I was 15 years old when I took my Junior High School graduation photo. My graduation gown felt frumpy and too large for my frame. I smiled a big smile in that photo and later looked at the proofs wondering why I smiled so big. My fangs were showing bold and unbeautiful. My baby teeth had refused to come out, so my adult teeth grew in on top of them. They were firmly rooted to my gums, with not even so much as a shake to indicate they might be ready to leave my mouth. My dentist said they had to be pulled. He should have pulled them long before my adult teeth grew through the top of my gums, making me look like a vampire. My baby teeth would not be easily moved, however. He had to put his back into it. They decided they would not go down without a fight. After what felt like more than an hour, they final relented, against their will. So at 15, I had to wear retainers to push down my adult teeth. I hated my retainers. They made me look uglier than I already looked during my ugly years. I believe we all go through ugly years as a teenager, don’t you think? My ugly years lasted through all of Junior High School and the first year or so of High School. But I made it through, retainers and all.