Sunday, January 24, 2010

Contemplation of a rhinoplasty...

Are you perturbed about the thought of plastic surgery? Or the fact that many people (especially in L.A.) look nothing like they were supposed to? Yeah, I am, too...except for the fact I've been contemplating a rhinoplasty, aka nose job, for the past 8 years and totally understand why people go under the knife to correct their insecurities.

Granted, Heidi Montag's recent nip/tuck/plump/pull procedures were a tad much (as there were TEN of them), but I don't agree with people passing an arbitrary judgement that everyone should be happy with what God gave us and learn to deal with it. Well, not all of us were born with some of our current, does that mean some of us are ok to go under the knife to get it back???

***WARNING: TMI in the following posting. Abort now if you don't like to hear a girl talk about gross things...***

For those of you still with us, this blog will detail why I've considered plastic surgery and why I feel that no one has the right to tell you if you should/shouldn't feel badly about going under the knife.

My story begins when I was eight or nine years old. As a young kid, I was an athletic, rambunctious tom boy having a hard time learning to grow into my quirkiness when all the other "pretty" girls were so different looking than me. This is the place where my nose was altered for the rest of my life, which has caused me physical and beauty-related problems. Furthermore, I have broken my nose twice and truly know how it feels to wonder what I would look like if it hadn't happened.

Aaaaactually, the first time my nose broke was because of my BITCH of a next door neighbor's purposeful maliciousness. Before a softball game, Mandy (bitch neighbor) agreed to help me warm up. She was three years older than me and thought she was hot shit. As we threw back and forth, Mandy kept throwing harder and harder. Because I knew she was doing this on purpose to watch me flinch or to ask her to ease up, I kept acting as though I didn't notice. When my mom and dad came to get me from the front yard, I threw Mandy's softball back to her. I told her I'd see her later and thanked her for warming up with me. Then I hear her semi-yell...

"Hey Meridith..."

As I was turn around, I felt the softball *SMACK* right into my face. I hadn't even got completely turned around. So, I KNOW she had thrown the ball while she called my name. I staggered backward clutching my nose and looked up to see Mandy smirking at me. She snottily said, "Ooops! Catch!" and started smiling. Knowing that she had done this on purpose for her own amusement, I started crying my eyes out. My parents were getting into the car, which was in the garage, when Mandy threw the ball at my face and didn't know what had happened until they heard me whaling in pain. I remember the heat of my body surging to my face, the metal taste in my mouth and blood running through my fingers and down my red jersey.

As my family and friends know, I snort when I laugh/cry. Even though I have a better control on it now, back when I was a kid...I couldn't stop it. There I stood, hyperventilating and snorting blood back into my throat. It felt as though I were choking and suffocating.

My dad, my hero, rushed out of the garage and asked what had happened. Turning my face back toward the softball's line of flight, I took my shaking pointer finger and indicated with bloody certainty that Mandy, who was sauntering up her stairs as if nothing had happened, had done this. From the lovely, malevolent attitude of her mom and brother just like her, I still, to this day, have no doubt this was for her own enjoyment and entertainment.

Sadly, this wasn't my first adventure to the ER, because I was quite "graceful" as a youngster. I had been in three times before for stupid, idiotic occurrences. Like dancing in the freezer aisle at the grocery store and ramming my head into freezer case door handles, or twirling in the living room and tripping on the carpet and landing my eye on the corner of the TV, or playing on top of our playhouse and falling off onto a cinder block lying next to our deck. (True definition of a klutz.)

Still, this broken nose was the first time I had truly broken something.

The nurse and doctor told my parents that the bridge of my nose was broken right under the bridge between my eyes. I distinctly remember the click, and resulting rush of pain, as they set it back in place. After taking an x-ray to ensure it was aligned, they inserted some tight gauze roll up each nostril. I had to breath through my mouth that night and couldn't do anything physical for about 3-4 weeks. Being the fact it was right before summer, I was PISSED. There went softball, hide & seek, kick the can, basketball and swimming. And for that following month, I tried to avoid Mandy as best as I could. However, because our neighborhood consisted of only 3 blocks and had only ten kids at the time, it was difficult to avoid her.

The result of my break left me with an elevated, and quite distinct, hump on my nose that looked like a "camel's back." I was in my formidable years and already extremely self conscious of my face.

Four years passed before the second nose break. It was during a basketball game. Oh basketball-it was a love/hate relationship. I LOVED the game and was actually pretty good. I started playing when I was in 5th grade and found I had good instincts for the game. I still was klutzy, though, and tended to get a lot of bruises during games.

Our team's point guard and I would always end up smacking our heads or tripping each other...didn't matter if it was during practice or a game. It was bad, and quite painful. Clarification on this, I should say that I was the one responsible for this, due to my klutzy nature, and Becky was the innocent bystander in the wrong place at the wrong time...every time. To this day, my mom talks about Becky and basketball saying, "Didn't matter where on the court they were, Meridith and Becky had a magnet that led them to disastrous collisions. Oh, and the SOUND when they ran into each other...!!!" *insert cringe face here*

So, during a basketball game, I went up for a rebound and was literally butted out of bounds, which caused me to lose my balance and trip over my feet. My balance was lost and I couldn't find it quick enough. My face met the "padded" wall with a terrifying CRUNCH, and I instantaneously felt my nose crack. Another trip to the ER.

From my second nose break, the hump got bigger and resulted in a soft spot on the ride side of my nose. Any time the weather gets worse, it gets softer and causes horrible sinus problems and congestion. I have suffered from migraines since I was 12, and I find that my nose only escalated the level of intensity. Even worse, I haven't been able to breathe out of both nostrils at one time since I was 8 or 9. Imagine that...l-o-v-e-l-y.

During my freshmen year at Millikin, my parents urged me to talk to my ENTA doctor about my nose to see how bad the damage was from his perspective and to ask for a plastic surgeon referral. After an x-ray, the doctor told me that there was a deviated septum but it wasn't the worst he had seen. Well, YEAH! It hadn't been crunched into a million cartilage bits. But it definitely was causing some airway constriction and added "height" to my once pretty curvature of my nose.

But my decision to NOT get a rhinoplasty came when my ENTA doctor told me the surgery could alter my vocal range and tone. Because I was a vocal music education major and was performing in opera scenes, I opted to deal with my large schnoz. However, that didn't stop me from feeling extremely sensitive and conscious about my nose. To me, it is my worst feature. From it, I have a hard time looking into peoples' eyes for an extended period because I don't want them looking at me back. I don't want them to look long and hard and see the huge bump on my nose that shouldn't be there.

I've learned to deal with it, and it's almost as though my broken nose stories are my battle stories. Looking in the mirror every day, I think about my nose every day. And I would opt into rhinoplasty if I could afford it.

If people can afford corrective/plastic surgery and choose it is right for them, more power to them. I just wish people would be more tolerant and stop peremptorily judging people they do not know.

(Except, I did judge Heidi Montag because I thought she looked prettier before. Bad, I know. Eat my own words!)

***FOOT NOTE: The debate is still out whether or not I broke my nose for a 3rd time while in my junior year at Millikin. I tripped and fell into my friend's buttock area. My nose clicked a bit and started bleeding, but I didn't go to the doctor. My dad thinks it was broken, but I think ti wasn't. ***

1 comment:

  1. Mer, you are beautiful no matter what you decide to do now or in the future. I love you!