Lisa Ricard Claro – Author

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Old Bagger Brace Face OR Proof that God has a sense of humor…

Posted on Dec 8, 2010 by Lisa Ricard Claro   22 Comments | Posted in braces · teeth
Clip art courtesy of CartoonWorks by Ron Wheeler, master cartoonist.  This man does amazing work. Take a minute to check out his site.  Just looking around is fun!

Brace Face. Train Tracks. Metal Mouth. Tinsel Teeth. Magnet Mouth. Cheese Grater. Zipper Lips. Tin Grin.  And my personal favorite: Jaws.

I am loathe to report that due to teeth-shifting events beyond my control I have been forced to join the ranks of the metal-mouthed. At 50. That’s right, buttercup. This old bagger has a mouthful of metal.  Well, okay, not all metal. I opted for the clear plastic brackets; but the wire attaches to the brackets and it is—say it with me—metal.

You know, I delivered three kids without the benefit of anesthesia. That’s right, au naturale from start to finish. So comparatively speaking, the soreness and discomfort associated with braces is no big deal.  (Trust me on this one. Labor and delivery is way worse.) How does it feel? Like I’m wearing an extra set of choppers or Billy-Bob teeth, that’s how. My self-esteem is curled into a fetal position at the back corner of my closet for the next 18 months. Even so, I can live with that.  What is driving me the most crazy is that everything, and I mean everything, gets stuck in these darn things.

The day the orthodontist wielded his torture tools on me, we went out to dinner.  I ordered soup and salad. How bad could that be, right? Between the shredded chicken in the soup and the greenery from the salad, the inside of my mouth looked like a rain forest. Throw in a sloth and a red howler monkey and it would have been a done deal. I learned fast that a meal means “zipped lips until after brushing.” My family has figured that out, too. When they want me to shut up they feed me something.

I know this won’t last forever. In 18 months the braces will come off and my teeth will be happy campers again. But make no mistake, buttercup. It will be a long 18 months, during which time my family and friends will tease me mercilessly, strangers will stare and pity me, and the toothbrush will be my best friend.

And if I find any sloths and red howler monkeys, you will be the first to know.

Off to brush–

22 Responses to "Old Bagger Brace Face OR Proof that God has a sense of humor…"

  1. Comment by Karen Lange
    December 8, 2010 at 3:52 pm  

    Sorry to hear of your challenge…but you did make me chuckle with the howler monkey thing. πŸ™‚ Note that I'm laughing WITH you, okay? Hoping the next 18 months will sail by quickly for you!

  2. Comment by tanyavalentine
    December 8, 2010 at 4:03 pm  

    Tinsel Teeth! I totally forgot that one. Very nice. I'm telling you, braces make you look younger….really. trust me. However, braces with food in them will make you look like a crazy lady with food in her teeth so, avoid that. Here's wishing the next 410 days go by quickly. πŸ™‚

  3. Comment by Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy
    December 8, 2010 at 6:36 pm  

    Hi Lisa,Wow. I can only imagine what a big change that would be. When you get used to the idea of having them on, show us a picture of the new you!Take care,Kathy

  4. Comment by Sioux Roslawski
    December 8, 2010 at 6:52 pm  

    You know what kind of things do NOT get stuck in braces? Milk shakes…Mashed potatoes…creamed soups…chocolate bars (sans nuts). Frosting (right out of the can)…(ha!)Keep the image of an even more gorgeous you in mind for the next year and a half…I am sure you will be thrilled with the final result.

  5. Comment by Dominic de Mattos
    December 8, 2010 at 8:43 pm  

    Ah! I bet they make you look even younger than you already look!Now this wouldn't happen in the UK … people just have bad teeth!

  6. Comment by Sally
    December 8, 2010 at 9:20 pm  

    Good for you for not shirking the time and discomfort. Good luck.

  7. Comment by Lynn
    December 8, 2010 at 10:19 pm  

    Poor baby, but it sounds like you're a toughy since you didn't have any help with delivering. Egads. I thought I was going to go without, but then when the labor came, I was like give me a gun or drugs. Please tell me you had a short labor. Anyway, you're funny about your new braces!

  8. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 8, 2010 at 10:43 pm  

    Hi Karen – If I didn't laugh I'd go nuts, and company is always nice. Laugh away! :)Hey Tanya – Younger, huh? Really? I don't believe it, but I'll cling to the idea anyway. A little self-delusion never hurt anyone!Hi Kathy – Yeah, eventually I'll take a pic. Maybe. πŸ™‚

  9. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 8, 2010 at 10:51 pm  

    Hey Sioux – I like your train of thought. I see a lot of smoothies (and extra pounds) in my future!Hi Dom – Ha! You made me laugh. I do like the whole "looking younger thing" though. If that were true I might never take them off!Hi Sally – I didn't have much of a choice in the matter, really. Skewed bite. *sigh* And now you know more about my dental work than you ever wanted to know.Hey Lynn – Not short labors, sorry to say. I always pull out the "hard labor" card with my kids. My son thinks there should be a statute of limitations on it. LOL The braces are such an absurdity at my age that I have to laugh about it or I'll go nuts. It's only 18 months…*sigh*

  10. Comment by irishoma
    December 9, 2010 at 10:51 am  

    Hi Lisa,You are so brave. If you can deliveer three children without any anesthesia, sounds like you can do just about anything.Good luck, and keep on smiling.Donna v.

  11. Comment by Jenn
    December 9, 2010 at 4:29 pm  

    I endured braces twice and couldn't find much humor in it both times, but you manage to make it funny. And it's totally worth it in the end. When you get those braces off, you'll be amazed how white and smooth your teeth are. πŸ™‚

  12. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 9, 2010 at 4:52 pm  

    Hi Donna – Thanks…but I knew with the kids (I was determined they arrive 100% drug free) it wouldn't last that long. 18 months looming seems forever! This too shall pass…Hey Jenn – Twice! Egads, woman! One round of these things better do the trick. I'm glad you got a chuckle out of my view on this…I look for humor in most things. Being able to laugh about stuff is usually the only thing that keeps me from going nuts. I'm not ashamed to cry, but laughter feels a whole lot better! πŸ™‚

  13. Comment by Lola Sharp
    December 9, 2010 at 5:58 pm  

    I would have just had them bonded or some form of cheat fix.That said, my neighbor had braces put on a couple months ago (at 46) and she's used to them now and pain-free, except when they put on new wires. But the pain only lasts a couple days, she says.

  14. Comment by anita
    December 9, 2010 at 7:28 pm  

    Lisa — you are hysterical even when you're suffering. Your self-esteem might feel all curled up but your sense of humor is as erect as ever. Just think of how wonderful and beautiful you'll feel when you get the braces off. I'm proud of you!

  15. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 9, 2010 at 11:54 pm  

    Hi Lola – Thanks for the info about your neighbor. That's good to know. I've had mine on about a week, and I'm still really sore, but improving. My daughter promised I'd get used to them, too. I will, but I want to whine about it for a while first!Hey Anita! Thanks for the encouragement. πŸ™‚

  16. Comment by K9friend
    December 10, 2010 at 7:06 pm  

    Keep plenty of that handy-dandy wax stuff around for any particularly ouchy spots. Good luck!

  17. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 11, 2010 at 11:13 am  

    Thanks, Pat. I've used the wax a couple times. It is minty, which is kind of nice. πŸ™‚

  18. Comment by Debra Mayhew
    December 11, 2010 at 4:39 pm  

    Lisa, the braces may bite the big one, but you turned the whole thing into a hilarious, well-written post. I loved the whole thing! Great job!

  19. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 11, 2010 at 11:34 pm  

    Thanks Deb! πŸ™‚

  20. Comment by Tammy
    December 12, 2010 at 10:42 pm  

    Oh my gosh, this post is a riot!!! I think those braces of yours must be channeling Erma. And I am jealous…I have teeth-shifting events, too. At this age, I find that 18 months passes in just a few weeks. Kind of like dog years in reverse. Or maybe howler monkey years.

  21. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    December 12, 2010 at 11:00 pm  

    Tammy — You just made, probably, my whole last decade with that comparison. *sigh* Would that it were true! Howler monkey years…I like that! 18 months should fly, and it will seem like it did after it's gone. Until then, I'm doing a lot of brushing!

  22. Comment by hope
    December 13, 2010 at 7:30 pm  

    I love the second one best. :)And you're right…Susan's little game has gotten so popular I don't know if I'll ever get to everyone again!

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