This morning is my “records” appointment with the orthodontist.  This is where they take impressions of my teeth and make a record of how screwed up they are, so eighteen-to-twenty-four months later I will realize what great things my braces have done for me.  At least I think that’s the purpose.  There might be some other, legitimate dental purpose that I’d have to go to school to understand.  At my next appointment, I will actually get my braces.  It is pretty exciting.

And scary.  The teeth are a little nervous.  They’ve never been…restrained before.  You know?  I’m not sure how we’re going to like that.  We probably won’t.  But we’ll get used to it because we want our bite corrected.  My bite corrected.  Whichever.  I’ve been living with this crooked bite so long, I can’t even imagine how it’s going to feel when I can finally relax my jaw.  What will that feel like?  Will it be like there’s a party in my mouth and everyone’s invited?  Or maybe it will be more like the party’s over and everyone has finally left so I can get some damn sleep?  I think I like the second one better.

I can’t decide if I’m going to get regular braces or clear braces.  Initially I was of the opinion that if you’re going to get braces, get braces.  Own it, man.  Metal-mouth and proud of it.  But there’s this woman at church who recently got the clear braces, and I can’t help but be impressed at how unobtrusive they are.  You might think, “If you’re impressed, how unobtrusive can they be?  If they were really unobtrusive, wouldn’t you notice their unobtrusiveness less?”  I will pause to let that deep thought sink in.  Deeper, deeper…

Okay, I think we’ve pondered that enough.  I stand by my original statement.  The clear braces are surprisingly unobtrusive.  I find myself wondering if I want to be similarly unobtrusive.  I’m more a blend-in-with-the-woodwork sort of girl, you know.  The question is, am I blend-in-with-the-woodwork enough that I don’t really need unobtrusive braces, because, heck, who’s looking at me anyway?  That’s sort of where I lean.  But then the vanity part of me still has doubts.

Regardless of what anyone else thinks, I still have to look at myself in the mirror every day.  Believe me, I’ve tried not to, but it’s simply unavoidable.  Unless I become a vampire.  Which makes me wonder if I’d have the same dental issues, if I became a vampire.  It seems like I would have different teeth, but would they all be in the same places?  Would my bite be just as crooked?  With those extra-long canine, it seems like I could seriously hurt myself.  And being a vampire, I would be living forever with that problem, so it would totally be worth it to get the braces, and it probably wouldn’t matter if I got them clear or not-clear.  Either way it’s good camouflage because who’s going to suspect a person with braces of being a vampire?  People don’t stop to think.  If they did, they’d realize that vampires have more reason than anyone to make sure their teeth are straightened out.

You think about that the next time you see someone with braces.

But I digress.  My point was that I am not a vampire, don’t anticipate becoming one, and therefore have to look at myself in the mirror every day.  When I look at my braces-ed self in the mirror, am I going to think, “Golly, that’s a lot of metallic…stuff in there.  I really wish I’d gone with something more…unobtrusive.”  Or am I going to think, “You know, that’s still a mouth full of corrective dental gear.  You’re not fooling anyone, sister.  Why did you spend four hundred extra dollars on that?”

My other question is, if one has these unobtrusive clear braces, does that make the food that gets stuck in them all the more noticeable?  I’m just asking.

This is one of those situations where it would be really helpful for my husband to have an opinion.  My husband has told me that it’s up to me.  That’s nice and empowering and crap, but not particularly helpful.  When I am torn like this, I need direction.  I need someone to please.  I need to know if my husband would rather have a wife with relatively unobtrusive braces, or four hundred more dollars in the bank.  Four hundred dollars is, like, a car payment, plus…lunch.  A nice lunch.  Maybe a movie afterward.  With popcorn.  Which you’re not supposed to eat when you have braces, so that’s neither here nor there.  Unfortunately, my husband claims not to care, which is probably the truth.  He probably doesn’t care, which makes my decision that much more difficult.  There is no one to please but myself, and I don’t know what would please me more.

The thing about regular braces these-a-days is that you can get the bands in any color of the rainbow.  I thought that would be pretty cool.  I could get a different color every time I went in.  Then I realized that there are actually not that many colors that I would want to have in my mouth.  Green would look like I had spinach stuck in my teeth.  Orange would look like I had…something orange stuck in my teeth.  Red would look like I was bleeding.  Yellow would just look weird.  That leaves blue and purple and possibly pink.  Eh.

But during football season, I could get green and yellow and every time I opened my mouth, I’d be saying, “Go Ducks!” without making a sound.  That might be awesome.

So, yeah, I have a lot of thinking to do.  That’s what I’m saying.



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