Dec 19, 2009
The offices of Worthington Dental Group in Worthington, Ohio. The great staff there made me feel right at home, and brought a lot of great memories to mind.
About two weeks ago I went to the dentist, and it was a little like going home. As I walked into the tastefuly decorated waiting area of the Worthington Dental Group, I felt a warm feeling of nostalgia wash over me. The good feeling lasted throughout my visit.
I know that may be an unusual reaction to going to the dentist, so let me explain. Somehow I ended up having a lot of friends in the dental profession. Dr. Ludders, the Piersons,Mike Stafford, Bev, Twyla, Lori Cerna, Malou--so many of the people I've gotten to know and like over the past ten years or so have been involved with dentistry. Perhaps for that reason, I've always found dentistry an interesting profession, though I myself could never enjoy doing it. Somehow my friends have made dentistry seem more accessibl than other medical professions. This has less to do with the actual practice of dentistry, and more to do with the people I've known who do the work.
While I signed in at the front desk at Worthington Dental, I remembered Jho and Tammy and Frank, who were always so helpful whenever I'd call or stop by the SDA Dental Clinic. As the hygienist gave my teeth a good scrubbing with her little sonic tool (help me out, dentists that are reading this, what is that tool called), I thought about Bev and smiled--as much as one can smile while his teeth are being cleaned. When Dr. Purcell came in with his assistant to make his assessment, I was reminded of Ken, the director of the Saipan SDA Dental Clinic, and also of Malou who worked for so many years as a dental assistant back in Saipan.
Dr. Ken in Saipan. (This photo and the one below were taken by the Piersons during their annual Clinic with a Heart day last spring. Once a year the SDA Dental Clinic offers free dental care to people who otherwise might not be able to afford to go to the dentist. Beautiful!).
My friend, filmmaker and actor Dan Shor used to refer to the Drs. Ken and Crystal Pierson as the "beautiful dentists", and indeed they, along with their colleagues are beautiful people all. As a result this one small group of beautiful people have colored an entire profession in my mind--and the fact that the folks at Worthington Dental Group were so great only helped reinforce that positive impression I have dentisty.
Tomorrow I'll be driving up to Columbus for my follow-up cleaning and to get my one cavity filled. (Allow me to brag a bit--Dr. Purcell marveled at my enamel--he says it's like iron, and despite my spotty record of dental visits, I only have one small cavity). And of course, I'm excited to be going back--because I know my experience will be great at Worthington, and because sitting in that chair brings back some beautiful memories of some beautiful people.