Oct. 7, 2012 -
It's been almost two months since I scheduled a consultation with Dr. Richard J. Warren in Vancouver, BC for a rhinoplasty. His waitlists are apparently 1 year+ just to get a consultation because he's the best in Vancouver - possibly even Canada. Or so I've heard from online reviews. He doesn't advertise, he relies solely on promotion via word of mouth. A bit about why I'm choosing to go ahead with this:
I'm 22 years old (will probably be 23 by the time the surgery happens) and nearly completed my university degree. I've recently come into some inheritance money, so I can afford the surgery. I'm mature enough to know that this is what I want, and have undergone years of teasing to confirm this. I've told myself that I won't become addicted to plastic surgery and get many subsequent surgeries to correct any and all imperfections. I can get a push up bra to correct sagging boobs, I can wear lipsticks to plump up my lips, I can work out and eat right to prevent having to get liposuction. But I can't cover or self-correct my nose.
My boyfriend of 4 years loves me the way I am and will probably be very angry when he finds out that I went ahead and scheduled this consultation. I'm terrified to tell him. Once, I made a joke to him saying that I'm getting to get liposuction. He told me that if I were being serious, that would be a really stupid decision. I think we can all agree that a rhinoplasty is even more serious than lipo. I'm not sure how to make him see that I'm doing this for me. Not to silence my critics, not to become a cardboard cutout of a Hollywood starlet, but for ME so that I can finally look in the mirror and like myself from all angles. Some people might wonder why I'm bothering to do this since I already have a very serious relationship and have no need to impress other men. If you're doing something strictly to appeal to the opposite [or same] sex then you're in it for the wrong reasons. You need to do what you can to make yourself feel beautiful and hopefully confidence will come with that beauty.
I was teased and bullied throughout school and still, to this day, I get comments on my nose at times. Part of it is probably that I'm half Italian. Every one in my family has a large nose. Whenever people try to guess my ethnicity, they can always see the Italian in me. If they don't guess it right away, I will tell them what I am and they'll say "oh, yeah, I can see that." As much as I'd like to think it's because Italian women are often considered as being exotic and beautiful, my insecurities keep telling me it's because I have a large nose.
I need this surgery to gain confidence and to be able to face the mirror without cringing. I will be looking for a full time job when I graduate within a year, so this is the perfect time for me to make this transition. I will hopefully have my surgery after I graduate and before my new job begins.
I'm tired of facing people straight-on when I talk to them, even if they're sitting beside me. I'm tired of asking my friends to delete photos that they post of me because I hate how my nose looks. I'm tired of being scared whenever someone brings out a camera and having to decide which way to turn my face so that I can minimize how large my nose is.
If anyone could share any advice, reviews about Dr. Richard Warren, or just offer general support it would be much appreciated!
Oct. 7, 2012 - It's been almost two months since...
Oct. 7, 2012 -
I'm thinking of also booking a consultation with...
Just had my consultation with Dr. J. A. Barlett in...
I told him that I wanted it deprojected (brought in closer to my face) and the bulbous cartilage on the tip to be narrowed. He agreed about the tip needing to be narrowed, but said that it doesn't project as far out from my face and I think it does, and it had a nice obtuse angle. That made should have made me feel better but it also kind of made me feel crazy. Like, maybe there wasn't anything wrong with my nose this whole time. But that can't be, because I've had an issue with it since I was a child and the fact that so many people who don't even know each other have said mean things about it reaffirms that yes, it's larger than a normal person's.
He said that if I deproject my nose I will also have to shave off a tiny bump that I have at the top of the bridge of my nose. I guess this will prevent it from looking "hooked" when I deproject it. So basically, if I do all 3 of these things it will cost me $9000 + tax. And he said that I might benefit in the future from bringing my nostrils in closer because they should align with the corners of my eyes, and mine go out slightly more. If I add this to my procedure, it will bring the total to 10,500 + tax.
A lot to think about. I could either go the cheaper route and do what he thinks is the only necessary change - removing cartilage from the tip to make it less bulbous and wide. Or I could splurge and get the whole thing done. I'm less concerned about the money factor with going with the 3-in-1 deal than I am about the greater chances of something look wrong if I get that much done to it. But then again, I don't want to just get the one procedure done, the narrowing of the tip, and then realize after that the change wasn't great enough and go through this all over again. Not sure which I'm going to choose. Still on the waitlist for my consultation with Dr. Warren and still haven't told my parents yet. Maybe my mom can help me out with this.
So I finally told my mom about my plans a few days...
Our plan is to not tell my father because he will definitely be opposed to it. He even hates it when we dye our hair. Since it's not going to be that huge of a change (I'm probably only going to get it narrowed, as per Dr. Bartlett's suggestion) and it takes almost a year for the gradual changes to develop, he honestly probably won't even notice. For the days that I'm in the hospital and recovering we'll just say that I'm staying at either my boyfriend's or best friend's house. When I return home, I'll be looking as good as new.
My boyfriend was surprised to hear of how supportive my mom was of me getting this done. I think he was encouraging me to tell her about it secretly because he thought she would be opposed and could talk me out of it. But nope, that didn't happen, so I hope that he will soon see the light too.
It's a Christmas miracle! My boyfriend finally...
Booked my consultation!
I still really want to get the procedure done, but pretty much my only two concerns are (and note that they actually dont really have anything to do with the procedure itself, lol):
1 - Needles!! I had to have surgery on my toe recently and I almost fainted/threw up from the freezing injections. Not looking forward to getting an IV, or whatever it is they'll be doing, can any other needle-phobes share with me how painless/scary this part was for them?
2 - Figuring out where to hide myself for a few days while I recover enough that I can take off the bandage and cover any bruising with makeup. I still live with my parents and my mom and I decided it's best if my dad doesn't find out about this, so I'm going to have to work around that
Booked my surgery!
- Will there be a line inbetween my eyes at the top of my nose?
- Will it grow with age?
- When can I wear makeup?
- When can I wear glasses?
4 more weeks!
Might have to tell my dad..
I thought I was so clever, I had it all planned out. I was going to stay with my best friend and her husband for the 10 days while I had my cast on and we were going to tell my dad that my boyfriend and I were staying at her house to house-sit for them while they were away, to test if we can handle living together eventually. It was a highly plausible story, because the topic of moving in with my boyfriend of 5.5 years has come up a lot with my parents recently. Besides my mom changing her mind about keeping the truth from him, there was one other flaw in the plan - my mom has cancer, but her oncologist is giving her a break from chemo so she can travel with my dad, something they've been wanting to do for a long time. They were thinking of going away early February, so they're away for Valentines day. My surgery is February 4. This still could have worked perfectly, as long as my mom arranged it so that they leave any day after Feb 4, so she can still be home to pick me up from surgery while my dad is at work. However, we realized that if they go away on vacation, I'll have to come back home and continue my recovery here so that I can look after my dog. That would have worked, I would have just gone back home after they'd already gone to the airport, but we realized it would be strange if I didn't come home just before they left so that I could at least say goodbye to them, especially if I had already been away from home for like a week prior to that. Sigh.
I don't want to put my mom in an awkward position or ask her to lie for me if she's not comfortable with it anymore. There's still some flaws with our half truth story, though. For example, my dad is going to ask who my surgeon is (if it was strictly a medical procedure with no cosmetic alterations, why would I be going to a plastic surgeon?), and since I'm no longer a student and therefore no longer covered under his medical insurance, he will likely offer to pay for it. My mom had to repair a broken nose and deviated septum when I was a kid, so the procedure is nothing new to him.
We need to think our story through some more. As much as it sucks to only be telling a half truth, we know that the truth would break his heart. Like I said, he's super weird when it comes to body modification and I feel like he would never be able to look at me the same. It's kinda hypocritical of him because whenever he sees women on tv that he calls beautiful or hot, my mom and me always say "yeah, cuz look at all the plastic surgery she's had!" Sigh. Men. They want us to look good but they don't want to know what goes in to making us look perfect.
Anyway, I've attached 2 photos of the nose I want to have! I'm going to bring them in when I see Dr. Warren on Wednesday. I'll post another update then.
Second consultation tomorrow
Had my second consultation
He's going to try to give me a nose that's as close to the photos that I brought in as possible, however he pointed out that it will look slightly different on me than on them because I have a bit of an overbite, so my chin slides back a bit, and my forehead also slopes back when you look at it from profile view (I never knew that). The women in the photos I brought had chins and foreheads that were perfectly aligned, thus making their noses appear smaller. Just goes to show what a good eye he has.
He asked me whom I've told about this and when I said we're not going to tell my dad the whole truth, just that I'm fixing a deviated septum, he thought that was a very good idea. In his opinion, my dad won't even notice the difference in shape, and if he does, the fact that I'll be happier and more confident should matter more.
Later that evening, my mom and I told my dad that I have to have surgery to fix my deviated septum. He seemed sad and worried about it because my mom had to have the same thing done a few years ago and he remembers that it was hell for her because she ended up getting a cold while she was still healing, causing an infection and the surgeon to had to re-break it. We assured him that I'm in good hands with the surgeon I chose (didn't give a name), he's the best at what he does, and they will be giving me antibiotics to prevent any sort of infection like what my mom had.
Overall, I'm very excited about this. I know that I'm in good hands with Dr. Warren, I 100% trust him. Whenever I think of events coming up, like the Canucks game I'll be going to with my mom in March, or a concert we're going to in April, the first thing I think of is "I'll have my new nose by then" :) Of course it'll take a year to reach its full potential, but the worst will be over and I'll be on my way to looking my best
Just had my pre-op
I don't usually need them, but she wrote me a prescription for T3s to fill before my surgery so I don't have to do that after. I forgot to ask her for one, but I was hoping to get a list of products I should buy from the drug store that will aid in my healing. Anyone have any advice in that department? I've heard a lot of you posting on here that something called arnica gel helps. Is there anything else I should be getting?
In 2 weeks I'll be at home resting after my surgery!!
Question for you realselfers
I posted a few more "before" photos too. I like how I look with my glasses on better because they hide my bump and make my nose appear smaller, lol
One week to go!
Yesterday I went to the dentist because I was experiencing a lot of pain in my cheekbone and teeth whenever I chewed on my right side. He took x-rays and poked around in my mouth and determined that the pain was due to my sinuses. I told him that I'm getting my deviated septum repaired next week and he said that'll definitely help my sinus issues (I left out the cosmetic part of the surgery). When I told this to my boyfriend, he agreed that it's good that I'm having my septum fixed, but he's still not on board with the cosmetic aspect of my surgery, either. Sigh. Oh well, can't win them all. My dad is starting to ask my mom questions too. He can't believe that I didn't say anything to him about this a year and a half ago when I requested a consultation with Dr Warren, especially since it must be so bad that I feel like this is the only option (he knows how terrified I am of needles, he shares the same phobia).
Excited for next week. I ask my patient coordinator what I should be buying from the drugstore and she said dry mouth spray was a good idea, as well as cold compresses and polysporin (I already have those at home). However, many of you have been recommending arnica gel, and she said that she does not advise it, as apparently there's no scientific evidence to prove that it helps. But she said it can't hurt
Here's another photo that I hate my nose in. I look through these whenever have some doubts about my decision
5 more days!
4 more days!
Less than 2 days to go!
Tomorrow's the big day!
- neck pillow
- arnica gel-cream
- sinus pack
- dry shampoo
- biotene moisturizing mouth spray
- sour candies (to get the saliva going)
- endless supply of lip balm
- cotton swabs
- vitamin C chewable tablets
- stanhexidine antibacterial face wash (to be used the night before and morning of surgery)
- prescription acetaminophen/codeine painkillers
This list doesn't include pineapple and jello and other soft foods that I'll have to eat. If I missed anything please let me know!
Last night with this nose!
Surgery is over!
Anyways I had nothing to fear - the anesthetist was FANTASTIC. He knew I was afraid of needles and said that we were going to concur that fear today. he distracted me the whole time as I looked away, not knowing when he was going to put it in. I didn't even know that he had numbed the area yet when I felt a slight poke in my arm and that was it. I 100% expected more pokes to come after and to feel it running through my veins like some of you described but nope!! he said "and that was the last needle im going to give you" and I turned my head to look at him really fast and said "WHAT!??!" hahah. I couldn't believe how painlessi it was. Then Dr Warren came in and explained to his team what the procedure was, and while he was doing that the anesthetist put an oxygen mask over my face and asked me to take 4 deep breaths. The last thing I remember was taking 1 deep breath, telling him that my 3 "S" fears are spiders, snakes, and stairs, taking another deep breath and feeling my face go tingly and burning, thinking about telling him that this is the first time I've ever felt high because I've never done drugs and then WHAM I was out. I swear I was dreaming when I was out and it actually felt like I had been sleeping for a while, not 1 second like almost every one says. They were calling my name and waking me up and I don't remember much except asking if I was beautiful, looking at the clock on the wall ahead and seeing the time 5:10, and announcing to the anesthetist that I could read the clock lol. it didn't take me long to realize that I had the WORST cramps I've ever had in my life. my period was late, it was supposed to come 5 days ago, and it decided to come during my surgery. lovely. good thing I was wearing a pad just in case but still it was the most horrendous pain. at least it distracted me from my nose. the worst parts about waking up were the insane cramps that they had to give me painkillers into my IV ASAP for, and having difficulty swallowing because mucous and blood were flowing down my throat and getting stuck at the back of it. I had to keep coughing it up and using this suction tube thing to stick down my throat and suck it out. it was gross cuz the tube was clear so I could see all the blood in it. my mom was worried that she hadn't heard from them yet, cuz we were concerned in the beginning about the fact that i'm allergic to every antibiotic I ever had (some have hospitalized and nearly killed me) and we didn't know which ones i'm ok with. they give me some in my IV, clindamycin? and I thankfully didn't have any adverse reactions to it.
One embarrassing thing that happened was I had to as the nurse to check and see if I had gotten my period and if that was what was causing the cramps. so weird, I know, but she was good about it. I also had to pull down my panties and they lifted me into this pee pot so I could pee cuz I really felt like I had to from the liquid from the IV, but nothing came out. holding a cold ginger ale to my abdomen to relieve my cramps (didn't help that much), they wheel chaired me down to my mom's Jeep and thankfully because it took so long the worst of rush hour traffic was over. I live in Surrey, which is about 30km from Vancouver, so it wasn't too far of a drive.
I'm not feeling too bad, but as you can see, I have serious black eyes forming. Dr Warren told me that nothing bad happened, that's not why it took so long, he just wanted to make sure that everything was perfect before he finished. He said that he was able to give me the nose that he sketched for me and that we discussed, so I'm happy about that. He also said that my tip is going to have major swelling, more than most peoples (not sure why), and my nose will look like a fat potato for 2-3 weeks, and it will take the full year for final results to show, I guess that's ok, a gradual progression will be less obvious to those who don't know.
PS. sorry for any typos, I can't wear my glasses or lift my laptop closer to my face cuz it\s heavy, so I\m looking at this from quite far away (im near sighted)
First night recovering from surgery
My dog is sad and confused as to why he can't sleep up on my bed like normal. He's 16 years old and cant jump up or down off it anymore, and I can't lift heavy objects (at 22 pounds he's pretty fat for a miniature poodle).
So far I've had water and ginger ale to drink. To eat I've had cold mashed potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes, jello, and apple sauce.
Gonna try to sleep soon, goodnight everyone!
Day 2 post-op
I've only taken my prescription painkillers 3 times since the surgery. the last time was at 10am this morning. it's almost 2pm now, so it's safe for me to have more if I need it, it doesn't really hurt though aside from the area around my stitches sometimes when I move my nose inadvertently while chewing or sleeping. Will post another update later, going to catch up on my soap opera for now, lol
Day 3 post-op
Day 4 post-op
Day 5 post-op
It hurts quite a bit (more in my right nostril than left) to wipe around the stitches just inside my nose with a q-tip. Is this normal? The other ones don't hurt near as much. It's not infected is it? I've been putting polysporin antibiotic ointment on them twice a day these past 4 days, as instructed
Day 7 post-op: feeling horrible
Stitches & splints removed
Funny story about the pic I just posted. It's of my right side, and when I took it I instinctively thought "ew, I can't post this, the right side is my nose's bad side" but then I remembered that I don't have a bad side anymore! :)
Just a couple more photos before bed
New comparison pics
First time wearing makeup post-op!
1 week after cast removal
One month post-op
Post-op appointment today
I still tape my nose when I'm at home or sleeping sometimes but I still find that it's noticeably swollen in the morning. The nurse coordinator said that's ok and there's absolutely no harm in taping.
When I first got to his office, his receptionist freaked out when she saw me, and she's normally very chill and professional. I was so happy that she was thrilled with the results, since she's seen tons of his patients, you'd think she'd be used to great results, so mine must be especially fantastic! I told Dr. Warren that too, that I had very high expectations and he managed to exceed them :)
I posted some before & afters here for you guys to look at. Will update if anything new comes up
Another comparison photo
4 months post-op
What's been going on in my life