Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Two weeks and two days

Here's my rating of the first two weeks: not too bad! Compared to having a baby, the pain is nothing. I have had two babies with no pain relief. Then you really get to know what 'bearable' means (or that in fact it means nothing because you can bear what you previously thought was unbearable, and retain your sanity (just)). Also, there's no one waking you during the night and other people do most of the work around the house for you. And you get to have heavy drugs when you need them. The emotional angst is minimal, whereas with a new baby I found there were emotional extremes never otherwise experienced. And I have NO regrets about the babies. Or the surgery.

Also three years ago I got a really bad flu type virus and slipped a disc in my back at the same time. Coughing and sneezing were agony. I'm finding this much easier than that.

That said I'm up and down. Not feeling so good today - tired, sore back, headaches at night. But I sleep in a bed again and it is bliss!

I saw my surgeon yesterday. He is really happy with my progress and amazed at how good I am for this early on. He pressed various muscles all over my face and expected them to be sore and tender, but they aren't.

I am almost off pain killers - the only two problems are headaches (which he said are common and a result of everything being in a different position and various feedbacks to the brain being very overstimulating, or something to that effect) and my teeth moving. The rubber bands the orthodontist put on my back teeth on Monday are already doing a great job of pulling them down out of their sockets so that they touch, but it HURTS! The same kind of pain as a regular braces tightening.

He said my sneering top right lip is definitely temporary, a result of things being tight, swelling, nerves etc, and he's seen it lots of times before. He still feels really confident that my lower jaw will move over when the swelling in the joint subsides but that it will take "quite some time". Until then I have a cross bite.

I can eat any soft food I want, but I can't chew for another 4 weeks. This is still very restrictive I am getting skinny. My hip bones stick out. I have to try to get more in.

I can brush my teeth. Excitedly, I removed my rubber bands and brushed the front and sides. Then I went to open my mouth to brush the surface of my molars and.... nothing. My mouth wouldn't open. It's like the joints have fused and there isn't enough of an opening to get a toothbrush in there. I will try a child's brush. I did a rough job with the little interdental brush I have.

When I see my surgeon again at the six weeks mark he will give me jaw exercises to do. In the meantime my job is to put heat on my face and massage it.

Today I am going to take my daughter to her gymnastics class. I won't be able to do all the skipping, hopping etc that the parents do with their children at the beginning, but I want her to go. I'll probably doze all afternoon again!


  1. Hi Andrea,

    I am sooo with you on the comparison to med-free child birth. Our youngest was just under eight pounds. I really thought I was going to pass out at one point. And I kept screaming to the doctor, "It's ripping in half!! I know it is...I can't do this anymore." Or, so says hubby. I doubt I was that dramatic...

    I'm glad to hear that the sneering will likely be temporary. I know it's things like that that can drive one semi-nuts.

    I can totally empathize with the no-chew diet and getting skinny. You appear to be an already smaller framed woman, so weight loss (like on me) is probably quickly apparent. I tried to combat it the best I could by eating more than my fair share of carbs (whole grain). But in all honesty. The no-chew got real annoying, real quick. Even though I can soft chew now, my jaws are still so tight. They barely open wide enough to chew anything. It takes me forever to eat a meal.

    Trying the baby toothbrush is a good idea. I tried one. I bought some, but dumbly neglected to pay attention to the thickness of the handle. I felt really stupid when I got home. One thing that's been very helpful is a tongue scraper. I bought is from Target; it's like $3. It's flat and does a nice job of sliding germs off the tongue.

    I know surgeons go to school for YEARS to do their jobs. However, I think that lightly exercising your jaw sooner rather than later would be a decent idea. My surgeon has me opening and closing off and on all day. He says go as far open as I can without feeling like I'm going to die....Hahaha. Also, he has me open-mouth smiling (I look like a psycho), pursing, and stretching in every direction.

    You definitley deserve to nap as much as needed. Sleep is such a lovely thing. Too bad these little buggers in my house won't let me nap too often... LOL!

    You are likely right in the thought that maybe my braces (and these SUPER chunky surgical hooks) are causing some of my lip incompetence. It's definitely a small ray of hope. Every little bit counts. Thanks for the thought.

  2. I'm annoyed. I did some slight editing to my comments for this post, but the changes didn't save. If anything's unclear, let me know.

  3. I've been following your blog Andrea and I want to tell you that I think you look great! I'm glad your recovery is going well. Hope mine does too. I've had two babies and I survived that... lol