Three AM Musings: Dentures, Diapers and Debt

Mr. Swirley is gone for this week. This means the following:

- My main caloric source is cereal. Lots and lots of cereal.

- There are no milk glasses left on the table in the morning and all of the throw pillows are still expertly placed ON the couch 24 HOURS/DAY.

- No one is looking at me confused and bleary-eyed at3AM and telling me to go back to bed.

So here we are.  Thinking about dentist bills amongst other things.

Yesterday we shelled out $630 for a crown for Arden after spending $1200 last month on a root canal. That puts us at approximately $25 million invested in her mouth as of today. Well, in the last 12 months we have $1784 coming out of the checking account and who knows how much on the credit card; I am kind of happy there is no search function within those statements.

New grill for Ho-Ho? (image:

New grill for Ho-Ho? (image:

So here is my question. At what point can/should we make a decision for a loved one when it comes to dentures? She lost her flipper (like a retainer with a tooth) three times (click the link if you want to read about an Easter flipper hunt) at $500/pop. Now I keep it for "special occasions" because we are a classy family like that. What if she loses her dentures? And how do you even make a choice like that when it's not your body? I don't know, it just seems really uncivilized to elect to rip somebody's teeth out to save money (and I feel like a bully).  At the same time, unless we win the lottery or I become a madam (I mean, I am too old to be an escort), this level of spending is not sustainable. And it's not like she is able to stop taking the drugs that exacerbate her already existing dental issues.

Did you know you can buy dentures on Ebay? What?

I love how a diaper butt feels on my hand. Like when you pat it. Now that EK is basically potty-trained, it kind of bums me out (pun intended) that the little extra layer of padding has disappeared.  Even the "swishing" sound little people make before they enter a room, a warning if you will, is pretty awesome. On the flip side, we can use the money we use to spend on diapers to invest in his 529. Or my mom's mouth.

Isn't it odd that "disappeared" has two "p's"? For some reason two "s's" (is that correct? s's? s'?) makes so much more sense to me. But no.

Yesterday, EK told me he is going to be "Franklinstein" for Halloween. It's funny how exited I am for him to dress up and get candy for me to steal. I could just go and buy a bag, but making him do all the legwork makes those sugary treats that much more delicious.  Actually, come to think of it, we are actually really self-sacrificing in relieving EK of all of that sugar (see above denture dilemma).

I am sure you have already seen this Jimmy Kimmel bit on parents pretending to eat all of their kids' Halloween candy, but if not, it's pretty hilarious mean. No, hilarious.

Also, I am embarking on an journey to attempt to enroll Arden in Medicaid AND see if we can get an aide to hang out with her and force her to walk more than four steps a day or at least wheel around to force her to socialize a bit more. If we cannot procure caretaking services, I might go AWOL or all Falling Down on some undeserving person.  So far I have left multiple messages with various agencies and received a total of ZERO returned calls (and got into a little tiff with a woman at the Oak Park senior center). I know you are surprised on both counts. I figure I can chronicle this adventure (or GIANT WASTE OF TIME) here in the hopes that either someone can help us, or I can help someone. Or both.

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    Annie Swingen

    Chicago-based hyperbole enthusiast. Mom to a kid and sometimes my mom. Overboard (1987) obsessed weirdo. I like the funnies in life.

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