Learning to Smile Again?

This may very well be my last post before Thursday- I have a feeling that the last days leading up to my surgery will be a blur of activity but as much as possible, I want to have things wrapped up before then. Only two work days left – most of today was spent polishing off a major plan I’ve been developing for the past seven months (the final product was 45 pages long) and, since I was working with my surgical date as a deadline, it works out that the plan (which I submitted at 5pm this evening to an external foundation for grading) is two weeks early, which will reflect well for both me and the agency. I felt like throwing up after sending it off and not so sure why – probably because I was letting go of something that I’ve spent so much time working on. Tomorrow I have to do the paperwork for a couple of new staff that I’d interviewed last week, plus check their references and I have a meeting tomorrow afternoon that I need to prepare for as the chair AND I need to find time to meet with our website volunteers to give them feedback on the new design they’ve been working on for me. I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing to be so busy leading up to my surgery – probably a good thing since I’m not thinking so much about it but maybe a bad thing in that I’m rushing to get things done.

A coworker asked me last week if people were going to even recognize me when I come back to work and I laughed and said the change won’t be that drastic. In fact, I’ve been told by many oral professionals that the change will be so slight that people won’t quite be able to figure out what’s different – they might ask if I’ve gotten my hair cut or if I’ve lost weight but the fact that my jaw has been reset won’t be obvious. When we were at the surgeon’s on Friday, she kept getting me to look in the mirror after she had my jaw in the position that she wanted and I tried to imagine me looking like that permanently, but because it was forced it didn’t look natural. I’m curious to know what it’s going to be like to smile with my jaw reset, and whether or not I’m going to have learn how to smile all over again.

My braces were put on a year ago Friday and I remember my hesitant, shy smile that first night and how self-conscious I was when I posted the first photo of me with my braces. It took me months to get used to my braces and I still find myself sometimes smiling awkwardly, but there are now times when I smile freely and without thought. Tay took a photo of me a few weeks ago at AL’s wedding, and when I compared that photo to the one that was taken my first night wearing my braces, I was surprised by the difference.

October, 2005

September, 2006

I’m sure people will be curious to see photos post-surgery but since I’m going to be swollen and bruised for quite some time, I probably won’t be willing to post any pics for quite a while. People have been asking how to get a hold of me or to find out how things went…I think I’m going to give Tay access to my blog and ask him to provide an update after the surgery Thursday. I will be blogging as soon as I’m able, but the best way to reach me following my surgery is through text messages, msn or email.

So that’s it, I think…

I know I won’t be smiling for a while come Thursday…but once it’s done and over with, I know I’ll be smiling on the inside. I’ve wanted this for so long and to have it so near is undescribable. I’m so curious to see what my new smile will be like, but for now, the smile above will have to do :).

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4 Responses to Learning to Smile Again?

  1. Anonymous says:

    Tina 5:31 AM I’ll be waiting for the posts from Taylor. I’ll be thinking about you when I am at the dentist Thursday!

  2. Anonymous says:

    staceface 5:36 AM I’ll be thinking about you! I’ll try to call you before Thursday! Love you lots!

  3. Anonymous says:

    flud22 6:58 AM You have a fantastic attitude towards all of this….one that I admire. Altho I will be working Wednesday night, I will be thinking of you eating your steak. And of course on Thursday!!! I can’t wait to see your “new” smile too!

  4. Anonymous says:

    jods 12:17 PM Lots of love to you!!! Will keep tabs on you via Taylor and mom! xoxoPS – enjoy your night out on Wednesday.

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