January 5, 2011

Braces. My Panama Impulse Purchase.

Okay, I've never actually gotten plastered on naked, upside-down Margaritas and woken up with a tattoo.  But yesterday I'm pretty sure I topped myself on impulse purchases.
I got braces.
Just ...   like ... that.

I had accompanied William on his usual once-a-month orthodontia appointment from Dr. Spiegel, one of three in David, but the only Dr. Speigel who visits Boquete.  As we were leaving, William mentioned that my front tooth, crooked and jutting out since childhood, was on a new and visible course all it's own.

Yes, I had actually noticed last week in a photo that suddenly it looked like I was growing a fork out of my front lips… or a tiny, pointy weapon.

As if it isn’t bad enough that a quick glance at my elbows reminds me  that I look more like my kid’s grandmother than the sassy mom of a twelve year old;  Oh boy! Now I get to battle a snaggletooth?

The thing I love about orthodontia in Boquete is the no-pretense, no-frills style.  William had initially come in with a $10 X-ray in hand, and not the 3-D Panoramic  landscape you get in the states that when they upload and projected it  into a state-of-the-art software program,  you can hardly capture the landscape of your kid's mouth without using special eyeglasses just to view it. Plus, in the USA, our orthodontist has an office with a special Game Room so the children could be thoroughly entertained instead of having to endure, well... waiting!  Plus we got pamphlets and special holiday emails.  And long explanations of why with was going to cost $3,000 for Phase One.  And another three grand for Phase Two.

Nope. Here in Boquete all we turned up with ws a $10 X-ray.  And that's not all.

So the doctor takes  the X-ray, snaps a quick photo of the X-ray with  his own camera, uploads it onto his laptop and... Voila!  William's jutting overbite is there,  in all it's two-dimensional glory.  A half hour later William emerged with braces.  One reasonable down-payment, monthly check-ups at $50 a pop and  after only  six months, William's extreme overbite and receding chin were so transformed his case was discussed at the latest convention in Acapulco.

So, yesterday, as we were finishing up a regular check-up, William  innocently but honestly mentioned, as nicely  as he could, that from the my profile view, I was "beginning to look like, well, Mom... Okay, don't take this personally Mom....but you look a little  like  a rat… but don't worry Mom. It's only from the side. Sorry!”

The orthodontist casually suggested he  "take a look," no appointment necessary.  So on a whim, or maybe because I really don't want to resemble a Rat!... I said “Okay,  but do I need fancy X-rays and stuff?”  To this  he quickly whipped  out his camera and 20 minutes later, no kidding, 20 minutes later, with William pinch hitting as the doctor’s assistant, in Spanish,  I walked out with  a set of front braces.  Purple, of course, because purple goes with my skin tone.

By the time I got home and stared in minor horror as I bared my teeth in the mirror, it dawned on me what I had taken on. And it was a done deal.  This must be what it's like to wake up in your twenties, after a wild night during spring break,  to discover you have a Yin Yang symbol tattooed on your lower back that maybe you didn’t  think all the way through? 

Okay. I actually don’t have a tattoo.  But on a whim, I do now have braces.  Wrinkly elbows, low estrogen, and purple braces.  I'll probably be sixty when they come off. Or dead.

There you go!


Anonymous said...

OMG! I needed that little story of yours! Can't wait to share it with my husband. So tell me... did you ever get your licorice need satisfied? I'm still up for sending you some! Can't wait to hear the next story in your life in Panama! Sending you happy thoughts and good wishes. Stay safe!

Hodges Family said...

Hey lady!! I MISS you and have been thinking of you so very often lately! I don't see you post often on your blog, but I just happened to check and, WOW you have braces!!?? Very jealous I am! You know that I've been wanting to correct my "reverse swallow" and I'd have to say only out of lack of trust in the 3rd world country ideals have I been able to commit to doing the same...So way to go girl! Super! I need to be in touch with you more often! I should have posted this in a more private e-mail, but I'm trying to take advantage of the internet service I have at the moment! Evidently, our line of sight service is being affected by the growth of the trees on our property, therefore our signal has been lousy...oh well, TIP baby! And I love it, and I hope I can always say that!!! PS We were out on the boat the other day, and I must have thought about you and our last trip most of the day! Miss ya bunches!!!

TeriKnits said...

Post more... post more! Love hearing your stories about daily life and especially about tatoos, parades and braces!

News About The Boys

Mrs. Bliss told us there is a caterpillar here that is pink and fuzzy, and, if you touch it, its fur will stick in your skin and sting you! This happened to her daughter, Aylana. It was very painful and they had to pull the fibers out using tape! There are also scorpions and snakes, but I think there are more poisonous snakes in Florida.

William is busy, busy. In the morning he does his home schooling (Dad is his teacher!). Then, around 9:00 he rushes happily off to the local, Catholic, Spanish-only school where he audits the 4th grade! He's been doing some skim boarding but we are seriously missing the skating. Surfing looms in the near future. For a change we finally have kids on our street to play with, (not to mention dogs and roosters, snakes, toads, etc.) and it is wonderful making new friends. Still, William really misses his friends and family back in Sarasota. It's wonderful to get messages from the folks back home.

We send a special "Hello How Are Ya?" back to Nolen, Max, Connor, Emily W. and Teah!

Larry is Mr. Handy! Between homeschooling and making repairs on the house, he is never without something to do. And we have gone from never seeing him, to having him around all the time. Hmmmmmm.....

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