Last week, I took Miss B to the dentist.

Her maiden voyage.

Yes, that’s her, looking adorable in her upside-down sunglasses, while I contort gracefully in the background.

And that’s her somewhat-dishy-minus-the-metrosexual-haircut dentist on the right.

Who insisted on calling me “mom” throughout the entire visit.

“Ok, mom, just make sure she’s not using the pacifier quite as much.”

“No cavities, mom. Great job.”

Really?

You’re going to call me “mom”?

Do I look like your mom?

Because you sure as hell don’t look like my son. I estimate you’re about 28, which means I would have had you at 13. Which is illegal in first world countries. And much though I imagined myself at 13 as a woman of the world, accompanying  Simon Le Bon around the world and serving as his muse, in reality, I was home, picking my spots and studying the timeline of the Normal Conquest.

Mom.

Do I not have a name?

How about “Melissa”? Or even “Mrs. Woodman?” Hell, “Ma’am” would suffice and make me think you were raised by a nice Southern woman.

But “mom?”

And what kind of mom am I, pray tell? Betty Draper? June Cleaver? Peg Bundy? Joan Crawford?

Or are we all the same? So easily categorized? A Tiger mom? A Helicopter mom? Or a Soccer mom?

I suppose I’m grateful that you didn’t call me “Madam”, which though, in certain contexts has appeal (“Madam, you’ve been very naughty and how shall I spank you?), in most (“What size hosiery is Madam looking for?”) does not.

Dude, I know you’re but a dentist, but please get more creative next time.

You could try making me laugh, for instance, by greeting me as “Hey, the poop meister’s here!” Mature? No. But guaranteed to set me off guard, at least.

Or charm me. “Mi’Lady” could take you to places you never dreamed of.

But “mom?”

Not even my husband gets that one past me. I’m mom only to my kids, and very occasionally, to Viktor, our cat.

That’s it.

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