Day 7 – January 13th, 2014
The splint finally came off today! I am sooo happy that it’s finally gone. That thing was extremely uncomfortable to say the least. The swelling of my nose has made it quite loose so the removal was not painful at all. I did feel a bit of pain when the stitches were removed and my eyes were watering like crazy. Finally it was time for me to take a look at myself in the mirror. Even though I’ve been excited for this day the whole week, I also prepared myself for the worst. This isn’t my first rhinoplasty after all, and I knew there would be a lot of swelling.
Finally, I was able to see myself in the mirror, and my first reaction was: HOLY COW, my nose looks super swollen! And i’m not just talking about a little bit of swelling, but I think it ballooned up to almost twice its normal size!
I didn’t freak out though, since I knew this was completely normal. To be honest, it did take away some of the thrill I was feeling. It helped that Dr. Shah tried to cheer me up, saying “Somewhere under all that swelling is a cute nose”. And I knew he wasn’t just trying to make me feel better, but giving me the assurance that I was in the right track in my journey to my dream nose.
I still had some bad bruising under my right eye, and I am taking the arnica pills, vitamin K and the gel that Dr. Shah prescribed. He also gave me some more healing gel pads, since they have been scientifically proven to help bruises heal twice as fast. He also did a kenalog or steroid injection to reduce my swelling. Dr. Shah decided that since I was so swollen, I’m going to have to receive several steroid shots over the next few months. Just my luck! Dr. Shah also instructed me to start taping my nose each night. The process is called type 2 nasal taping and it helps to reduce swelling, minimize scar tissue and help form the nose’s shape more quickly. Luckily, Dr. Shah created a YouTube video on how to carry out the taping process. It’s quite simple but I wanted to make sure I did it perfectly, so the video really did come in handy that evening.
So today was actually a great day. Even though I was still swollen, I left Dr. Shah’s office in good spirits. Today, after all, was a milestone in my journey to recovery and I was one step closer to the final results that I’ve always wanted.
Day 8-Janauary 15th, 2014
Today I woke up and the first thing I did was look in the mirror, and the first thing I realized was: I have a LONG, LONG way to go. At first, I planned to write a journal entry for every single day of my first 14 days of recovery, but have decided that a monthly update would be much better. First of all, I figured there might not be a significant change worth reporting every day. And I don’t want to bore you with my rantings of how swollen and bruised my face is!
Aside from my monthly update posts, I will also be posting pictures along the way, so be sure to check out my “Road to Recovery” photo gallery. I believe in the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words so my pictures will probably illustrate what I want to express better than words can. As the months progress, you can see pictures of how my nose is recovering and healing from the surgery. In the meantime, I’ve decided to focus all my energy into staying positive and healthy. I’ve also decided to write blog posts that others can find useful or helpful. I think my next blog post will perfectly encapsulate my frame of mind right now, since I am entitling it “How to Stay Positive During Rhinoplasty Recovery”. I have no doubt that this will be useful for the women and men who have undergone rhinoplasty and are now struggling during the early stage of the recovery. Having read plenty of rhinoplasty journey diaries in blogs and forums, I noticed that a lot of patients tend to stress and worry over their nose this early in the recovery process. Although I completely understand all this stress, I do think that in the end, it will just be a big waste of time. It takes a full year before you can see the significant results of the rhinoplasty. In some cases, it can even take as long as two years before results can be seen! So if you think about this fact, it really doesn’t make sense to stare at the mirror every couple of hours, feel devastated over how you look and worry that there might be something wrong with your nose.
I have read too many stories in RealSelf that featured women who constantly obsessed about their noses every single day and felt depressed about what they see in the mirror. Unsurprisingly, these women also report being absolutely happy a few months later. So if you will eventually end up having the nose you’ve always wanted, then what is the use of all that stress and negative energy? Personally, I have spent the past week cooped up inside my house with nothing much to distract me from my nose. If I wanted to, it would have been easy for me to channel all my thoughts and attention to my nose. But I chose not to! I may not look great, but I truly feel awesome. This is because I’ve accepted the fact that there is not a whole lot I can do at this point, except be patient. My nose is still swollen and my right eye looks so black and blue that it looks like I’ve been thrown out a window, but you know what? I don’t care! I’m going to Trader Joe’s to shop for some healthy meals, run several errands and just basically go on with my life. I understand that I am not supposed to like my nose right now and that it’s just part of the journey. Besides, you won’t have to wait literally a year before you can go out in public. After about three months, I will look good enough to be photographed! 🙂
So there you have it: my first week’s journey to rhinoplasty recovery. As my journey continues, I will continue to write blog posts and tips that aim to help other patients like me and those who are just contemplating rhinoplasty. I will also be documenting my healing progress on a monthly basis. In the meantime, it’s a beautiful day outside and I’m determined to enjoy it without letting my swollen nose and black eye bother me. If you are reading this post and you’re in the same boat as I am, then I really do hope you do the same. I’m off to Trader Joe’s now. See you guys in a month!