This is it! Nine hours to go!

Made it through a full day of back and forth ortho/dental appointments and the final hours at work! Enjoyed a massive and delicious beef burger and home cut fries with the fam for my ‘last chewable meal’. Hoping to get in a few decent hours of sleep if I can get my mind to rest. Here goes! Ready to jump in with both feet and get this over with! I’m ready for Kim 2.0 😉

One More Day – Is This Really Happening?

I’ve been so preoccupied with work that I’ve barely had a chance to really sit and think about what’s about to happen. Today, that definitely changed. My problem is that with any major life event, it doesn’t ‘hit me’ until it’s happened; I don’t believe it until I’m in the moment. So I guess I’ve somewhat been living in denial that surgery is right around the corner? Is that normal?

I’ve researched, asked countless questions, and wracked my brain over the pros and cons and the reality of recovery and outcomes. But as someone who has never spent time in a hospital; never had surgery (other than wisdom teeth)…I’m realizing that there’s only so much planning and mental preparation that I can do before I’m ‘there’ – on the other side; swollen and numb and facing a long road to full recovery. But I chose this so I accept the outcome and believe wholeheartedly that this is the right decision.

I continued to tie up loose ends at work today. Some colleagues took me out for one of my ‘last chewable meals’ which was really sweet 🙂 I enjoyed some lovely, crunchy nachos!

Tomorrow is going to be a full day of work and numerous dental appointments – final cleaning, new moulds (blech), pictures, and attachment of surgical hooks (fun). I won’t find out until mid day what time my surgery will actually be – either 7am or noon. Believing for the former since it has a much greater chance of being on time – and it means surgery is over and done with sooner!!

Thinking happy thoughts!! Thinking of being in one of my happy places again.

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Florence 2013

Hope everyone’s personal recovery is going well! Keep me posted 🙂

Three Days and Counting…and What’s the Plan Exactly?!

I can officially say that I am having surgery…this week!

Spent the weekend picking up the final items on my recovery check list and some groceries for the hubby to enjoy while I get settled into a liquid diet. With three days to go, I’m feeling as prepared as I can be with the exception of one thing – I am no longer entirely certain what my surgeon plans to do to my face!!!

I went into my pre-op understanding that my upper jaw would be moved up and my chin would be shifted forward. However, after seeing the changes to my bite after eight months of braces (I’ve lost the majority of my overbite), my surgeon explained that he would need to do sketch measurements to determine whether or not he would have to also move my lower jaw; back a few millimetres. Apparently, the new position of my upper jaw could cause my lower jaw to have enough forward rotation to cause a minor underbite – and that was NOT in the plan!

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Pre-surgeryI’ve been so busy getting things in order at work that I haven’t had a chance to follow up with my surgeon as to the final plan. At this point, I’m just choosing to prepare myself mentally to undergo double jaw surgery and a genio. If I show up on Thursday and he says it’s back to single jaw surgery….bonus! Either way, I just want done whatever is necessary!

I’m just ready to get this over with. Like many have said, the anticipation and anxiety that consumes you before hand is often the worst part of this whole journey. Of course, I can’t speak to the other side yet! I’m ready to experience what it feels like:

a) for my teeth to properly touch;

b) for my lips to close in a resting position;

c) to breath properly through my nose;

d) to actually have a chin; and

e) for the lower half of my face to not feel like it wants to pull itself off and hit the ground all of the time!

ImageHope everyone had a great weekend!

Ready or Not – It’s Jaw Time

hawaiiAnd so, the final countdown begins. In exactly one week, I will be undergoing jaw surgery. After months of preparation, it is hard to believe that the day is almost here!

I debated whether or not to blog about my experience but after following the journey of countless others and learning so much information through their experiences, I thought it only fair; for any one currently on their own jaw surgery journey or for those contemplating the entire process – this is my story:

I’m currently ‘enjoying’ my second round of braces. I first had the ‘pleasure’ of being a brace-face nearly 15 years ago for 18 glorious months of high school. My teeth were a mess; I had a severe overbite that needed correcting and the notion of jaw surgery was presented to me by my orthodontist. Needless to say, I chickened out! I couldn’t handle the idea of being wired shut for weeks on end; only to depend on a pair of trusty wire cutters to set me free in the event of an emergency. So, I opted to have my teeth positioned ‘as straight as could be’ given the position of my jaws.

Fast forward nearly 11 years. Location – Hawaii for my honeymoon for two incredible weeks. Amazing, no? Absolutely, except for one minor detail. I completely forgot to bring my retainers with me! Most people would think, no big deal, right? The problem was that my front teeth, even after roughly 9 years post braces, would still shift and move on a daily basis if I wasn’t consistent with my retainers at night. Two weeks without my retainers gave my teeth free reign to begin shifting outward…permanently. : (

Fast forward to June 2013. Despite attempts by my dentist to provide new retainers (and even a lovely biteplate) and maintain the teeth placement and bite that I still had…I knew something was off. So I paid a visit to my friendly orthodontist again and learned that not only had my teeth shifted but my upper jaw had, over time, began to sink. I’m sorry….sink?! Yes. I was showing the signs of long face syndrome. As my upper jaw continued to essentially fall, it was pulling my face (and nostrils) down with it. My nasal passage has become more constricted over time, causing me to be one of those mouth breather types and yet I’ve lost the ability to properly open my mouth without severe grinding and cracking of my lower jaw. I guess the two years I spent dealing with lock-jaw weren’t simply stress related after all :-l

So here I am. T-7 days. I agreed to surgery with the understanding that I wanted a fast turn around. I was not about to live in braces for years again while approaching the ripe old age of 30! ; ) I’m scheduled to have upper jaw surgery to lift my jaw back up and give my lower jaw proper rotational functionality. I’m also getting a genioplasty to redefine my chin which has receded over time. So the braces went back on in July 2013; Surgery is set for February 27, 2014 and I should be out of braces within six months post surgery!!