Tales from the Tooth: She Won’t Forget Again

After I brushed her, twice.


Addie was up before the rest of us, dressed and shoveling cereal into her mouth before our alarms even went off. I had a morning flight so I was up earlier than usual as Cody was getting ready to head to the gym. Addie declared herself ready to go when I reminded her that her hair needed to be combed and her teeth needed to be brushed.

“Okay!” and she rushed down the hall to the bathroom.

A few moments later I heard the front door open and close. I knew a few moments wasn’t enough to get the job done let alone properly. Sure enough, I checked her toothbrush and I was right. So I set out to do the job myself.

Look, I know the kid was excited for her first day of school, but that’s no excuse to skip personal hygiene. Since I was already ready to leave for the airport and the bus wasn’t coming for another 12 minutes, I packed a comb, a toothbrush and a little cup of water to the bus stop.

In front of everyone.

It was something my mother in law would have done. Or my grandmother.

It was in that moment I felt more like a mom than I have ever felt before.

There weren’t many people at the bust stop, a couple of kids and their parents who know Addie and me well. Addie knew she was in for it as she saw me coming towards her and obliged to a corner double brushing.

“I’m not afraid to do this everyday, or come to school and do it in front of your whole class. You NEED to comb your hair and brush your teeth before you leave the house.”

“Okay.” she hugged me, got on the bus and left.

We are three weeks into the school year and so far she’s been well groomed 85% of the time. Hey, you can’t win them all. She’s rounding the corner into that strange and awkward phase of childhood, the one we all struggled with. If good grooming habits are in place now, I won’t be dealing with “smelly kid” issues at the next parent teacher conference or cavity issues at her next checkup, hopefully being aggressive now will make the transition into young lady hood a little less painful.

Now, am I the only one who’s brushed their kid’s teeth at the bus stop? Please say no.


I received products from Johnson & Johnson as part of my participation in the LISTERINE® Kids Cavity-Free School Year Program. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own. Click here to see more of the discussion.

Article Posted 4 years Ago

Videos You May Like