Thursday, July 10, 2014

Day 21: The dark side of jaw surgery

Pain Level: 1 - Some aches (maybe due to stress), tingling in my chin. 
Swelling: I don't know.
Other weirdness: Too tired to think if anything weird is happening.
Mood: Really stressed and feeling really low

It hit today, the post-surgery woes.

And I just need to get it out.

  • I feel really ugly now
  • I feel like I now look as if I have an overbite (instead of my pre-surgery underbite).
  • I keep wondering if something went wrong with the surgery and whether my surgeon made a wrong call to not do the genioplasty. (though I really debate about this too because inside, I really trust Surgeonman a lot)
  • With my 3-6 mm impaction, my face/head looks too small for my body
  • My shortened face makes me feel like some sort of imp
  • I really dislike it how there looks like there's so much fat on my face now because of my cheeks sticking out
  • My smaller face/head makes my body look a lot bigger and fatter
  • Because my body suddenly feels bigger/fatter, I'm afraid to put on weight, and in fact feel like I need to lose a lot of weight to balance it out
  • I think it's because I'm afraid to put on weight that I'm having problems eating now
  • I'm afraid my lack of eating is going to affect my healing
  • I miss my sharper chin
  • My chin looks really fat
  • My face shape looks weird and octogonal
  • I miss my oval shaped face, even if it were a little long
  • I don't know why, but I now have blackheads
  • It looks as if my nose is a lot wider and a little more upturned. :(
  • I've lost a lot of hair and they are still dropping, I am now afraid to wash/tie my hair 
  • I'm really affected by a comment a woman whom I don't know made on FB that she thought I used to be gorgeous and "wished I appreciated what I had." :((((
  • I'm thinking I've lost my beauty that I might have had before the surgery
  • I'm really wondering whether I really look more Chinese. No offense to my ancestral culture, but it really isn't a compliment to me to look more Chinese. I've always been used to be mistaken to be Eurasian. : :(
  • I'm starting to be afraid to go out
  • I just want to sleep and not do anything
  • I feel like I don't know myself anymore
  • I am so busy and stressed by work issues, I don't have time to deal with all this right now
  • My best friends are overseas and I'm feeling really alone
  • I have friends here, but I think they're really too busy and I don't think I want to bother them with my issues
It's been a pretty rough day for me. I really tried to get out of it by getting out of the house and going for a walk to the library. It took me almost a half hour to walk there and it took so much out of me that I took a long nap after I got back. I was so superbly unproductive and there was so much stress on me that I just couldn't function... and having my dad constantly ask me questions about work issues isn't helping. I feel like my memory and brain function has been somehow hindered since the surgery.

I couldn't take it anymore and I told him "I need to manage my stress levels, I am losing so much hair" and I showed him where my hairline has been affected (it's so ugly)... and all he said was "it will grow back". :(((

I just want to crawl into a box today.

Food Report


1/2 bowl Banana, Soymilk and almond blend with cinnamon
Cal+D Tablet

1 bowl Seaweed and egg soup

150mls 100% Pure Apple Juice
1 cup Redoxon
Too stressed by work to eat anything else.
Cal+D Tablet

High point of the day

Went for a walk to the library and got my hands on the Primal Blueprint book. :)
Low point of the day
Psychological struggles with the darker side of the surgery. Stress.


  1. Based on my imprecise analysis, the # of kcals you're eating is way way below what you're reasonably using in a day. This could definitely contribute to fatigue, stress, etc.

    It's cool that Primal Blueprint is available at the library over there! I personally liked this book:

    Hope there are some good soup and swallow-able recipes in Primal Blueprint!

    Also, don't want to turn your blog into a paleo vs. non-paleo argument section, but Alan (above book) has put out an interesting slideshow where he gives his thoughts on some stuff that paleo tomes like Blueprint have said:

    Despite this, Alan does advocate low intake of processed foods especially those with calorie-dense but nutrient-lacking "flavor enhancements." So he is in agreement with many but not all of the Primal Blueprint precepts.

    Anyway please give yourself permission to ignore those who criticize your looks or decision to have surgery. Also, your swelling is probably not down yet; in a month when the swelling is gone, I bet things will be much better. Until then try to get good rests and sufficient nutrients :-)

    1. Thanks Sean. I've started reading the book and we'll see where it goes. I can't imagine giving up bread though... I'm a totally bread person. And no dairy is pretty extreme to me too... but I'm going to read through it and find something that works for me. About looks, yeah, it's a process about adapting I suppose. Just need to be patient with the healing process. Thanks for the encouragement.

  2. Hey Claire! I was just browsing your blog and came across this post. Although it's been 6 days since you publish that post, i just want to encourage you.

    I do have moments whereby i feel many of those pointers you mentioned too. I totally get how you feel but i just want to tell you to keep your focus on being positive. You're still in the early stages of recovery so you shouldn't be too quick to judge how you look. Honestly when i look at myself now, i don't like how i look at all. I do miss my old face a little but that's only because all the swelling hasn't gone down.

    Trust that you made the right decision and trust your surgeon (you mentioned we share the same surgeon? If yes, he's amazing so you've got nothing to be worried about). :))

    1. Thanks girl. Yeah, it's a rollercoaster... but getting better. Dr Winston is amazing, I know. I'm just adjusting I suppose. :) But I can't wait for the swelling to go already! :)

  3. Hi Ariela,

    dont know if you will see this comment but I'm planning to go for this surgery too and have alot of questions, is it ok if I can email you privately?

    1. Hey Kim, PM me at Claire Ariela Shen on FB.

    2. PM-ed :) My FB is Kimberly Cordeiro.