Sunday, February 21, 2010

gag me with a toothbrush

I hate brushing my teeth. Hate it. Makes me gag on a regular basis-- I've even thrown up as a result, which is a pain since I have to just brush again. Changing toothpaste is a recipe for disaster, and nothing is worse than getting to the store and finding my tried-and-true brand is new-and-improved! Different water is bad too; chlorine is also a smell that makes me gag, so put the two together and it is not pretty.

I love to visit friends, but it is a bit of a challenge for me to keep up good dental hygiene. As I was packing to head to Belfast, I was putting way too much energy into a situation that should have been as simple as remembering to bring a tooth brush. I could just make all my visits day trips, but that's not fun. The easiest solution would be to just not brush my teeth, but I think we can all agree that it's not a good idea. And that's when it hit me: the easiest solution is not necessarily your favorite solution, but if the other options don't seem viable, it becomes the only solution. If you've grown up in a household where everyone smokes, and then you start smoking... and then one day you decide you really should quit, but it's all around you so quitting will be really, really hard... it is just so much easier to keep smoking. Or not exercising, or swearing, or fighting or... any of the many things that keep my Sunshines from moving forward.

My job is to help them figure out their plan, so that instead of not brushing they bring their own water in addition to their own toothpaste. Sounds simple, huh? But really, that is my job-- to help my kids figure out what is holding them back and how to move around it in an acceptable way. After I brush my teeth, of course...

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