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  • Writer's pictureElijah Ricks

Brains, Bladders, and Teeth, Oh My!

I forgot to mention last week just how brilliant our children are. Not that it was ever in question, but I have some objective evidence thereof. Avey took some assessment tests last year, the results of which we received this year. In her English literacy assessment, she scored 823/850, placing her in the “exceeded expectations” category of her school. She did the same in math, with a 793/850. To put that in perspective, only 3% of her school was in that category for literacy, and only 8% for math. We love her no matter how she performs at her tests, but it certainly is nice to know and not just believe that she is brilliant.

Hakan has reached an important milestone this week, as he has started potty training! This is an exciting and stressful time for us all as he learns to listen to his bodily cues. Because it’s the middle of the semester, Kira is doing most of the supervising, so I can’t take any credit for his success. He’s been doing very well. He has had a few accidents, but as long as his head and heart are in it, he can fill the potty on command. He’s even been dry a couple of mornings after waking! The trouble is keeping him motivated to do it. We used little treats as incentives, and Kira reads him books while he’s sitting. He was excited to wear his new superhero underwear, and his favorite color underwear (orange), but now his accidents just mean that he gets to change to a new pair. That is, rather than being saddened by the accident, he may be choosing to see only the silver lining, as it were.

Kira even tried a sticker chart this morning, but Hakan did not seem to understand it, instead wishing only to stick a few stickers on the paper and then never see it again. We’ve made the subtle threat of having him revert to diapers, but he just acquiesces before we swallow our words. He’s definitely proud of when he has success, so maybe the best move for us is to just focus on the positive reinforcement. 

On the more mundane side of things, I have been experiencing some slight dental pain for several weeks now. Most of the time I didn’t even notice it, and it was never predictable when it would appear: sweets didn’t trigger it, nor did hot or cold, and sucking air through my teeth didn’t set it off. So, I ignored it mostly. Just in the last week or so it’s gotten noticeably worse, even throbbing a bit at night while I’m trying desperately to catch a few winks prior to the children’s disturbances. I finally decided to make an appointment, thankfully getting in that same morning. The diagnosis was not good. It looks like a very old filling on a very patched up tooth was to blame, and the one right next to it looked like it needed the same work. I had them both redone for a pretty penny, and then we were to wait to see if the pain went away to determine whether I needed just crowns or a root canal. 

Thankfully, I am pain free now, so it’s looking like the crowns should suffice, but still, I half wonder if I should have just pulled them both out to save the cash. It’s probably time to get on the dental plan with work, huh?

We’ve got another thrilling week of school and work and potty training. You can expect all of the gory details next week.


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