For some time now, Aaron has used mouthwash every night before bed. His dental hygienist suggested this for Aaron, telling us that it would help prevent tartar buildup. Aaron’s dental habits could use some tweaking, let’s just say………….so could his showering habits, for that matter. Anyway, I was skeptical that Aaron would come anywhere near a bottle of mouthwash, let alone actually put it in his mouth…………but lo and behold, he has used it faithfully for months. Amazing!
When I got him the first bottle, I stood beside him and instructed him on the mechanics of using mouthwash. He was full of trepidation as he took his first tiny sip of the suspicious substance. I encouraged him onward and finally he had the entire amount in his mouth. The look on his face was priceless! He was adjusting himself to the minty taste of this weird colored liquid. I really thought that this first swishing would be his last……….but it wasn’t. He has decided that this miracle mouthwash will keep the hygienist from delivering bad news to Mom at each dental visit, so swish he will!
He has told me when his bottle of mouthwash was running low so that I could buy another one. He has commented on the shapes of the bottles, the brand of the mouthwash, the taste of the mouthwash…………and even confided in me that one night when he had a cold, he got out of bed and swallowed some mouthwash, thinking that it would help his cold……………so we had another instructional session of the pros and cons of swallowing mouthwash……..heavy on the con side………..and I don’t believe he has ever drunk mouthwash again.
Last night we were going through our getting-ready-for-bed routine. Aaron was in his bathroom brushing and swishing. He had a brand new bottle of mouthwash and I was soon to hear about it. He charged into our bedroom. “Mom!! That new mouthwash is blue!”
Yes, Aaron, it is. Did you like it?
“Well, it’s called Blue Mint.”
“It was different!”
I know it’s different. Did you like it? And he told me that, yes, he liked it…………..and he thumped on down the hall to his room.
But not for long. Into the room he burst again. “Mom, it’s just that this new mouthwash is a weird blue color.”
It is blue, Aaron.
“But my other mouthwash was green.”
Yes, Aaron……….green mint and blue mint. Crazy, huh?
Off he went again, satisfied, I hoped. I was almost done with my own brushing of teeth when he barreled in again. “Mom! Can you come in my room and do something?”
Aaron, what is it? I really want to go to bed.
“There’s something wrong with my bed! I noticed it today.”
Aaron had a couple seizures earlier in the day and so I wondered if his covers were messed up. I went to his room and he said, “It’s this part of the bed….over here, on the lamp side.” So I went to the lamp side of the bed and stood there looking down to see whatever it was I was supposed to see. Aaron was quiet, waiting for me to correct the very obvious problem that wasn’t at all very obvious to me.
So, Aaron, what is it? What’s wrong with the bed? And he leaned down a little and pointed to the end of the mattress, at the rounded corner. OK. And the problem is?
“See, Mom? It’s halfway messed up. The mattress needs to come over this way.”
It looked totally fine to me, but I knew better than to try to dissuade him of his firm conviction that the mattress was halfway messed up, so I reached down and gently moved the mattress over………….maybe an eighth of an inch………..maybe. Aaron was very happy to see this improvement in the position of his halfway messed up mattress. So was I, believe me. Simple solutions to Aaron’s halfway messed up issues don’t always happen!
We hugged good night and I started up the hall, only to have Aaron follow me. I turned around to nip this in the bud and he said, “Mom, that mouthwash was different.”
OK, Aaron………..I know the mouthwash was different but the Blue Mint is good, right? He agreed. And your halfway messed up mattress is fixed, right? He agreed. So let’s go to bed.
Another hug and we parted ways…………me holding my breath as I fully expected him to return with one more mouthwash update. But he stayed in his room and settled in his bed to read before closing his book, recording his going-to-sleep time in his notebook by his bed, turning off his light and getting his covers just so-so on his no longer halfway messed up mattress.
And it hit me…………he didn’t even ask if it was going to rain tonight. Wow! Must be the mouthwash!