I just got back from the dentist. I don't think that I've ever been one of those people who does not like going to the dentist...ever. Today, I became one of those people. (It could possibly be the "Froggie-Full O' Treats" at my old dentist's office, but that's neither here nor there.
I had the same dentist/orthodontist for 20 years and then when it was time for me to go to a "big girl dentist", I just went right across the street to my parents' dentist, a fellow church member, and an office where my favorite dental hygienist, Alice, had moved. Alice is my favorite because she was one of the first people to clean my teeth when I was a baby. And she is always, ALWAYS, smiling. Always.
So, needless to say, Alice was truly missed today. The lady who did my teeth today (who shall remain nameless only because I can't remember her name because she obviously didn't make that good of an impression on me) was so not Alice. She took FOREVER! Alice is a speedy chick. Speedy, but efficient. And before she starts poking around in my mouth, she always asks me how things are going. Even though she heard me say the same thing out in the hallway just five minutes ago. She brags on how she just loves to hear my "momma" sing and how sweet my daddy is (of course, he is). She continues talking to me while she's poking around in my mouth and pretends to understand what my responses are to her questions even though I have a mouthful of Alice's hand. And the four words that people hate to hear, "You have a cavity", well they were never as daunting coming out of Alice's mouth.
And then there's Dr. Boteler. Bill. Now this guy is a dentist. For realz. You can tell by his bowtie. Dude can pull off a bowtie. But also, he is one of the most gentle creatures I have ever meet. The guy loves the Lord and is not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Even if I didn't know him from church and I was a bum off the street, I could tell that he is a servant of the Lord because Christ's love just radiates from him. His smile is gentle, calming and of course, perfect. And I know he prays for every single one of his patients.
He also does pro bono work with Mission First, a branch of the First Baptist Jackson ministry for people who can't afford to go to the dentist.
He, like Alice, loves to brag about my mom and dad and what great people they are. Of course, they don't have to tell me that. I mean, I am their daughter but it's just a great feeling when you hear it from someone else. You know how parents get when people brag on their children to them? Well, that's how I am when folks talk about my mom and dad. The pride wells up inside me and I can hardly contain it.
Needless to say, my first trip to the dentist in Birmingham left much to be desired...except for that Sports Illustrated with Tim Tebow on the cover that I barely skimmed in the waiting room before they called me back. Other than that, let's just say, I'm not looking forward to my next visit.
I guess Dorothy was right after all.
There is no place like home.