Today is the first day of my cushy Thanksgiving Break. After a long Tuesday of teaching, playing piano, and driving, I made it to my hometown to head to the dentist. The dentist is my cousin, so I get a marginal discount.
As a child and teenager, I had extensive dental work performed. I had a gnarly tooth, which I dubbed “The Monster Tooth,” that grew in the wrong way. My orthodontist spent years slowly dragging the tooth into place, only to have the enamel completely absorb the root, making the tooth nonviable. At that point, bone from my wisdom teeth was used to create a foundation in which a metal implant—a small screw, of sorts—was installed into my mouth. I walked around with a small metal rod in place of a tooth for some months, and then a crown was placed atop the implant.
Needless to say, I’ve become accustomed to dental work, but that doesn’t mean I enjoy going.