I Love Being A Dentist...


I Love Being A Dentist...

            “Dude, you’re going to be a dentist? Don’t you know that everyone hates dentists?”

            These were the encouraging words from one of my best friends the day that I received my dental school acceptance letter in 1998.

            I’m blessed that I ignored his theory.

            While I understand that people would prefer to spend their time anywhere but the dental office, I made the right choice for me. I love being a dentist.

            Our patients make it so.

            We have patients that bring cookies for our team when they have appointments. Sometimes fresh eggs, or cakes, or kolaches show up. A few juicy rib-eyes made it in the door one time. On another occasion, an extremely nervous patient brought in a bottle of bourbon. We refrained in the office, but enjoyed it after hours. We have some patients that occasionally stop in just for a visit or a hug. Really. A hug. We have been blessed with advice, prayers, throw pillows, baby presents, paintings, thank you notes, and even a homemade quilt.

            I’ve gained more knowledge from the people that I’ve met than all of the books in all of the schools that I have ever attended.

            We have patients who are professional cowboys, teachers, writers, ranchers, doctors, and poets. We see kids from the age of toddler to the age of “know it all.”  On any given day, our sitting area may house a mom, a lawyer, a preacher, and a politician. There is surely some joke about that group somewhere.

            We have been inspired by patients and friends who have beaten cancer and those who love life and inspire others with their aura. We’ve seen patients overcome horrible accidents and crippling loss. Quite often, their stories of life make what we do seem small. 

            Most importantly, we’ve made friends. A lot of them.

            We’ve heard stories of traveling the world and camping and graduations and hunting and family reunions. More and more, we are seeing kids grow up and move on and move out. We get to see pictures of grandkids and trophy deer and pet fishes. We get updates every 3, 4, or 6 months. Most of the news is good. When it’s bad, we hug some more.

            Yes, dentistry is a rewarding profession. The rewards have nothing to do with teeth, though. The rewards are the people that share their lives with us.

            Until next week, please, keep on smiling.

-Suggestions can be sent to Drs. Parrish at www.ParrishDental.com.