Braces, gaslighting and a brand new smile

Ah braces. Yes I slid that one in yesterday. I’m subtle like that. It’s not something I usually shout about to be honest. But what can I say, it’s a thing. I’m going to do this one post on the teeth situation and then that’ll be it. They’ll be referred to only in passing.

So hmm. It’s been two years and four months since operation brace began. I had eight, yep eight, teeth taken out. All of my wisdoms and pre molars were removed at the same time. I was old cold but afterwards my whole head hurt like words cannot describe. Two weeks later the braces went on.

I had braces in college when I was 16 but only for 9 months because I refused to have teeth pulled. Some grand stupid idea about wanting to die with all my teeth in my mouth. Blah blah blah. Bullshit. The other and more crucial reason? Boys. There was no way I was going to give up both of my college years to braces. I left school feeling not very desired and not very pretty. College was to be my teen movie. My Paula Danziger/ Judy Blume story. I was to be the star of my own show. I wanted nice teeth but I wanted a boyfriend a hell of a lot more. So I took the hit on perfection and settled for straight teeth and cute smile.

Years later my wisdoms came in facing in all sorts of directions and so began the slow forward migration of my teeth. Cute rabbit was becoming cute donkey.

Aged 26 my lovely dentist said my teeth were perfect and that I’d look even prettier if I had some orthodontic work. Well you’ll soon notice that I’m a sucker for being called pretty; insecurity is such a pain in the arse (I’m working my ishooos. Anyway…) and so began the consultation years.

I first went to a lovely local orthodontist. Just before I got married. Bad timing. No could do. I went to her again five years later. That was no could do Part II. Pregnancy was enough of a headache. A year later I went to another orthodontist for another free consult. No could do again. (Part III) But why I hear you wail? All the orthodontists I had ever seen wanted four teeth out and two years of my life. I just could not face it. And Ugly Betty was on tv. I was NOT going be know as Ugly Betty no matter how cool that show was.

Then the pesky wisdom teeth had to come out and I thought well I might as well get all eight taken out for free and pay to get braces before the cute donkey became a not so cute horse. And so I went on the NHS waiting list. I remember asking my then husband what he thought. I got the ‘oh you don’t need them’ blah blah. But by then I knew that we were on borrowed time. We were not going to last. It was just a case of seeing when and not if we would split up. I thought at least I could do something for myself for once. It didn’t matter what he thought. I was going to get my teeth in order once and for all.

So I went for another consult and fell again for those same words: you are pretty. Unfortunately he followed it up with: you would be more so if you corrected the buck teeth. Whoa. Now hold on I thought to myself. Easy fella. Why the fuck did you have to ruin it by calling them buck teeth. I mean he was meant to be professional. Use dental jargon not insult me and make me pay for the pleasure. But alas I was weak. And insecure. And he had uttered the magic words. And he was male. And he gave a treatment time of 15-18 months which I could oh so live with! The deal was done. I didn’t even leave to think it over. I said sign me up cowboy and he began the prep work right then.

So during this period the husband is being a shit. Drinking. Fucking around. Not being there. Being mean. And gaslighting. Now I’ve only discovered this term in the last 6 months. And it has been a revelation. You know shit’s going down. But which ever you say that the shit stinks there’s an explanation. So he’d be like: I don’t remember pissing on you last night in bed because I was so drunk. Or. All that money on my credit card that WE have to pay off? oh those are work expenses. Or. You make me like this you are so unreasonable wanting me to help out. Or not coming home. Or whatever flavour of shit it happened to be. It was either my fault, no big deal or never happened. Aaaaaagghhhh!!!!

Well my orthodontist started with the same shit. I tell him my concerns and he’s like yeah I’ll fix that. Over and over and over and then 18 months passed and he was like ok all done. Well I started freaking out. My teeth were certainly not done and while they were not as jacked up as before, they were in a mess.

So the universe sent me a messenger who did to me what the ex did. Well I wasn’t in love with him so eventually thought fuck this and switched to another orthodontist in the same practice and now I’m much happier. It will have taken a year longer to complete my treatment but that bastard gaslighting orthodontist number one showed me that if someone is stringing you along, making you feel crazy you better run like Usain for the hills.

I stopped running from the ex about 6 months after he left because I was out of breath and was out of danger. Now I’ve built a kind of wall between us. It’s invisible but it’s about infinity tall to the knowing eye. It’s called the NO CONTACT wall of wonder and it’s awesome.

I run for pleasure now and my braces? Well I hope they come off before my birthday in the autumn. I try not to worry about them. Mainly because the new orthodontist is awesome and because they are symbolic of a new me forming. Rising like a Phoenix from the ashes.

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One thought on “Braces, gaslighting and a brand new smile

  1. This really hit home with me. Partly because I went through root canal, which stopped and started each time I was breastfeeding or pregnant and also because I had a big time gaslighter too!! (I had never heard that term by the way so thank you!) You are now a new person inside and out and you should be proud of your braces. They are part of the new you and your new future of freedom! And I bet they look fab! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

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