Pulling Teeth for a Living

I know a dentist who checks mouths for abscesses, cavities, dead roots, loose crowns, gingivitis, and many more dental-related diseases, everyday. I asked him if he ever gets tired of his work. He told me that the one task he never tires of is pulling teeth. He loves the feeling of getting a dead tooth out of someone’s mouth. As he is a spiritual man, his reason is that nothing dying or dead belongs in anyone’s body—not even an old thought.

As a quip, I replied, “Buddy, every human is dying every minute of every day!”

He replied, “Not me! I am a living, breathing, and powerful part of God. Spirit, my friend, is not dying. In fact, God is constantly reproducing itself in all of us and in the universe every moment of every day! Even your cells are reproducing at a rate of two trillion times a day!”

I couldn’t argue with his theory, even though, it’s clear that as a human being, we are all on a clear path toward dying, eventually. At that amazing rate of cellular mitosis, I wondered, however why.

Apparently, my dentist friend considered that, as long as we are living, we are not dying. If someone thinks he/she is dying, then he or she often gives up living completely and fully. Also, he explained that disease comes from the inability for cells to reproduce. So, this paradigm of “dying” could be as a result of our minds acquiescing to death. Who knows?

I often have friends say to me, after meeting my mother, “She is so vibrant and alive at 82!” As I watch Mom, daily, even though she has many aches and pains, she is a woman with purpose—every day. Because of that, nothing much has kept her down. Twenty-four hours after her triple bypass, she was walking on a treadmill. Three days after her operation, she grabbed me by the collar and said, “Get me the hell out of this hospital!” And, she meant it.

When she got home, she didn’t mope, as some doctors said she might. No, she rested a bit (two days) and then got back to her daily routine as quickly as she could. I noticed that her routine—the mundane, for me—actually kept her life purposeful. As long as she could put out the dinner for the day, clean, wash clothes, walk the dog, and go shopping twice a month, she was good! I envy her fortitude and hope I can be as alive at her age, too.

I have developed a routine in my time off that has kept me busier than I was when I was working. I find myself writing more, getting projects finished, spending more time with friends, volunteering, and spending energy letting my soul lead me to the treasures of life. This way of living, keeps me not dying, daily.

I had a tooth decay and die in my mouth about three months ago. I had to get an implant so that I could get a cap to replace the useless tooth. The implant was grafted into my jaw and gums. The process sometimes takes six months. I’m in the waiting now for my new tooth. Life often feels like a waiting game, waiting for the new to replace the old.

Life is for the living. Just like my new tooth, every moment of every day is a chance to live life and replace that, which no longer serves us, with something more powerful and alive! This is a recipe for a long, purposeful life.

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