I am an angry, miserable woman in pain.
Let me rephrase that.
I am a 40 something woman who took a long look in the mirror and didn’t recognize most parts of her body.
And I decided to do something, anything, about the fact that I don’t look like I’m 21 anymore.
I know, I know.
I’m supposed to age gracefully and embrace the wrinkles and the sagging and the stretch marks that look like a map of New York City at rush hour on my abdomen.
I’m supposed to go grey and wear pants that don’t zip without complaint.
I’m supposed to just let Mount Vesuvius erupt daily on my skin while I pay a king’s ransom for a skin care “system” that will keep my skin on step above “death warmed over.”
And, I’m supposed to simply accept that my eyebrows have rogue hairs that could poke someone’s eyes out if I’m not careful.
I’m sorry, but I just couldn’t take it anymore.
I hated feeling old every time I looked in the mirror. I missed my lustrous brown hair and my perky boobs.
My abs were spectacular at one time, I assure you. Now, they are buried under 20 years of baby weight and C section scarring. And one too many pints of Ben and Jerry’s during Grey’s Anatomy but we won’t talk about that, okay?
So, upon taking stock one morning after a shower (read: taking a big gulp of air and actually facing the mirror as I toweled off), I started to run through the litany of things I could do to make myself feel younger. More vibrant. And less, “Jesus Christ, you are how old now?”
Hair color was a simple fix. Well, as simple as dropping the equivalent of a month’s worth of groceries on a concept I still don’t understand called “low lights.” And yes, seeing my hair returned to its former glory did help. For a month or two.
But, I wanted a more permanent change. I wanted to do something lasting. Something that said, “Screw you, Mother Nature. Nanny nanny boo boo, I’m winning.” Because apparently I devolve into a petulant teen when I discuss my poor aging process.
At first, I thought I’d get a tattoo. But, in the absence of being attached to anything so much that I wanted it permanently emblazoned on my skin made that endeavor tricky. And, as a nurse, I’ve seen firsthand what tattoos look like on the skin of very old men. I just couldn’t commit to a Tweety Bird melting down my ass as a nurse turned me over in a nursing home.
And, since I was afraid of the recovery required for a tummy tuck and a boob job, I decided to do the next best thing.
I decided I was going to have my teeth straightened.
Because a newly straightened 40 plus year old smile will turn a C section frown upside down, right?
When I lamented to my friends about the fact that, on top of everything else, my teeth were starting to resemble my teen smile, my friends all nodded knowingly.
“Get Invisalign!” they said.
“It’s so easy, you won’t even know you are wearing them,” they promised.
And when I found myself with basically a square dildo the size of a Saltine box in my mouth so the orthodontist could build a 3D rendering of my mouth based on ultrasound scans of every square inch of my mouth, I started to have reservations.
“This the hardest part, we promise!” they said.
I raised my eyebrow. I asked my questions. I was promised that Invisalign wouldn’t be a big deal.
And so, that’s how I turned into an angry, miserable woman in pain.
A boob job has to be easier, people.
Turns out, the mouth trays, top and bottom, are hard AF to remove. Like, I split a nail AND sliced my finger open twice, trying to yank these plastic pieces of hell out of my mouth. And I’m pretty sure I’m going to take a tooth out the next time I try to remove them.
Which will be next Tuesday because f*ck that bullshit anytime soon.
I can’t eat anything because you have to brush after each thing you eat and the trays are so hard to remove that it’s not even worth it anyway so, silver lining: I’ll be 25 lbs thinner in no time.
When I do decide to eat, everything hurts because my teeth are, wait for it, REALIGNING, and basically loose AF and tender and JESUS CHRIST WHY IN THE NAME OF HELLO KITTY DID I DO THIS TO MYSELF?
I can’t drink coffee or wine while wearing them because of staining.
I’ve been gagging for infinity because my gag reflex is so bad that my tongue is revolting. I’ve thrown up twice since yesterday.
I should have gotten a boob job. And a f*cking tummy tuck. Because the recovery for those procedures are significantly less than the two years I’m stuck with these plastic death traps in my mouth.
Straight teeth are not worth it.
Tits that don’t sag will always be the better choice.
Learn from me.
The only silver lining is that orthodontics have improved greatly in the 30 years since I was a teenaged metal mouth. Mercifully, headgear is no longer a thing so, though I’m reliving every teenage insecurity I had when I was 13, at least I don’t have to show up at a PTA meeting wearing an apparatus.
So, there’s that, at least.