If the Crown Fits . . . . . .

 

Nothing says Valentine’s Day like your husband buying you a new crown.   I say new crown because he already bought me about 1400 of them over the years.  It’s not even Valentine’s Day yet, but I am getting a new crown and it’s pretty expensive so please don’t feel jealous.  It’s the same color as the others, but it’s a little smaller and more dainty.  It has been ordered and will be here in about 10 days.  I’m so excited…..

Well, that is how I talk myself into being happy about  getting a tooth crowned.  And, truth be told, I don’t have 1400 crowns to wear upon my head, but I do have several (lost count) crowned teeth that are worth way more than $1400.  I have to try to be happy about it and see how funny it actually is or I will cry.  We could have gone to Europe a few times for the money we have spent on my teeth throughout the years.  I am  just grateful we have dental insurance or it would have been much worse. 

Don’t be jealous about my crowns.  I know it’s human nature to be jealous of something someone else has, and now that you know I have so many crowns, I don’t want you to start wishing you had crowns, too.  Because I promise you really don’t want to have crowns.  They’re not any fun to get or pay for or floss around.   And you can’t eat caramel corn and Jolly Ranchers any more. 

Today is Wednesday and this all began on Monday.  When I intend to get a new crown, I get serious!  I went for a regular dental cleaning.  I was enjoying the nitrous oxide (laughing gas) that I have to get even for a cleaning because my teeth are so sensitive, when even through the thick fog of being stoned, I could feel horrible pain.  Yikes!  When the cleaning was done I asked the girl what would have caused that pain, but she didn’t know.  “The doctor will come in now and take a look now,” is what she told me. 

The doctor looked at the x-rays, which didn’t show anything.  He put on his binocular glasses and head lamp to take a closer look.  “You have an old crown here, that someone else did, that doesn’t fit properly.  It looks like there is some decay here around the bottom of the crown that is causing the pain.  You have two choices.  We can do a patch and fill where we drill out what we can, going under the crown and just patch it like a regular filling, but I can’t guarantee I can get all of the decay that might be under the crown.  That costs about $30.  Or, we can cut the crown off, get it all cleaned out, and give you a new crown, which will cost about $430 (insurance helps).” 

Well, I have had so many misadventures with my teeth that I have learned there is no point in taking any shortcuts.  It’s best to do it right the first time.  Speaking of which, it would have been nice if the other dentist would have done it right the first time his own little self so I wouldn’t be facing this now, but that was a long time ago.  I told the doctor, “I always tell my kids to do things right the first time or they will have to go back and do it right later on, so let’s do it right.  Please make me a new crown.”  See, that is the way to get a new crown.  Just declare that you want it and 10 days later, it comes delivered to your dentist to be fit just for you.  LOL. 

The appointment for the crown was fast tracked so I could have it fitted before an upcoming surgery.  So, that was today.  I spent almost 2 hours in the chair.  Again, I was really enjoying the bliss of semi-consciousness under the nitrous when I heard the doctor say, “well, you certainly made the right choice.  There is a lot of decay here that I didn’t even expect over here in the back,” and all the way about, above, according to, across, after, against, along, among, around, before, behind, below, beneath, beside, between, beyond, and now I’m tired of writing so many prepositions, but you get the idea.   “I couldn’t possibly have gotten it all without taking the crown off.”  He told me he cleaned it all up, put medicine on the nerve that was now exposed, and would seal it up temporarily while I waited for my permanent new and lovely, expensive crown. 

I’m glad this happened.  It isn’t fun to open your wallet to a $430 expense you didn’t plan on, but I’m glad I could get this fixed before it became a worse problem, which the dentist said it would have become.  It would eventually have led to total tooth loss, probably an implant, and a lot more money.  I’m glad I chose to get it fixed right the first time. 

It makes me think about the little things in my life that I don’t even know are creeping in.  Working their way in where there is the slightest opening, that I might not even know is there.  For 15 or so years I though this crown was doing its job of protecting the tooth.  But because it didn’t fit properly, not covering the entire tooth area, decay was able to begin and do its damage, slowly, but surely.  I think this could represent anything that we don’t want in our lives.  Influences of bad media, bad friends, negative people, or anything else that has the power to slowly eat away at the root of our soul, our faith, our love. 

This helps me see that I have to be very careful about preventing negative influences from eating away at my spirit.  I have always been good at flossing and brushing and taking care of my teeth, but it doesn’t do any good if the crown doesn’t fit.  It wasn’t my fault that this happened to my tooth, but it still happened and I have to deal with it now.  I can blame the old dentist, or I can move happily along and be grateful I’m not going to lose my entire tooth.  I like to look at hardships and negative forces the same way.  And, I’ll admit, it has taken me a long time to have this outlook.  It isn’t the product of youth, at least not for me.  It has come as I have gotten older.  There are things that happen to us that are beyond our control.  But most things can be cleaned up, repaired, replaced, or forgotten.  The reason this is so is because we have a Savior, Jesus Christ, who makes up the difference, after all that we can do.  We have to do our part first, but then He steps in and makes up the difference.  We need to be obedient, like brushing and flossing and keeping our dental appointments, and then the atonement helps us.  I could not fix this problem myself.  I needed my dentist’s help.  So, we made a decision together to move forward with a new crown, and the health of my mouth will be restored.  Just like I can get a newly crowned tooth, I can repent and forgive and receive a newly crowned soul. 

I love to think about daily things and the way they pertain to my faith.  I’m a visual learner and a figurative learner so I think God gives me these lessons so I can grow my faith by learning this way.  I’m going to work harder at making sure my crown fits.  When I say crown, I mean my faith, my belief in Jesus Christ, my covenants.  All those things that help protect me from the evil influences all around me.  I’m going to be making sure it’s on really nice and tight.  If decay slips in, the Dentist will come to the rescue and help me fix the problem.  I just want you all to know that I really know this is true because it has happened to me in my life many times.  Not just going to the real dentist, but trusting the real Healer, my Savior, Jesus Christ. 

I want to wear the crown promised me one day if I am obedient and worthy, to live with God again, with my family.  I know it is possible because that is what God has promised.   I’m going to be more serious about looking out for silent spiritual stalkers and invaders that want me to fail, and defeat them before they have a chance.   I don’t want anything coming between me and my eternal reward.  No black decay allowed under my crown, silently eroding away at my faith!  Gross!  I will be committed to do everything I can to prevent it, but if it comes without me inviting it, I know there is still hope and it can be drilled away and repaired. 

Go check your crown! 

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