Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Back to Life.....Back to Reality.....

You know that song..."back to life, back to reality..."  I'm dating myself here. But it's by Soul II Soul in the 80's.  That first line keeps running over and over in my head.  I am facing a rather unpleasant issue this week and it's making my head hurt.  I decided to face up to it yesterday and I called the dentist for Daniel.  He has been blessed (as have we) with pretty much perfect teeth.  No cavities thus far (he's almost 14) and this is with not having them cleaned for YEARS.  They are straight, spaced well.  Nice.  Thank GOD.  His very last baby tooth became loose months ago.  The. Last. One.  We are almost there.  The golden ring is in reach.  We've been riding this crazy carousel ride round and round with the dentist and we are on our last circle the ring is there, we tried to grab it and the damn thing got STUCK.  Literally.  The darn tooth refuses to let go.  The adult tooth is almost in.  It's in front of the baby tooth.  The baby tooth is stubborn.  And it's stuck.  And I'm not happy.  Not one little bit.

We have worked so hard at the dentist.  We have spent years.  Yes YEARS, mastering the cleanings with our ever so patient and wonderful Jenny the hygienist.  The dentist, Dr Hartman is a young guy, and so very very patient with Daniel.  This spring we got our first complete set of X-rays!  They all celebrated.  He hasn't been able to do the bite ones, so we tried the full head x ray. You stand at a huge machine bite down on a guard and the machine actually circles your whole head.  We have the X ray in his room.  They printed it out for him.  They are wonderful and know just how to handle him.  He calmly does cleanings after years of practice.  He gets no sedation.  Never has.  We chose to take the long slow road, so that someday he could just walk in and do it.  We accomplished it and I'm very proud of that.  I think it empowers him that he can do it without any help.  He let's people put instruments in his mouth and scrape!  That can't be easy!  But he trusts them.  They have earned that trust.  But now. This tooth.  GAH!!!

During the last triumphant exam they said if the tooth wasn't out by July 4th, to call and set up the extraction.  Well, I waited until August 2, but who's counting.  The thing will not let go. I thought I should get it done before school starts.  I called on Monday and they said "you can come in at 4:00 today" and I panicked!!  "I'm not ready TODAY!!!" So it is tomorrow at 2:00 pm.  What am I scared of?  I'll tell you.  This one thing could undo years of work.  He might not want to go there again.  It might panic him and take him years to get back to this place we've worked so hard to get to.  They cannot put him under there.  I think it's because he is a minor and they are not pediatric dentists, I'm not sure.  But I don't know if I'd opt for that anyway.  In my opinion he might see that as much of a breach of trust as just getting it done.  So today I am preparing.  And I'm literally giving myself a migraine with worry. I can feel that tingling starting on the right side of my head like it does. 

I just hung up with the phone from a conversation with someone at the Dentist office.  As I was asking questions about what the plan is so I could prep Daniel, she said, "I totally understand, more than you know".  Apparently she has a son who is now in his 20's who has autism.  What a relief.  I know the others would understand but she understood every word.  So the plan is:

1.  He will have the tooth pulled in "Jenny's room" where he normally gets his teeth cleaned.   This is not procedure.  That would normally happen in the "Doctor's room".  It is too keep him in familiar territory (or should he be in a different room so he doesn't associate it with Jenny's room?) 

2.  Jenny (super hygienist) will be there.  Because he trusts her and she always seems to know what he can handle and what he can't.  She always says the right thing.  (Or should we get a "mean hygienist" so he doesn't relate any of this to her?)

3.  They can use nitrous oxide to relax him (or will he feel claustrophobic with that on?)

4.  They will put on a topical numbing whatever you call it (or will the taste and smell make him crazy?)

This is all me arguing with myself.  Trying to decide what is right for Daniel.  I argue and argue with myself.  This is what I do.  Until I finally have to just DECIDE.  There is no way to know what is correct, I just have to go with my gut based on past experiences. 

Talking to the office I said do not even think about a shot.  Don't even mention the WORD.  He is not scared of anything more in this world than a shot.  That will totally undo him FOREVER.  They said "good to know".  So if it can't be done with the above we'll have to go somewhere else where he can be put under. 

I then called his pediatrician to ask for a prescription for a Valium.  "A" as in just one.  He has done this before, but I never used it.  Unfortunately,  our pediatrician is on vacation this week so it has to be ran past another doctor.  I called the nurses line and laid out the scenario.  We have lots of friends who are doctors, so I hear about people trying to talk doctors into prescriptions for things, so the whole time I was trying to convey that I just wanted ONE to get us through this appointment.  I almost said two so I could get through it too, but I thought the humor might have been lost on the nurse and then I wouldn't get anything!    It's too bad our pediatrician is gone because he would do it in a second he seems to realize I'm not (too) crazy and trusts me.  We have built up a great relationship even though he doesn't always agree with some of my decisions.  But he does appreciate that I listen and have an intelligent conversation with him before I tell him no :)  But basically he knows I'm doing my best. 

So that's where I am.  Waiting for the pediatrician to call me back.  Preparing myself mentally.  I'm going to write a social story so Daniel knows what to expect.  I'm not in Charlevoix anymore.  Where my biggest decisions seem to be which beach to go to or what to have for dinner.  I'm here debating with myself about what will make this as successful as possible.  I'm back to life. Back to reality. . . Just so you have that stuck in your head too, here is the link.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jLHMAFfXYNY&feature=related

1 comment:

renae said...

Ok...now I have it stuck in my head too! Good song though.... :)

Michelle, I speak from my personal experience and you know that I understand what you are going through today. Remember that Daniel trusts you and there is nothing that can remove or alter that trust. Remember how your eyes "locked" when he was on that ride? You have done everything in your power to prepare him for today and you will be right there with him.
Take a deep breath,let Daniel know that he can do a good job and then put your trust in him. It will be ok...