Zach and Tyler visited the dentist over Spring Break and Gavin was mightily jealous. When the day came for his turn, however, he was a stinker at home all morning. After a lengthy time-out in his room for a string of serious misdeeds (including but not limited to escaping the house and running to the end of the block four times), he was furious about going to the dentist. He screamed on the way to the office and sulked in the elevator. I braced myself for a heinous visit.
The hygienist came into the waiting room to collect her 11:00 patient. I was opening my mouth to warn her about what was coming when Gavin looked up and said, "Hey! It's my turn! Yes!" And then he walked back to the exam room, hopped into the chair, and opened his mouth.
From there, Gavin was a model patient, especially considering his age. He cheerfully submitted to teeth counting and a full cleaning, including plaque scraping, flossing, polishing, and flouride application. He didn't mind any of it and held perfectly still the whole time. I was floored. I think my other kids were at least five before they allowed all of that to happen inside their mouths.
Gavin was thrilled to get a new toothbrush and his very own toothpaste in a special bag. My camera battery ran out mid-cleaning, so I didn't capture his triumphant grin as we left. I was too busy thanking Gavin's guardian angels for transforming his attitude so completely to take a picture anyway.