Yep, those are braces.
And they're still on my teeth.
Oh, and those? Rubber bands.
Kill me now. Please, please do.
Just last month I was all, "Tra-lee-la-lee-la! Life's wonderful! I'm wonderful! I'll never have to wear rubber bands!" And then, BAM! Reality check. "Almost everyone has to do this toward the end," I'm told, but I don't really believe it.
So yeah, here I am. Six months. Braces. No feeling in my mouth.
That's cool, I guess.
As usual, I'm going to tell you that nothing has changed and then prattle on about all the stuff that actually has changed. Except I mean it this time! Literally nothing has changed since last month.
It's six months and I still don't have feeling in the roof of my mouth. Just--ugh. No. I'm supposed to have feeling there by now. I'm irreparably damaged. I just know it.
I noticed a little while ago that the roof of my mouth is this purple-ish color, which isn't helping anything. Please somebody go look in the mirror and see what color your's is. If you tell me that your's is that color too then I'll know mine's not, like, dead or something. And if nobody says anything, I'll just take it to mean that you all simply hate me. Which I honestly would prefer to never feeling the inside of my mouth again.
I still can't whistle. I wanted to be able to whistle after the surgery. But I'm not giving up hope yet! If I can't whistle after I get my braces off then I'll give it up, but I'm holding on to that thought for now.
I do whistle, however, whenever I use any fricatives.
fric·a·tive [frik-uh-tiv] adjective1.(of a speech sound) characterized by audible friction produced by forcing the breath through a constricted orpartially obstructed passage in the vocal tract; spirantal; spirant.
So, you know, like -ph or -sh or -th.
In other words, pretty much every other word I say whistles when I talk.
I sound like an old man.
On a completely unrelated topic, I said something in my last post before I had my surgery about taking "anti-swelling medication" because I needed to go to the school the next week. I don't really know where I got the idea that I actually had any of that or that it even exists (does it?) but I definitely never took anything like that. I don't know, that just made me feel dumb so I felt like I needed to clarify.
Anyway, I've been to two orthodontist appointments since my last post. Two! Lucky you, getting to read about two different visits.
The first one I went to around the end of November. I finally told the ortho how I felt about my front teeth so he tried to fix that. He also polished a few of my teeth so that they're all smooth on the bottom, but they don't exactly feel straight, so I'm not sure he understood what I meant. But I'm done. I'm just done. They look fine so I really don't even care anymore. I'm just ready to get them off!
My regular orthodontist was actually there this time, and he knows that I wanted them off by Christmas, so he told me to come back in four to five weeks. He went ahead and told me that the braces weren't coming off before Christmas so I didn't really care so much how far away the appointment was, but for some reason his secretary set it for three weeks. Later we realized that my appointment interfered with an exam I was having that day, so when my mom called the office the secretary moved it up a week. So it really ended up being only two weeks, but that's fine by me!
I went again. And I got rubberbands. And now I'm unhappy.
They hurt and--aughh! One literally just popped!--they're inconvenient and annoying and they take up my time and I'm just fed up with them. I can't move my mouth and they make me spit all over the place and they're just ugly. But I'm going to be a good little patient and wear them anyway because I WANT MY BRACES OFF.
On the bright side, though, they're making me sleep with my mouth closed. Kind of. I can't keep my lips closed (fingers crossed that that'll change after my braces are off!) but my mouth doesn't hang open unattractively. It's a work in progress, but I--Crap! Another rubber band popped!--have faith that this'll fix me!
Sooooooo, that's it really.
Once again, on an entirely different subject, I love my hair.
In the spirit of keeping things Susan-like, though, I'll follow that positive note with something negative.
Glass bottle soft drinks irritate me. I really would like to just put the lid back on it when I'm done.
That's why there's a lid!
Aeroiuqyknsdbnxz! I'm bothered just thinking about it.
Have a happy Christmas or something.
Hidy ho, readers. I fear tonight might be a short post due to my ineptitude and horrible memory; I forgot to write earlier and now I'm sleepy.
There's really not much to tell this time anyway, but...
I have noticed that in the last couple of weeks more feeling has come back in the roof of my mouth, which I am super happy about. I really like to brush the roof of my mouth when I brush my teeth (does anyone else do that?) but I haven't since the surgery because I'm afraid I'm going to hurt myself. My brushing just doesn't feel complete if I can't rake the bristles across my palate. Soon, though, I think I'll get to feeling everything again.
The only other numbness still bothering me is my philtrum and my nose.
My upper lip continues to fluctuate with how numb it is. Normally I don't notice anything wrong with it, but whenever I do anything strenuous--don't worry, this is very, very seldom--it gets all tingly and uncomfortable. Like, all I want to is scratch it, but that doesn't do anything.
And I don't even know what's up with nose. I have feeling all over it and everything is normal from mid nose and into my glabella, but I don't like the tip is doing right. I can feel pressure if I touch it, but say I push my fingernail into it, then I can't feel that. Is it because that's cartilage, or am I still messed up?
By the way...
Red fingernail is your glabella, gold fingernail is your philtrum, neither of which is recognized as a real word by spell check.
I can't remember if I've been to the orthodontist or not since my last post, but I'll rehash anyway.
I went, my regular otho wasn't there, they really didn't do anything, told me to come back in two months, were promptly told that that would not happen (thanks mom!), readjusted to six weeks, then we left. I go back at the end of the month and then hopefully the time after that will be when I get my braces off. My front teeth are still not straight so I'm going to point this out to them next time. My upper right 2 doesn't look exactly right to me either, but I seriously don't want to just go in there telling them how to do their job.
But, yo, I've gone through nearly two and a half years of braces and double jaw surgery without ever having to wear rubber bands. I rock. Or my ortho does, but I like to think that after all the trouble I've had with my mouth (consult my first post if you need to) they decided to cooperate just this once.
Back to my lips though, I realized yesterday in theatre that I have no control over the upper one anymore. We were playing chubby bunny, but with grapes...
...when it became apparent that I could never win, because I can't stretch my top lip over a grape. I still have lots of scar tissue up there and half the time I can't even reach parts of my upper mouth with my tongue. It stinks when this starts affecting important things like chubby bunny, but it's super annoying when it comes to eating. Oh my goodess. Ground beef (i.e. the only meat I really like very much) is just a nightmare to get out of scar tissue. You can swish water, you can try to use your finger, but it very rarely works. And also (sorry for the stream of consciousness going on here, but I need to go to bed!) the inside of my nose is also an area that is isn't very easily reached anymore. Sorry if you don't want to know anything about my snot, but I'm telling you anyway. If you recall, I wasn't allowed to blow my nose for the first few weeks after my surgery because I might bleed to death or something, but I still can't blow it five months later. It's uncomfortable. And believe me, even if I wanted to take my fingers digging for gold, I couldn't because that hurts too. There's some kind of freaky bone feeling thing protruding from my right nostril, so I'm just trying to leave my nose alone. But this, in turn, makes is harder for me to breathe and that is why I'm still sleeping with my mouth open which is something I wanted to end after the surgery. I've still got my surgery bandages, so I'm thinking I'll to ignore the reddish stains on them--maybe it's just medicine?--and wrap them around my face so tightly that my mouth can't open after I fall asleep. It works in theory, but I probably won't be able to sleep with them on.
Okay, guys, I'm seriously pushing it now and I can think of nothing more that is pertinent to my surgery. Plus, this post is reaching dangerous levels of erraticism that haven't been seen since I was doped up on pain medication. So I'll just close by saying that even though my hair has been a hot mess lately, I still love myself. Like, for real, I'm great. Have you seen my nose?! Oh goodness, I just can't stop talking about it. But now I need to so here's copious amounts of pictures for you.
My dad is sitting within view of the webcam and I don't want his feet in my pictures so these are all just somethings taken away from computer. Jeez, I don't live at this desk you know. Get over it.
I'm actually pointing at a mustache painting on my cheek, but we can pretend it's actually just my beautiful jaw.
And here I am without an arm.
Here's my hair curled.
Pre-surgery Susan couldn't have pulled that off.
Oh my goodness, I just remembered how I used to laugh at before and after surgery pictures because everybody's hair had changed so much that it was hard to get a real idea of how much everybody changed. But now I've done the same thing by changing the color and growing it out!
See, I have friends now that I'm pretty! Though I don't know how I always end up on the same side of the picture.
Anyway, goodnight and jeg elsker dig!
I've officially made it through one-third of a year being completely and irrevocably in love with my face.
Anyway, all month, every month things come up that I think I should write about in my blog and then I sit down on the sixteenth and completely blank.
So I'm going to go get some pudding and brainstorm.
Yeah, I'm eating with a baby spoon. Get over it.
Okay, so that didn't really help anything, but I remembered what I meant when I mysteriously typed "fish" into a note on my iPod*.
*Steve Jobs died! Be sad!
That baby over there just so happens to be a Blood Red Parrot Cichlid. The last time I was at PetSmart I ran into a tank of these (literally) and I immediately thought that they looked just like little jaw surgery patients.
Need I remind you of her?
Moving on, if you happen to be anything like my friends and family you're probably wondering when I'm going to quit going on and on about jaw surgery. Probably never, but I plan on doing monthly updates until the six month mark or until I get my braces off, whichever comes second. Six months is when I should definitely have all my feeling back (or know for sure that it's not coming back) and around the time I will hopefully be getting my braces off, so I thought that would be a good stopping point. And maybe if you're lucky--or unlucky if you happen to wish I would quit spamming Facebook with links to my blog--I'll do a one year update too. But I promise I'll quit after that.
Speaking of braces, I'm going to the orthodontist in two days in hopes of a more definitive answer to the big question than, "I don't know, Christmas time? Maybe?"
One of my fellow jaw surgery patients got her braces off a week or two ago and has been posting pictures of herself sans hardware on Facebook, unknowingly making me more and more anxious to get mine off.
One time I heard one of my ortho's partners say that they were "terminating treatment due to patient noncooperation" which, to me, sounds preferable to "arresting patient due to assaulting entire staff because she's gone postal due to the fact that she's had her braces on FOREVER," which you might soon see in the paper.
I'm going crazy over here.
Look! This new color means that I'm changing the subject since I can't seem to use transitional words properly. Plus, you know, I love purple.
Alright, so I stabbed myself brushing my teeth this morning and even though it hurt like Vin Diesel, it was masochistically nice because I kinda also felt it in the roof of my mouth. I repeat, the roof of my mouth. I haven't had feeling there in four whole months! For the first time I have hope that I'm not irreparably damaged. It's wonderful.
Aaaaaaaaaaaaand... that's all I can come up with.
Super short post is super duper lame, I know. Go cry about it.
Just kidding, I love you!
Can you believe it‽ It's been three whole months already!
I remember when I was religiously studying the blogs of other jaw surgery patients before my surgery, I wondered just what they were doing with their lives at this point now that the surgery was out of the way. I'm a very linear thinker and I tend to center my life around the next big thing coming for me. Now, I've been looking forward to having this surgery for the past 5-8 years. This was HUGE for me! I would read these people's blogs and think, "What are you doing with your life‽ Is your life just bland now? What do you have to look forward to?"
Well, I'll tell you. Time absolutely flies once you begin healing and before you know it you'll be sitting in AP English 11 not really listening to the lecture on methods of argumentation and think to yourself, "Goodness me! How ever did it get to be a month thrice already?"
In all honesty, I don't think like that nor am I certain that I used thrice correctly in that last sentence, but you'll deal.
Seriously, though, three months kinda sneaked up on me without much really changing since last month. Healing is a slow, constant process so new things are coming up every day and, ask anybody that spends any time around me, I still talk about my surgery and face constantly. I'm not kidding, I never shut up about it.
So, maybe a blog post will get some of it out of me and you all can stop hearing about it for a while.
But probably not.
I've been going back and reading some of my first posts and making little notes about things I never followed up on or wasn't exactly clear about that I thought you might want to know, so... here.
1- Um, I'm pretty lazy and all I wrote down on this one was "fish." I have no idea what I meant by that so I'll come back to it if I remember.
2- Last night I remembered my time spent in the hospital and having to go to the bathroom with my morphine drip and whatnot. Thinking back on it, it's pretty funny, because my thought process was so messed up because of all the medications I was on. I remember thinking "BATHROOM. I SEE BATHROOM!" and then I yelled something along the lines of "BAHHHRGOOHN!!!!!!"
Why don't they understand? I need to go to the bathroom. Now!
"BOONPRAWN! BARFGOON! AGHHHHHH!"
I think there was some kicking and whining before I emphatically jerked my whole body in the direction of the bathroom, pulling on my IV painfully.
Finally, either my mom or the nurse understood and took, like, and hour to unhook my oxygen mask and IV. The nurse told me to "hold on" but we all know I didn't. The last time a nurse told me to hold on, I decided to half-consciously roll my wheelchair down the hallway. This time I stood up, took a few confident steps, and pretty much fell into a wall or something. Like I said, my mental process was all messed up and I couldn't for the life of me figure out why I felt exactly the same way I did every other time I've had surgery.
Needless to say, I was more careful the next 5000 times I had to go to the bathroom that night.
3- Speaking of my IV, that thing hurt. I'm not really complaining or anything because I was fortunate enough to have morphine, but why should it hurt that much to get something to make me feel better. The tube was in my hand (my thin, frail hand) and I could literally feel the medicine entering my bloodstream through the stretched, open wound. I lived.
4- I hate being snapped at. I bring this up because the first thing I remember upon waking is a lady snapping at me saying, "Susan, stay with us. We need you to--." At this point I understood that they needed my cooperation getting me into a new gown and bed, but the snapping killed that for me so I immediately succumbed to sleep. They managed, I didn't have to be snapped at.
5- I was looking back at some of the comments on my old posts and, boy, was I doped up. Everyone was telling me that I was brave and an inspiration, you know, usual surgery things. But what's different is my response.
No joke, here is an actual quote:
"Thanks guys! But really, it's everyone who's keeping me in their thoughts and prayers that are the inspiration. You, my wonderful friends and family, are what's keeping me going right now.
I love you all!"
I am a snarky, cynical, narcissistic jerk. Normal me would have simply said, "Duh."
But no, I just had to go put myself out there like that.
It's a shame, really.
6- After I got home from the hospital, I was too sore and weak to bathe for a while (judge me, please do) so when I finally found one of those little sticky things they put all over you at the hospital, it had been on me for maybe two weeks. Baths make me feel better when I'm sickly, so I had laid in the water a lot before I ripped it from my skin, which makes me wonder what exactly they use to stick those on you. I swear, it was like taking a breathe-rite strip off your nose.
7- I don't know if you remember me talking about the terrible time I was having drinking from a straw, but I would like to tell you it's gotten much better. It hasn't, but I would like to anyway. I don't really like drinking out of straws much, so I hadn't noticed I wasn't improving with this until I went to Zaxby's with my friend the other day.
"Here, have a sip!" she said innocently.
"OKAY!" I replied oblivious. So I picked up her drink and stuck the straw in my mouth and attempted to make suction. Then I remembered that the only way for me to drink out of a straw now is for me to stick it in the very corner of my mouth, bite down on the straw, and use all of my strength to create a vacuum. This is just a slobbery mess so I put the drink down.
You could say it sucks, but, you know, it doesn't.
See what I did there? Yeah.
7- Lastly, I never finished my story about peach picking. I said I would tell you about it, but I never did.
Me and my grandparents got up even earlier than old people usually do and drove to a peach orchard that was obscenely far away from where they live. On the way we stopped at Jack's and I learned that my grandmother picks the middle (a.k.a. the good part) out of her biscuit and puts mustard on it, which is as completely unappetizing as it sounds. Anyway, we got there and the owners had this adorable dog named Elvis that would come charging through the knee high grass while you were picking and scare you. Although, if you were able to see him coming it would just look like there was an extremely large, extremely fast snake coming for you. It was something straight out of a horror movie. A horror movie named Elvis.
Regardless, I was not good at peach picking. I didn't really know what to look for and after sinking my fingers into my fifth worm infested peach I told my grandmother to just let me hold the basket. Of which, they picked nearly 20. It was exhausting and my shoes were soaked, but it was really peaceful and the weather was abnormally pleasant for late July in Alabama. All I really got out of the experience, besides time with my grandparents was the knowledge that stepping on a rotten peach is remarkably similar to stepping in dog poop.
Well, I still have absolutely no idea what "fish" was supposed to mean so I'll move on to what's not exactly new or old.
I mentioned last month that I still couldn't feel my upper lip, through my philtrum and that I had no feeling inside of my mouth either. The first part is still true, but I am now able to feel behind my front teeth a little. Feeling is feeling, which is good, but it's extremely sensitive right now. Eating chips and brushing my teeth is torture, but both are necessary things in life so I'll get over it. I think the six month mark is when you're supposed to be able to say, "This is the feeling I have, this is how it's going to be for the rest of my life" so if I don't start getting some feeling soon I'll probably have permanent nerve damage.
Since I've gone back to school I've learned of three other kids that had jaw surgery over the summer too, but they were only single jaw surgery patients. I'm an overachiever and just HAD to have double!
I'm not really friends with any of those three, so I don't know if it would be different if I was, but I can't tell a difference in any of them. I think, and I'm working purely off of rumor here, that one had an overbite, one had an open bite, and the other had a less severe underbite. Knowing that even a jaw surgery patient wasn't able to spot the differences in them makes me wonder if I even look that different. I sure think I do, in fact I think I look fabulous, but a few of my friends have said that they didn't even notice I had surgery. And one of my teachers from last year told me, "I like your hair!" Because it's not like I changed my whole face or anything. I haven't even done anything different with my hair.
People! I was gross, and now I'm not! Why can't you see that‽ It does lift my spirits, though, to hear some of the things people say about me, because I know some people have noticed.
Some of my favorites are-
"That girl looks like this other girl that goes here named Susan."
"Is that Susan's cousin or something?"
"Excuse me, but you look a lot like this other girl. What's your name?"
One of my friends said the other day that when I left the room a girl said, "Did anybody read her blog over the summer? It was hilarious!" So thank you to you too!
And just today my friend Jason told me out of the blue, "Your jaw looks nice!"
I really don't think there are any words out there to describe how much I love hearing that.
Since the surgery I've enjoyed new activities such as rubbing my newly defined jaw line and poking my cheekbones that came out of nowhere. Not to mention, my extremely pleasing dimples that I have again. I love them!
All in all, I just feel good about myself. At the beginning of the year I even demanded that this guy in my history class be friends with me. Old Susan wouldn't have done that. Old Susan didn't talk to people. Mostly because Old Susan didn't like people, but I'm trying to be more personable. Trying.
I've been working at this thing for nearly two hours now, so I'll close by telling you of my cold.
I don't get sick, it just doesn't happen. But I've had a yucky cold this week, my first since the surgery, and it's like this terrible relapse into Beak Nose. When my nose was weird and hooked I didn't breathe out of it because I was not physically able, but now I freely breathe without my mouth. Except now I'm all stuffy and it's making me feel claustrophobic. I've told you about the funky nerves in my face not exactly acting right, and now every time I sniff my runny nose a nerve above my front left tooth spasms and it's totally disorienting. But whatever, the very first sentence in my first post surgery blog was that I wouldn't constantly complain on this blog so that is that and I'm done talking about it.
My friend found me this nifty tattoo in English the other day. I thought you would enjoy it since all I ever talk about on here is pain killers.
Ignore the hooded man in the back.
My webcam does terrible profile shots, so here's something my friend took at church the other night.
Ain't she a beaut?
I mean, look how defined that is! And compare it to what is quite possibly the worst picture ever taken of me.
Ugh, I don't even know how I've come so far as to be able to show this to the whole world.
Okay, now please just glance at it, maybe think a few nice things about how much more AMAZING I look now, then scroll down and forget about it forever. Whatever you do, just please forget about it.
Here, have a nice picture to make it all better!
Lastly, we can just forget about that thing I do at the end of every post because
A) Now that school's started, I'm reading a million books
B) My weight is pretty much staying at around 110 pounds now
C) I'm not really actively doing anything regarding my recovery, so that's not relevant.
So, if you've stuck with me to this point, I want to say thank you and that soon (I really mean it!) I'm going to be adding a few more pages that you can look out for.
[Insert generalized apology for not writing here]
Yeah, yeah. I'm sorry, but not much has happened that you would have cared about anyway.
Plus, school started so I've been really bogged down with homework. You don't want me to fail do you?
Because of school I've been kinda stressed out (and we're only five days in!) but lists always make me feel better so here's one for you guys; get ready for some rambling:
I still don't know what I'm going to do with my hair.
It mostly just bugs me right now, so I've been wearing it in a ponytail. I found this
website where you try on celebrity hairstyles.
These are my obvious favorites. You can try to guess who they are and then click on the picture to find out. Or if you're really lazy--just like me!--then just ignore them.
I'm thinking I'm going to get rid of the blond in my bangs, but after that I don't know what I'm going to do.
I want to grow it out some and put a few different colored streaks in the underside, but I'm not sure my parents or semi-fascist high school will go for that.
Speaking of school, it started Thursday so I went and got registered the Monday before. I'm telling you, it's like lines mean nothing some people. Why is it okay for you to just walk up to the front while everybody else is waiting?! Needless to say, I was pretty pleased when a teacher (who's usually mean anyway) chewed this lady out.
Yes, line cutters. I don't like them; therefore, there have been many altercations involving me in the cafeteria before. I'm seriously not okay with that and I don't mind making sure people know it, but it's an unnecessary stress that I'm not really wanting to deal with again this year. It seems like our new principal, who's been in the lunchroom, is trying to get the SRO's to watch the line, so maybe it won't be a problem. I know this has nothing to do with jaw surgery, but I just have to vent a little sometimes.
So I'll get back on track with yawning. For the most part, all my pain is gone, but yawning is about to kill me. I mean, I'm stretching my mouth as far as possible over and over again, so it's going to hurt. But I assume it'll get better soon just like my laughing did.
I think my swelling is pretty much gone! If you look closely, my left side is still a little puffier than my right, but I suppose it could have always been that way. I had been thinking that I was still swollen under my eyes too, but I realized that those are cheekbones. I've never had any before!
Braces, braces, braces. I went to the orthodontist on the seventh and had my braces tightened and my surgical hooks removed. He said that the only real thing left to fix is my bottom right teeth. I was afraid that it would hurt more than usual since my mouth is still a little sensitive, but the lady was really gentle and it went okay. The only thing that hurt later was the teeth on the bottom right, so they must have been serious about everything else being straight. Before my surgery the ortho cut my wire between my front two teeth, presumably to allow the surgeon to expand my palate or shift my midline; as a result, my upper right 1 overlapped my upper left 1 in the following weeks. At my appointment, I got a new (whole) wire and my teeth shifted back to a normal position... then my upper left 1 started to overlap my upper right 1. Oh well, I'll mention it when I go back next month. When I go they're going to move some brackets and hopefully I'll have my braces off before Christmas!
Eating is going well. I can eat almost anything now without much trouble and chewing gum hasn't proved to be a problem. Food still gets stuck in my braces much more than before surgery, but without my surgical hooks this has improved some. Drinking isn't going as well as eating, though. I'm efficient... but that's it. I still am unable to wrap my lips around a straw so I just make some suction with my tongue and the roof of my mouth. It works fine, but it's pretty hard to keep the liquid in my mouth after that. I'm better with simply drinking out of a cup or can, but that's not perfect either. And don't even get me started on taking medicine!
People stare at me a lot because I've taken to brushing my teeth at school, but I look back at these starers with eyes that condemn their lesser hygiene. "Look at you with out a toothbrush, without minty fresh breath. You're just jealous." Honestly, though, I can't laugh at anybody else when I'm still drooling like my friend's six month old daughter.
I'm working on it.
I am pleased to report that I seem to be in 70% of people who regain full feeling. I'm still completely numb inside my mouth, though. I can't feel a thing in my mouth, even when it's bleeding. One funny thing though, is that when I eat something hot the outer part of my left cheek feels warm and wet, and the opposite things happens on my right cheek when I drink something cold.
I have some feeling under my nose, but not completely. I have feeling there, but it's kinda... muted. I don't know how to explain it very well. I guess, if you're willing to be imaginative, you could say it's like my lip is distracted: I have most of it's attention, but part of it's always drifted off to a place without John Mayer and line cutters.
There's a reason I type instead of talk. Before the surgery I had hopes that my problem with certain words would clear up but, alas, it's gotten worse. I'm fine with most words and short sentences, but I talk like I have peanut butter in my mouth when I get long winded.
And my f's whistle. I sound like an old man!
It's irritating, but I think it's getting better. I'm auditioning for a play at school on Thursday, so I'm a little worried, but my monologue is short, I'm adopting an airy accent, and my confidence is way up from where it was last year (not to mention that I've always gotten flustered when lines got wordy), so maybe it'll go all right.
I went to the DMV before school started and got my license. I think I'm in the .00000001% of people who actually like their picture, but right now I think I would like any picture of myself. If it helps those of you who don't like yours, my hair's bad and I look extremely over eager.
I was pretty nervous because we went to the one in our area with the worst reputation for rude employees, but my lady was really, really nice. The computer was being slow so we talked about jaw surgery (her sister had it too) and gastric bypass surgery for half an hour.
Yeah, she was really sweet. And she said she liked my necklace.
Since I last wrote, all of my stitches came out. I tried extremely hard to pocket one and take a picture of it for you--they were really long. And smelly--but I kept losing or swallowing them. Sadface.
But if you want me to describe them, I will. Really? You care that much? Okay, then!
Um... they were white.
There isn't really much else to say about them. They each seemed to be about two or three inches long and some had cute little knots in them that were more like miniature hair bows than your traditional knot. And they didn't hurt all that much coming out, even when I pulled them out against their will.
PAIN! My favorite song by Pain is probably Milk. My mom once commented on how appropriate their name is because she didn't appreciate their talent, but they're from Alabama, so I'm inclined to like them.
Why am talking about a band and not pain related to jaw surgery?
Because I don't have any, that's why!
And that brings our little chat to a close. I need to go to bed.
I'm not making anymore promises about when I'll post, because you see how long it took me this time.
The next time I feel like it (and by that, I mean sometime within the next few years), I'm going to add a couple of new pages about stuff relevant the recovery process. Or maybe not. Who knows? I'm just keeping you on your toes!
I started writing this a couple of weeks ago, but I decided to save it for the two month mark and update it now, so my pictures are a little old, but since my webcam has once again quit, they'll have to suffice.
Currently Reading: The only thing I'm reading for pleasure right now is Cirque Du Freak. I said at the beginning of summer that I was going to try to read 20 books this summer. My AP work was so ridiculous that I only got 16 read. And I still need to finish the required books, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens and The Great Gatsby.
Current Weight: 115.3 --that's good, but I had Pizza Hut buffet for dinner, so I'm probably up a little bit from normal.
Current Task: Tarea. Mucha tarea.
Hola, readers. How are you? I'm fantastic!
Last Thursday I went to see my surgeon again. This time there wasn't much of a wait and once he saw me all he did was poke around in my mouth for a minute and call me "Superstar." I'd say he's proud of his work.
That night my friend and I went to the movies. Not only did nobody look at me weird, but I ate popcorn!
It was great!
Today I had an appointment with my orthodontist. Everyone wanted to know how things went and they all said I looked great. I think so too! They didn't want to upset my mouth just yet so they didn't actually do anything. To be honest, I think he just wanted to see how it looked. Dr. T says I've got 3mm of overjet now, which is an overbite. He says it's not ideal, but it's better than where I was before the surgery. My surgeon thinks I'll probably grow some more and my mandible will grow with it, so hopefully that means it grows a little, but less than 3mm, lest I have to undergo another jaw surgery. I'm pretty sure the only person in the office who didn't care, or didn't know, was the stud-muffin intern who hasn't been there that long. He's hilarious; he comes out to call people to the back and, like, props himself up in the door way with his arms all above his head, and he's always telling the assistants stuff like how he drove through the drive-thru and forgot to order. Anyway, I'm supposed to go back next month before school starts so I'll let you know how that goes.
Other than that, the only thing I need to say is that I'm going out of town this week and then again next week so there won't be any posts unless I do one Saturday. The thursday after next I have another appointment with my surgeon and believe you me I will try to do a post then too.
Currently Reading: Their Eyes Were Watching God, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, The Lovely Bones
Current Weight: 114.3 lbs --es las galletas.
Current Task: Packing! (Clothes, not guns.)
There are lots of people you can trust in life.
Obviously, I am not one of them. So, don't count on any more of my promises I make about doing a blog post on a regular basis because, quite frankly, I'm a slacker.
The past three days have yielded nothing new.
I went to church Sunday and for some reason my lip stayed swollen the whole day. We went out to eat after church to the same place we went last Sunday. Burritos are about the only thing I can manage to eat besides soup, so I'm getting my fill of those.
Yesterday, was my parents' anniversary so they went out to eat and to a movie. Those crazy people, staying married 31 years or whatever.
Since we weren't invited and couldn't care less about fireworks, my brother and I also went out to see a movie. We went to see Super 8, and while I enjoyed it, I wouldn't say it was up to J.J. Abrams' usual standards. After the movie we went to Taco Bell (more burritos!), Books-A-Million, and Target.
Somehow I managed to spend another $40 on books. None of them were even hardback; paperbacks are getting too expensive. On the plus side, one of my friends gave me a $20 gift card to BAM so it wasn't that hard wasting my money. One thing about this, though, is that I've got at least 10 books on my shelf waiting to be read. As a result, I've started book hopping. It's this thing I do where I start reading, like, seven books at once. I can keep up with all the story lines, but I feel like I lose something when I don't focus on just one book. Oh, well. Too many books, too little time.
Today my best friend came over and we watched TV together. During this time I ate a pop tart--my first since the surgery! I'm happy to be back to eating unhealthy foods again. The closest thing I've gotten to sweets in the past two and half weeks are the pudding cups I eat daily. Those things are my life now. For dinner I had lasagna and garlic bread (no crusts yet, though) and now I'm here writing for you. And contemplating more pudding. You guys are important and all, but I'm mostly trying to wrap this up now so I can eat my pudding.
In order to end on a positive note, I'll say that the infinite amount of time on my hands has led to my picking up the piano again (not in the literal sense). I'd say I'm better than ever right now!
Currently Reading: I Am Number Four, Their Eyes Were Watching God, What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, The Lovely Bones, The Girl Who Was on Fire.
--I'm so into these Hunger Games books that I went out and bought a book of other author's commentaries on them. It's given me a new perspective on the books. If you've read them then I'd recommend The Girl Who Was on Fire.
112.5 lbsCurrent Task:
Reading, reading, reading!
Sorry about leaving you guys for a whole four days! I hadn't planned on it, really, but I got a little sick.
In the past four days I would say I've improved some, though.
There's nothing much that anybody other than me would probably notice, but I myself am seeing some improvement. For instance, that huge
upper lip is now a nice, moderately sized upper lip. I've abandoned trying to sleep with my head elevated so it's a little puffy when I wake up every morning, but as the day goes on it gets smaller. I still can't feel anything between the bottom of my eyes and my top lip, but if I poke certain spots on my face I'll feel a nerve twinge somewhere. The most reliable spot is around the middle of my lip and it spasms if I poke the left side of my nose; however, my favorite spot is the roof of my mouth and it freaks out if I poke the right side of my nose. The deal with the thing in my mouth is that when I poke my nose it feels like someone's stabbing me with knife in there, but it's a good kind of stab. The only thing I can really relate it to is if the roof of my mouth was cake and the knife was just softly stabbing through it. I know, it's weird. And it would probably bother me under normal circumstances, but right now any feeling is good with me.
The stitches in my mouth have all decided to come loose within the past few days. While it'll be nice to have them out of there soon, I can not say it's equally as nice to have them flapping around in the meantime.
My top lip still doesn't move, even when I talk and eat, so my speech is still a little slurred and there's ALWAYS food I'm trying to get out of my top braces. That immobile upper lip just traps it there and teases me with the thought of ever eating the same again.
Two of my friend came over on Thursday for a movie day. Between the comedies and my friends just being funny, I laughed a lot. And it didn't hurt! I don't know if I've finally popped one too many stiches, or they're stretched out, or if I've subconciously found a new, less painful way to laugh, but I like it.
Yesterday my mom and I went to my uncle's retirement party, so I was blessed with a day out of the house. The only thing I did today was ride with my parents over to the garage where my car was recently painted and got to look at it. Let me just say that it's purple, sparkly, and beautiful.
I love it!
My only problem right now (since the pain is pretty much gone) is my mouth breathing. I'm still breathing through my mouth 24/7. It just seems like such a waste now that that's not the only orifice I can breathe out of! I have never been able to breathe through my nose and now I feel like, for the first time in my life, I could be kidnapped, have my mouth taped up, and not die of suffocation before the kidnappers could do anything to me. You probably laugh, but that's an innate fear I've had to deal with for the past decade. So I looked up "train yourself to sleep with your mouth closed" on Google today, but the only thing I got was advertisements for CPAP machines. Since last night's attempt to wrap my face in my post surgery bandages so tight that I couldn't open my mouth resulted in my being awake until three in the morning, at which point I removed the bandages, I'm not exactly sure what my next move is. Maybe I'll just morph into a William Shatner like being that never sleeps. Because, at this rate, that seems more plausible than my morning breath ever going away.
Anyway, the swelling's going down, I feel good, blah blah blah. We all know you don't care anymore, you just want the pictures.
Well, I'm sorry to say, I'm inept and I still haven't been able to fix my webcam.Currently Reading: I Am Number Four
--Done with The Hunger Games trilogy, to my dismay. I would like to acknowledge Mockingjay
as both the saddest and most frustrating book I've read in a long, long time. Don't read it if you value your sanity.Current Weight:
112.1 lbsCurrent Tast:
Ridding myself of these hateful stitches.
Lastly, I just want to beg of you to please, please, please, please, please, please, please never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever take your ability to chew for granted. I actually had to leave the dinner table tonight because watching my parents take human sized bites of food and easily grind them with their teeth dismayed me that much. The feeling is something I would relate to being dumped if I had any experience with such. My jaw has dumped me and moved on to prettier things.
Kanye West had it right (for probably the only time in his life) when he wrote the following lyrics after having his jaw broken:I drink a boost for breakfast, and ensure for desert
Somebody ordered pancakes I just sip the sizzurp
That right there could drive a sane man bizzerk
Okay, I think we can all agree that these posts are getting a little bland, right? Right, so I've decided to just start doing my posts every other day rather than daily.
All right then, lets get started.
Yesterday I slept until noon again because I keep staying up half the night reading. Of course, this gave me a headache. I just can't make myself get out of bed! Darn you, Hunger Games!
In the mere hours it took for dinner time to roll around I lazed about waiting for my headache to go away. I saw today that Birmingham was rated one of the top ten laziest cities in America. My new sedentary lifestyle probably doesn't help that. Sorry, Birmingham!
But I digress. Moving on, nothing really happened the rest of that night.
This morning I--surprise, surprise--slept until noon. What is wrong with me?! I'm going to bed at a reasonable time tonight and I told my mother to drag me out of bed by my ears tomorrow, so hopefully this is the last day I do this to myself.
At three we left for an appointment with my surgeon downtown. Traffic was kinda bad, but we got there right at my appointment time, 3:45; regardless, we waited nearly an hour. We remembered this time that they have terrible magazines, though, so I was happy with my book. A lady called me back at around 4:30 to take x-rays, and then she sent me back out to the waiting room to sit some more.
They need to quit with the x-rays or I'm going to get some kind of cancer.
Soon they took me to the back and my surgeon came in to see me. He poked around my mouth and made me smile for a while, but he didn't really do enough to make me hurt like I thought he would.
He wasn't going to stay long, but he made some kind of passing comment like "Be careful what you eat" and started to head out the door. My mother had the sense to ask him what he meant and he told me that I shouldn't be chewing and left. His assistant asked me what I had been eating and pretty much had a come-apart when I told her I ate a hamburger last night. "Are you serious?! You could do some kind of damage to something in your mouth and something bad will happen!" I'm paraphrasing of course, but that's what it sounded like to me. What I got out of it was that by chewing I'm going to damage the bone in my mouth and have to be wired shut.
Gee, that doesn't sound like something that I might have wanted to know, I don't know, maybe... TWO WEEKS AGO, does it?! And she was indignant about it! I was mad. No, I was livid. This is something you tell somebody before they go into surgery. At least before they leave the hospital. They should have stressed that "soft foods" are mandatory, not just a suggestion like we thought.
I cry when I'm mad, so of course I had a fit in the car which only made my mouth hurt. It just made me so angry that they wouldn't tell me this before I had the chance to potentially hurt myself. Not only that, but then the surgeon just said it so flippantly and his assistant acted like this was something I should have known already. It makes me want to chew just to spite them.
We went to Ruby Tuesdays since my dad wouldn't be home for dinner, and I chewed. Yep, I don't even care anymore. I ate zucchini cake burgers, french fries, and a salad. Now, I don't want to be wired shut (except for the fact that it would give me a chance to complain to them how it would be their fault because they did a crap job preparing me for recovery) so I cut everything up really small, but I still chewed. Out of spite.
I going back again next Thursday, so hopefully I won't damage myself irreparably before then.
BUT, if I do, I'm still saying it's their fault. And I'm still feeling pretty spiteful, so we'll see how things go.
My webcam is being poop and I don't remember how I fixed it last time it acted this way, so no picture tonight. But my swelling is pretty much gone! Hopefully I can get it up and running again soon.
Currently Reading: MockingjayCurrent Weight:
112.4 lbsCurrent Task:
Being spitefully spitefuliscious.
Well, well, well. Look who's back.
Oh, wrong point of view. Well, glad to see you're back.
Sorry I didn't write yesterday, but there was this puzzle and it was 1500 pieces and it's all 3-D... and I'm sorry.
Truth is, I was going to make this post all special and long and super duper informative, but I'm stupid and closed my browser before I saved that super duper special post and this is my second time writing it. With a headache.
So, yesterday I was a poop and slept until one o'clock. Ugh, big mistake. I had a headache and my face swelled back up some, but I toughed it out and didn't take any pain medication even though it's all in pill form now!
I sat in the living room and read until dinner time when we had turkey and dressing (sans turkey for me) and candied sweet potatoes. It was awesome, and since I didn't even have to chew any of it I was finished in less than an hour.
After that I read some more. I'm not kidding you, these Hunger Games books are a-may-zing.
I got tired of reading and moved on to that puzzle I mentioned. I'm not gonna lie, I had fun. Yeah, that's right. I don't need you anymore!
I'm sorry, readers. I lied; I do need you! Come back!
Anyway, this morning was better because I got up and went to church, meaning I was out of bed by 9:30. It was nice to see my friends and everybody, but I over did it. They're all so funny, but funny's not good right now. I took a preemptive lortab before we went, though, so it wasn't too bad.
My parents and I treated ourselves to Mexican food for lunch, which I was able to eat. The chips were a little difficult, but i just let them sit in the cheese dip for a minute to soften them up and all was well. My nacho cheese burrito was also very good, but I didn't quite finish it. It really is amazing how much food doesn't really require any chewing. The ground beef in the burrito was small enough to swallow and the tortilla was soft enough that it went down without any trouble.
When we returned home I realized just how pooped I was and sat down to work on my puzzle some more. By the time church time came around again it was raining and I was still tired so I just stayed home. After my parents and brother left it really started storming and the power was becoming unreliable. It kinda freaked me out.
After church was out my brother went to Burger King and I made the mistake of asking for a burger and fries. I'm so dumb. I hate Burger King. It doesn't taste good and the food always makes me sick. Always. I just took some Advil for the headache it gave me. So dumb.
That's all that's happened since my last post, so I guess I'll take this opportunity to tell you about my pain.
Most of the times I've talked about my pain on here, it's been pretty much nothing. On a scale of 1-10, it's usually a two or a three. Sometimes there's not even any pain, it just pressure. The only thing that ever really hurts is when I smile or cry, and that's definitely a ten. When I first started noticing the pain there, it was mostly on the right side and just kinda felt like my stitches were pulling. Now the pain has switched to my left side and it goes all the way up the side of my nose. I don't think anything is wrong, there must just be a sore nerve over there or something. I'm not too worried about it and it seems to be the only thing that's in danger of bothering me.
I think my talking has greatly improved. It's been a while since I've had to use my dry erase board here at home (and my dad hasn't needed to use any of the sign language I've taught him) but I know that could just be my parents getting used to the way I'm talking. I talked to my sister the other night though. She lives in Japan, so obviously it was via webcam, and I'm assuming that if I'm understandable through that, then I'm understandable in person. I mostly just sound like I have a lisp now. And I'm having trouble with p's and sh's. For instance, the other day I tried to say "poo-poo" and my brother thought I said "foo-foo."
I don't know how the guy understood me today when I asked for a "na-ho cheeth burrito." Speaking of which, the owner of the restaurant was talking to us and he said, "Did she have surgery?" *points to his mouth* "She's quieter today." What can I say? I like to talk.
Um, what else...
Oh, well I still don't know if I can whistle. Once the swelling in my lip goes down (hopefully I'll be able to feel it by then) I'll try it out. My swelling is gone for the most part, but that pesky lip is still pretty big. My cheeks, though, have pretty much deflated. Sometimes when I sleep on them they puff up, but right now they're lookin' good. I'm not sure about the areas right under my eyes, I can't feel them whatsoever, but they might be a little swollen still too.The swelling inside of my mouth has gone down too, I think. At first, the places where my molars are at were swollen on either side to the point of almost choking me because I didn't have anywhere to put my tongue. There are stitches on both sides of my mandible where I'm assuming the surgeon took my bone out. Sometimes I get food in those. Not fun. The only other things that I'm aware are in my mouth are these spots at the very back and I can't even decide what they are. They feel just like it would if I had bitten down on my cheek really hard, but they're not exactly in a spot where I could have bitten down on them. I was thinking that maybe they were in a different place when I was still swollen, but I think I can feel stitches in them. I'm not sure what they would have been doing at that spot in my mouth, but who knows?
I currently can't even lick my top teeth, but my talent of licking my nose looks like it won't return.
It's a small secession for a huge victory, as far as I'm concerned.
I'm still having nosebleeds every once a while, but they're small so no worries there.
Argh, I really can't think of anything else that might even slightly interest anybody.
I'll try my very hardest to come up with interesting writing material for tomorrow.
One positive thing, to close, is that I'm feeling like I can do anything with my hair now. For the last couple of years, I've confined myself to one hairstyle because it balances my face well. To do something really short would have shown off my underbite; to do something long only made my long face longer. As a result, I've kept it right at my chin, never getting to my shoulders. And forget doing anything with it besides leaving it down. Putting my hair in a pony tail would defeat the purpose of the haircut and my hair hasn't been long enough to really do anything else with it. What will I do now? I can cut it short or I can grow it out. I can put it in a ponytail or learn to braid it! I have so many options now!!!
What do you think I should do? Tell me in the comments!
Love you guys!
That's the farthest I can stick my tongue out, but at least it's looking clean again!
Look at that beautiful overbite!
We discovered today that I still look like good ol' Susan if you cover up the mouth.
Currently Reading: Catching FireCurrent Weight:
111.4 lbsCurrent Task: