This was the part I was dreading the most. To be honest, after having gone through it, it wasn’t so bad! Overall, the only discomfort I felt was the tenderness of my right ear – where the doctor took some cartilage from. Also, I had a runny nose, which has since improved a lot.
Aug 1st – I checked out of my hotel and walked across the street to MVP for my first post-op appointment. The nurses took me to the 3rd floor for some LED laser treatment. I closed my eyes and had some red & blue lights over my face for about ten minutes. While I was doing that, the nurse also injected my arm with a cocktail of vitamins to speed up my recovery as well. After those treatments, I went back to the second floor so another nurse could check up on my nose. The first thing they did was remove the packing cotton from my nostrils. Imagine having an extra long tampon removed from your nostrils. It was the most uncomfortable and strange sensation. Like, how the hell did they even jam the cotton that far up??? My eyes were closed for most of that process. It felt like I was drowning. There was a small sense of relief when my nostrils were free. The nurse also applied some antibacterial/antibiotic ointment in my nostrils and at the base of my septum where my stitches were.
Aug 2nd – I spent most of the day resting at home. The swelling was at its peak on this day. I was really diligent about drinking my pumpkin juice. It is known to help reduce swelling and inflammation in general. Most people drink about 1-2 packets per day. I dumped about 5 packets into a water bottle and went through about 4 water bottles haha. I was still kind of sleepy from all the drugs, so I took a nap midday. I also applied the ointment religiously several times throughout the day. In the evening, I decided that my hair was way too gross and ventured out to get it washed. I went to a local hair salon by my house. The hairstylist was nervous about getting water onto my ear stitches. He covered my ears with the hair dying ear covers, and I also held a towel over it as he washed my hair. It felt so nice to have a clean scalp!
Aug 3rd – The swelling went down by a bit today. To be honest, I was one of the lucky ones. I had absolutely no bruising. I had osteotomy, which usually involves A LOT of bruising… I got by without even one tiny bruise. God bless the magical healing powers of pumpkin juice!! I arrived at the clinic around 4pm and was taken up for another round of laser therapy. After that, I was taken to the nurse’s office for an antibiotic shot. She also gave another round of vitamins via IV. Today, the nurse changed my ear gauze. It wasn’t quite ready to be taken out, so she just changed the gauze and wrapped it up again. I’m really glad that I live in Seoul. I was able to take my time healing and nothing was rushed.
Aug 4th – I felt like the size of my face reduced a lot by Friday. I was active and alert throughout the day, no naps needed. I spent my day drinking pumpkin juice and strolling around the block. Walking promotes blood circulation and faster healing. I also went to Myeongdong at night because I got bored. I didn’t need anything, but I just wanted to walk around and not be stuck in the house.
Aug 5th – I started the day off by sleeping in. Afterwards, I had a light lunch with included leftover pasta and a lot of pumpkin juice. I went to my doctor’s appointment at around 3:20pm by cab. I have to say, throughout all this, I spent a lot of money on cab rides. Each 30-minute cab ride averaged out to be about 10,000won… so 20,000won per doctor visit. This visit was fairly quick. I had my last round of laser therapy. After that, the nurse removed the stitches at my septum. She even started removing some stitches inside my nose. The best part was that she pulled out splints from inside my nose. I had absolutely no idea that those things were in there hahaha. I seriously thought that was my nose was just really stiff from the surgery. Who knew??? The nurse also removed the gauze covering from my ears. Instead of covering up my ears, my stitches were now free to breathe.
Aug 6th – I felt really energetic today. I no longer wanted to eat porridge and rest at home. Luckily, my co-worker Nina called me to come out and eat brunch. I quickly went to the salon nearby to have my hair washed. The humid summer was making it feel extra greasy everyday. I cabbed over to Sinsa to meet up with Nina and her friend at The Original Pancake House. Although I had my septum stitches and splints out, I failed to realized that this meant an increasingly runny nose. Boogers are just the body’s way of recovering and warding off a traumatic experience. I was alert and talkative at lunch, but that also came with a randomly runny nose from time to time. Thanks for not judging, lunch buddies!^^
Aug 7th – Today was a real test. I went to work for a few hours to sub for my sub. It wasn’t too bad. I wore my mask for the most part because I didn’t want my students to see the dried blood on my nose. Some of them were concerned for like a minute.. then they stopped caring the moment I turned on Youtube. I was out of there by 2:30 and headed straight to the doctors. I waited around and chatted with Ellen, Elizabeth, and Victoria in the VIP room. Thanks for hooking me up with a nice spot to relax, ladies. Throughout this whole experience, I think I will miss them the most. I met with the nurse who took off my splint and remaining stitches. There was a bit of pressure when they removed the splint… but overall, it was nothing too painful. My skin was super oily and flaky once the splint was removed. This was too be normal since my skin has been traumatized from surgery. I celebrated my freedom by eating dinner at Vatos in Sinsa down the street. Since I live in Seoul, I also did not have to rush my ear stitch removal. I made another appointment to come back on Thursday 8/10 to remove the rest of the stitches from my right ear.
I will not see my final shape until about the 3rd month or so. It sometimes takes as long as 6 months. But by the third month, all the swelling will have gone down. I’m still in my first month of healing. There is definitely swelling, but nothing that I have to hide. My skin is still super oily, but less flaky. Overall, I am SOOOOOOOO GLAD that I finally went through with this surgery. I can’t wait to see the final shape of my new nose!