Monday, May 14, 2012

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth

Or maybe all 32 of them. In two perfect, pearly arches. Oh, and a chin implant too.

Pol guessed my silliest decluttered item: Item 78, the plaster casts of my own teeth!

My top impression lost part of one of its teeth.
Does that mean I get a visit from the adult tooth fairy?
Happiness is a fleeting thing. Have you ever spent a ton of money on something, been thrilled, and then a while later you're suddenly finding any and every flaw in the thing you purchased?

That's the story with these impressions. I had braces as a child and everything shifted as an adult. So a year before my wedding I decided to get them done again. $950 later, the front half of my upper and lowers were nice arches. On my wedding day I LOVED my teeth.

Unfortunately I was cheap and only had the front ten teeth or so fixed, which means that everything shifted in the months after the wedding. It did mean that I had the braces off in time for the wedding, though. These impressions were taken post-shift.

Now when I look at the impressions all I can see are the flaws. The fact that my incisors have dropped again and I'm starting to look like a rabbit once more. That all of my front teeth are flaring out and I'm starting to wonder if Mr. Ed is a distant cousin of mine. That I should've had my lower jaw brought forward as a child so I wouldn't be wishing for a chin implant now....

I talked to a classmate from college who has a similar facial structure and did have a chin implant. She looks *gorgeous* now. But you know what? She told me she's still very unhappy with her appearance. No matter what I do, my teeth and jaws will never be good enough for myself.

I kept these teeth impressions on my desk at work because, come on, I work at a medical library. People have plastic models of body parts on their desks where I work. Only difference is that those plastic models don't remind people of the things they don't like about themselves. I can like myself more if I'm not constantly reminded of my flaws.

For many of us there is never a "good enough." My chin will never be like Kate Middleton's. My body will never look like Kelly Pickler's. I need to start accepting what I have now or I'm going to spend the rest of my life in a miserable heap.

Are there things in your life that remind you of things you don't like about yourself? What's stopping you from getting rid of them?


  1. What a tough question that is!
    All of the lotions and ointments in my cabinet to combat adult acne and wrinkles?
    The thing that stops me from tossing them is the hope that these creams will keep things from getting worse (I can't count on them actually fixing the acne/wrinkles)

    1. me too! It seems that with every new wrinkle magically comes a new cream or potion in my skincare collection. I wish Consumer Reports would stop saying that these things actually work because I believe them!

  2. It's funny...I recently purged an expander (used to fix my crappy teeth) from my memory box. I totally get what you're saying about living with what you've got. I'm trying...but still want to run to the orthodontist every time I see a picture of me smiling (missing incisors + pointy incisors= real life vampire). And as much as I keep telling myself that I'm ok, there's always something not good enough. I find that continuously pointing out my decent features (like aqua eyes and long nails) makes it a bit better. If you do find a great method to get over the "if only" hump, do share!

  3. You are the way you are meant to be right now. Nobody rejects you as a friend on the basis of your looks. No academic qualifications is given on the basis of your appearance. If your appearance bothers you then close your eyes and see like a blind person. How do your teeth look now? If the body works, then that is good enough. You are heaps better off than those unfortunate people born with no arms or legs, or any of the thousands of permanent disabilities. By the way if someone is boasting about their body and its wonderful attributes, how does that feed the starving or create peace and kindness? Ten years after death we all look much the same anyway.

    1. "You are heaps better off than those unfortunate people born with no arms or legs, or any of the thousands of permanent disabilities."

      This is so true. It's so easy in our wanting to forget how much we have.

      I'm not good at appreciating "enough." But recognizing that I have so much and that I am more fortunate than many is something I can work on and feel that maybe I can achieve one day. Thank you for the reminder and the encouragement.

  4. While I don't have casts of my own teeth, I have been keeping my daughters teeth as they fall out (she's turning 7 soon). I'm not sure why I've kept them. They kinda creep me out after a while, and I'm certain she won't want them as an adult. But throwing out something that originally came with my baby seems wrong, too! LOL

    As for the self-image issues, I think we all have those. Goes to show you that clutter isn't just a pile of physical items, but junk in our minds, too. And it's harder to clear.

    1. "Goes to show you that clutter isn't just a pile of physical items, but junk in our minds, too."

      I think that's what makes me the most concerned for my mom. Her physical clutter is tied to her mental clutter. If she's going to get better she can't just work on one or the other. And she won't acknowledge that. Ah, I'm having one of those "almost being sympathetic for my hoarder parent" moments....somebody stop me!

  5. This is where a lot of my clutter has come from, shopping for the person I want to be or wish I was rather than the person I am. I think the process of decluttering makes us take a closer look at who we actually are and finding what fits our current life.

    Oh, and if you put the piece of plaster tooth under your pillow, you might get a plaster coin. =)

  6. I have a full -length mirror in my closet. The lighting in the closet is florescent which I feel is not flattering. I've noticed in a couple really nice department stores they have great lighting in their dressing rooms which make me look way better than I do in most dressing room mirrors. I'm thinking of getting rid of the mirror because we're not about to upgrade the lights.

    1. a lot of people underestimate the power of mirrors, for good or bad. I'm glad you've been able to see how it affects you and how you feel about yourself!

  7. I just ran across your blog and will be reading more. Please don't hate me but I'm not dissatisfied with my looks. I'm not perfect, nor do I want to be. A good friend of my always says, "You don't want to be on top; there's nowhere to go but down."

    1. No one here would hate you for your looks! In fact, we'd probably be begging you to tell us your secret. How do you learn to love yourself as you are? (sounds like a good guest post if you'd like to write one!)

      Thanks for reading!

    2. I think it is because I grew up being the oddball kid who was often picked on and taunted. I spent years of trying to be "normal" and fit in but it isn't who I am. I learned that I could either be unhappy about not being like the others (being who I am) or I could be happy and be me. It turns out that embracing who/what I am was a lot less work and heartache.

      It wasn't THAT simple though. I went through a lot of disliking of my looks and/or not being satisfied with what I have. Lots of trial and error has lead me to discover that what I want to be in this world more than anything is HAPPY. And fretting over looks, weight, fashion, lack of tact sometimes, etc makes me unhappy.

      I learned there are some things that you can change and others you can't. If it something you can reasonably change then go for it, but I also think at some point you just have play the hand life dealt you.

      I get where you would try a few times to fix your teeth to where you like them to be. Teeth are something that are fixable if you have the income to do so. However, it sounds like nature has other plans for you. I say you gave it the old college try, but your mouth just doesn't want to be the way you want it to be. To it, that's unnatural. Don't keep your old teeth impressions if they make you feel dissatisfied with what you have. OR keep them and look at them and think, "Wow, I could have a mouth like that if I wanted to waste a lot of time, money, and energy and go through a lot of hassle, pain and upkeep. I'm so glad I'm over that."


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