Ever After
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  • November11th


    Posted in: Lori

    Last December, we found ourselves with a bit of extra money in the flexible spending account. Not wanting it to disappear at the stroke of midnight on December 31st like Cinderella’s princess garb, I opted to get braces. Again. I had them twice as a youth but my wisdom teeth weren’t removed in a timely manner and my teeth became crooked again by the time I was in college.

    (We would have put it toward orthodontics for Ariana, but her teeth weren’t ready for braces yet.)

    After consulting with several orthodontists in the area, I selected Dr. Maria Castano-Rendon to be my orthodontist. I was impressed with her practical approach to treatment, with her genuinely kind and helpful staff, and with the glowing reviews  from a trusted friend who had taken all her kids there. Many of the other offices I visited were too much Frisco glitz and glamour for my liking. Cappuccino bars? Walls of flat screen televisions? Crazy. I loved the down-to-earth feeling of Rendon Orthodontics.

    On December 16, 2010, I walked into Dr. Maria Castano-Rendon’s office to get my braces on. The morning had not gone as planned–I had just come from the vet where I had to put my sweet little Marina kitty to sleep. Having to part with my best friend of seventeen years was the most gut wrenching thing I’ve ever had to do–and I’ve had guts wrenched several times in my life. I only mention these details because Dr. Rendon and her staff were so kind and sweet to me on this tough day.

    The beauty of my orthodontic treatment this time around was that the braces were going on the BACK of my teeth. Because I only had minor “crowding,” I qualified for lingual braces (a 6-8 month limited treatment) that would address “minor tooth movement.” This treatment wouldn’t address all of my orthodontic problems, but I’d end up with straight teeth, and that was good enough for me. It took some getting use to, but after a while, I didn’t mind having braces because no one else could tell that I had braces.

    Sadly,  part way through my treatment, I started to develop an open bite which, in my opinion, is more unattractive than the minor crowding I started with. An “open bite” is typically caused by someone with a tongue thrust problem. I’ve never had this problem, but we speculate that I had unknowingly developed a bad habit of unconsciously pushing my tongue against the back of my teeth because the braces were inside my mouth. Regardless, to correct the open bite and finish the alignment process, the braces had to come off the back of my teeth, and I had to start traditional treatment. If I had known that I’d once again have to relive this chapter from my pre-pubescent days, I’d have tried a little harder to find a more creative way to salvage our flexible spending funds. It didn’t help that, in addition to the braces, I seemed to always have a pimple or two to complete the whole adolescent look.

    But on a positive note, Dr. Castano-Rendon was amazing to work with. She could have charged me for full treatment (quite a bit more than lingual braces), but she didn’t. She and her wonderful staff could have been irritated when I had to bring my kids with me to appointments, but everyone was incredibly kind and accommodating. She could have become frustrated with all my questions and perfectionism, but she didn’t. She did everything she possibly could to minimize the amount of time I had to wear the blasted braces, and on October 5th, less than ten months after getting them on, the braces came OFF, revealing a beautiful new smile.

    Yes, the process was more complicated and lengthy than I had anticipated, but I am so happy with the results.

    And to further underscore how wonderful Rendon Orthodontics is, I have a couple of teeth (one upper and one lower) that just insist on trying to go back to where they had been for the prior 20+ years. I was pretty distraught by the relapse, but Dr. Castano-Rendon had a new retainer created for my uppers, and she expertly tweaked my bottom retainer to immediately correct both problems.

    All whining aside, I know that I am blessed to have been able to go through this process. It’s a wonderful feeling to be able to SMILE and not feel one bit self-conscious about it.


  • November10th

    I started cleaning at sun up yesterday morning, and it was well after sunset when I wearily vacuumed my bedroom while the other members of the family were glued to the t.v.

    I’m not trying to suggest that they had done nothing else that evening except watch t.v.

    No, they had also eaten a bowl of warm, homemade chicken tortilla soup and had randomly deposited their clutter at three different entry points downstairs.

    After a while, BT could sense that I was not particularly happy, so he bravely came in to ask what was wrong.

    “I feel like the Little Red Hen!”

    His response, though not meant to be funny, has brought a smile to my face all day: “The sky is falling???”

    Wrong bird.