Thursday, September 8, 2011

Day 41 (5 weeks 6 days)- TADs removed and I'm allowed to chew!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Let me just add in some more exclamation points to that: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


This morning I went to see my surgeon and complained about one of my TADs being loose and hurting.  My surgeon said they didn't need them anymore so, under local anesthesia, they removed them!!  I feel so much more normal now and my smile looks so much more natural because it doesn't catch on them when I move my lips.  Life is about to be so much more normal.  I can't wait.  

Oh and I CAN CHEW!!! After my appointment, I went to visit my friend Meghan (who took care of me post-op) at work nearby.  She works in a food store and I was browsing around and saw an avocado and hummus sandwich.  I figured this was a good starter since everything is soft and I could have bread for the first time in forever!  I quickly bought and opened the sandwich to find that there were tomatoes, lettuce, and carrots inside.  It kind of scared me, but I decided to give it a try.  And guess what?!  It was awesome!  I bit right through a tomato and a piece of lettuce at the same time!  I can't remember the last time I bit straight through a tomato without having to hold onto the other end so it wouldn't all come out!!!!  It's so exciting and truly shows the benefits of my new bite.  The sandwich only took me forever to finish, but it was soooo good.  I was still numb from them removing the TADs too so I did a lot of lip biting, but it was all worth it!

I feel like I look so much more normal without the TADs pushing my lips forward.  There were also two at the base of my nose so it made it an awkward shape as well.  

I haven't updated in a while so I'll do a general status update:
  • About two weeks ago, I yawned a lot in one day and this allowed me to open 3 fingers wide.  I can now easily open 3 fingers wide and can separate my fingers slightly.  
  • I drool a LOT more than normal.  It's a lot more when I sleep and embarrassingly enough, when I laugh.  It's gotten better this week, but when I look down, I sometimes drool if I'm laughing, smiling, or talking.  It's annoying.  
  • My feeling has come back a lot.  Earlier this week, I started to be able to feel the TADs in my top jaw and it was uncomfortable.  
  • I still try to sleep as upright as possible, but still wake up more swollen than I am throughout the day.  
  • I have had one great struggle recently because a very close family member to me passed away.  It was very hard for me to cope initially because I couldn't even eat comfort food.  It was very frustrating that I couldn't have something simple like that which would make me feel just a little bit better.  
  • I have a cold right now and I've been sneezing my butt off and everything feels fine.  I've also lightly blown my nose multiple times and nothing seems to have popped.  
Overall, I'm feeling good and am getting back to my invisalign on Monday (in 4 days). 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

3 Weeks 1 Day (Day 22)- The Waiting Game

So I've been a little bit disgruntled these past few days because I just don't feel like myself and I'm getting hungry and I can't sleep.  Sleeping upright is not the most comfortable endeavor I've ever experienced.  It's been really hard to fall asleep and I've been staying up all night not able to sleep.  It sucks.  So then I sleep late the next day and don't get anything done.  I'm moving into my new apartment tomorrow and I'm very nervous because I can't lift anything heavy and I know it's going to be more difficult than normal.  

On tv, I've been seeing people eating yummy food and I'm a little on the jealous side.  I love really healthy and fresh food like fruits and veggies, but I can't have them.  It's annoying.  I'm not feeling above blending a salad, but I don't even know if it'll work. 

Since I've been lying around a lot, my swelling has increased a little bit in the center of my face.  I'm sure it'll go away once I get moving again.  

My numbness has decreased a lot the past two days.  My upper lip has been really tingly in deeper places than normal.  I can now feel if I scratch my nail on the surface of my nose and cheeks.  I don't feel it like normal, but only on the outer "layers."  Itching my face now kind of works.  

Most of all, I'm really not looking forward to moving tomorrow and am pretty nervous about it. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

3 weeks exactly

I literally just sneezed for my first time since surgery.  Feels a little strange. 

Update like 5 mins later:  my nose hurts a bit and I have a half headache.  I could be ruminating on it too much...

Just Remembered a couple things

About a week ago, so I guess around two weeks post op,  I was at my friend's house and I was sitting in a chair next to a couch.  At first there were only a few of us there, but then someone else came and sat down on the sofa directly facing my side.  It was such an incredible moment.  He sat down and I knew that he could see my profile, but I realized that this is the first time that I can remember that I didn't have to worry about it.  Before surgery, I would've cocked my head to face him more directly or have been uncomfortable.  But this time, I just smiled, knowing it will always be like this.  It was amazing and I'm so thankful. 

There's this bar that I go to a lot with my friends and I remember that within the week before my surgery, I was sitting at a booth with my friends and I saw people looking over from the bar.  Their view was, of course, a direct view of my profile and I was miserable about it.  I hated how bad it had become bc of my teeth being straightened and just couldn't wait until the day when I wouldn't feel this way anymore.  I can't wait to go to that bar for my first time with my new profile. 

Drinking with a straw is really hard because I can't get a good amount of pressure on it.  I also bump into my front teeth which worries me.  I also hit the roof of my mouth which is still numb so I don't know if I'm hurting myself. 


Thursday, August 18, 2011

2 weeks and 6 days

Hi!  So things have settled down a lot as far as recovery goes.  I feel like I'm in a strange transition phase:  I'm not in constant pain anymore, but my jaw feels foreign and I'm very aware of it.  I'm getting more used to my bite and talking.  I can hang out with friends like normal, but it feels weird because it's different to talk and I'm aware of being different than normal.  I'm more tired than normal and have to be cautious.  I'm getting a little bored of the soft food diet, but it's not too awful yet.  I'm waiting for the rest of the swelling to disappear so that I can see the final result. 

At this point, I worry if I'm doing everything right.  Am I closing my bite together correctly? Is it okay to bite down on this soft thing just a little bit?  Is everything settling right?  Is it okay to try to open my mouth a little wider?  Is it okay that I feel a strange pressure when I yawn?  Is it okay that I hit my teeth with a cup sometimes?  I just worry that I'm going to mess something up which I obviously don't want to do.  

My speech changes from day to day.  Sometimes I can't close my back molars together and I'll get a little lispy or not be able to finish the end of short words.  I had some trouble saying "lid" over the weekend. 

This past weekend I went to the beach with some friends for two days and one night.  It was way too much for me.  The first day, I was okay, but in the car on the way there I got really swollen; probably because I didn't stay upright.  We walked around a lot the first day and then at night it was really hard to fall asleep because it's so uncomfortable to sleep upright.  I was talking a lot during the day and it made my rubber bands dig into my gums really badly.  I was worried about that because they were so inflamed and it hurt so much.  I took off that rubber band for a bit and started worrying that I'd mess something up.  All of this was very late at night when I should have been sleeping.  

The next morning, I could hardly move.  It was so difficult.  We were walking around and it hurt to talk because the rubber bands rubbed my gums and I was tired from the day before.  By the time we were getting ready to leave, I was so tired that I couldn't even put the right inflection in my voice.  I was trying to be sarcastic to my friend, but I didn't say it right and she got offended.  It sucked because I knew what had happened, but I was too tired to even talk about it.  

When I got back, I collapsed and just slept and slept.  My jaw started hurting again and I started taking my percocet around the clock.  I hadn't taken it for probably 5-7 days before this.  I stayed in bed and only got up to eat for two days.  Everything wiped me out and I felt awful.  The third day (yesterday), I got up and felt a little better.  I was still really exhausted, but as the day went on, I was ready to go out.  I saw some friends last night and everything was fine.  

Just a general update:
  • my numbness:  I'm still much more numb than normal, but it's better than it was directly after surgery.  I can now kind of feel my nail if I scratch my nose!  I discovered this yesterday.  When I massage my upper cheeks, my upper lip tingles a lot.  This has been true since one week post op at least.  I'm still very numb in my upper cheeks. I can feel my gums a little bit better.
  • bruising is gone as far as I can tell
  • I think all my stitches have fallen out
  • my teeth are getting kind of yellow, I'm not exactly sure why
  • I can open my mouth wide enough to get two fingers in tightly
  • it takes a while to eat because I have to work hard not to burn my top lip.  Earlier in recovery, I burned it really badly, but it took me a while to tell because it was so numb, so it was harmed more than necessary.  Now, I make whatever I eat very hot and then blend it up so I can eat it.  That takes a while so it loses a considerable amount of heat.  Then I wait a while and test my food with my finger to make sure it's an okay temperature.  Then I'll start eating.  
  • I can only use tea spoons and I only put food on half of the surface of it because that's all I can eat at once.  It takes two tries to clear the spoon.  
  • I've probably lost about 6 lbs.  I look really skinny.  
  • I've eaten about four meals without a napkin bib and all went well!  I also don't need to wipe my lip after every bite/sip like I used to.  I still sometimes look in the mirror after eating and see dried food at the corners of my top lip because I can't feel it.  
  • I kind of look like a monkey when I smile because my cheeks are swollen and my top teeth have an overjet from when they were trying to match up with my bottom teeth pre surgery. 
  • My front teeth are all crooked and there are weird spaces because they've been pulled in different directions due to the TADs and elastics.  
One thing that I have found really difficult recently is that I don't know what I look like.  During the day, when I'm walking around or hanging out with my friends, it feels really different than normal.  Before surgery, I'd look in the mirror and see how everything fit together and then I'd know how I looked for a while.  But now, I can't really remember what I look like and it's been changing so much over the past weeks that it makes it even harder.  I don't know what I look like when I talk, or when I smile, or when I'm laughing, or anything.  It's almost an indescribable experience which is why I'm having a hard time explaining it.  It's almost like a new identity.  Pre surgery, when I'd look in a mirror, I'd look to see if I looked alright, but now I look in the mirror to find out what I look like because I don't have any idea.  I guess it's a sort of out of body experience, but not in the typical sense. 

Another strange thing is that when I walk around, my cheeks will swell a little bit and they feel tighter.  It feels like I'm making a face at people, like I smell something bad, which I obviously don't like.  I asked a friend about it and she didn't know what I was talking about so it could just be from the tightness. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Day 11- I see contours

Yesterday was day 11.  Contours started to show up about two days ago on the outside of my face and they've slowly moved in and now they're really here!!!  I massaged my face throughout the day yesterday and at night I went to a movie.  I saw my reflection after the movie and I was so shocked.  I don't know how to explain my feelings, but it's a mixture of shock, awe, gratitude, and just general disbelief.  I think it's mostly that I can't believe how I look.  I finally look how I always expected I would look when I looked in the mirror, but it wasn't ever true.  Now it's true and I feel nervous to even get my hopes up.  It's that unreal.  

I was at the movies with my friend Meg who I stayed with post-surgery and my other best friend Kristy who came to visit almost every night.  They were so shocked to see how much less swollen I am and they said I look great.  

Earlier yesterday I had been wearing my hair in a bun to keep it off my face because I was sweating.  When it was time to go out, I put my hair down as I normally would, but it had the tell-tale creases in it from being up.  Pre surgery, it would've been unacceptable for me to put my hair back up and I would've put water in it so it would get smooth.  Last night, however, I did the unthinkable; I put my hair in a pony tail and added a headband!  I have so many headbands, but would always want to wear them so that there's still hair falling and covering some of my face so it looked a little funny.  I wore a headband last night and my hair up.  I can't believe how free this makes me feel.

I came home and took pictures and the same feelings of disbelief came up again.  I don't even know how this happened, in reality I do, but it's just too good to be true. 

smile's still a little crooked

Monday, August 8, 2011

Day 9

Today was good.  I hardly used any pain meds at all.  I massaged my face a few times today and my swelling seems down a lot.  I walked on the treadmill for 2 miles at a faster pace and for about 45 mins.  I was pretty tired and light-headed after, but nothing an ensure couldn't fix.  Today was the 3rd day I've been home by myself and now that I've caught up with updating this blog with all the pictures, I'm starting to get bored and am ready to go out.  The only bad thing is that it sounds funny when I talk so it could potentially be hard to interact with people.  It's also funny that, because I'm home by myself, I haven't been talking much so when I call someone, I remember that my voice is all funny and that I'm talking through closed jaws.  Every time it's an, "oh yeah, that's right; I'm banded shut" moment  Seems like a strange thing to forget, but I guess people get used to stranger things...

The liquid diet isn't really getting to me very much right now.  The only annoying thing happens when I open the fridge and see something I would normally nosh on while putting together a meal.  I just can't eat it now and it bums me out for a second, but whatever.  It's not for too much longer.

Oh! And today for the first time, I felt in the back of my mouth near the base of my lip and I felt a connection from my lip to my gums where the stitches had fallen out!! I'm almost all put together again!  Very exciting :)

lip still big, but the middle has hardly deflated :(
I'm so excited about my teeth lining up.  It's so awesome!!!
it's getting better...right?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Day 8- starting to look normal!!!!!

As stated in the title, my swelling has decreased enough that I look human!!! I'm so excited!!  My top lip has continued to decrease and the right side is pretty much normal looking, the left is more inflamed, and due to brushing the stitches and irritating it, the middle of the lip is still very full, but definitely better!!!  I also burned it pretty badly two days ago because it reaches the soup so much before the rest of my mouth.  Now that I'm looking at it, it almost looks like a baby lip because I'm so used to seeing this huge, bulbous, red monstrosity! 

The rest of my face is also less swollen.  My left side is more swollen than my right; maybe because I sleep with my head tilted to that side, but I'm not sure.  That side also has darker bruising so maybe there was more trauma to that side.  So, basically I have no idea why it's more swollen, but it is what it is.  The swelling under my eyes, next to my nose, and down to my upper lip feels hard, unlike the sides of my face (which is swollen, but soft) where the ice packs touched.  I said I needed a ski mask!! (see video from day 2 to understand that). 

I didn't do much today.  I spent way too much money on rings on ebay.  I didn't think I'd win all of the auctions.  Rookie mistake, but I'll never have to buy rings again! wahoo

For breakfast, I gave oatmeal another try.  This time, I only used one serving and started thinning it before I even microwaved it.  I also gave up on having texture because it just takes too long to make it all go into my mouth.  So I liquified it and it was delicious.  For dinner, I had campbell's chicken and stars and it was sooooo goooddd!!!  It was like a delicacy, I can't even believe it.  I poured the can into the blender and added almost another can full of water and liquified it.  It was delicious and went down so easily!! I only have one more can of it so I must go get some more tomorrow!

Because my gums were so irritated from the last rubber band configuration, I wanted to try to prevent that from happening again.  So I did a dumb thing!  I took the cotton ends off of a q-tip and put them under the bands as a buffer between them and the gums.  I guess I did this last night so then all day today, I was having a lot of pain in that area of my gums.  Before I ate my dinner, I was in pain from it.  It wasn't intense pain, but it had been steadily increasing during the day.  I removed the cotton and it was slimy like there was a lot of bacteria on it.  I immediately knew I had not done a good thing.  The right side was a wide, open, and bloody cut and the left wasn't as bad, but it was bleeding.  I rinsed with warm water and then the peridex mouthwash, that the doctors gave me, about 7 times.  It eventually stopped bleeding so I brushed very lightly then ate my dinner.  I've brushed and rinsed with peridex 2 times since then tonight.  There is now a scab forming over where it was bleeding.  I hope I didn't mess things up too badly!

I saw my first stitch fall out today!  At least I think it's a stitch.  TJ told me the stitches would fall out a week to 10 days after surgery.  At day 8, I can see that my top lip looks very different underneath.  Early in recovery, the stitches looked very dark and weaved continuously across my upper lip.  Today, the stitches looked light, far apart, and there seemed to be less of them.  On the underside of the apex of the still swollen middle lip, I can see a place where my lip is still healing and I can's hard to explain...  I guess it looks like 3 small slits in my lip before where the stitches are.  I'm not sure what these are from, but it could be from the first time I brushed.  I had no idea where my stitches were (although I should've guessed they'd be there, but I didn't even think of it) and brushed like normal under there until I realized it hurt...a lot!  I kind of remember a pulling sensation and I may have dislodged the stitches from that site so it's still not healed in that area.  I'm not sure if that's even possible though.  My top lip also started to be enormous the day after that so that could be from that or from the natural increase of swelling over the first few days.  It was and still is hard to gauge where I should be brushing because I'm numb in all of that area, but oh well. 

I'm getting tingly sensations in my upper lip.  While it is annoying, I know it's good because the nerves are coming back to life.  It's such a strange feeling.  My upper lip also feels itchy sometimes and it's annoying because I can't itch it!  I try, but because it's numb, it doesn't help at all! Today i had the least bloody and clogged nose in this whole process.  I think I only used hydrogen peroxide and q-tips twice today and it was for much less time and I used fewer q-tips than ever before. 

Today I had a really intense workout!  To speed the healing and de-swelling process, it's good to take a walk every day.  I didn't feel like going out and walking by myself so I went on the treadmill.  I walked a mile and felt like such a granny, walking on a treadmill.  The even more embarrassing part is that at 0.6 mile, I started to get tired and was getting some pain in my face where they broke the bone.  So as I was walking on a treadmill, I had to start motivating myself to finish the mile.  So unreal!  This anesthesia is tough stuff!  I remember when I came back from the hospital, I had to climb the flight of steps up to my friend's house and I was wiped after!  So at least I'm better now.  Walking on the treadmill was pretty nice though.  I wasn't moving very quickly so I had my laptop in front of me and was just playing on my comp and walking. 

I hardly used any pain meds today.  I took my ibuprofen a few hours after I got up and then later at night after dinner because I remembered that it's an anti-inflammatory; I want to be anti-inflamed!! haha.  Before today, this was unheard of for me.  I was taking my meds around the clock because I would have intense pain when they wore off.  Yesterday I would be able to last an hour or two after they wore off and then I had to take it. 

Just a little tidbit that happened earlier:  When I was taking photos of my profile for today, I thought to myself, "okay that's the closed mouth version, now I have to do open."  But then I realized there isn't an open!!!  My bite fits together now- so exciting!!! :) :)

Everything seems to be progressing well and I'm about to update with the pictures from the past week.  stay tuned! :)

my lip is kind of bird beak looking
my bite is so fantastic!!!! :) :)
the dark line at the base of my lip is the stitches
the TADs and the sliced gums from the rubber bands

Day 7

Today I didn't do much.  I stayed home and relaxxxedddd, it was nice.  I took a nice shower, slept late, and ate mushy food.  I started mixing my vanilla ensures with juice and it tastes really good and gives extra nutrients! 

The swelling in my lip is quite a bit better today.  Not anywhere near normal looking, but way less out there.  It's strange how it heals.  There are two creases in my lip that are a lot flatter and separate the rest of my lip into 3 swollen pockets.  It looks veryyy funny.  The right side is a little less swollen than the left.  The "pockets" in the lips kind of get in the way when I slurp in my food.  Sometimes I'll be slurping and catch my lip, but because I can hardly feel it, I don't realize it and I keep slurping on it, but it doesn't come in.  It gets a little confusing haha.  

I ate chicken soup and noodles all blended up for breakfast.  Then later on I had oatmeal blended and thinned with milk.  This was the most ridiculous thing to eat because I didn't make it thin enough at first.  So I ate some and added milk and ate some more and added more milk and so on.  It was taking forever and was such an incredible mess that I gave up on it halfway through.  I had been working on it for 2 hours...or so it seemed.  

A family friend walked in the house unexpectedly today.  When he saw me he said, "What happened to you?"  He was all confused and wasn't delicate about it, but he's kind of socially weird so I wasn't too taken aback by it.  My cousin and aunt also called me today to see how I was doing which was very nice.  They said that they could understand me which was encouraging. 

Last night, I had a weird dream.  It was a normal dream until I randomly caught a view of myself in the mirror.  My bottom teeth were out in front of my top teeth which was obviously very upsetting.  I woke up all stressed out and then realized everything was fine. :) Thank goodness!

Will post pics tomorrow.

you can see what I mean about my lips healing into different sections. 
I took a picture of my smile, but it's too ridiculous to post.  I'll get a second opinion and maybe I'll post it. 

Day 6- first post op appt

Today I went home.  I was running out of soups at my friend's house and didn't want to have to buy more when I have so many at home. Also, I had been there for almost a week!  What sweet friends I have, I feel very lucky. 

I had my first post op appt today.  Everything went fine.  When my surgeon walked in, he joked about how they beat me up.  This kind of sucked because I had said this joke the day before and was going to say it to him when he walked in; it took the wind out of my sails a little.  But other than killing my joke, my surgeon and TJ were very nice and supportive as always.  They both commented about my super swollen top lip and TJ thinks it looks unusually prominent because most of the time, both lips are very swollen so it's more balanced.  He checked the numbness in my lip and upper face; it's still just less than normal.
Then they wanted to change my rubber band arrangement which I was more than ready for because they've been causing me SOOO much pain.  Dr. C jerked the rubber band out quickly to avoid the snapping and it hurt so badly!!! I actually cried a little.  I'm soo not a crier either, I'll only cry if something's really wrong, but it just came out immediately as a reaction; it hurt!!!!!  TJ seemed to feel really bad and tried to comfort me and gave me tissues.  It felt okay a little bit after the initial pull.  They said the TADs aren't ideal for this reason, as they put so much strain on the gums. 

So then they repositioned them into an X shape in the front. This position is a little annoying as far as eating, but it's better than the pain from before. 

Then they did xrays and I asked for some wax or something to put over the TADs.  They tried to put these caps on them, but they were too hard to get on. They gave me wax and caps to take home so I could try to put them on.  My xrays looked awesome!!!  Everything's lined up, it's so different looking.  I'll try to remember to ask to take a picture next time.  They said the stitches will fall out soon.  

I asked if I can start flossing yet and they said to wait a week.  (I secretly may have flossed my four bottom teeth that morning because it felt like I had food stuck and I can't stand that feeling).  They laughed that I was so gung-ho to brush and floss because most patients are scared to go near their mouths.  They said another doctor in the practice had to spend an hour cleaning a patient's mouth that morning because he wouldn't touch it.  Because of my invisalign, I'm used to brushing and flossing all the time so if I don't do it, I feel like I'm doing something wrong.

Dr.C, unfortunately, said I can't start the soft diet yet.  He said I should come back next week and that normally he sees patients again after 4 weeks, but that he's keeping a closer eye on me because I don't have braces.  He mentioned that I was a more difficult case again and I said sorry haha.   Honestly, I wouldn't care right now if I had braces.  I look so gross anyways that it wouldn't add to it.  I would not, however, want them once the swelling is down or to have had then pre surgery.  He said I'd hopefully be on a soft diet after next week's appt, but that I could start thickening up my diet.  (I went home and literally shoved a blueberry muffin past my teeth and into the tiny space I can open.  Not the greatest, easiest, or fastest venture, but it tasted damn good). 

I told TJ I watched the surgery online and he was shocked to hear that it was on youtube.  He said if I had watched it before I would have cancelled haha.  He told me about another procedure that a lot of residents faint during.  It was interesting. 

I was easily worn out today.  I went to my friend's apt and went up the elevator and walked down the hall to her door.  The building is a square with an open inside so I had to walk down two sides of the building to get to her place so it is kind of long.  As I approached my friend's door, I realized my heart was beating pretty fast and that I was tirrredddd!  It's so weird. 

I ran out of ibuprofen mid-day so I knew I had to venture outside again.  I was very nervous and put it off until 9pm-ish.  During my stay at my friend's house I was careful to only wear things I didn't care about getting bloody or covered in food.  Once I got home, I showered, put on the jewelery I normally wear, and put on a dress I'd normally wear in the summer.  Then I decided to put on some makeup because I still looked kind of dead.  I put on mascara and eye liner like I normally wear.  I gave a half-second thought to putting cover up on my bruises, but I quickly realized it wouldn't really do anything to make me look more normal.

I looked in the mirror at my hair which looked nice, at my nice dress and necklace, and then my gaze landed on my face.  It was shocking to see the "normal" me with this messed up face.  I see the silhouette of the "me" I'm used to, but with a fat, foreign face.  It's really hard to get used to this completely different view of yourself.  I'm not used to feeling ugly and not wanting to go out in public.  But what's worse than feeling ugly, which I've experienced- we've all had the awkward preteen stage- is feeling freakish.  My face is shockingly messed up and it's really an adjustment for my mind and sense of self.  (sorry I keep saying shocking, but it is!).  

So I finally got the courage to go to walmart- not even the classiest place.  I figured I wouldn't see people I know there or see intimidating people (whatever that means) and it was late so I hoped there wouldn't be many people there (wrong).  As I was walking in, there was a man sitting on a bench and I saw, out of the corner of my eye, him look up, come to attention and keep looking.  I was so nervous and self conscious.  When I walked in, kids were walking towards me and I was worried they'd get scared.  I walked briskly past them and into the shelter of the clothing racks.  I uncomfortably went about my business, very aware of how I appeared.  When I finished, I was so happy to get back in my car.
I don't know if other people have this same degree of discomfort about their appearance, but I've been struggling with it.  Notice I've still not posted the super swollen pictures (update: I started posting the super swollen pictures on Day 9).  I wonder if I think it's worse than it is.  I'll ask my friends the next time I see them.

lip is so huge :(
bruising came out

most ridiculous smile ever