My "Super Mom" award has been revoked and may never be reinstated. For what kind of mother allows her children's dental health to deteriorate to the point that one child has two cavities on either side of her mouth that require fillings, and another child has two cavities right on top of each other that require sedation, a pulpectomy (baby root canal), a crown, an extraction and the placement of an "appliance" (spacer)? There is some serious mama-guilt here, I can tell you, even though I felt like we were doing the right things all along to keep these kind of problems from developing.
Ruth's fillings have already been taken care of, painlessly and without fanfare, despite my warnings that there would be a shot and drilling. Turns out they don't do it that way anymore. At least not at our dentist's office. Just a completely pain-free shot with a laser that lasts about 5 minutes.
Weston went in for the first part of his procedure today, which was pretty much the opposite of that. He had to be sedated, though not put completely under, while the doctor performed the pulpectomy and the extraction. There was definitely some pain involved, with the promise of more to come when the full effects of the sedation wear off. There was also fear, which may have been an even worse pain, and certainly a pain that even I felt, especially when Weston looked at me with tears in his eyes and said, "Where were you?! That was so scary!" I had been not more than a few steps away, of course, but his feeling of abandonment struck me to the core and broke my heart! I will admit to shedding more than a few tears right along with Weston on our way home. They tell me he won't remember any of this, but I will not soon forget. His spacer has to be custom made for his mouth, so we will get to do this all over again in 4-6 weeks.
I can tell you this, we will not be taking our dental health lightly around here anymore. We will be brushing and flossing and mouth-washing like crazy, and we will be doing it with close maternal supervision.