Monday, 24 November 2014

Jaw Surgery & Genioplasty Recovery - Days 7 - 13

  This has truly been a week of ups and downs. At the start of the week I sort of just gave in. I concluded that there was absolutely no point getting out of bed because I couldn't do anything, and I didn't want to eat out of a syringe anymore so I concluded that there was just no point in eating at all. Nothing could persuade me to get out of bed, until at last incredible starvation sank in and I had no choice.

  I had a visit to the orthodontist on day seven, and had a very embarassing moment. He asked me how I was, and I promptly burst into tears and couldn't stop. He sort of stared blankly at me whilst I wailed pathetically (hard to do when your jaws are stuck together). This horrendous moment did have a positive outcome though - I was allowed to start taking the elastic bands out to eat food. Of course, I'm still not allowed to actually use my teeth, and my jaw opens by maybe 1cm, so 'eat' isn't quite the accurate word. More force feed myself food then swallow it whole. But actually it has made a massive difference. My energy has improved, I'm not quite as disgustingly skeletal as I was, and I'm getting a lot of colour back to my face. I've always had a really high metabolism and this half a yogurt nonsense just wasn't cutting it. To be honest, just being able to use a spoon has made a world of difference - using a syringe is really degrading.

  The first time I ate it was terrifying as my mouth sort of got stuck open and I had to sort of suck it back shut. Really hard to explain. It's happened a few times since and it always alarms me, but now I eat in a really odd sort of way and it seems to stop. I've become a master at eating yogurt, and I'm pretty good at ice cream. Scrambled eggs somehow get stuck all in my teeth but I've pretty much got that down. Mashed potato is complicated but doable. I've found some baby food which is basically pasta and vegetables chopped up, it's a bit awkward but it can be swallowed whole and I feel better for it. At one point I gave in and tried to eat a chocolate roll but the outside was too hard making it really difficult to suck into my mouth, haha. Eating is much more complicated than you think it's going to be. Of course it's all about food that can sort of be sucked in and swallowed whole and can actually make it from the gap in your teeth to the back of your throat easily. And in my case, since my jaw sometimes decides not to close again if you open it at an angle it didn't like, you have to be really careful about how you're doing it. But still. Food has made life better. I really don't like having my elastic bands out though - you'd think it would be the other way round but I hate it. My jaw doesn't know what to do. It feels really heavy and it doesn't want to be closed. I don't know if I should be exercising it or leaving it alone. It feels so heavy that it becomes a massive presence and it becomes stressful, to the extent that putting the elastic bands back on just feels really relieving.

  On day eight I then went to the hospital on a mission, to find out if I could see my surgeon earlier and when the surgery would actually be. I don't want to recover only to have to start again. I toured the entire dental building and kept hearing that there were no appointments until January at least, meaning surgery would be later than that - this seemed pointless to me, and I was trying to explain that that was when I was supposed to be back at work, did they expect me to take four months off and completely recover twice? I was also amazed at how some of the receptionists clearly weren't listening to what I was asking of them. Eventually, my consultant orthodontist heard that I was touring the building and I was told if I waited an hour he would see me. I was a bit embarassed by this, but I went along with it. And guess who he called to come and see me with him? The elusive surgeon, who apparently isn't available at all until January. Yep. Either way they confirmed together that it was still too early and they'd look together next Wednesday and make a decision then - but the surgeon said he'd used soft plates which can be moulded even by hands, so he thought that with strong elastics it should sort itself out. If not, I should have the surgery within a week. So it still sucks, but it's better than it was.

  The swelling has gone down a lot. I can definitely see myself in there now. I asked my friend who came to the hospital with me if it alarmed him the first time I came out all hippo-like and he admitted that it had been pretty startling, haha. I was first confronted with my hippo face when I was wheelchaired into a lift and I had much the same reaction, so I get it. Laughing is still the most painful thing in the world, like my face is being ripped open. The main concern to me is still the fact that my lips don't close properly. I hate that they're just open. I have to manually close them and even then it's SO MUCH EFFORT and it looks silly as well. My housemate can understand my talking but its still awful - I have a job interview that includes a presentation that is scheduled for next week - obviously I've had to cancel it but damn, I really want that job. Hopefully they can move it back a fair bit, because I really bloody want it.

  On Wednesday I'm seeing the surgeon and the orthodontist again to decide on whether I need further surgery. I'm going to bring up my lips (again) and if I don't have to have more, I'm going to ask about bringing in exercise. I know running is out of the question, but maybe something like the non moving bike - or perhaps even if I can start doing yoga classes. My energy isn't completely back but it's definitely at the stage that sitting around at home is not working for me. I don't want to go out in public too much yet though, I'm hyper aware of my lips not closing and people talking to me is terrifying to me. It feels ridiculous to me because I used to happily talk to anyone and everyone, but I just had to give in and leave the chemist because I was so afraid of having to talk to the chemists, even though I know I can talk at least a little bit.

  Overall, an improvement - but still a long way to go!
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2 comments

  1. That sounds like a pain and I have to go through exactly the same process next year. I hope you're okay! <3 xx

    nessiehere.blogspot.co.uk

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  2. I'm not going to lie, the first week was easily the worst week of my life and I'm still way off feeling like myself, but once you're past the first ten days or so it does improve! What are you having done?

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