The 12 Days of Post-Op

Note: I forgot to post this at the time. What a wally. But I liked it so here it is.

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Definitely not as much fun as the 12 days of Christmas, obvs.

So let me talk you through my experiences of post-operative funtimes!

To be perfectly honest, the first few days were hell. Like, wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy, hell. I was swollen, bloody, and sore. The pain was intense, I couldn’t concentrate properly on anything.

Trying to drink with a syringe was ridiculous, as I had to try and find the few tiny gaps between my teeth and the elastics and metal bars and plastic wafers that would allow liquid through. This did get a lot easier, and now I’m drinking out of a glass and eating soup with a spoon. So, progress there.

I was so sick the first night, and being sick whilst your mouth is banded shut is really scary. Thankfully, your body knows when something needs to get out, so it wasn’t as difficult as I had thought.

Big shout out to the nursing team looking after me, I could not have asked for better care. They were empathetic and understanding. They made me milkshakes and made me giggle. They brought me meds in syringes and never made me feel like an inconvenience. I don’t like hospitals, and I certainly didn’t relish the idea of staying in one for any length of time. But they made me feel safe whilst I was in the worst pain of my life. For that, I will always be so super grateful.

Coming home was wonderful but hard. I struggled to manage my medication schedule and I struggled to get comfortable. Say what you will about hospital beds, but mine was pretty kickass. I missed the reclinability (I know it’s not a word but, sshhh) which helped me to get comfy when my head felt like a lead balloon.

11 days post op, I had my first appointment with the doctor who did my surgery. He’s such a cool guy. He was impressed with my progress, said I looked much better than he expected. He took my elastics off and the plastic wafer that was sitting between my teeth came out too. This was weird. My jaw felt oddly free and wrong. But, I GOT TO BRUSH MY TEETH! Oh sweet lords of dance, did this feel good. My mouth was fairly grim at this point, so I felt like a Queen after getting to brush my teeth for the first time in over a week.

I can now eat without elastics, but must wear them otherwise. My muscles aren’t used to this freedom. I feel like I’m slipping back a step, pain wise, because of this new found freedom but I know it’s just a temporary thing.

So currently, I am doing alright. I’m trying so hard to keep a positive attitude, which I think is helping massively. It slips sometimes, which I have to remind myself is perfectly normal. But, yeah.

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