Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Ten Teeth of Thankfulness

Please note: I am posting this on Tuesday but it will also be my "Ten Things of Thankful" post for Saturday...lest you be confused. 

So…I’m certain you knew about my 10yo having oral surgery. And the deed has finally been done. He had the surgery yesterday and all went well. We will return to the doctor on Friday for a follow-up, and just to ensure that everything is kosher, but so far, so good.

But just in case you missed it, here’s the initial post of the whole to-do.

And here's the x-ray in case you just wanted to see it again:

X-Ray from November
Now that you are caught up, I shall fill all of you in on the delightful surgery to which we had to look forward to experiencing:

Ten Teeth were removed from his head yesterday.


Six of them were casualties, if you will…baby teeth on the top which were pretty-much just hanging there (one had more root left than the others but mostly they were ready) and we decided to take them out while we could. He's never been a "Oh that tooth is slightly loose so let me wiggle, wiggle, wiggle it until it comes out"; he's more of "Yeah it'll come out when it is ready" kind of loose tooth kid. Which meant they could potentally be in there for weeks if not months.

And there is WAY too much work to be done in this tiny mouth to be waiting around for those teeth to fall out.

Patience isn't really my thing...have I mentioned that?

But, I am also cheap (you've possibly discerned that before about me?). And to have those upper teeth removed wasn't going to be cheap.

My frugality was over-riding my patience.

So...this brings me to my first item of thankful: the orthodontist wanted those out but we were ok with them staying in and coming out in their own sweet time...much as it pained me.

But we knew the oral surgeon (I actually babysat him and his sister a few times…yikes! How old AM I? and he attended our wedding, with his dad who was our dentist.) and he was SO gracious and took out those teeth FOR FREE. Oh yes…big money savings right there.

More thankfulness than I can even explain.

So that’s the story with the six teeth on the top.

The four baby teeth on the bottom which came out were ankylosed…which meant that not only did the roots not dissolve but they fused to the jawbone. Fun, right?

You can see from the pictures included that they have roots still...and a couple of them have quite a bit. And you can see where the bone was cut.

Words fail me.

Oh, and one last bit…don't forget about those two permanent teeth which were coming in at an angle…remember those? Well, they were exposed by cutting back the gum tissue. Then they were attached to a chain (at least that’s how I understood it…I can’t quite see very far in that tiny little mouth, especially since he can’t open it very far!) and next week those chains will be attached to the braces which were already put in place a couple weeks ago.

And because you were wondering…why yes, the back teeth on which the braces are attached…those back teeth are also ankylosed baby teeth. But there wasn’t any choice on what teeth to choose, so those teeth will come out (in another surgery) in about a year, or whenever those teeth straighten up and the permanent teeth have come in next to them and the braces can be attached to those instead.

All that to say…I am thankful that the next surgery won’t be nearly as extreme as this one…only two teeth. Which is good because he only has two baby teeth left.

But they will probably be about the size of the largest ones shown here:

I know you wanted a photo to show these roots at close range...I am a full-service blogger.
As an aside, he's already reminded the 12yo (several times in 24 hours, in fact) that he has fewer baby teeth than him; I believe the 12yo still has 4 or 5 baby teeth. As one might expect, such reminders are well-received by the 12yo. (Insert his eyerolls here.)

We shall deal with the wisdom teeth if/when they decide to make an appearance. They’re not showing signs of themselves yet and possibly won’t. I didn’t know this (and you may not have known it either…if you did, bully for you) the doctor said it’s around age 12 at the earliest when wisdom teeth begin to develop.

So there’s THAT to wonder about/worry about/look forward to.

Now…what you have ALL been waiting for…the entertaining parts of the day…and I am thankful for all of them:

When he came out of surgery, he (I was told) was humming “Frere Jacques”…which is the song my mom and I would sing to him when he was a baby. Even now, he wants me to sing it (again…he’s clearly tone deaf because I cannot sing on key to save my soul…and I’m so thankful my salvation does not require that) when he’s upset or scared.

But yesterday, the sweet boy hummed it to himself. That part isn’t entertaining so much as it was sweet.

When he came out of surgery he told the nurses they he had to go to the bathroom, so they came to get me to help him. (Good call on their part.)  

He felt pretty shaky; “I feel really weird” was actually what he kept saying, so the nurse brought a wheelchair for him. She got him into the bathroom and allowed me to “take over”.

I helped him stand up thinking he would take one tiny side-step over and then pee…with his back to me. No embarrassment needed for anyone.

But no…he turned around and sat down on the toilet. With his pants still pulled up.

Me: Dude, you are sitting down. Do you have to pee or poop?

10yo: Pee!

Me: But you’re sitting down?

10yo: Yes…(like I’m the dumb one)

I’m pretty sure he would have rolled his eyes if it would have been possible.

He kept asking me “What are you laughing at?” But the gauze stuffed in his mouth make it almost unintelligible, which only made me laugh more.

And then he started laughing but didn’t know why…which also made me laugh.

Which made him ask why I was laughing.

Ah...fun with anesthesia.

After the nurse finished giving me instructions on "wound care" and we were waiting to see the doctor, the nurse asked the 10yo if he wanted to see his teeth.

His reply with swagger: “Yeah I want to see my teeth!” (Translation: Yeah lady…you think I’m a freak? No way…I’m a cool dude who wants to see those teeth…hand them over!)

After taking a quick glance at the bag of teeth, he turned his head, clutched his stomach and said, “Oh no, no, no! I DON’T want to see my teeth!”

And then he burped. A sign of things to come.

Once we left the doctor’s office, he continually asked, “Where are we going?”

Me: We’re going to get your medicine and then to get a shake for you. You can’t take your medicine without eating a shake first.

Turn the car

10yo: Where are we going?

Me: We’re going to get your medicine and then to get a shake for you. You can’t take your medicine without eating a shake first.

(Repeat conversation as needed or approximately 300 more times)

We went to CVS first to drop off the script. They were going to be a little while so we went across the street to Burger King for a shake. Why Burger King, you may be asking…because it was close.

And even though Steak N' Shake was right next door, my boy isn’t a big fan of Steak N' Shake shakes.


I asked him what flavor he wanted, and he said chocolate, which was actually no surprise.

But I figured I had better ask, just in case he all of a sudden wanted strawberry or something ridiculous like that.

Yeah, strawberry shakes ARE ridiculous. I said it.

In the meantime, the kiddo dropped back off the sleep.

So I placed the order and pulled up to the window to pay.  As I was handing my money to the cashier, I realize that he was looking past me and he shouted (yes, actually shouted), “Oh my GAWD! What happened?!?”

I turned to see my child had momentarily awakened; the stocking cap he never leaves home without had migrated to the floor of the car, leaving him with some CRAZY bed-head-type hair; there was a large bandage across his chin and traveling up his cheeks in an effort to keep him from opening his mouth too far and busting the stitches; and a fairly large piece of bloody gauze was hanging out of his mouth.

So clearly I could understand the need for the guy’s question, but since my child had not seen himself, he had no idea why this guy was asking.

Me (to the guy…with my eyes WIDE, so as the say “SHUT UP, IDIOT!”): Ummm he had some teeth pulled this morning. Like 10 of them…so, yeah.

Guy: “Oh my GAWD! “Oh my GAWD!”

Apparently he did not speak “mom eyes”.

I gave him my money and the next thing I knew, he sent another employee over to the window to gawk at my child and hand me the shake.

Really? This is Greenwood…but it can’t possibly be the first time you’ve seen this come through the drive-through.

Moving on, we drove BACK across the street to pick up the scripts.

10yo: Where are we going?

Me: We’re going to get your medicine.

When picking up the prescription at CVS, I, of course, went through the drive-through. No way was I taking my “happy little drunk” into the store and marching him all the way to the back to pick up the scripts.

Nor was I going to leave him alone in the car.

In hindsight, both of those decisions were sage in every way.

So, we pulled into the drive-through line and THANKFULLY someone had (previously) suggested I take an “urp bucket” in the car…and that I had heeded the advice.  Because the child belched probably the loudest burp I have ever heard come out of his tiny body and he said, “Ought oh!”

I scrambled for the bucket and shoved it under his chin; at the same time I glanced out the passenger side window in time to catch the eye of a guy sitting in his car in the lane next to us.

I can’t be sure, but I think I saw him heave a little bit when he saw my son start to “spew”.

It reminds of the quote from Wayne’s World “If you’re gonna spew, spew into this…” Fortunately I had more than a Dixie cup.

Just an aside: blood and bile do not make for appetizing vomit. I mean, what does, really…it was probably good that there wasn’t anything chunky in it.

Of course I started laughing at the absurdity of the situation, and I hear “Why are you laughing? What are you laughing at?”

And then in a moment of clear lucidity, he held out the bucket and asked, “Where are we going to dump this out?”

Me: Well, we’re going home so we’ll dump it out at home. Just put it down there in front of you on the floor…in case you need it again.

He handed it to me and I put it on the floor in front of him.

On the drive home from CVS, he, understandably, kept dropping off to sleep…only to reawaken a few seconds later.

Finally he told me “I’m not really tired, I just need to go to sleep.”

In case you were wondering, yes, I did receive permission for this photo to be included.
But he BEGGED me to show off the teeth (once his stomach settled and he could actually look at them.)

Day 1: check!


  1. I've been wondering how things went. I'm glad all went fairly well.

  2. wow. just wow. I didn't know this was happening, however, I have thoroughly enjoyed your post...as always...love laughing out loud in my cubicle at work....have to keep that "Jo is a bit loony" thought circulating....

    1. I'm so sorry that I didn't tell you! Yes, craziness, right?

      I do what I can to help you keep up appearances :)

  3. Ah, oral surgery...we're at 4 and counting for Andrea. Thankfully for her, I don't recall any stories quite so entertaining with her. Sadly it took us until after the second one, though, to determine that she can't tolerate the pain killer with codeine. Hope he's feeling better today. :)

    1. Yes, I have had 5 of them and braces twice...so I feel the kids pain. Granted, I NEVER had 10 teeth removed at once. He is a trooper for sure.

  4. Ohhhh poor sweet boy! You did so well to look after him and think of taking an upchuck bucket. Bless his boots.

    Thank GOODNESS that's over! Owwww!

    1. I know...it's crazy. And yes, he even keeps saying he's glad he had it but that it's over. Bless him for sure! :)

  5. Well, that's an impressive recovery, there. Or maybe he was still high on anesthesia when he was busting a move today! Hahaha!

    1. Yes, if it were not for the banadages and the puffy cheeks, you'd be none the wiser, right? He hasn't had any pain meds since Tuesday night...and that wasn't because he was asking for it. I just wanted to ensure that he slept ok!

  6. Hilarious! I mean, poor Gannon.....

  7. Oh my! Kristi from Thankful Me sent me over to read your post! My granddaughter, who is also 10 just had 11 baby teeth pulled. http://amaraland.com/memories/2014/a-letter-from-the-tooth-fairy/ I must say her problems are not nearly as severe as your son's. Her baby teeth were not coming out fast enough either and she was going to have serious problems with her permanent teeth coming in wrong -- but nothing like your son. Her's came out very easily. I wish you all good luck! I have to follow so I can see the outcome!