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Shared Toothbrushes


When I was pregnant with my first child I started taking polls with my female coworkers who were also mothers.  For whatever reason I was uber concerned about cleanliness.

With the first baby, it seems everything must be sterilized, even your own breasts. Bloody nipples anyone? No, just me?  I swear I had a breast pump that had more rpms than a formula one racing engine. Is nipple amputation by breast pump possible? Why yes, I do believe it is.  That wasn’t strawberry milk I produced.

Anyways, many moms have experienced that slow motion moment when you’re out with your infant and a stranger reaches out to touch their hand.  For some of us there is a split second where we consider whether a karate chop to their throat would cause us to lose our balance and drop the kid.  That’s not just me, right?

My ex boss said to me about my concerns, “Don’t worry about cleanliness.  When you have your first you’ll sterilize everything.  A pacifier will fall on the floor and you’ll rush over to pick it up and clean it before giving it back. With your second you’ll wipe it on your shirt and hand it back.  With your third you’ll pick it up and shove it right back into their mouth.”  I could only laugh at the absurdity of it.

I now have four. I learned she spoke truth but learned it much later because my nipples were the pacifiers and were always in some kids mouth regardless of where they had been. That sounds weird yes? Not any kid. I mean my kid. Kid being baby. Not like a teenager or anything. No judgement, to each their own. I’ve heard about teenagers that are still breastfed. What the hell? I mean, no comment.

Anyhoo, a kid came up to me with breath so bad that my eyes watered.  I asked him to brush his teeth.  He said he couldn’t find his toothbrush.

Well, this is a ploy because I always have at least 12 new toothbrushes on standby. Somehow they’re all missing this day.

I thought of my ex boss as I told him, in all seriousness, “Use your brothers”.

He thought it was gross but I told him to sterilize it. Voila.  Just like a pacifier.


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