Day 38: Graduation Day Is May 10th!

  • Pain: 0/10
  • Inconvenience: 4/10

Mini Mini Mini Mini Wheats! (Remember the catchy tune from the commercial?)

Mini Wheats. One of my favorite types of cereal. I like the fact that they only have frosting on one side–it makes them well-rounded. They’re a little bit about fun and a little bit about health. We have a jumbo-sized box of them in our kitchen. Oh, how I long to have a big bowl of Mini Wheats on a Saturday morning…

My posts from the past few days have definitely been lacking, but today I have some exciting updates! I went to see my surgeon for my “4-week checkup”, which is 10 days late due to the Icelandic volcano deciding to be an attention-getter and delaying planes from all over the world (if you’re not sure what I’m talking about, my surgeon was stranded in Switzerland last week), and he gave me the best news I’ve received in a long time: I only need to wear my elastics at night from now on. I no longer have to spend my days living in fear of snapping them!

Further to that, I found out that I’m slated to have my splint removed on May 10th! That will be exactly 49 days from my surgical date, which means I’ll have lived with this burden for 7 weeks (instead of the proposed 8 weeks). However, as soon as it’s removed, I have to drive straight to my orthodontist’s office so they can put a metal appliance in the roof of my mouth to, once again, prevent my upper palette from shrinking.

My surgeon is surprised at how well my recovery is coming along. I learned the following things at my appointment:

  • The incision sites are all closed up and almost completely healed over
  • My stitches are beginning to dissolve
  • The swelling in my cheeks and lips should be completely nonexistent in a month’s time (he told me my swelling is still quite prominent due to the fact that he had to move my cheeks forward during the surgery)
  • He’s quite surprised that I already have patchy feeling in the right side of my chin and bottom lip (apparently those areas are usually completely numb for at least 3 months)
  • I can expect a lot more mobility with my jaw over the next 3 weeks

I’ve had fairly brutal throbbing present in the joints on both sides of my jaw since my appointment. This always happens because I have to open my mouth as wide as I can so my doctor can get his mirrors and other interesting dental tools inside to look around. It’s nothing a smoothie-and-Blizzard dinner won’t fix, though!

On an unrelated note, I’ve added Facebook comments to these posts. If you’re logged into Facebook, you can now easily post a comment without having to give your name or email or anything. Make sure you give it a try! (Note: I don’t believe the comments work in Internet Explorer 7 and below. If you don’t see them, you should probably be upgrading your browser anyway.)

Edit: Facebook comments have been removed due to several issues (scrollbars going crazy, comments not loading properly, inability to subscribe to new comments, incompatibility with older versions of Internet Explorer, and so on).


  1. Danielle Robinson

    September 25, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    Im having my double jaw surgery on December 16 I am so pleased to read your blog that my mom and I are reading it together thank you for your upbeat tone it has honestly made me feel so much better about this surgery

  2. Lydia Anderson

    June 15, 2014 at 12:11 pm

    Hi Graham! First of all I just want to say how amazing your posts have been regarding the surgery and I’m not sure if you even check comments on here anymore but I’m currently on day 38 and am supposed to go to the orthodontist tomorrow to change my wires and brackets and im really nervous its going to hurt like hell. All of my stitches are still pretty in tact and sometimes get stuck in my braces. Im worried that my ortho will accidentally snag a stitch or something since theyre all still there. When was the first time you went back to the ortho and they actually did work on you? Im considering cancelling my appointment because im so nervous.

    • Lydia, I went in for my first checkup one week following the operation. Having your wires changed should be relatively painless. You may feel a bit of pressure for the first few days with the new wires. I encourage you to honor your appointment in the name of completing your recovery as scheduled. Stay strong! =)

  3. Your day 38 is my day 38! As in, I also got the news today that I could stop wearing my bands during the day. I’m so excited!!

  4. Graham, it’s day 38 and I was wondering if at any point your tongue felt like it was either on fire, almost a numb feeling and at times my tongue and lips feel like someone is holding an ice cube on them. It is very strange. It’s probably the only thing that is really annoying at this point. I am still swollen, which I expect to be for awhile and my face is still pretty stiff as I still have 3 elastics on each side. Hoping that the surgeon reduces it down to one on each side and let’s me take them out to eat soon.

    • Terry, I honestly can’t recall my tongue feeling like it was aflame, but your nerves will still be recovering at this point, so it’s possible that feeling is coming from your nerves waking up again. Try taking a modest painkiller, give it a day or two, and I have a feeling it will go away. I can’t think of any other reason your tongue would spontaneously begin to hurt. =)

  5. It still works! (My computer)

    And, exciting news – tomorrow I have an appointment with my surgeon to find out a date for the surgery!!! Is this the hardest part of the whole ordeal? (Anticipating a surgery date and anticpating the surgery…?)

    • Tami, I would say the most frustrating part of the surgery is not being able to speak for a few weeks afterwards. However, the most stressful part would definitely be anticipating the operation. Don’t let your mind run away on you, though! Remember that heaps of people have already been through this same ordeal and we all came out smiling! =)

  6. A few months out from my jaw surgery and I have decided to spend most of my time at work researching in order to be as prepared as I can be. Your blog was the first one in the search results and for good reason. I decided to start at your T-Minus 1 Day link and work may way up through your recovery. I have four sticky notes full of tips I have written down already, I have laughed so hard at times I have spit my beverage out, I have become way more comfortable with what is going to take place in the next few months, and I can’t wait to read more!

    Thanks GrayYum, this is very helpful!

    • Tami, I’m happy that you found my story so helpful. I hope your computer still works after spitting your drink all over it, haha! Good luck with the surgery in the near future and let me know how it goes.

  7. The thought of blended meat is always a turnoff at first, isn’t it? However, drastic times call for drastic measures. =)

  8. I just made blended chicken broccoli fettuccine today – it was good! Added some spinach to it too, per Graham’s tip. I said I would never blend meat, but I am getting more adventurous as I am seriously craving more and more meals with meat. A couple days ago I blended a whole turkey dinner – turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, and corn. Very tasty!

    Suddenly blended pizza doesn’t seem out of the question… but I’m not quite there yet haha.

  9. Well apparently I’m not the world greatest mathematician, my calculations are off, and I’m still wired 🙁 However, I would like to suggest to anyone to try blended chicken broccoli fettuchini alfredo, it is quite delicious! Make sure it’s extra cheesy because then it goes down better. I’m sorry to hear about Iceland, and maybe I live under a rock because I didn’t know all of that was happening, I just googled it! I’m glad you’re ok!

  10. Emily, your incredible math skills are leading you to a far more swift recovery than I enjoyed. 😛

    You’re lucky that Iceland didn’t erupt into a molten mess lately!

  11. So, on this day you were only wearing elastics at night? I just did some quick calculations, and because of your surgeon being trapped in another country, you perhaps would have had to wear your elastics only at night, starting 10 days prior, yes? I’m thinking positive! Tomorrow is my 4th post-op appointment, and day number 28, which miraculously would be the same day you would’ve been released from elastic 24/7, if your surgeon wasn’t trapped in Switzerland. Oh my God, if you can’t tell I’m excited for tomorrow.

  12. Adam, it’s so great to meet a fellow Super Mario champion! I love Mario!

    Only a few more months and you’ll be back in action, pal. Stay strong!

  13. Dude, this blog is awesome! I had my surgery on 8/2, they moved the bottom back 7.5 mm and the top forward 4.5 mm. I have been reading your blog a little everyday and find myself laughing through a lot of it. I also have had many nights of playing Super Mario bros Wii with my friends! Hahaha I was blessed to have an awesome surgeon as well, I have already gotten the okay to start eying soft foods if I want and I only have to wear my bands at night! The doctor says I am in week 5 when it comes to the healing process and I have only been out of surgery a little over 2!

    Thanks for making this blog for all of us out here. I don’t feel alone anymore! Lol

    P.s. Sunchips are the best chips, hands down!

  14. Gracie, you’ll do fine! You’ll be all healed up just in time for the nicest part of summer (provided you live in the northern hemisphere)!

  15. Hi, this is such an awesome blog! I am getting double surgery in 2 weeks and I am so nervous. I have to have the top moved back 4 mm and the bottom moved back 7 mm. I hope it goes well. I couldn’t be more nervous.

  16. Really? Did you sing the song?

  17. Krista Hoogenboom

    April 30, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    Just so you know…I bought Mini Wheats today and thought of you 🙂

  18. Hey Nav, nice to meet another person who can share in the double jaw surgery stories.

    I remember way back when I was at 10 days post op (although that really wasn’t too long ago). You’ll start feeling much better really soon here. 2 weeks was kind of my turning point.

    How much time did you take off of work? I only rested for 2 weeks. If I had to sit at home for longer than that, I think I may have gone crazy.

    Cheers. Keep me posted re your recovery. With no splint, you’ll be eating long before 30-40 days, I’m sure.


  19. Navinan Rajeswaran

    April 29, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Graham – awesome blog, well written and excellent humor. I had double jaw surgery in Australia last Tuesday – I’m 10 days post op. The liquid diet, in ability to speak and mostly, the household boredom are killing me.

    I will never drink another smoothie when this is over…I don’t have a splint like you, only elastics – it makes eating mashed potato somewhat manageable (best thing in 10 days…sorry).

    I feel your angst re the gym – definitely missing the exercise, I’ve lost a ton of weight..anyway, I’m sure we’ll be all the more motivated.

    Best of luck and keep it up.


Leave a Reply

“Over the past several years, I’ve done my best to respond to every comment on this blog, but unfortunately I no longer have the time to do so. If you have questions about jaw surgery and want to connect with others on this journey, please join the Facebook group. Don't worry — it's free!”