Since the first moment we paid the down payment and applied braces to Hayden’s teeth the clock has been ticking toward the moment when we would be able to pay them off and begin the orthodontic process with Anna. Double payment was out of the question, out of our financial reach, and we simply could not afford to have both girls in braces at the same time.
Steve enjoyed joking with Anna that when the orthodontist removed Hayden’s braces we would have them put the same brackets on Anna’s teeth thus saving a boatload of money. Anna always laughed at the joke, but, occasionally, she did so with a look of horror on her face as if wondering whether that might be a possibility.
We thought Hayden’s braces would be paid for this coming fall, and we (ok, me, it was me) were eager to get Anna started because it appeared to us, dental professionals that we are, that her teeth would be more involved than Hayden’s, taking longer to complete, and we wanted her process to be finished before any of the major high school milestones. (She’s going into eighth grade in a few weeks) So, I called to inquire as to the pay-off date and as to whether or not it was possible to start her now, and simply continue the payments, tack them on to the end of Hayden’s?
The monthly payment was an automatic debit from our checking account, and because we, clearly, don’t spend a ton of time *ahem* balancing our checkbook, we did not realize that Hayden’s braces have been paid off since last December.
Last December. As in, eight months wasted with no braces on Anna’s teeth.
Although, let me just say here that eight months ago, at the height of the bullying situation, it would probably not have been the best timing to put braces in the poor kid’s mouth. Everything happens for a reason, and in it’s own time. I truly believe that, and this is another example.
So, I made an appointment for Anna’s consultation, and to discuss the new financial picture for July 28th, and I promised her that she would not be getting braces that same day like her, apparently still traumatized by the right-this-minute of it, sister. Steve didn’t even join us for the appointment because we were just checking things out.
As returning patients we received a small discount, the required down payment was somehow much more reasonable, and they had time to get started that morning. I saw the blood drain from Anna’s face when they said they could start immediately, so I assured her that we didn’t have to, that she could come back another day to have the braces put on, but she smartly decided she didn’t want to deal with the building stress of anticipation for a few days, and bravely chose to get her braces that same day.
She was a trooper, but she had a severe case of buyer’s remorse after they were on and didn’t want to show them to anyone for a day or so. Also, she was in much more, and much longer, initial pain than Hayden seemed to be when she first had hers. But, she soon adjusted to her new look and how to take care of them.
I love her new smile already.
Fifteen to eighteen months. Here we go.