It’s been six months since my face got kicked in with a scalpel. My surgeon told me that the results I experience after six months will most likely be the results I’ll live with for the rest of my life.
I’ll begin with the good news, since I believe we should always focus on the positive (unlike, say, the news). My braces should be off by Christmas time. Apparently they’re only still on so I have a place to hook my elastics on to. That’s going to be a glorious day. I’ll be able to smile while I eat!
I’ve received a lot of positive comments regarding how different I look. I still fail to see the change, but my entire social circle can’t be wrong. (I’ve also been informed that women will come flocking with this shiny new jaw of mine, but that hasn’t happened yet either. Good things take time, though… I think.)
Now for the less than optimal news. I’ve been left with a severe open bite on one side of my mouth. This makes it difficult to chew, especially when it comes to items like steak or gum. I’m considering having a second surgery performed to close my bite. It would be far less intense than the first one, since all the surgeon would have to do is make a single cut along the roof of my mouth and insert enough putty (read: cadaver bone) to fill in the gap that needs to be made to push my teeth together.
I’m also still completely numb in the lower left corner of my bottom lip and chin. I believe this is permanent. It doesn’t actually bother me though, because the only time I notice it is when I’m shaving.
Well, that’s the end of the news! This will be the last post made on this blog. It will remain as a point of reference for others undergoing the wild ride that is jaw surgery. (Edit: Since I was repeatedly asked to post a picture of myself sans hardware, I’ve made one more post: The Final Product.)
Thanks to everyone out there who has taken this trip with me! I’ve enjoyed the messages, emails, in-person encounters and comments that have all contributed to building a community around this odd experience.