*I had been doing on and off rhinoplasty research for the past four years. I don't remember noticing the hump on my nose when I was in high school or at least it bothering me to the point where I would beg people to delete pictures where I, upon seeing them and seeing my "bad angle," would immediately feel TERRIBLE and the ugliest in the group. So terrible that I became fixated on my nose. Everything I didn't notice before became magnified. For example, I never thought I had a bulbous tip, had a "bad angle," had a noticeable dorsal hump. I believe the dorsal hump became prominent as I transitioned into adulthood. Looking back at pictures of my younger years, my nose appeared smoother. So, I began to dabble in some rhinoplasty research. I researched doctors, procedures, experiences, etc. I became obsessed with the idea, then would forget about it. This went on and off for a few years until my sister suddenly let told me something. She told me that on a particular night I was snoring very loudly and was breathing oddly. I felt so ashamed and tried to justify it by saying “Well, it's not all the time." And to my surprise she said, "...Yes, it is..." I was even more alarmed than ashamed at this point because my family knew something I didn't know! So she asked if I thought this was related to my deviated septum which I discovered when I was younger when I was "cleaning" the inside of my nose. I didn't think much of it until I realized that my breathing was very restricted from my left nostril. I found out that surgery was the only way to address this problem and was too afraid to even considering putting myself through that since I've never had surgery. After putting 2 and 2 together, I, once again began considering rhinoplasty even more. this time more motivated because I would get it for cosmetic AND functional reasons. I spent hours and hours looking up pricing, doctors, before and afters, pros and cons, recovery, etc.
**My older sister came across a girl's Instagram where she raved about Dr. Grigoryants, a plastic surgeon located in Glendale. I looked him up, got some information on him, examined his before and afters, read reviews on Realself about him and I was VERY impressed with his work. I was nervous just thinking of considering Rhinoplasty but knew I wanted it and I had to start somewhere so rather than look for other options, I was almost decided it was HE whose work I wanted. Finally in December 2013, I decided to schedule a consultation, to my surprise he was booked all the way out to March! I was crushed but determined. March came around and I finally got to see him. I let him be the judge rather than give him an expected outcome. I felt that there was no use in picking noses I want because I don't want to look like another person, all I sought was my nose to be "refined." So he said, he'd shave the hump down, reduce the width of my nose a tiny bit by bringing the nostrils in, and reduce the size of the tip. So I scheduled the next surgery date available. Again, to my surprise he was booked all the way out to July! I was crushed once again but so set on doing it. I just felt it was my year to finally do what I wanted and to better myself so I can extinguish my insecurities.
***The whole waiting game was actually pretty exciting until the pre-op appointment three weeks before my surgery. Everything just came so fast and it became more real. I saw the doctor again, filled out paper work, got prescriptions, and paid for the surgery. Before I knew it the week had arrived and I was anxious. Until recently I can't handle my anxiety very well so I didn’t feel like myself. The day of, I was very nervous and anxious and not myself. This is by far the scariest thing I've ever done. I was nervous about having a bad reaction to the anesthesia. I checked in at 10:00AM and waited. A little past 11AM I was called back to finally change into my gown and waited anxiously. My orderly wheeled me into the waiting area where I met with Dr. Grigoryants (and discussed the surgery more), the anesthesiologist, and my nurse. All very nice and comforting. I was sedated and after that I remember finally being wheeled into surgery and getting the general anesthesia then I was gone. I woke up smoothly and not in pain just very weak and sleepy with a SUPER sore and dry throat. The nurses were so nice, and they brought my mom in. My mom told me the doctor spoke to her and asked her if I ever fractured my nose because my nasal bone was brittle and made the surgery more difficult than he expected. That worried me but knew he took care of it.
****The recovery week was tough, but not painful. Not a walk in the park at all. Urinating like crazy the night of surgery from the fluids administered in the IV. Felt okay but passed out in the bathroom in the middle of the night when I was about to change the bloody dressing under my nose. No one heard me but once I came back I quickly got up and went back to bed but was trying to stay awake since I hit my head against the tile wall. And no, thankfully my nose was unscathed but my head took a beating. Swelling and bruising set in around day 2, got worse on day 3. Day 3 and 4 were the WOSRT. Hot, teary eyes from the swelling getting worse around my eyes. Bruising was not bad . Day by day the swelling began to set in and had no energy or strength. Netflix wasn't cutting it anymore because I was feeling a bit depressed. I just wanted to look and feel normal. Slowly I began sleeping less and had some energy. The swelling began to resolve around my eyes and jawline. Washing my hair and showering was the best thing ever, oh and applying my eyeliner and doing my eyebrows.
*****Cast removal happened on day 6. I was SO nervous and my beautiful friend offered to drive me to my appointment. I thought I had nasal packing and took 1/2 a Vicodin just in case it was painful. And whaddaya know there was no packing just splints! I was not able to breathe through my nose. Upon first seeing my nose, I was shocked because I looked like a feline-alien-avatar, that's all I focused on. That, and my columella looking pushed in. I really did look like an alien but knew this couldn't be it (of course it's not! It was barely day 6 post-op! Healing takes 12-24 months!) I tried to remain positive and calm. Dr. Grigoryants reassured me that it's swelling and little by little it'll resolve. The swelling was VERY prominent at the bridge of my nose since there was hefty work done there due to the fracture. He told me my septum was so thin, like paper, that he had to use DOUBLE layers/grafts of it in order to prevent my nose from looking dented. Thankfully he achieved a very smooth nose and he encouraged me to feel my nose and it felt sturdy and smooth. Thank goodness for good plastic surgeons! This guy does some great work. I never doubted his work but I was taken aback by the swelling at the top of my nose and my uneven nostrils. He told me the swelling can make nostrils appear that way so what I can do to help it is push it up with a Q-tip. I regained some confidence and positivity and I’m looking forward to August 11 when I get to see him again for the 1 month mark. Definitely excited for month 3 where swelling should be more resolved and the nose appearing more natural. Each day gets better and I feel more comfortable but it will definitely take some getting used to. Taping my nose makes it look less swollen which is why I wear tape to work. I know it'll be swelling on and off but I still feel self conscious. I'm just confident it'll look better by the end of the year. It is WAY too early to judge it in my opinion. I can't bring myself to say "I love/ like it!" yet. It is growing on me little by little, but until all the stupid swelling is gone, that is when I'll make a solid judgement. Patience and positivity is key and I am doing and trying my absolute best to hold on to that.