The Day My Face Peeled Off

It wasn’t one of my bucket list goals to undergo surgery or improve my physical appearance, but hey, we’re all a little vain. And although vanity wasn’t the sole reason for the surgery I had last week (there was medical necessity pre-empting it), it played a part in its results.

What have I learned through this experience? Well, I’m tougher than I thought. I can be a real emotional basket case, but when it comes to physical pain, I’m a pretty tough cookie. I’ve told myself for months that this was a minor surgery, but realistically, much of my face came off my body, muscles and bones were adjusted and broken, I was spitting blood upon awakening, my eyes were swollen shut, my mouth was cut wide open from the inside, and I still have tubes up my nose. And guess what? My surgery was Tuesday, and I worked Thursday and Friday. And I’m starting my new job tomorrow.

“Hi, everyone! Meet the resident monster! She comes equipped with whisker stitches, a splint, and two black eyes.”

I’ve also learned a lot about the people I love. I didn’t originally share news of the procedure beyond “need-to-know,” but those who did know brought me flowers and care packages (much love to Abi and Greg), my parents came out to take care of me and cater to my near-constant demands for hot tea, and Brandon even made me icebox cake. Alice hasn’t left my side for 5 straight days. And also, bonus lesson – post-surgery pictures are an AWESOMELY FUN way to freak out everyone on your phone contact list.

Being able to breathe more easily and enjoying the outer effects of an improved appearance will be nice once all these stupid side effects wear off. And frankly, I can’t wait to enjoy my first glass of wine in more than a week (how pregnant people do it, I’ll never know). But even beyond the bucket list, I’m continuing to grow, proud of my strength, and only slightly embarrassed by the depths of my own vanity. Hey, we can’t all be saints.

Seriously, though, someone please take these tubes out of my nose.

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