Want to go along with me to the dentist?
They've got all kinds of bird feeders and squirrel feeders and even a bird bath to watch from the dental chair.
We're getting to be really good friends now.
My crown collection is magnificent!
See, isn't this a pretty view from the dental chair?
I've had the worst luck with dentist in the past.
Most visits felt more like an assault than dental care.
I'd stagger out of dental appointments, wondering if I should call 911.
It got so bad Bernie used to have to go with me to see the dentist and hold my hand so I wouldn't sob.
Turned out I have a strong reaction to epinephrine, the drug they give you to numb you up.
It wasn't that I "needed to straighten up and stop shaking", or that it was all in my head.
It took me finally figuring out at what point the shaking began...about 90 seconds after an hearty injection.
Let me tell you, this dentist is different.
Dr. Rowntree, (the guy in white, first picture above) is the first dentist I have ever had that hasn't made me feel physically and emotionally miserable.
He's not at all like a former dentist who shot me up with epinephrine, and then chewed me out for shaking.
Or the one that started a root canal and decided half way through it he wouldn't finish it.
Now that a challenge, finding another dentist willing to finish up an open tooth on a late Friday afternoon.
Nope, Dr. Rowntree is a good old Texas doc.
He loves to go fishing, and he lives out in the country, where he and his wife can sit around a campfire at night.
So I feel relaxed.
Sometimes he speaks at dental conferences.
I guess you could call him an authority on a lot of dental stuff.
(I know he is an authority on a lot of dental stuff.)
I like that he tells me what he is thinking about doing about the stuff going on with my teeth before he starts.
I like that he explains in simple terms what the procedure is, identifies what he actually IS doing DURING the procedure and at the same time manages to make me feel both intelligent and cared for.
Surprising how often those two things don't go together.
And I really, really like that mostly he remembers not to use epinephrine on me.
Because of that issue, he has to work very swiftly to finish procedures on me before the numbing wears off.
Epinephrine apparently lengthen the amount of time the numbing lasts.
Now to hear him talk, you might think he's planning to ride a horse on the next cattle drive.
He's got that Texas country accent.
Listening to him, you'd think maybe he'll pin on a sheriff's badge and join a posse rounding up cattle rustlers.
His office LOOKS like he might possibly live on a Texas ranch, doing roping and cowpoking, and gitten them little dogies along.
His whole office looks like what anyone visiting Texas would hope Texas would look like.
Some day I'd like to wander around the whole office and check out all his great wild life art and Texas country memorabilia. Pretty interesting stuff.
The only thing missing that I can see is a big ol' white hat for our drill wielding hero to tip as he says good bye.
I can see him doing that.
It would be a great shtick at conferences.
Now I would be remiss to not mention the office staff, the friendly women who care enough to keep up with how I am are doing, and they share enough about what they are doing that it feels more like we should be having a cup of tea and a visit together instead of grinding away at aging teeth.
There were blue jays, cardinals, doves, sparrow, downy wood peckers, ladder back woodpeckers, sparrows, finches, and I don't know what all else outside the dentist's window while I was there.
And lots of squirrels too.
Most of them left before I could get a good shot.
I did catch a woodpecker hanging from the bird seed basket, and a sparrow on the edge of the bird bath.
There's a bird guide book on the table below the ironing board.
With all the birds coming through in winter, sometimes it is needed.
You know, it's pretty relaxing to talk with your dentist and dental assistant about the birds outside the window.
It's almost like being in a park.
I'll be back in the chair in a couple of weeks, as soon as the replacement crown comes in.
I can think of "funner" ways to spend $998 and 90 minutes.
(Crowns that go ON my head, instead of IN my head would be great!)
What can I say.
Dental work costs. Thank heaven for insurance.
And thank heaven for a dental team that keeps me comfortable while they get done what needs getting done.
Good job, ya'll.