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stupid mouth

So Wednesday I had the consultation with the orthodontist. Now it turns out I'm going to need a year of braces again before they even do the bone graft! Arrgh. It's all upper jaw work, and it sounds like mainly nudging my canines a bit and pulling those pesky floating front teeth more into the center, but it still may require braces on the bottom teeth too in order to use damn rubber bands as well. This of course means getting some kind of permanent replacement false teeth gets pushed off over another year - though there'd be temporary false ones included with the braces, so at least this worn-down retainer would finally go.

There's the financial side to this as well, which is not good for my plans for this year: the estimated cost is around $5,000, and my dental plan does not cover adult orthodontics. Additionally, I recently realized I made a minor screwup. Last year I worked at 3sharp as a subcontractor for 10 weeks before they hired me as a full employee, and that means 10 weeks of income with no taxes withheld. Well now it's tax time, and I'm anticipating having to pay over $3,000 in taxes as a result. Oops.

Now, on the one hand, I'm really not hurting financially. I'm pretty much debt-free, and I haven't been spending all my income, so I should be able to cover the taxes without a problem. I expect it'll wipe out most of my reserves, but I can handle it. Likewise, I can afford to take on the payments for the orthodontics - the tax thing means I may have to delay starting the braces for a few months, so I can put aside the downpayment for that, but still I can afford it. And I know for many people, there would be no issue here: they simply couldn't afford it, paying the rent and buying food would be far more crucial. While my dental work does seem to be a necessity over the long term, if the surgeon is right about the eventuality of losing my front teeth unless work is done, it nonetheless does have a large aesthetic or luxury aspect to it; it's not an immediate necessity of life, and it's not critical that the work be done now.

On the other hand, these unanticipated expenses do mean it's likely I'll have to defer all my big plans for this year until next, or later. "Boo hoo, so you don't get to buy a new laptop (second computer) this year, too bad" - that would be fair to say. But also my idea of buying a condo, starting to own my own place, would be deferred, maybe by two or three years if I'm understanding how the buying process works. And that's disappointing.

Well, I really need to file my taxes first, so I get that big expense out of the way. Then I can worry about orthodontics and condos.

Final note, since it's likely I won't get around to posting again later today (Friday): it's the second anniversary of my arrival in Seattle. Still love it.


( 2 have written — Write )
Mar. 12th, 2004 07:12 am (UTC)
happy anniversary!

i hated braces with a passion, so i'm sorry you have to go through that again.... :(
Mar. 13th, 2004 11:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks, on both counts. I wouldn't say I hated braces with a passion, I was long since resigned to having some kind of corrective devices in my mouth, but I certainly didn't like them, particularly headgear. And I'm rather unhappy to have to go back to braces, even though it shouldn't be as much trouble this time and won't be as long.
( 2 have written — Write )

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