Day 30: The Weekly Soup Rations

  • Pain: 2/10
  • Inconvenience: 5/10

I figured out how to prevent the severe lacerations my lips have been receiving as of late. If I simply puff my cheeks out like a blowfish constantly throughout the day, my cheeks and the inside of the mouth all pop off my braces. It’s a weird feeling though, when the metal braces and hooks tear out of your flesh. It hurts a little bit each and every time.

I thought I’d be able to post the coveted 0/10 pain rating today, but that’s just not happening. I accept full responsibility for it. I threw the football and the Frisbee around with a few friends last night for a couple hours. While that may have been alright in and of itself, I also ran quite a bit and jumped a fair amount (to make those hard-to-get catches, of course). I also missed one of my catches with the Frisbee and it hit me right in the chin. As a result, the jaw joints on both sides of my face were throbbing for most of the night, my swelling got worse again, and I have a toothache like you wouldn’t believe from one of my bottom teeth continually slamming against this cursed splint in my mouth. But I had a lot of fun being able to do something active for the first time in over 4 weeks, so I still think it was all worth it.

Say hello to my dinner for the next few weeks.

Note that today is Day 30, which means I am exactly 1/3 of the way through my healing process. This is a good thing. This is a very good thing.

In the name of balancing out the good with the bad, my credit card was has been compromised. I checked my statement the other night and I have almost $500 worth of charges, split up into 10 different $5 – $100 instances, all on the same day and all in a span of just a few seconds. I tracked them to a foreign investment “company” with no legit contact information. I gave my bank a call and they informed me that the “company” also attempted to push a $500 charge through, but it was rejected due to the bank’s in-house security measures. They told me that the charges were indeed fraudulent, so I now have a fraud report being mailed to me which I have to fill out and send back. Why must this world strive to be so dishonest? I will never understand it.

Continuing with the bad, there was a big wrap-up party at work yesterday for the product we just shipped, and guess what decided to stop by right at lunch time: free pizza. Boxes upon boxes of it. The next time you’re about to bite into a warm, fresh piece of this momentous achievement of the culinary arts, do something for me. Stop for a moment and take a nice, long sniff. It smells delicious. Trust me.

The next appointment I have with my surgeon has been moved a full week ahead. Apparently he’s stuck at a conference in Switzerland, and I can only assume his delay is sponsored by the infamous ash cloud from Iceland. While it may be costing airlines a lot of revenue, I personally think it’s quite a beautiful sight. A testament to the power of nature, if you will.

I made a pit stop at the Superstore last night on my way home from work so I could stock up all the extravagant delicacies I have the privilege of ingesting presently. I received a lot of weird looks from people as I was purchasing my weekly soup rations. It might be because I was buying more than a few cans: 18 in total.

I also stopped at Dairy Queen before I got home so I could buy an ice cream cake to turn into blended dessert. I was pleasantly surprised to find out about their current deal on Blizzards: buy 1 at regular price and receive the 2nd one for a quarter! Not a quarter of the full price, literally a quarter. 25 cents! The lady laughed at me as I bought 4 extra large treats for myself. I picked up the following flavors:

  • Skor
  • Smarties
  • Crispy Crunch
  • Reese’s Pieces

And just for the books, when you have a giant splint in your mouth, “Reese’s Pieces” is the most difficult word you could possibly attempt to say. I challenge even those of you who have more maturity then you know what to do with to not laugh when I try to articulate those 2 words.

15 Comments

  1. Hey Graham!

    I’m a little past 30 days now, and I’m getting kind of worried. The past couple days I’ve had a pretty sore pain in my very back left tooth on my upper jaw under the splint when I brush my teeth. I also feel like my teeth are loose and moving. As of tonight I’ve also developed a very light popping/clicking sound in my left jaw joint as well as a pain. I’m not sure if all of this is normal? Last week my surgeon approved for me to eat fries and small pieces of pasta so I’ve been “chewing” (mashing?) lightly/as well as you can with a splint and it seems like since then I’ve had all kinds of issues from stomach to jaw pain. I want desperately to be back to normal and the pasta/fish/fries allowance makes me less starving, but I’m wondering if it’s worth it?

    All in all I hope these pains and aches aren’t serious…

    Thanks in advance.

    • Francis, I recall thinking my teeth were a bit loose during recovery as well, but I think it was directly related to the braces moving them around. I also felt like I had a few cavities, which frightened me a bit, but it turned out to be sore gums in the end (due to not being able to brush and floss properly). Make sure you’re gurgling warm salt water around for a few minutes in the morning and at night to prevent infections in your gums. For peace of mind, a checkup with your surgeon or orthodontist may be able to provide some more information (or, hopefully, reassurance!). Best of luck!

  2. Good to meet you, Scott! You sound like you’re taking great care of Sandee!

    She’s lucky she already has her splint out. The cravings one has when they’re unable to eat are often quite humorous. Think of all the times she’s smelled McDonald’s without being able to even nibble on a single French fries.

    I must also give you props for custom ordering processed lasagna at the restaurant. I bet they shared that experience with quite a few people.

    Keep taking care of your lady and she’ll be back in action with a glistening smile in no time at all!

  3. Hey Graham:
    My name is Scott and I am the loving husband of a great So Cal girl that decided to do the double. This has been a six year project to this point and I can say she is doing really well at day 30. Her splint came out yesterday and it was a great relief and the most awesome opportunity to brush her teeth! It is almost a religious experience apparently, it looked like one from my perspective.

    I would like to pass along a few food tips to those at this stage that may still have a splint in. Two words “processed Lasagna”. While in Las Vegas for New Year’s (Bob Seger rocked the place) Sandee and I went to get some lunch at an Italian restaurant. She smelled all of those great dishes wafting their dastardly smells while being served nearby and was she literally drooling. She turned to me and said “Scott, I really want Lasagna”. What was any good husband to do? Ask the waiter to put the dish in a food processor and blend away. After a weird look followed by my now well rehearsed standard explanation of the surgery, off he went to the chef. Returning with this food from the Gods it was initially served in a water glass, what? Well after the faux pas was duly noted he came back with the desired lasagna served properly in a bowl with a small spoon and away Sandee went. I must admit it tasted really good. The bowl was cleaned while I scooped only a spoon or two much to her dismay, well I must make sure I am feeding her good food, right?

    I have also BBQ eggplant and processed it, this gave her some flavor of BBQ without the meat. She loved both of these. Processing steamed broccoli, carrots, squash work well. Add some cinnamon and nutmeg to squash, carrots and sweet potatoes while steaming or processing, this will spice up the dish too. Soups are always good as you have noted.

    OK, splint off and what is her first request for food, a salad. Well that choice was going to be tough and she knew it. Choice #2….drumroll please…….McDonald’s for a small hamburger and the largest french fry she could get. While these were swallowed in larger pieces than normal, you could see the pleasure through the difficulty in eating the delicacies of the Golden Arches. I was never happier than watching her eat.

    We want to give a big shout-out to UCLA School of Dentistry and Dr. Earl Freymiller, what a team of wonderful people. Our experience with the UCLA staff and especially Dr. Freymiller has been nothing short of exceptional for this surgery. We highly recommend them.

    To all of you healing my hats off to you, you are all champions. This is not an easy journey but from where I stand it seems to be a real life changer.

    Graham, you have provided the best barometer for Sandee and I, thank you for taking the time to make this site. It has been great reading and we look forward to reading it as each day passes, the comparisons are eerie sometimes. You are a great writer and an inspirational guide to all of your readers, wether you know it or not. Bravo.

    Peace and fast healing to you all, and of course my Sweet Sandee.

  4. You’re going to camp after one month?! I’m so jealous!

    If you’re comfortable switching your bands, I’d say go for it. Just make sure you don’t jar your jaw when they’re off since your bone is probably still fairly weak.

  5. Hey again Graham:)

    I’m doing great! Today marks my one month recovery! Woohoo!

    I’m also going to camp tomorrow which I am very excited for since I can talk and eat kinda normally aagain!

    I was wondering, my bands are starting to get a little stained and rank. Would it be okay to switch them on my own instead having a doctor do it? (I have the right equipment)

    Thank you! 🙂

  6. Sam, all of the things you mentioned are completely normal. You’ll regain movement and feeling over the next 2-3 months.

    Your mouth feels “shorter” because it’s a completely different shape than you’re used to. Just give it another month or so and you’ll get used to it!

  7. Hey Graham
    its my 30 day after surgery . my theeth was wired till yesterday and that I can move my jaw I noticed that I cant openit more than 1 cm . and I have a feeling that muscles in my face (just the left side ) is not working and dont have any reflexes.and I also feel that inside of my mouth is shorter and I cant open it for that reason . did you have any of these problems?it really makes me nerveous thinking about these .

  8. Haha yes! Desperate times call for desperate measures. I’ve also blended sushi, steak and chicken! I like blended pasta though, that’s good.

    I saw your post on Liver and Onions…that does not sound appetizing! Haha. And I definitely can’t wait to eat pizza again.

  9. You blended pizza?! That sounds gross! (But not as gross as blending liver and onions.)

    Imagine how wonderful it will be when you can eat pizza the way it was intended again!

  10. It’s amazing what you crave when you can’t eat…I’ve been craving CARBS..pizza, bread, bagels, anything. it’s also amazing how inventive you get when you’re desperate! I actually blended pizza about a week ago. Aside from the texture being interesting, it wasn’t bad! Haha.

  11. I’d say that’s a pretty good bet. They said he was at some course over there, so perhaps it’s a good thing that your surgeon is there too? 😀

    I know how annoying it is that your surgery is delayed though. You just want to get it over with, right?

    I waited for surgery for 2 years. When it was finally available, I said yes right away.

    And remember, the first 2 weeks are the worst!

  12. Hi Graham, been enjoying reading your blog in the build up to my double jaw surgery and noticed that your surgeon is stuck in Switzerland. Funnily enough so is mine (surgery was due to go ahead tomorrow and is now cancelled, sooo annoying!). I wonder if there was a big jamboree of jaw surgeons over there, and now they’re sat together in departures downing duty free booze and eating toblerone???

  13. I’m about to have one right now!

    As for wax, I suppose I could use it, but then it falls off and floats around your mouth. Besides, not only is my new method fool proof, it’s also totally attractive.

  14. Hey Blowfish, can’t you use wax? It really takes the edge off.

    So much love for Blizzards. I had a chocolate covered strawberry one a few weeks back. Heaven.

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