Post-Surgery Opposite of Jitters

About an hour after surgery. Attractive, right?

About an hour after surgery. Attractive, right?

Well it happened. I survived my first surgery and went through a pretty hellish recovery. Please read the following as a somewhat dramatic girl with the pain tolerance of a three year old.

I’ve never had a nose bleed before, and after my surgery, I was thrown into the world of perpetual bleeding, which was alarming to say the least. At first anyway. If my nose were to start gushing blood right now, I’d probably pull some gauze out of my bag and just roll with it (seriously — I have tissues hidden all over because this keeps happening to me).

If I’ve learned anything from this experience, it’s that you cannot trust a doctor when they tell you that the recovery isn’t that bad and it’s a minor surgery. Like, no shit they think that. They perform these surgeries back-to-back weekly! I went into this telling people I’d be fine, I’ll be back at work in three days, it’s a minor surgery — no biggie! YES BIGGIE. Me saying this. Me. Nicole Ortiz. Telling people it’d be fine. I want to go back in time, punch myself in the nose, and then as I sit there crying in shock say, “IT’S ONLY GOING TO GET WORSE.”

So yeah, it sucked. CLEARLY. I was stuck in bed for about six days with the company of a cute,

Day Two: At least one of us was happy.

Day Two: At least one of us was happy.

overprotective kitty. I got exhausted and winded if I walked up a flight of stairs, and I couldn’t go anywhere without my nose leaking all sorts of colorful goodness. I couldn’t sleep well because…duh, I just got surgery on my damn nose and I had to sleep basically sitting upright. The pain medicine I was prescribed made me lightheaded and dizzy to the point that I couldn’t look at my computer screen for too long without my vision doubling. And there was so much nausea. I had no appetite, but whenever I did manage to force some food down, my body decided that it was the worst thing that could happen and it would consider throwing up for the next hour or so. Gotta love those small print side effects.

This past Monday I had the splints removed from my nose, which was just about one of the most uncomfortable things I’ve ever had to deal with. I walked around self-conscious as hell because I was unable to smile without looking like a serial killer (the placement of the splints caused this, I SWEAR) and because I had two chunks of rubber visibly stuck in my nose. When my doctor asked how I was feeling, I told him to end this now and put the whole ordeal behind us. Which he did, luckily. But not before making me sit in the office waiting room for three and a half hours to simmer in my anxiety. Then while cleaning me up, he shoved two gigantic q-tips up my nose and laughed at me because I looked like “such a sad human being.” Cute, right? Why yes, I am single, boys.

Here it is. The creepiest, surgeriest smile.

Here it is. The creepiest, surgeriest smile.

All this being said, would I do the surgery anyway if I knew what it would be like? Hell fucking yes.

I can BREATHE. Out of both of my nostrils! This has never happened in my entire life. Do you understand how weird and amazing that is? Air feels so cold and refreshing in my nose. I can now smell out of my right nostril, which is another thing that I’ve never been capable of. Currently I’m in the process of training myself to not breathe through my mouth as often because it really isn’t as necessary as it once was.

My friend who also got this surgery done told me how foods taste so much better. And she’s damn right they do! I ate Chipotle and Chinese food (whatever, judge me for my unhealthy habits — I haven’t been able to eat in two weeks.), and there were so many flavors! I’ve been missing out on the mastery of subtle spicing for my entire life. I can’t wait to eat more delicious things and experiment with my own cooking in a whole new way.

Better picture to redeem myself and show that sometimes I can look normal.

Better picture to redeem myself and show that sometimes I can look normal.

And in addition to all the better breathing/smelling/tasting, my nose is also straighter! It was never really that crooked, but I did have a little bump on the bridge of it. That bad boy is gone now! AND I think my voice is different! It’s very strange, but I feel like I sound clearer — my voice was always a little bit nasally, but now it sounds smoother.

Gone are the days of continuous sniffling and mouth breathing. I’m a new girl with a new nose, and damn does it feel amazing.

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