Saturday, 2 March 2013

Bridget is awaiting the Tooth Fairy

Bridget's Closed lip smile
I started this entry last Thursday when Bridget and I were at Holland Bloorview Children's Rehabilitation Centre.  I have a preface and this blog entry will be continued this week. It will soon be clear why.  I promise part 2 will be shorter.  

Thursday was the day for which we have been waiting for 12 years.  
Since the day the dentist approached me with that "I have bad news to deliver" face that every parent dreads.  When Bridget reached the ripe old age of 7 and was yet to get her "6 year old " molars, she asked the dentist "why?". He took a panoramic xray and informed Bridget and me that she had only about half of the permanent teeth that she would need. At this point all I knew that from a dental perspective, her childhood would not be easy. I wanted to cry but I smiled with all of my relatively perfect permanent teeth at this little 7 year old toothless wonder.I promptly bought her a puppy. Not a real puppy just a cute cuddly one. She was happy with this. Derek would have bought her a pony. 

At the age 10 the process began at Holland Bloorview Children's Rehabilitation Centre, just south of Sunnybrook Hospital. The dental program is associated with Sick Kids' Hospital.  I think Bloorview used to be referred to as the Crippled Childrens' Centre and there is really no other place that makes a parent value the health of their children.  Enough said.  

  The project manager was the Prosthodontist, with a project team made up of our family dentist, an orthodontist and an oral surgeon.  So, after 7 years of braces and tears, retainers, teeth extractions (ironically), more tears, C-T scans, a bone graft from her hip to her jaw, Percocet highs and tears and finally the implants in November, Thursday was to be the final hurrah.  The permanent teeth for which she has waited so long, were finally ready.  The Prosthodontist, Dr. Robert Carmichael, was running late and the staff were apologizing. We were not at all concerned. We have been waiting 12 years so far. It snowed again Wednesday night. How do people live in this climate?  Bridget has chosen today to extend her Barbados holiday and wear slip on, mini running shoes in the slush. She said "it's fine mom".  Soon she is wearing my mitts on her feet.  

Today's team

When the teeth are inserted, Dr Carmichael had a worried look that Bridget was not picking up on. Fortunately this was her day to be self absorbed. He keeps talking in dental gibberish. We were then asked to give our thoughts, terribly critically, about the teeth.  "Today is the day to be critical and self absorbed". Bridget was good with this. She noticed every fraction of asymmetry, every nook and cranny.   He said she should be a dental aesthetician. I said " she is just an 18 year old girl". She is also critiquing her new freckles from the sun. I don't think that degree of detail was necessary.

Bridget and Dr. Carmichael in consultation

We were then sent to the lab across Toronto at Dufferin and Davenport.We were carrying Bridget's new teeth in a box, similar to an organ donation cooler and we carried it as such. Bridget's GPS on her phone is hard to follow for an old woman and a girl who has difficulty with north and south. We got lost twice on the Don Valley. If you know Toronto at all, you will be asking what we were doing on the Don Valley. I should have just looked at a map.  

Glamorous lab below. More furrowed brows and dental gibberish and some pain and a few tears. I think sometimes doctors forget that she is attached to her teeth as they poke and scrape. However, she did enjoy her photo shoot.
Glamorous waiting area

Well the reason this is a 2-part entry:  either her teeth shifted or the model was off, but the new teeth just didn't fit to the level of perfection for which they were aspiring. Back to Bloorview and new impressions were taken and a new model is being made.  New teeth for Thursday.  Same time, same place. 
At the Lab - note mitts on feet
Bridget's Photo Shoot - always loves the camera

Yes it was frustrating and disappointing.  Yes there were tears and curses.  Yes Bridget was a trouper once again.  We walked out of Bloorview feeling deflated.  but perspective was again provided.  The fact was, we were walking.  Thursday will come and those teeth will be ready and all will be as it should be, for us. 

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