Face Lift Surgery

Face lift surgery is not to be taken for granted. It is still after all surgery. All surgery is difficult, regardless of the outcome desired. Sometimes it may be worth it and sometimes not. Make sure your reason for face surgery is valid before embarking on the journey. After that, listen carefully to your surgeon before the surgery. It will make your final decision much easier.

Day 1: Surgery

I arrived at the surgery center at 6:30 am for my face lift surgery. I am wearing a shirt with buttons and a pair of pants with an elastic waistband.

The nurses start an IV. It did not give me much confidence as it took 2 tries. My surgeon stopped in to talk to me and circled the few blemishes on my face I want to be removed.

The anesthesiologist stopped in and asked me to open my mouth wide. It is not the person we spoke to for about an hour the day of the pre-op. I am getting very nervous about this. Is it a mistake? Too late, they open the IV wide and I remember nothing else. I asked how I got into the operating room and he said I walked.

My husband was aghast at how much my face was swelled. He said my lips were protruding our and my eyes were so swollen they would not open.

He took me home & put me in the recliner. I took an advil crushed in a small amount of tea through a straw and I remember nothing else. Later that day my throat is raw and I feel like something is irritating the outside of my neck. My husband cuts back some of the bandages and puts some antibiotic and hydrocortisone creme on it. It is soothing.

I am constantly drinking liquids thru a straw. I remember just sleeping all day in my recliner.

Day 2 – 1st Day After Surgery:

We drove to the surgeon’s office to have the bandages removed.

After coming home I was still nearly comatose all day and on advil every few hours. I could not swallow the pain pill and am glad the crushed advil worked for me. Had to drink thru a straw as my throat is sore. I can not eat anything but I do drink liquids all day. I tried drinking soup broth through a straw. The warmth feels good on my throat. I still need help getting up.

My face is swollen but my husband swears it is better. I will take his word for it. I do not want to look in a mirror.

The outside of my throat is really sore so my husband keeps putting more antibiotic and hydrocortisone on it. The surgeons said I could shower so he asks me to get in the shower to clean the stitches. No way! He cleans them with a cloth for me. At this point, I do not care. This was definitely a big mistake. How could I do this to me? How could I do this to him?

Back to the recliner. I am still in the clothes I came home in. I will think about changing tomorrow. It would be more comfortable in my PJ’s but I do not care. I am comatose for the whole day.

Day 3 – 2nd Day After Surgery:

I am mostly dead all day. I stayed in my chair and did not move. I can not eat as my throat is still sore and I can barely open my mouth. I ate a little bit of a scrambled egg. The tea is good and I gobble up the crushed advil.

My face is not as swollen as it was. I do not want to look in a mirror. My husband says I have a chin for the first time in years and the wrinkles in my neck are gone. I can feel how tight it is, I may never move my neck again. I still do not care and think I made a huge mistake. Maybe, maybe not. I need to get an advil and go back to sleep in my chair.

The recliner seat is getting hard. I tried to lay on the bed with my face up but ended up partway on my side. I can not feel my ears so do not think it is a good idea. Back to the recliner and to sleep.

Before he goes to sleep I ask for help to put on my nightgown. It feels good to change my clothes. I hope I feel better tomorrow. My feet are cold.

Day 4 – 3rd Day After Surgery:

 I feel better today. I woke up at 5 am and had a hard time going back to sleep. I had to get up & let the dog out for a minute. No need to wake up my husband. He has been so good taking care of me.

I stay in my recliner a bit longer. If I do not move, soon I will not be able to get up even when I want to. I know it is not good to not move about.  Later in the afternoon I get up and take an advil and then get in the shower.

It does feel good to wash my hair although I still can not feel my cheeks or my ears. I am scared that my ears will fall off. My husband is happily surprised to see the shower going. He looks behind my ears and insists that I wash them over & over.

I do feel better and put on regular clothes. After my hair dries, I put the chinstrap on they gave me. I can see my chin and the wrinkles on my neck are gone. My face looks round as it is still swelled a lot. I do look different. This chin strap is not doing a lot. Maybe it is to keep you from touching the stitches behind the ears. I put it on as they said to.

My neck is still chafed on the outside but feels much better today. There are black marks on my face & I ask if I should scrub harder. The answer is no, they are the stitches from the moles that were removed. My glasses will not fit over the bandage & I am scared to put them behind my ears so I am partially blind. This will not do! But I do feel like a real person today.

Day 5 – 4th Day After Surgery: 

Last night was horrible. I went to sleep in my bed with 4 pillows under my back and head. I could not get comfortable. The pillows kept bunching up and there was a hard spot behind my head. The recliner is better. Finally, I got up & went back to my recliner. Then I had to get up and put on my socks as my feet are cold. I took an advil around 2 am but could not go back to sleep. Moral of this episode, take your advil PM before you go to sleep whether you think you need it or not. I hope the rest of the day is better.

The rest of the day has indeed better. However, I still do not want to be seen and too many people kept stopping by. However, I know I will be OK as now I am hungry.

We went for a short walk and it felt great, even in the rain. I think I am a real person now. I see the end of the tunnel. I need to get the stitches out and hopefully, my face will not look as though I have been assaulted. I am looking forward to it. It should be a good evening.

Day 6 – 5th Day After Surgery:

Another bad night. I was hungry so ate some chicken nuggets for dinner last night. They had too much salt. When I woke up this morning I could feel that my face is swelled even more than it was last night. I have chipmunk cheeks, although they were already bad yesterday. My neck is tight and hurts even more. No more salt for me.

My husband is going out of town today & I want to go. I am tired of staying in all day. I must be getting better! I am going to go and just stay in the car as he runs errands.

Well, that idea went out the window. I ran the errands as he waited in the car. I kept my scarf wrapped around my neck and the lower part of my face. Who am I kidding? He and I are the only ones that care what I look like. I feel better for getting out and am glad I went. Tomorrow will be better.

Day 7 – 6th Day After Surgery:

Today the stitches come out. I am glad to get this done. My surgeon was not exactly correct. It did not hurt a lot when they were removed but I could certainly feel them. No matter, I look OK at this point and will put on some face makeup as soon as the removed mole scabs heal. Soon, very soon. I do not feel too out of place going out in public. I do not know any of the people who see me and no one appears to be staring.

The surgeon wants to see me in 2 weeks so I made an appointment. However, I know there is nothing else he can or will so. I may save the $5 in parking fees and skip it. He is only going to pat me on the back and say: great job.

Day 8 – 7th Day After Surgery:

I had the face lift surgery a week and a day ago. I still do not know if I would say it is worth it. My husband keeps telling me that I look 15 years younger and will be much happier. I think he is correct.

I stayed in my bed last night. I have missed my soft bed and pillows. Not to worry, I had my heating pad on my feet and took a pain medication just in case. It was a good night. I woke up early and could not go back to sleep but I am doing nothing all day so it is to be expected. My neck is tight but it will get better. This ordeal is almost over. I will not have more face surgery. This one was enough for a lifetime.

Read more at GuideForSeniors.com for all things senior. You can email us at guideforseniors@gmail.com