Author Topic: Laura's FFS Journal  (Read 3364 times)

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Offline AllieSF

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #20 on: August 11, 2020, 01:48:19 pm »
Congratulations Laura!  Do you need any help?  I live near Concord and could possible assist you in some way.  Just let me know.  If yes, PM me with your cell phone number.  Good luck with everything,

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #21 on: August 11, 2020, 02:01:47 pm »
Congratulations Laura!  Do you need any help?  I live near Concord and could possible assist you in some way.  Just let me know.  If yes, PM me with your cell phone number.  Good luck with everything,

Allie

Thank you @AllieSF. I'll be taking the bus from Modesto to BART in Pleasanton and then taking an Uber to a hotel by the hospital. That way I don't have to fight the morning commute to get to the hospital at 7am. A good friend is picking me up Wednesday morning to take me home and look after me for the first few days.

None of this has really hit me yet.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline AllieSF

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #22 on: August 11, 2020, 03:41:09 pm »
After your surgery remember to sleep sitting up.  That way you can get less facial swelling.  My stupid doctor, who I actually like, forgot to tell the nursing staff.  My face swelled up a lot and I got bruising under my eyes.  However, all that subsided and faded quite quickly and by the end of the week the bruising was basically gone and the swelling was way down to what I expected for the longer term recovery.  I also had to stay an extra day because one of my blood tests was not right.  As to the pain, get that pain killer prescription filled right away and for the first 2-3 days always stay ahead of the pain, i.e. take your medicine when scheduled and not when you start feeling pain.  After that it gets a lot better.  I think I took a total of 8-9 hydrocodones over 3 days.  Then I switched to extra strength over the counter tylenol.  I recover very quickly and have a high tolerance for pain.

Just take it easy and let your body tell you what not to do and what you can do.  Take naps, read, and enjoy the recovery as best possible.  The normal daily routines, chores and work will return soon enough.  I did my recovery at a friends house in Novato and they treated me very well!  Then I drove home by myself.

My procedure consisted of brow ridge and eye orbital grinding, hairline lowering and brow raising, fat transfer to cheeks and both lips and some minor chin grinding.  I found out that I was in the rare 5% group of people that have no sinus cavity in the brow area, more solid bone, so instead of the take out, grind and then replace (level 3) procedure, they had more than enough bone to grind away.  I also had only a small, probably normal male brow ridge.

Do not hesitate to contact me if you need help.  I am about 15 minutes away from Kaiser.

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #23 on: August 11, 2020, 07:29:17 pm »
After your surgery remember to sleep sitting up.  That way you can get less facial swelling.  My stupid doctor, who I actually like, forgot to tell the nursing staff.  My face swelled up a lot and I got bruising under my eyes.  However, all that subsided and faded quite quickly and by the end of the week the bruising was basically gone and the swelling was way down to what I expected for the longer term recovery.  I also had to stay an extra day because one of my blood tests was not right.  As to the pain, get that pain killer prescription filled right away and for the first 2-3 days always stay ahead of the pain, i.e. take your medicine when scheduled and not when you start feeling pain.  After that it gets a lot better.  I think I took a total of 8-9 hydrocodones over 3 days.  Then I switched to extra strength over the counter tylenol.  I recover very quickly and have a high tolerance for pain.

Just take it easy and let your body tell you what not to do and what you can do.  Take naps, read, and enjoy the recovery as best possible.  The normal daily routines, chores and work will return soon enough.  I did my recovery at a friends house in Novato and they treated me very well!  Then I drove home by myself.

My procedure consisted of brow ridge and eye orbital grinding, hairline lowering and brow raising, fat transfer to cheeks and both lips and some minor chin grinding.  I found out that I was in the rare 5% group of people that have no sinus cavity in the brow area, more solid bone, so instead of the take out, grind and then replace (level 3) procedure, they had more than enough bone to grind away.  I also had only a small, probably normal male brow ridge.

Do not hesitate to contact me if you need help.  I am about 15 minutes away from Kaiser.

Thank you @AllieSF.

You and I had largely the same procedures, but I opted not to have the fat added to my lips. I know that FFS mostly just makes small adjustments to our faces, but I do hope to see less of <deadname> and more of Laura when I look in the mirror.

I'm resolved to sleep on my back with my head inclined the first two-four weeks. I do hate this, though, because I've been a stomach sleeper all my life, until two months ago when I began to have back pain upon waking up. Now, I'm a side sleeper. It's impossible for me to sleep on my back in bed, so I'll be on the couch for the foreseeable future. oh, the pain we must endure to become beautiful. LOL.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #24 on: August 14, 2020, 11:33:36 am »
Four days until surgery. EKG, COVID test, and CT Scan all completed, although I still have some shopping to do for post-op food and supplies. Everything is on track though.

I should be nervous at this point, but it feels like I'm on autopilot. Perhaps the short notice is the cause. One thing is certain, life will be different after next Tuesday.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2020, 06:31:47 pm »
August 16, 2020

Two days until FFS. In 24 hours, I’ll be on my way to the Bay Area, where I’ll stay overnight at a hotel two miles from the hospital. At 5am, I’ll awake, take the magic potion I’ve been directed to drink, and at 6:45am, the hotel shuttle will take me to the hospital entrance. Around 8am, two of Kaiser’s best will spend 10 hours making me look like I got run over by a truck. For the week afterwards, I’ll wonder “What the hell have I done?”, “Will this actually help me look more feminine?” And “Everyone’s going to know that something’s up”.

And so it goes.

This path has been tread my many others and their stories will encourage me through the hellish first few weeks as I wait for the swelling to slowly go down, the incisions to heal, and Laura’s new face to appear. I have supportive friends, a great network here, and time.

Onward.
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline AllieSF

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #26 on: August 16, 2020, 06:44:49 pm »
Good luck Laura.  You are in my prayers and thoughts.  You are also in good hands because at least one of my friends had her FFS done there, with Dr. Kleinberg [??], I think.  See you on the flip side.

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #27 on: August 17, 2020, 06:26:34 am »
Thank you @AllieSF. It looks like both Kleinberg and Shih are performing the surgery.

Four years after coming out to myself and 15 months after my consultation, this is finally happening.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline AllieSF

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #28 on: August 17, 2020, 12:53:33 pm »
Laura,

That is fast by many standards.  See you on the flip side and please let me know if you need any assistance.

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline davina61

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #29 on: August 17, 2020, 02:34:41 pm »
Wishing you well for tomorrowXXX
a long time coming (out) HRT 12 2017


Jill of all trades mistress of non
Know a bit about everything but not enough to be clever

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #30 on: August 22, 2020, 11:31:35 am »
Post-Op Day Four

I am alive and because so many of you have detailed your post-op journeys, I have a wonderful perspective to judge against my current experience. This has allowed me to stay calm as my face transitions to the new Laura.

Surgery was Tuesday, August 18th, which went quickly. The worst day was the next day, Day One of my recovery where my left eye swole shut and my right eye came close to it. Beginning on Day Two the swelling around my eyes began to disappear and my bruises began to subside. Swelling, which is part of the process, wlll continue for some time but will get better.

Pain has been manageable. I’ve avoided taking Oxytocin, but advice from others to keep taking your other drugs, regardless of your pain or lack of pain, has been important. Both Motrin and Tylenol are taken at regular intervals to ease headaches and I’ll continue these for awhile. Otherwise, I’m pleased with our pain management.

A good friend, a retired nurse, brought me home from the hospital and cared for me through this morning. I’m at the point where I feel comfortable changing my dressings, but having a nurse around has been a blessing.

Probably the hardest part for me was that my cat didn’t recognize me the first two days and was quite unfriendly. Now on day four, everything is back to normal, as Cessna (my cat) sees who I am.

I’m not sure what I’ll look like when this is over, but I feel calmness knowing my doctor is an expert, that the incisions are healing well, and that eventually Laura will appear. It’s all good.

Onward.
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Northern Star Girl

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #31 on: August 22, 2020, 12:04:03 pm »
@Laura1951
Dear Laura:
As you might be, I will be waiting IMPATIENTLY for the results of your surgery.  It does take quite a bit of time for any swelling and bruising to go down and for the healing process... all of that can not be rushed.  It can be difficult to wait and have patience!!!!

I am glad to read that you have a retired nurse friend to help you while you are healing.  I am also glad to read that your pain management is going well.

Have lots of "cuddle time" with Cessna, now that they recognize you !!!!   :)

Be patient, heal well and as always I am wishing you the best outcome and good success..


HUGS and more HUGS,
Danielle
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Started HRT:   March 2015
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Offline Another Nikki

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #32 on: August 23, 2020, 10:41:40 pm »
Laura, so glad to hear your recovery is going well.  Fingers crossed for continued good healing and results you’re happy with!

-n
“What you know, you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life—that there is something wrong. You don’t know what it is, but it’s there like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad. It is this feeling that has brought you to me.”

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2020, 10:51:24 pm »
Post-Op Day Eight

I drove into the Bay Area today for my one-week follow-up where they took out the staples in my head, the stitches below my nose, and my nose splint and cast. Oh, what a relief to be able to breathe through my nose again.

My nose and face are still a bit swollen and several bruises are still working their way out, but Day Eight certainly feels much better than Day One.

For the next week, I'll continue to sleep with my head elevated and eat soft food, but knowing I'm about three weeks away from resuming full activities is motivation enough. My face is healing well. Patience.

Onward.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline AllieSF

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #34 on: August 26, 2020, 10:53:57 pm »
So happy that you are healing well and quickly. Keep up the good work and updates.

Allie
HRT - February 2017
Full Time - July 2018
Orchi - January 2018
BA - September 25, 2019
FFS - January 10, 2020
GRS - TBDDD (To Be Determined, Decision and Date)

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #35 on: September 01, 2020, 02:44:29 pm »
FFS Post-Op, Day 14

Things are getting back to normal. I've been walking about three miles a day in the early mornings and I'm finding my energy level feels equivalent to pre-op levels. The bruises on my face are mostly gone although a few stubborn ones will take more time to fade away.

I've been religious about taking care of the incisions, applying ointments in twice a day and using a mist in my nose to keep it moist. The stitches in my nose and mouth are softening so I expect they'll give way in the next week, if not sooner. there's still some numbness in my lowercase and my forehead and the top of my head are fairly numb. This will improve as nerve endings reconnect in the next few months. Hopefully, most of the swelling will be gone in the next two weeks, although I can expect my final results may take a year to reveal themselves.

I've been sleeping on the couch the past two weeks, given that I must sleep on my back with my head elevated. I'm NOT a natural back sleeper so my sleep patterns are all over the place. Daily naps help me catch up, but I can hardly wait unto the 30 day mark so I can return to side sleeping. Until then, I'll do what I have to, to protect my new nose.

onward.

Laura

One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #36 on: September 08, 2020, 03:50:06 am »
Post-Op, Day 21

Recovery seems to be on schedule, and I've been fairly loyal about doing all the things the doctor recommended to heal the wounds. I actually placed a dresser drawer on my bed to creat a small sleeping area so I don't accidentally roll over and injure my new nose.

Still, several things weigh on me. Sutures in my mouth and nose have yet to dissolve, although I'm hoping they will soon. Several bruises are still present and one of them has yet to show any indication of fading. Yes, parts of my face and most of my forehead and head are numb but I know it will take time for nerve endings to reconnect.

My larger concern, and I'm postponing panicking until the two month mark, is that I don't see any difference in my face. I don't see how the fat that was injected into my cheeks has changed anything. In fact, I don't even see that it's there. Yes, my nose looks a bit different, but the remainder of my face and forehead look exactly the same. My friend who took care of me the first few days has confirmed this as well. I do know that swelling takes time to lessen and I'm hoping that during the next month I'll see some differences emerge.

For now, I'm just waiting for my next appointment, which is in two weeks.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #37 on: September 13, 2020, 04:00:14 pm »
Top Ten Reasons FFS is a Pain

1. Waiting 12-15 months between my consultation and the operation.
2. The incredible swelling and pain the first 2-3 days post-op
3. Ongoing headaches the first week due to the staples in my head
4. Walking around outside with bandages circling my head and from my head to my chin the first week, and continued bandages around my head during week two.
5. Continued headaches for weeks 2-3, probably due to sleeping on my back.
6. Making sure you dress the incisions in your nose and head twice a day and applying Scar Away for months 2-6.
7. Taping my glasses to my head the first month to make sure they don’t touch my nose.
8. Mouth breathing the first week because the nose plugs make it impossible to breath through your nose. You’re guaranteed waking up with a dry mouth.
9. Numbness in my jaw, chin, forehead and head, which hopefully will subside as nerve endings reconnect in several months.This makes shaving a bit scarier.
10. Waiting for the swelling to go down so I can see what the new Laura looks like.

Would I do it again?

yes.

Onward.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



Offline Northern Star Girl

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #38 on: September 13, 2020, 04:03:30 pm »
@Laura1951
thank you for sharing your Top Ten Reasons FFS is a Pain.   Great first hand information for those considering FFS.

I will eagerly be looking to read your newest post Post Op Day 28  when you are ready to share.
Hugs,
Danielle
***SEE MY LINKS BELOW
The Ramblings of a Northern*Star Girl
A New Chapter: ALASKAN DANIELLE's Chronicles
I am the HUNTED PREY: Danielle’s Chronicles
Things change re: ALASKAN DANIELLE
Positive Mindset... put away negativity

Started HRT:   March 2015
Went Full-Time    December 2016
Quit my male-mode job and relocated to a very small town in Alaska in January 2017
I'm a blonde, blue eyed woman, Age 40

Offline Laura1951

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Re: Laura's FFS Journal
« Reply #39 on: September 15, 2020, 03:38:52 pm »
Post-Op Day 28

Well, it’s much better to be at the four-week mark than the day after FFS. I’ve returned to all my normal activities, and I’m being a good girl about dressing my incisions to make sure they heal well.

Not all bruises have disappeared. Small areas on both cheeks have a faded bruise that is visible and I still have one stubborn one beneath my left eye. It’s a quarter-moon shape and while it’s shown some sign of getting smaller, it’s still prominent. I can wait until my follow-up appointment in 10 days before complaining.

The dissolvable stitches in my mouth are still present, although soft, and they often irritate my gums. Having thought these would have broken up by the three-week mark is disappointing, but I’m willing to wait for my next appointment. Numbness along my chin and jaw, as well as my forehead and head is still present.

While the doctor’s instructions say I can wear my glasses normally now, I’m going to continue sleeping on my back for two more weeks as well as taping my glasses to my forehead. Given that I’ve read that it takes six weeks for the nose to fully heal, I don’t want to do anything to mess up this new and expensive nose.

Hoping some of the swelling disappears at the two-month mark.

Onward.

Laura
One New Life to Live (My personal blog)

Laura's HRT Journal     |     Laura's FFS Journey.   |  Stay or Go



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