I’ve submitted here before, but I figured I’d address a different topic this time - my smile, or more specifically, my teeth.
When I was a child, I came down with scarlet fever. This bug happens when the same bug that causes strep throat gets into the blood stream. It causes extremely high fever, a painful rash and can be deadly. I was put on antibiotics, and I believe that’s when we found out about my penicillin allergy. I can’t really remember more than the light tracking over the floor of the room I’d been isolated in until I could recover, honestly.
During that time, my adult teeth were forming, and we didn’t know that the drugs would permanently stain them. When they came in when I was 12, it looked like I was a heavy smoker. I was ashamed, already depressed for various reasons, and stopped smiling altogether for a long time.
The dentist couldn’t do much, since I was so young, so they put bonding on those teeth to hide the stains. Unfortunately, it left them disfigured.
As I grew, I ended up needing braces, since my mouth was just a little too small for my eye-teeth to come in.
After a year and a half of having metal in my mouth, all of my teeth came in, but the front ones were still out of alignment, and they are to this day.
I have days where I hate how my smile is. Although I don’t have a complete bite, I can still eat well, and keep my mouth healthy. Occasionally, people will make comments, but I’ve gotten past the point of hurt. Sometimes, I still get angry.
Since it looks like two of my front teeth are still growing in, I usually just tell them it’s a sign of eternal youth. Honestly, their opinion isn’t helpful or worthwhile to me.
If they want to pay the several thousand dollars needed for another round of braces, hey! That’s cool. I can’t, so I won’t be fixing something that’s purely cosmetic.
So, to sum up, imperfections can be turned into something positive, and those who feel the need to be pointlessly hurtful aren’t worth listening to.
Be strong, folks, and take care.
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