Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Day 28 - FOUR WEEKS. woo.

YAY. i made it! i really really made it. *happy dance* I honestly can't believe that my surgery was 4 weeks ago...  i know it sounds cliche, but it really does feel like i was in the hospital for surgery just yesterday. but in looking back over everything, i have actually come quite a ways. so yay. i'll try to just write a ton and try to update on different topics instead of my usual "write the random stuff on the top of my mind that probably doesn't make sense" sort of thing.

So hmm. Seeing as i was too lazy to try to edit one of my pictures showing the numbness tonight.. ill just try to describe how everything is. so i apologize if none of this makes sense. let's see. okay.

80-90% feeling = my lower lip and chin, outer cheeks, gums on my lower teeth
0% feeling = on my nose, areas on either side of my nose, under my eyes, gums on upper teeth
5% feeling = upper lip, roof of my mouth

so i put my upper lip in the 5% category (even thought i can't exactly feel it) because it is tingling and almost vibrating like crazy. holy buckets. this is SOO annoying. and my nose and the other areas at 0. well they don't even tingle yet... they are just completely numb. well, i take that back. the areas underneath my eyes feel badly bruised. (taking off my eye makeup isn't the most fun).

I also get these weird feelings all around my face.. i have seen that other bloggers have had similar ones. for instance, my nose either feels like it is wet/runny (when it isn't..) or it feels crusty (when it isn't...). my lips also feel like they always have food or liquid on them. or they feel like they are chapped/cracked and sting sometimes too. fun stuff...! Also, if i go outside and it is extremely hot... my entire face feels like it is wet and/or has water dripping down it. not sure why.

another "funny" thing with numbness is that whenever i am eating in public.. i normally end up with food on my face that i don't notice. luckily i have friends that will tell me, and we all can laugh about it together! also, since a lot of my mouth has been numb, i feel like my perception of the temperature of foods and drinks is really weird. for instance, this morning i was eating a smoothie with a spoon, and all of a sudden i get the pain in my upper lip, i go to touch it, and it feels almost frozen. like my body is so numb it can't give me a warning until it either gets way too hot or too cold. i also feel like no matter how much i heat up a meal.. it always tastes like it is just lukewarm. even if it burns my finger to touch. so just thought id share :P

In regards to stiffness, it feels so incredibly awkward to smile.. but you know, im not going to complain too much, because at least the pain in smiling went away. i also feel like i can't easily make normal facial expressions if i am having a conversation with someone. but things are improving each day! soon i will not seem as non-expressive or rude.

i think i finally look somewhat "normal" by now. i think that these pictures hide the swelling really well too. when i go out in public i feel like people wouldnt notice that i had jaw surgery recently or anything out of the normal.. but i think when i see people i know, they think i look either different or puffy. im not sure! i have gotten so many mixed views on the state of my swelling, that i don't know what to think. overall, this last week my swelling hasn't bothered me too much since it is minimal now. but i still want it ALL to go away!

i feel like my smile continues to get wider and more normal. yay.

I feel like i have had more pain than most people by this stage in recovery... i am still taking motrin and tylenol during the day. and most nights i take 1 hydrocodone just to help me get to sleep. I am trying to get off medicine... but my whole face just aches whenever the medicine wears off. sigh. on the plus side, sometimes i do forget to take medicine if i am distracted :) like if i am doing anything with friends, i don't even notice that my jaw has started hurting normally until i get home.

I woke up this morning though with the area on the right side where my surgeon moved forward my jaw throbbing. and even tonight, it still hurts. i hope nothing has gone wrong... im a little worried. hopefully it goes away after a long sleep. my rubber bands hardly hurt anymore though!! yay! i can tell my jaw is getting stronger too. because, when i first got my bands, i could barely open my mouth enough to talk well. but now i can open my mouth even though i still feel resistance from the bands.

First off, let me just say this. I WANT TO CHEW. so badly... I feel like so many people are given the "ok" to chew things by now.. even if they are limited in what they can chew. idk. just frustrating i suppose. another thing i found is that i haven't been allowed to use a straw during recovery yet. has anyone else been told this? so at restaurants i have spilled quite a bit of water on myself from sipping out of these huge cups. haha. ok. now i know i am not allowed to chew. but i can't just eat all liquids. so i just do what i can "tongue chewing" where i mash food up with my fork, and then kinda just let my mouth dissolve it enough with my tongue to swallow. once i figured out that i can swallow anything that is mashed by my fork.. my diet got a LOT better. i have broken MANY plastic forks along the way though... oops! I eat about 4 smaller meals every day and have definitely stopped losing weight. ended up losing 7 pounds (this was all just in the first week, after that it stopped going down). especially after discovering that i could eat cake :P

list of my food! (i am lactose intolerant, so have to avoid ice cream and milkshakes)

  • smoothies
  • i have been living on gatorade lately
  • soups (tomato and chicken noodle (chicken and stars is great because the "stars" are small enough to swallow without chewing!))
  • spaghetti
  • cake/soft cookies/baked goods - good to mix with ice cream or frosting to help make softer
  • eggs
  • pancakes drenched in syrup
  • mashed potatoes (gravy)
  • hashbrowns
  • stuffing - mixed with finely cut turkey
  • sloppy joe without the bun
  • yogurt
  • applesauce
  • jello or pudding
  • baked beans
  • black beans
  • chili
  • banana bread with a lot of butter microwaved to make mushy
  • mashed raspberries and blackberries
  • rice
  • anything "noodle"

I feel like my energy is pretty normal as long as i don't do anything. I don't think I could work out though... i kinda get exhausted from doing a lot of physical things. i want to start working out again though!! i partially havent because things like jumping, or running, etc. kinda make my face ache.

Time to complain again about my sleep....! i am now sleeping on my side, but i just hope it isn't irritating my face too much... I sleep on the really soft pillow and try to just put like the top of my head on it so that it doesn't hurt the side of my face. i am able to sleep much better now that i gave up on sleeping propped up! but by now my schedule is BAD seeing as i continue to be up til 3am. but i promise you it'll be back to normal... eventually...

I am still brushing my teeth after every meal. and am still using my little baby toothbrushes! they are so darn cute and tiny and soft and wonderful. I don't think i have talked much about my stitches. My surgeon said that they would all dissolve eventually. sometimes they fall out and they look like clear fishing wire. but, i can see stitches under my top lip, and those are white and not clear at all, look more like floss actually. so do these fall out at some point? i can't imagine such a think string dissolving. but i guess we will find out..

Random Advice of the Day: don't go over speed bumps quickly the first couple weeks after surgery. that was not too much fun... haha

I have my first orthodontist appt tomorrow since surgery, and another appt with my surgeon on thursday. so ill talk about those after they happen.

take care everyone!! thanks :)


  1. Thanks for the update Katie! Sounds like things are progressing well.

    1. well thanks for putting up with reading it! hope my writing is somewhat helpful to people. but yes, things are doing so much better overall :)