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46 and Ready for a Lift - New York, NY

I have really appreciated the information shared...

I have really appreciated the information shared on this site... it has helped me so much as I was thinking through the decision to go for it. I want to give back to the community -- and, yes, I'd love your support through my journey!

A couple of weeks ago I interviewed my doc and set a date. I travel a lot for work and my "window of opportunity" this year isn't until April, so I still have a while to wait. Trying not to obsess too much in the interim (and not succeeding too well).

Here are a couple of current pictures showing what I want to fix.

Not exactly ready for my closeup, Mr. DeMille

I got copies today of my professional pre-op photos (which my PS requires) and I was surprised by a few things.

(1) They are in B&W. I guess that makes sense; the doc isn't going to do my makeup, after all, and B&W shows texture better than color. I think the contrast may also have been enhanced to show more detail.

(2) The sagginess of cheeks and neck doesn't look as bad in these pictures as it does in the ones I took (or in recent candid snapshots), because the photographer had massive lights shining straight at my face instead of the overhead lighting we normally inhabit. Fewer shadows = less obvious droopiness. I guess RuPaul is right and it's all about the lighting.

(3) But OMG the texture of my skin in these high-res B&W photos is appalling. Thank goodness for makeup.

(4) And perhaps the most useful thing I learned: the photographer had me do a "big toothy grimace" for the camera... and my smile is more lopsided than I realized. Not that I see this as a problem, but it's something I want to make note of now and not freak about asymmetry later, since I wasn't symmetrical to start with!

P.S. Waiting for my hair to hurry up and grow. I have worn a pixie for years but that does NOT seem like a good option for the recovery phase! Maybe by the time the surgery is done and I'm ready to go back to work my hair will be in some kind of decent shape and people will attribute any change in appearance to my hair being past the awkward-growing-out phase.

Pre-op phone consultation with nurse

Called today for my pre-op phone consultation with the surgical nurse. Mostly the purpose of this seemed to be confirming that I read and had understood all the materials they had provided me and giving me a chance to ask questions.

What I learned was...

(1) At 2 weeks before the surgery, really cut out absolutely all vitamins and supplements (other than the Arnica Montana and Bromelain) as well as alcohol, aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, etc. (a long list); maintain through 2 weeks post.

(2) One week before the surgery, start taking Arnica Montana and Bromelain 3x a day; continue through 2 weeks post.

(3) An Ambien or Tylenol PM is OK the night before the surgery if I am nervous and cannot sleep.

(4) It will be OK to take Diflucan (which, given the antibiotics, I am glad to hear).

(5) I will have drains for 48 hours which my private nurse will remove. But all the sutures and/or clips will stay in a full week; the first post-op appointment will be scheduled for one week after the surgery.

(6) The doc wants patients to keep the face muscles and skin very still to the extent possible -- minimize talking, laughing, smiling, chewing but also not washing the face, not applying moisturizer, not massaging the scalp while shampooing, etc. -- for the first 2 weeks. Gentle rinsing with warm water is beneficial after 48 hours but the strong instruction is don't move the facial muscles or disturb the facial skin any more than absolutely necessary during those first 2 weeks. The nurse said this really makes a big difference for optimal healing.

Less than a month to go

I filled my prescriptions yesterday... there is Ondansetron (Zofran) for nausea on the day of surgery, Hydrocodone-Acetaminophen (Vicodin) for pain, Diazepam (Valium) for anxiety, and Cephalexin antibiotic. The nurse told me that patients often find the Valium more useful than the Vicodin after surgery because the pain as such isn't the major issue, it's more the sensations of tightness or numbness and the overall emotional aftereffects in the first week or so.

Anyway I am excited about the date getting closer, a little nervous of course. I am trying to get myself into good habits now, for example trying not to cross my legs when seated. That is surprisingly difficult!

Final check-in done

I've now had my blood work and EKG done, and I went for my final consult with the PS. Re-confirmed with the PS exactly what will be done - short scar SMAS, including the stitching of the neck muscles under the chin, and also we will do a TCA peel under the eyes to reduce fine lines. Reassured me the procedure is totally routine. I wish the day would hurry up and get here already!

(Naturally, now that I am moving into the period where it's imperative NOT to get a cold, my throat has begun to feel a bit scratchy. Making me anxious since I really do not have a lot of schedule flexibility and absolutely do not want to postpone!! I will just try to get a lot of sleep the next few days and hope it goes away.)

Here are a last couple of "before" photos of what I want my neck not to look like...

day of

I am now ensconced in my recovery hotel with expert nurse. One interesting point is she wants me propped at 45 degrees not upright... Says too upright contribute to pooling / swelling under chin. More tomorrow!

rest of what happened yesterday (day of)

So here I am! Amazingly I was really not nervous before the surgery yesterday. I was supposed to be there at 6:30 am but I totally did not want to be late and I go there about 6:10 (fortunately craxy taxi diver managed to avoid causing an accident but it was a close call... wouldn't THAT have been perfect). When the nurses arrived at 6:30 they had me strip down and get into a gown and compression hose, take a final pee, and then got me into the operating suite (I was not catheterized thank goodness). The anesthesiologist go the IV into my arm, started the sedation, and that's the last I remember until waking up in recovery. I was woozy but not in pain, no nausea. They had a drink a fair bit of ginger ale (juice also an option but I love ginger ale) and then god me dressed and the duty nurse and my husband accompanied me to the hotel.

No face bra (yet - may come 2nd week, bleah). Just bandages. The way they have the drain set up it's a single drain that apparently runs the width of my neck under the skin and comes out behind the right ear. That is tended and is making my neck look lumpy and causing bruises. But, I hope, preventing hematomas etc.

So I had not much pain -- really only the very top tips of ears -- maybe 3 on scale of 10. Took my Vicodin, antibiotics, Bromelain. The most difficult think is trying not to talk or laugh and not to do things for myself. Oh, and keeping my head pointed straight ahead and tilted back at 45 degree angle along with torso. Watching old "comfort TV" (I brought DVDs) helps stay still but does not help the head position. Getting up to walk laps in the hotel hallway is a relief.

I didn't sleep all that well despite Vicodin and Ambien. Plan to take a nap later today. More later when I can give proper report on day 2. Meanwhile I should take a walk and then get my head back into proper position (hard to do while typing!).


ps please excuse, typing semi-recumbent not helping!!

day 2

feeling more tightness in the neck today and definitely aware of the drain. But still in the "discomfort" realm rather than "pain". I feel like my face and jawline look pretty good, a little worried about appearance of my neck which I hope is just swelling and issues caused by the drain, and the horizontal banding I'm seeing now will go away!! the bruising is much less than I'd feared (so far but of course it's only day 2).

definitely feel more lucid and amble to walk much better. still an effort not to talk too much, laugh, push myself too hard. Will be very happy to get the drain out and have a shower.

more day 2 pix

Day 3 adventures

I think I am in full "balloon face" mode now. My face and ears look and feel very much more swollen than yesterday.

The good news is, I got a decent night's sleep last night and the drains are out. The bad news is, I got VERY VERY woozy after my first shower. With help of my nurse everything was OK but it was kind of scary. I think I need to eat more... I have had basically no appetite, but the body needs fuel to heal of course. Originally the plan was for me to be on my own by this afternoon but I arranged for 24 hours more nursing supervision. Will just feel safer that way.

I'll post more pix when I can but for now just imagine a Bobble Head. Thank goodness the nurses have seen it all before, and though my ears feel like two bricks tied to the side of my head the experts tell me the swelling is not bad at all and will go down soon. Everyone says day 3 and 4 are the worst, right??

Day 3 report - made it through and starting day 4

Thanks everyone for the words of encouragement!! It is so much appreciated!!

Here are some of my balloon-head pictures. As I know others have experienced, my face and neck *feel* much more swollen than they seem to look (not that I would say it looks good or anything). The numbness probably makes that feel even worse... you know how when the dentist numbs you and it feels like your lip is the size of a cantaloupe? I guess it's like that, my cheeks / neck / jaw feel about 5 times normal size but only look twice normal size, ha ha.

I am actually surprised that there is not more bruising. Developing bruises (just from brushing against the corner of a desk, etc.) is one of my best skills, so I give major credit to my doc and the Bromelain that it's not worse than it is.

Today I am definitely going to pay close attention to my blood pressure; I always tend to run low (typical 110 over 65) but I do NOT want a repeat of yesterday's scary dizziness. Maybe I should get a bp cuff of my own to use once the nurses are off duty starting this afternoon.

day 4 swell-o-rama

I thought I looked like a bobble head yesterday but that's nothing on today! The nurses tell me it is all normal and will start to go down tomorrow and I sure hope so. I can see why Day 4 is the day when people start wondering "why did I ever do this?"

I am heartened by everyone else who has been through this and come out with beautiful results... I hope I will get there too!!

Day 5 part 1

My emotional rollercoaster is dipping today for sure. I slept well last night, thank goodness, but when I woke up and found my face still felt like a giant heavy mask and that the swelling under my chin didn't look any better than last night (why did I think it would magically go away overnight?) I really got hit with a case of "oh no why did I do this to myself things will never be normal again" etc. etc.

My husband is being a sweetheart. He doesn't understand why I felt I needed to do this but is being supportive... on the other hand I can tell he is freaked out by how I look now, and last night when he came to visit he said he really never wants me to do anything like this again. (I suppose that's better than "hey honey, do X and Y next, OK?")

Maybe some of my low mood is the fact this is my first morning waking up on my own since my nurses went off duty yesterday afternoon. Actually I should point out that last night the nurse who helped me through my "whoa-low-blood-pressure-don't-pass-out-on-me-girl" first shower dropped by to check on me. She was here in the recovery hotel with another patient and when she went off duty she came by my room to see how I was. She assured me the swelling was much better ("I can see your cheekbones now") and that the swelling under the chin was not a hematoma or anything scary but just a part of the healing process.

My plan for today is to take a (careful) shower, watch some "comfort TV", and maybe (MAYBE) check work email for no more than 1 hour. I was thinking I might try to take a very short walk (just up and down the block) but if it is still raining this afternoon I will stick to pacing in the hotel room!

Day 5 part 2

So it did pretty much rain all day, no walking the block for me. But I did take my careful shower and pace around the room a bit. Maybe a sign that I am feeling better is that I caught myself trying to turn my head a couple of times (and chided myself: no head turning! Turn whole torso only!). Tomorrow it is supposed to be nice out so maybe I will try my "walk the block" then. Originally I was thinking I would walk to my doc's office for my appointment Thursday afternoon to get my sutures out -- it is only half a mile -- but now I am thinking maybe it would be smarter to get a cab than to walk by myself.

I did *not* check work email and not feeling too guilty about that! But I did chat with one of my three girlfriends who is "in the know" and that was nice. Husband came by tonight and we had (soft easily chewable) dinner together. The next couple nights he is away on business... and then Friday I go home for a week's recuperation there.

I think *maybe* the swelling is starting to subside in my cheeks. My face is starting to look a bit less like a balloon, although it has acquired a lovely yellow bruise color. The neck and under the chin (and the left ear... why??) still feel and look super swollen. But, early days, yes?

Thank you so much to everyone for your kind words of encouragement. You really really helped me get through the day without a crying jag, which would have done no one any good. Karma points to you all!!!

Day 6 update

I counted surgery day as Day 1, so that makes today Day 6. So then tomorrow is lucky number 7? :)

Today my face seems to be more face-shaped (yay!) and my neck a teeny bit less swollen but the swelling under the chin is still freaking me out. My right ear (the less swollen one) is starting to feel slightly more like an actual part of my anatomy, though the left one still feels more like a brick tied on to my head.

The TCA peel under my eyes is actually starting to slough skin, which is progress. Actually I also noticed the front of my chin (not underneath) is starting to shed some skin flakes though there was no peel there. Maybe just from the swelling and the lack of moisturizer? My strict orders from the doc are to do absolutely nothing to my face other than keep a thin layer of Aquaphor on the TCA peel areas under the eyes.

I took a walk around the block today and that felt good. Maybe I will actually brave the walk to the doctor's office tomorrow instead of taking a 2-minute cab ride. I am glad I'll see the doc tomorrow to get stitches out and ask him my long list of questions! Not just about the swelling and such but also when will it be OK for me to start smiling and laughing and generally having facial expression again? :)

Day 6 photos

Eventful Day 7

Today was my post-op appointment to have sutures removed and generally have the doc check me out. I walked to and from the doc's office -- about a mile all told, which should by rights be nothing but still felt like an accomplishment!

I went in with a very long written list of questions so I'll start with what I learned:

1. Is all this swelling under my chin and on my neck normal? Is it going to just stretch everything out so I am back to turkey wattle? What's with the lumps behind my ears, are they from the drain? -- ANSWER: normal swelling. Unfortunately everybody is different about how long it takes to subside, so we can't say when it will go away, but everything looks totally fine. No, it will not stretch back out into a new turkey wattle. The fact that one side (for me, the left) is more swollen than the other is very common. The weird lumps and bumps on the neck are mostly due to the short-scar procedure rather than the drain, and will settle down and flatten out over time.

2. I've had a bit more pain around my ears the last 8 hours. Is that because the nerves are starting to heal, or is something wrong? ANSWER: yes, the nerves are healing; no, there is nothing wrong.

3. Is it possible to sleep too much or should I just nap when I feel like it? ANSWER: sleep all you want. Sleep is healing.

4. I should still be trying not to move my face much for the next week, right? No smiling, animated expressions, etc? ANSWER: keeping your face as still as possible through the next week will give you the best result. Similarly don't floss your teeth, yawn widely, etc. for another couple of weeks. If it feels OK to you it is now fine to turn your head about 45 degrees to left or right, but no more than that, and if you can keep looking straight ahead for another week so much the better. And keep sleeping propped up and no bending over!

5. Do I really have to wear the compression stockings for another week? ANSWER: not necessarily if you are up and moving around, but it doesn't hurt.

6. When can I wash my face? Can I use my Clarisonic again? ANSWER: you can wash your face gently with Cetaphil if you feel the need, but it is actually better still to do nothing in week 2. Wait until at *least* 2 weeks after surgery to use a Clarisonic and if it doesn't feel right, stop immediately. Basic rule -- if something doesn't feel right, stop.

7. Do I need to have my head supported when reclining / sitting? Or is sitting up (e.g. at a desk chair, working at a computer) all right? ANSWER: It's all right to sit up, but you may be more comfortable for a while yet with more support. Don't push yourself.

8. I normally watch what I eat very carefully. For this first week after surgery I set that aside and just ate what I could to make 3-4 meals/snacks a day (not just soup, scrambled eggs, and applesauce but Ensure, yogurt, peanut butter, ice cream, chocolate... I fear I will be one of the few people who actually gains weight in the first week post surgery). Is it OK for me to go back to my normal calorie intake now, headed into the second week? ANSWER: yes, but make sure you eat extra protein.

9. Is it reasonable to target about half my normal exercise level as a goal in the second week? ANSWER: sure, give it a try, but listen to your body.

10. Do I have to wear a face bra now? ANSWER: it should help with the swelling. Here it is -- wear it as much as you can when you are not out and about, take it off if it starts to drive you nuts.

11. How should I care for the incisions? ANSWER: Up till now we wanted you to just leave them alone. Now that we're taking the stitches out, it can't hurt and might help to put on a thin layer of Bacitracin morning and night.

12. I go home tomorrow... what precautions should I take with my pets? ANSWER: Pet hair and dander can cause infections of the wounds. Keep pets away from your face. Wash your hands well after touching your pets, their toys, etc. Use a clean pillowcase each night. Keep your face bra clean.

13. What should I have asked that I'm not asking? ANSWER: Can't think of anything but call any time.

Anyhow, the nurse took out the clips in my scalp, the sutures in front of my ears and under my chin. The ones behind my ears are dissolvable and may take a while to finally dissolve. Wish my hair was longer!!

The nurse also checked out the TCA peel under my eyes and carefully removed the last of the dead skin so I guess I am all done with that. Whew. It was not a deep peel so that went quicker than what many others have experienced.

Both nurse and doc say my result will be very good. (Of course what are they going to say, unless they saw a big problem that definitely needed fixing right away... but I will try to take them at "face value". By the way this whole experience makes me realize that movie "Face Off" was far more ridiculous than I ever could have guessed, even though I did in fact guess it was massively ridiculous.)

I do feel like the swelling under the chin is a teeny bit better than yesterday and the bruising a bit less noticeable. Little baby steps.

Next official appointment with the doc won't happen for about a month, though they welcome me to come in or call any time.

Oh I almost forgot the important but *really gross* thing I learned today (discovered all by myself, not at the doctor's office). Since the first day I had been feeling my ears were clogged but assumed that was just numbness & swelling. Well this evening I had kind of an itch in my left ear canal -- not near the incisions -- and (sorry, but here it comes) I pulled out a plug of dried blood about the size of a black-eyed pea. EWWW. I checked, as you might imagine, to make sure there was no new bleeding and there wasn't -- the thing must have been left over from the surgery itself or the day 1-2 ickiness. Now it's gone I can hear again in my left ear -- hallelujah! There may however be an evil twin lurking in my right ear... will rinse with some ear drops when I get home tomorrow. Sorry for the yucky story but I hope it might help someone else.

Day 8

I'm home now from the recovery hotel. For me I think it was good to be away that first week, but it sure is nice to be home. I think a week of rest and healing at home will really help me ease back into a normal routine and prepare for the "real world".

I'm wearing the face bra as much as possible since I got it yesterday. It does look weird but it feels supportive and I have less fear that I'll bump an ear in a bad way or something. And maybe it is even helping with the swelling? Whether it's that or just the passage of time, I'll take it. I feel like I can start to see my chin emerging once more. Still swollen under chin and lumpy around the neck, still yellow bruises, still sort of flaky skin around the lower face but overall a little better I think. Patience (says The Impatient One)!

Day 9

Last night I did find the face bra uncomfortable when I woke in the wee hours, so I had to take it off to get back to sleep. But it does make me feel more secure that I won't do something horrible to an ear by turning my head in my sleep. So I will try to keep wearing it as much as possible at nights for a while and during the day while I'm home. One thing I realized -- no need to fasten it too snug behind the neck!!

My energy is definitely improving... for sure not back to 100%, but today I helped the Mr. run errands and did not feel shaky or anything. My pedometer has me at over 6000 steps for the day so far... not bad, considering. I felt a little silly in my scarf, hat, and sunglasses getup but I guess I did see people wearing sillier things.

Small daily improvements continue. Swelling a little less, I think. Right ear feeling a smidge less clogged. Left side of the face still quite yellow but oh well. Too early for any makeup on the face, but I have been using the black & blue bruise I got on my arm from the IV as a test case. (That is much more typical of how I normally bruise, and I had expected my whole face to come out that way.... big hat tip to the doc that I did not!) I had a reasonably decent result by starting with Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick and then patting Becca Ultimate Coverage Complexion Crème over that. If that got the awful black & blue to a somewhat less noticeable yellow, maybe it can hide the scars and any remaining yellow on my face and neck when the time comes.
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Hi - 6000 steps is a lot! I've thought of putting my pedo back on but decided not to because I don't want the pressure to do too much.. You're doing so great!! And looking great! My bruising has almost all gone (nearly 4 weeks) and I'm wearing make up .......but the swelling persists (mainly left side). I put on my face bandage for a while yesterday and it felt quite comfy so planning to wear it a bit at home. I've loved following your posts (fabulous Q&A) - thank you so much. Keep up your great healing x
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You are looking great. I am with you regarding patience. So want to get about regarding my social life.
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I just wrote the below, without seeing your most recent update.....you look great! Impatience....this was a real test for us!.
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Ah A to Z....you are going home today...YIPPEEEEE!......& not having to see your doctor again for a while....that is great! Your yucky story made me smile...I would keep feeling lumps in my hair & waking up to bits on my pillow.....oooooo that first week is gruesome! Have a lovely, lovely Easter!
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Arent you glad that we arent pumpkinheads anymore? I still have uneven eyes, a bit concerned. You are looking good ,and i hope feeling the same. My DNA has been scattering everywhere , due to my peel. Keep your chin up which will be much easier,now that you have less of one....haha!
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LOL @ it's evil twin. :D I had read blood can collect in ears like that. I'm glad you got it out. I had a clogged ear feeling for the first week after too. You look great. I hope you have much more healing this week and your under the chin swelling starts going down a lot. That part really bothered me too.
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its. Dang non edit feature. :D
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The pictures which you posted before and after are really amazing.One thing i could not beleive is how you have so small swelling after surgery.have you completely recovered now?
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Hi samsperseo1, I had a lot of swelling my face was Hugh and like a heart shape however each day that became less,from day one to day ten when I returned home I was pretty much back to normal apart for some bruising under the eyes which I covered using a concealer.If you have a close look at pic you will see that my face actually changes shapes through each photo,some we're quite freaky,I am 5 months now since my surgery and you can't see any scars apart for a slight faint one on eyebrows which I can cover with make-up and also my fringe.my profile pic was taken about a week ago .I am over the moon with my results better then I expected :))
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My goodness, samsperonseo1, if that's for me I do thank you but I sure have felt swollen! (If instead your comment was for Kandis60, I agree her before and after are totally amazing and stunning, but even she did have swelling). For me days 4 and 5 were just the worst swelling-wise and honestly freaked me out. Since then it has gone down just a bit every day. I am hoping by the time I go back to work I won't look like I have a double chin and swollen neck, especially since the neck and jaw were the things I really wanted to fix...
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It's so strange not knowing any of you ladies here and yet I find Myself feeling a strong bond for each of you,I guess because we have had similar surgery and we are all at different stages - 1. Waiting to have surgery. 2. Have just had surgery. 3 . In the middle of it . 4 . Or months down the line in the recovery stage. We are aware of what each other are going thru or going to go thru. We all have similar fears and get nervous of our choices.no pain no gain, We are all different and our recovery stage will be slightly different from one person to the next. However the end result will be the same for all of us. Stepping forward looking and feeling refreshed and younger in appearance . What a wonderful experience to be rejuvenated with the confidence we all deserve to have. Feeling fantastic on the inside now our look from the outside matches.Such a hard decision to make at the start of this journey ,to actually go through with it.Im almost 5 months today,and I feel and look fantastic,my face is clear,fresh,and youthful in appearance . My scaring is almost invisible . I wasn't sure what my end results would be, I just new it had to be better then what I looked like at the time. Now I have started to get my excess weight under control, then I will look at having lipo ,and also have my nose re shaped . :)) stay positive stay safe ....hugs xxxx
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I agree with all my heart... this site is such a godsend. So many lovely, supportive people from all around the world!! It is so wonderful and healing to be able to connect with others who have gone through, are going through, or will soon embark on this journey. It's tough to talk about with even my closest friends (and certainly my poor husband who is still kind of freaked over the whole thing but I hope he will be happy when it's all done)... I have a couple of friends who have had upper eyelids done, or rhinoplasty, or breast augmentation... but the FL journey just seems to be its own intense thing. Thanks so much to all of you!!!
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Yes, I am glad to that we have this wonderful website! - The journey has been scary.Its wonderful to read and write about what we are going thru. It has really helped me in my recovery. And believe me, if I was going thru this FL journey on my own , I would be FREAKING OUT! or obsessively calling my PS. Thank you for sharing !
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Absolutely kandis60 we in this conversation are the four categories of people what you say. I hope we all people are there relaxed by knowing each others pain and recovery.I fell somewhat pain when reading some one stories and fell really great for some people who recovered from the Tummy tuck surgery which they have .Thank you kandis60 .I love the way you replied
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I could finally wash my hair today, and boy did it feel good! I only have sutures in my scalp,but i needed the drain behind my ear taken out. I am still icing, as it still helps and staying elevated, and salt free. Hope you are ok :)
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Isn't clean hair wonderful? I even blow dried today on "cool" setting and that was such a treat. I wonder if this whole thing will help me break my salt habit -- I now have very strong motivation! Be well, WW, and keep us posted!!
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A to Z...everything is all coming together!...I just looked at your 'before' pictures... You can really see a difference...just a few more days & you will be perfect!
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Thanks so much! Happy healing to both of us!!
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Getting your suture out will be a 'turning point', I'm sure. I had the best long shower and hair wash after mine were removed......look forward to that.....and feeling/looking better little by little every day from now! Thinking of you!
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I cant write much, as we are both on the same page,but hang in there. This will all be worth it! :)
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To you as well -- feel better and I am sure a month from now we will be going "yay, I am so thrilled I did this!" :)
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Hi there you seem a lil down,don't be by the time your swelling and bruising disappear you will be so happy with you results,put your make up on do your hair you will feel so much better .as soon as I woke up I put make up on and tried to style my hair a bit,and I looked like a freak,however I new as the days go by my appearance would improve,pretty much with in 10 days all my bruising ans swelling was gone ,I to have taken pic of my journey and the transformation is unreal,enjoy yourself and go with the flow end result is what counts :)) you rock chick Hugs xxx looking great
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Thank you so much - I have valued your story and others, it is so heartening to see your success and I really appreciate the words of support!
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I looked like a freak when I came from surgery, puffy bruising blood in the ears as well, be excited because you will be just fine, remember you have gone through a lot, the lil black duck turned into a stunning swan :)) I'm sending you positive energy your way, relax hugs xxx
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AtoZ...it is only day 5.... I honestly think from your pictures...yes ok swollen...but you look good! I said to someone else I just wish I could see a picture of myself a little down the road, to see myself looking normal, then it would be easier to take these low days. We will get there!. My husband has realised a different approach is a better option & saying things like ' gosh I can see an improvement just in the past hour!'. ( ha!) My neck feels like I have a tight scarf on...BUT I 'THINK' the sweeling might have gone down slightly this evening! Yes!
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