Friday, 30 April 2010

Surgery tomorrow

The time has come for me to sign off from this side of the journey. I've just returned from getting my surgical hooks attached, and am fully stocked up on smoothies and ice-cream. For the rest of the evening I plan a long bath, a good dinner, and then bed to attempt some sleep (though heaven knows if i'll be able to)

The plan for tomorrow is this, up at 6.15am for final dithering then a short tube ride to the hospital for 7.30. I should be going down about 9.30ish and will be back in my room sometime in the early afternoon. I'm booked in for a 2 night stay so will be back home on Monday. I'm taking a ton of stuff to keep me entertained, including my laptop, and am hoping to distract myself enough not to worry too much about what's going on in the jaw department.

Can't say i'm feeling too nervous right now, the meditation and relaxation techniques I've worked on seem to be helping keep me calm. Tomorrow will probably be a different story but i'm not too worried, after all who wouldn't get scared at the prospect of imminant jaw breakage! So hopefully i'll just relax and treat whatever crops up as part of the whole adventure.

See you on the other side :)

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

3 days to surgery...

Yesterday was my final appointment with Mr T to test the fit of the wafers (to the uninitiated, these are nothing to do with ice-cream, but rather pre-measured molds which are used during surgery showing where the teeth need to be for the perfect bite). It didn’t take 5 minutes to establish that everything was fine, then we sat down for a final chin wag before the big day.

We began on the subject of the sliding genio, and apparently this is the only part of surgery that isn’t decided for certain beforehand. He told me that once my jaws are in their new positions, he and his team would have a shufti at my profile and face shape, and only then decide if it is necessary. I asked him how he judges this, and he told me that in 9 out of 10 cases it’s very clear if the chin is in proportion or not. If, however, I fall in to the 1 in 10 category where the decision is not so easy, then he will not go ahead. This is all highly reassuring :) and while i’ll still go in expecting a genio, it’ll be a lovely surprise to wake up and find it wasn’t needed.

We then moved on to the question of fitness. As a thrice weekly gym goer plus yoga plus generally active person I was hoping for a go-ahead at the two week point for walks and gentle stretching/toning to begin, but Mr T was adamant: no activity for 6 weeks! When I protested that this seemed a bit harsh I was told in no uncertain terms about risks of pressure on the jaw/light headedness causing me to fall on my face etc etc ok ok I get the point! While I’m sure caution is the best policy I’m not so sure I’ll be able to sit and do nothing while I develop bingo wings and a gut, so for the moment I’ll say silent on that issue..

Finally I asked him about the heat/ice packs i’ve bought. He said that the ice packs would come in handy, but I was not to use heat AT ALL as it increases the chances of developing an infection. Fine by me, infections sound horrendous.

So, 3 days to go, better start packing. After last week’s postponement fingers crossed that no other dumb reason crops up to stop surgery!

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Pre-surgery photos

It's about time I unveiled a few 'before' photos to show what my surgeon will be up against next Saturday. As you can see, it's a pretty impressive underbite i've got going on, and a nice deficient midface to boot. When Mr T. gets going he'll be pulling my upper jaw forward 4mm and pushing the lower back 2, he'll also be doing a genio to keep facial symmetry in balance.

It's a weird feeling knowing that the bottom half of my face will look completely different pretty soon but i'm not worried, after all my messed up bite couldn't be much worse right now!

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Surgery postponed!

Gah! Damn them all!

Got a message from Mr T's office this morning. Mr T has been stranded in Switzerland since the Icelandic volcano ash closed European airspace, and will not arrive back until Sunday! My surgery slot on Friday has been cancelled and rebooked for May 1st, and i'm gutted, gutted, gutted :(

It may only be an 8 day delay, but building up to surgery is proving an emotionally exhausting experience - one minute you're gleeful and the next fearful, and all the while the countdown clock in your mind is reminding you that in X amount of days and hours you'll be there in the recovery room experiencing heaven-knows-what!

So, i've stood down family and friends, and have ANOTHER final weekend to try and relax.


Monday, 19 April 2010

Surgery in four days...

The excitement/nerves are increasing! I've got my final appt with Mr T. on Wednesday when he'll check the bite plate templates are correct, then we're good to go!
Friday's plan is as follows: show up at my orthodontists at 11.30 to get surgical hooks attached, arrive at the hospital at 12.30, down to the operating theatre for 2.30 and be in recovery by 5.30/6pm, job done. Makes it sound so simple! I've also found out that the hospital has wifi and intend to take in my laptop - I could be sharing my sufferings with the world as early as Friday night!
The only thing that's not so cool is that my mum won't be here. She wanted to come up for the op and recovery, but thanks to my (naive) belief that I'd be having surgery on the 12 month mark, she went ahead and booked a holiday to Africa for the whole of April thinking i'd be good and recovered by then.  My sister's interest in this begins and ends with my availability to babysit for her during recovery so support from there is out. Sooo lucky have A. and my friends to chivvy me through :) 
Planning to get some decent before pics up here by Friday...

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Get thee behind me invalid!

Just got back from a quick holiday to Iceland to take my mind off things. Before going away I was too busy planning excusions and outings to
think much about surgery, but now there's nothing else to focus on except the BIG DAY. It's all starting to feel very scary! 

Fortunately, yesterday was my latest appt with Mr T. We kicked off with further moulds and measurements, after which he pulled out a device called a facebow, which looked a bit like a scold's bridle, and attached it to my face which he then fiddled round with for a while. Afterwards we sat down and went over The Plan again, and I quizzed him on waking up from surgery. He reassured me that I would be woken very slowly, and that the local anaesthetic injected into my face and painkiller via the IV would ensure that I won't be in any pain when I come round, which is hugely reassuring as i'm terrified of waking up in agony and panic. 

With so little time left all I need to do is stay healthy, but that's easier said than done as pestilential people seem to be popping up everywhere coughing in my direction and fingering all the surfaces around them! One recent bronchitis sufferer in the office (who i've been avoiding like the plague) even came up to my desk, grabbed my new Sigg water bottle (without asking), and began turning it over in his hands! Had to resist the urge to shriek "get your germ-ridden mitts off my stuff!" Once he'd left I promptly legged it to the kitchen to give the bottle a thorough disinfecting.
So, next up is Dr H tomorrow. I've heard nasty things about surgical hooks so i'm hoping that it won't be in this appt that he chooses to inflict these evil things upon me - I want to enjoy my final weekend of eating in comfort!