As Molly turned 4 this week, I was reminded that she is still a kid even though she seems so grown up. I recall our last visit to the dentist and how apprehensive both Jill and I were.
I took her in for some fillings, not quite sure how this was all going to play out. We walked into the waiting room and there were toys everywhere. Good start so far, great way to help keep her relaxed. We were called into a consultation room and it was rather plain, I immediately thought this is going to be just like any other dentist. We enter the treatment area and I can see right away how overwhelming it would be for any kid. Giant chair with an octopus apparatus hovering above it, people with masks walking around, and sharp shiny objects nicely laid out.
Enter the assistant, she talks about a princess cape. Just the utterance of princess will usually win Molly over. The assistant is chatting Molly and letting her know everything she is doing. Molly is shy anyway, but she is nodding like she understands what is going on. The dentist comes in and is reassuring her everything is going to be all right and the pictures of her teeth look good. We head back into the waiting room and wait for her to get all doped up. I could not help but laugh when she became all wobbly, her words were slurred, and eyes barely open. However, as she was lying in the chair I realized she is still my little girl. She was so innocent, doing what she was told as best as she could. By the end of it, I could tell she was uncomfortable and all I could do was watch, feeling so helpless. She bore it all and I knew that my little girl is also a big girl.
It is one thing to be competent in your profession and it is another thing to be competent and working with kids. It is something they don’t teach you in school, I think it is something that has to come naturally. Kids are never straight forward and you have to be able to think on your feet. The staff at the clinic were awesome, but let’s hope we don’t have to go back there again.