And for good reason.
A week ago, I took her to the Orthodontist to get fitted for a palate spreader.
A palate spreader, for women, is the equivalent of a speculum, permanently installed in the upper mouth, in order to flair out her palate to make room for the mess in her mouth we call teeth. If you are a man, think, "bamboo skewers inserted into the tip of your penis, to make room for a kidney stone". There is not enough room, and shit's coming in like Stonehenge, but without the happy tourists.
She is not a fan of the dentist, having inherited both my and her dad's dental issues. She has had more work done than Joan Rivers. Consequently, she has a bit of anxiety. So they gave us Flintstones Chewable Valium, to make things go smoothly.
Instead of selling them to high school students, I gave her one. She melted. Which helped, because they had to put a bunch of Silly Putty in her mouth in order to create a mold.
They took a bunch of "before" pictures. Likely to laugh at in the break room. Or to put on a billboard as a warning to people with bad teeth to not reproduce.
She ended the day fairly pissy. But nothing a trip to Baskin Robbins and Target couldn't cure. I am NOT a stranger to
She also had a list of foods she had one week to gorge on, including popcorn, corn on the cob, jerky, and chewy candy: four of her favorite food groups. And by looking at her, you can tell she certainly can't stand to miss too many meals. Unlike her mother.
It was a long week full of popcorn and anxiety. Friday came quickly though, and when I picked her up from school, one of her teachers told me her tics* were in full effect and the appointment was all she talked about.
*She has some transient tics that get worse when she is excited or stressed. One is where she stretches out her upper lip. Another, she forces air out her nose quickly, almost like a snort. The third most common one is the one where she makes a slight gulping sound.
She could barely get a word in edgewise, what with all the shit she had going on with her face. If I didn't know why it was happening, I would have likely found it humorous. But I'm not THAT mean. At least to her face.
On the way to the appointment, she popped her kiddy roofie, and by the time we got seated she had melted again. Things were looking good. Of course, every time she said something weird or licked someone, I had to explain she took "a little something to take the edge off". I'm sure I made some "list". Put it in my permanent files, assholes.
I coulda got $10 a hit for this shit
Then the fun began. First, they fitted the spreader. With tools that look like medieval torture devices. I had to stop them to explain each one, so she wouldn't freak. Then she would forget, and say something like, "My mom has huge boobies" or, "My brother is a jerk" or, "my mom is taking me to Target after this to get some squinkies.....or some Littlest Pet Shop.....or a new Barbie....or maybe all of them......I like ice cream. I want chocolate. Or maybe cookie dough. Oh, no. I can't chew. That's right....."
It took a while. They finally got ready to cement the spreader in. She had to open wide, let them fit it, let them jam it further with tools, then let it dry. All while her spit pooled in the back of her throat.
After several silent tears and a dry heave, we were done.
Almost done. Because then they had to teach me how to "adjust" it. 3 times per week. And by "adjust" they meant, lay her down, shine a flashlight in her mouth, make her open wider than humanly possible, all while I stick a tool in the teeny hole in the spreader, and crank it one full turn, in order to slowly flare her jaw outward to make room for her teeth to drop down.
Then she spoke. I could hardly understand her, so much spit was coming out. She couldn't form "s"s or "l"s. Daffy Duck is the closest comparison. No artistic embellishments, either.
I couldn't spend my money fast enough to make up for my torture.
Once home, she spent the night letting her meds wear off, until she was nearly hysterical with jaw pain. I gave her some Tylenol, and she decided to go to bed early, to get away from the pain.
Once my heart stopped feeling like it would explode, I convinced her to eat some ice cream.
She snuggled me all night.
Today, she's still in pain, and has to use a water pic after each snack just to get the food out from under the appliance. Now I have to go get more children's Tylenol, before the last dose wears off.
Sometimes, parenting really sucks. Hard.