Since having facial plastic surgery and a mommy makeover (tummy tuck + breast list), I have found that I think about my appearance much less than I did before. Yes, I do take more care with my appearance now when I go out. When I would often go out with no makeup before, I now spend 5 minutes on it. Where I used to spend 15 minutes on a special occasion getting ready to go out, I will now spend 20 minutes. Basically, before I often felt it was no use to try to make the effort and I now I feel that it is useful.
And, I’m still in the recovery period and have some things still to be done to complete all of my plans. I am having a small revision in November on my facial surgery (mostly fixing how my ear lobe healed and piercing my ears again and doing the final group of excisions of my cholesterol deposits). I will addressing some things not covered by the facial surgery, such as doing a Resurfx laser treatment on my face. And, while I am ecstatically happy with my tummy tuck, I still have a lot of swelling during the day (this should slowly abate over the next couple of months). So, yes, I still think about those things.
But, the rest of the time I don’t think about my appearance much at all. Last night, we went out for my husband’s birthday. Afterwards, I took a quick picture of him and he took one of me.
In the past this would have been an agonizing process. I would have spent a lot of time to try to pose in a way that wouldn’t show my turkey neck and wouldn’t emphasize my drooping eyelids. I would have worried how my tummy looked and would have carefully considered the angle. He would have taken a few pictures then I would have looked and rejected them and he would have tried again until I either gave up on getting an OK pictures (most of the time) and he took enough that I finally found one that I thought was OK (which often took taking dozens of pictures).
This was different. I didn’t really make much effort to get in a good pose for the picture. He took 3 pictures and I was happy with the result. The above picture isn’t perfect. I was using some new makeup and I didn’t really get my eye shadow right so my left eye looks like the eyelid droops when it actually doesn’t droop. So — not a perfect picture. But, it is fine.
And, that is how I feel now when I go out. I look fine. If a quick pic is taken of me, it is almost always fine. Some are really good, others are just OK. But, it is all fine. I realize now how much of a burden is gone from me. Sometimes you don’t realize what a burden you were carrying until you don’t have it any more. Used to, when I would go out I would be worrying about how I looked. If pictures were to be taken it was an ordeal for me and for whoever was taking a picture. The chance of getting a quick, fine picture was very small. So, I was either always unhappy with the pics or it took forever to get an OK one. And, even with no pics, if I happened to catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror I would be unhappy with the turkey neck or the drooping eyelids.
That is all gone now. If I glance in a mirror I think I look fine. It doesn’t worry me any more. In the above picture, I did spend 15 minutes putting on makeup before we left (it took a little longer than usual since I was trying out some new makeup). But, once we left I didn’t once worry about or think about my appearance.
And, it isn’t just when we go out. Used to when I was changing clothes I was always unhappy with how my body looked. The tummy especially bothered me. I had lost over 60 pounds and I felt I didn’t look like it. The other day I bought a new swimsuit to use in our home spa.
This is the first two piece swimsuit I’ve had since I was 14 years old. Now, I know I don’t look perfect. I have batwings for the upper arms and I don’t want the scars that would result from having surgery on that. And, I have some upper thigh saddlebags. And, right now I still have swelling that gets worse during the day That can be seen above my belly button. From morning to late evening my waist line often “grows” up to 3 inches due to swelling. But, that swelling is temporary and will go away as I heal more and the body repairs the drainage paths that were impeded due to the surgery.
Still… Compare this to shortly before surgery:
There is no comparison. The bottom picture was what I saw whenever I changed clothes. I hated to look at it and it did weigh on me. No, it wasn’t the whole of me. I had good self esteem…but I just didn’t like how it looked and it bothered me. Now, it is different. When I change clothes I don’t worry about how my body looks. Yes, I can certainly see things that aren’t perfect. But, as with my face, it is all fine. So, I don’t think about it any more.
I wanted to post this because I think there may be some who assume that if you have plastic surgery you must be overly concerned with appearance and think about it all the time. The reality is that I think about appearance much less now than I did before.