First, An Excerpt
First, an excerpt from a story I wrote a few years ago – bare with me, it has meaning.
Side bar... I wash my sheets when I’m drowning in stress.
“I know a little about a lot of things and a lot about teeth. It’s okay that I only know a lot about teeth and not ALL about teeth, because the ones that have ALL the toothy wisdom wash their sheets way more than me. Most tooth Dr.’s are troubled.
My theory is: if I went to school for 8+ years and could only save a tooth, I would be troubled too. I’m a Certified Dental Assistant. I am happy with my career choice, a compassionate team player in a hyper stressful job. My day usually starts with an “I hate dentists” greeting by my patients.
I respond with, “Oh, you meant to say you hate den-tis-try,” and I watch some of their fears ebb away with my idle chit-chat. This dance I do two days a week with at least half of my patients, and it never gets boring; it just seems necessary to point out that I am not the bad guy. Thinking the opposite would send me straight down the detergent isle. A little dyslectic vein runs through some of my work, but overall I’m quite confident in my part-time abilities. I never have to do laundry after a nine hour shift”.
Practicing Self Acceptance
For many years I have wanted to be part of something other than dentistry. Don’t get me wrong, I love your imperfect mouths, and I still practice voluntarily in different parts of the globe with talented, devoted, like-minded people. But I have always wanted to build something of my own, create something, hell, dare I say it, even run something! But a gut full of low self esteem and lot of ‘I’m not smart enough’ always got in my way.
But slowly, as I began to practice self acceptance and changed my mental tape, I realized that I’m pretty damn smart, and my perception about my non-dental abilities began to change.
One of the biggest things that kept me from moving forward with gusto was computer technology. Lack of technology is something that can cripple you in today’s business world, and let me tell you, I posses the bare minimum of this techy trade. But the more I thought about how debilitating this was going to be for me, the more I kept thinking about my dental roots. Yes, pun intended!
Rewriting the Story
So I decided to rewrite the beginning of that tooth story so that I can apply it to the Accept Me movement. It goes something like this...
I know a lot about teeth and a LITTLE about technology, it’s ok that I only know a LITTLE about technology, because I can employ amazing talented young minds that can provide and help me with technology. I never have to do laundry after a nine-hour Accept Me shift.
I have unfortunately worked with a couple of unpleasant dentists. But, I have also had the extreme privilege to work with a few incredibly gifted and kind dental artists. I choose the latter. These fine men and women understand the concept of It Takes a Village. They get the value of ‘the strength of the team.’ They put their ego’s underneath their paper PHD’s, and their villages flourish because of their leadership and care. More than anything, I knew I wanted to lead by their example.
So really, this is a long-winded thank you letter to my village. The fabulous talented group of young women that grabbed my brand and movement by the short and curly’s, and have helped me run with it. These women are fierce, bright, and above all, patient with me. And for what they lack in years on this planet, they make up for in unbridled talent. I could not have gotten Accept Me off the ground without them, and ego aside, I am more than happy to share my success with them.
Let’s always remember to thank the villagers of our tribe. Appreciation, acceptance and kindness go a very long way.
To those of you in my hut, I thank you.
and Chantel, who helped me change my mental tape (and you don’t even know it).