Two days ago, when I brushed Sophia's teeth (after a quarter of an hour of wheedling and needling), I noticed something brown stuck in her molars. Ofcourse, I tried to make her open her mouth properly, but she went something like
"Are you the dentist?"
"Then I wont open my mouth"
Husband managed to take care of it and the brown stuff by sticking a toothpick in her molar and pulling out something rather yucky and which would put you right off your food. We showed it to Sophia and you would think that it would change her mind about the toothbrushing business
"Some on Sophia", I say at 7 in the morning. "Time to brush your teeth and get ready for school"
"I am steching!", she says
"Fine, are you stretching your mouth?"
"No. I am steching my hands and legs"
"Right. Can you stretch your mouth?"
"I'll teach you. Say Aaaaaa"
We go on like this for about a minute and then I say, "right, now lets put the brush in your mouth."
"No! I am still steching"
"Sophia, your bus will bee here in twenty minutes. Why dont you come back from school and stech?"
I dress Anjali and send her to the living room. Husband conveniently chooses this time to take a shower.
"Fine", I say "I am about done with making you brush your teeth. I am going to count to five and then either you brush your teeth on the bed or I will brush your teeth in the bathroom"
"I want to bush my teeth by miself!!!!"
"Ok" I put the toothbrush next to her. "three... four..."
She makes no move towards the brush
I grab hold of her, pin her down and she yells as if someone is trying to strangle her. And I run the brush threw her teeth. Sometimes she bites the toothbrush for all its worth in her anger.
When Anjali went through a similar (but shorter) phase a couple of years ago, I used to use my fingers to scrub her teeth (its a lot easier to manipulate fingers than to manipulate the toothbrush when you are force brushing). But with Sophia I have a stronger love for my finger and more respect for her teeth. Both Anjali and I have had very bad experiences of bite marks in some very sensitive areas in our body
"The most difficult part of the day is done!", I announce to husband while rinsing the toothbrush, who finds it a good time to get our of the shower.
*DISCLAIMER* I must state at this juncture that husband usually has more success than I do in brushing Sophia's teeth. So on the days when he is actually not in the shower during the toothbrushing episode, he tends to spend a lot of time with her and somehow convinces her to actually brush her own teeth. Ofcourse, husband is rather more lenient on the quality of brushing than I am, and he counts it positive if the brush touches the tooth.