It was that terrible, horrible, awful, scary time of year again. No, it wasn’t Halloween. That would have been much, much better. It was time for Little Monster to go to the dentist.
“My teeth are fine,” Little Monster said. He smiled a wide, sharp-toothed grin. “See? They’re all there and they work great. Why bother the dentist?”
Mama Monster rolled her large yellow eyes. “It won’t bother the dentist. It’s her job to check on monster teeth so they stay healthy.”
Little Monster coughed a little, unconvincing cough. “I think I have a cold. We’d better not spread it around. We might as well reschedule.”
“Hmmmm.” Mama Monster picked up her purse. “We’ll let them know when we check in, but I think it’ll be fine.”
On the way to the door, Little Monster fell dramatically over a chair. “Ouch! I think I broke both my legs. I’d better go lie down.”
Mama Monster scooped him up and carried him out to the car. “I guess I’ll make an appointment with the doctor as well.”
Little Monster sat up straight in his booster seat, looking worried. “Actually, I think my leg is all better now. I don’t need to see the doctor.”
“Well, that’s good.” Mama Monster started the car and drove to the dentist’s office.
At the front door, Little Monster paused. “Are you sure we need to go to the dentist today? Wouldn’t another day be better? We should think about this. I think it’s a bad idea. Remember my cold?” Little Monster coughed another little cough.
Mama Monster opened the door. “Come in and sit down. I’ll let the receptionist know about your cold.” Little Monster sat in a terrible pink chair with a scowl. Mama Monster walked up to the front desk. “Little Monster thinks he might have a cold.”
“That’s fine,” the receptionist said. “The dentist wears a mask and gloves.”
At that moment, Little Monster knew that he was going to actually see the dentist and there wasn’t much he could do about it. It’s not easy being a little monster. He decided that someday he would get to choose whether or not to visit the dentist. He would choose to not visit the dentist.
All too soon, Little Monster was sitting on an awful dentist chair decorated with horrible rainbows. The dentist came out wearing a frightening people mask and people gloves. Little Monster screamed. Mama Monster and the dentist chuckled as the dentist changed her mask and gloves to something more normal.
Little Monster didn’t think it was funny.
“Have you been brushing your teeth?” the dentist asked, leaning his chair back.
Little Monster smiled widely. “Yes. I brush everyday with my brussel sprout toothpaste.”
“Oh, the green slimey one? I love that toothpaste,” the dentist said.
“So, since I brush everyday, I don’t need to be here, right?” Little Monster tried to sit up.
Mama Monster put a paw on his shoulder. “Nice try.”
“Open up,” the dentist said.
The next twenty minutes weren’t so bad. Unfortunately, after the dentist finished poking Little Monster’s teeth with something sharp, she turned to Mama Monster and said something scary. “His teeth look boring.”
“Oh no,” Mama Monster said. “I was afraid of that. I kept hoping they’d get more crooked as he got older.”
“I’m afraid that if you don’t do anything, they’ll remain straight as straight can be.”
Little Monster crossed his arms and glared. This was hard to do when lying in a dentist chair, but Little Monster was always good at glares. “I like straight teeth.”
Mama Monster shook her head sadly. “The other monsters at school might tease you.”
“I don’t care.” Little Monster turned his head away from the dentist. “They’re my teeth, and I like them. I don’t want braces.”
Mama Monster sighed.
“Maybe we can wait until he’s a little older.” The dentist clicked a few keys on her computer keyboard. “But the later you start, the later it will be until he’s done. I’ll send you home with some brochures. We can customize his look. We have a lot of options for artful, attention-getting crooked teeth.”
“I want to go home,” Little Monster whined.
“Not yet,” the dentist said. “You still need to get your teeth cleaned.”
“But I brush them every day,” Little Monster said. No one listened. Little Monster resolved to catch the flu next time he had an appointment. He never wanted to go to a dentist appointment again.