MMA Surgery recovery pix back up!

I know you missed them.

It’s been 2 years and 2 months since my surgery.  Absolutely amazing.  Just looking back at these pictures it’s extraordinary where I was and where I am now.  I feel like I got the gift of life…  I’m not a different person.  I’m still the same old Shelby.  But I think I am the better non-sick version and that is something I didn’t even know was going to happen going into this.  I just thought I wouldn’t look like Gonzo at night anymore.

As I write this I am at my sister’s house in Dublin (no, not Ireland) taking care of her two kids for a week…more than a week actually.  I moved in on Thursday afternoon (it’s Wednesday night right now), they left Friday night, and will be home (from Belize) this coming Saturday night after midnight.  In a million years I could not have imagined taking care of a 3 1/2 year old and a 15 month old for a week+ on my own…I couldn’t imagine having kids of my own would be really all that possible with how crappy my immune system was and how tired I was even on my best day.

Now, I’m not signing up for the baby wagon just yet.  I think my clock is unplugged or on mute, and that’s just fine.  I mean, after all, I just started sleeping.  Why would I voluntarily give that benefit away so soon?  I hear it takes a long time to make up sleep debt…and I have a lot of it.  Sweet, sweet sleep.  I owe, I owe, so off to sleep I go!  However, big drawback to finding out what a good night’s rest REALLY is?  Take any of that away and I am a GRUMPMEISTER!  Steer clear of the modern-day sleep-deprived Shelby.  Now she KNOWS it could be better…and you will PAY!  :)

Sleep well!


9 Responses to “MMA Surgery recovery pix back up!”

  1. Sara says:

    Hi Shelby,

    First of all, I’m SO glad to hear you are sleeping well. After all you’ve been through, you deserve it!

    I had my tonsils, GA, Dr Li-style UPPP done shortly after you last summer, and I so appreciated your blog so I knew what to expect next! Now that that surgery didn’t work, I’m going for the big, bad MMA this summer (do I know how to have fun?)

    I was wondering which one was worse? I remember being in horrible pain and thinking I would do anything to avoid another surgery. My biggest fear, other than pain, is waking up from the surgery not being able to breathe. It’s so disorienting when you first come to, and then having a stuffy nose and not being able to open my mouth soounds so scary. Did you have that experience?

    (If you don’t have time to answer, that’s ok-!)

  2. Shelby says:

    Hi Sara,
    I am so glad that what I wrote has helped you! Now, I know that I did the reverse of you, but I honestly believe that if they had taken my tonsils first I never would have had the MMA. The soft tissue stuff was so much more vivid pain. I think with the MMA you are #1 on way heavier drugs and #2 as long as you don’t move the bones they don’t hurt as much as soft tissue which you have to move every time you swallow your own spit.
    The MMA was a very painful journey all on it’s own but I would do it again in a heartbeat with the dramatic change in my quality of life post MMA. It is a much longer recovery, but I didn’t feel as claustrophobic with the MMA as I did with the UPPP.
    One thing to know about the MMA is that they do not actually WIRE your jaws shut. They use heavy rubber bands. Keep scissors nearby and if (it didn’t for me) it so happens that you need to throw up, just cut the bands…you’re not stuck. You’re just heavily encouraged not to move :)
    Are you doing braces first?
    I wish you the best best best of luck! Let me know if you have any other questions…it is the main reason I blogged this…I certainly didn’t think that bulldog-esque pictures of me for all the world to see was just for kicks. :)
    Talk to you soon!

  3. Ashutosh says:

    Sleep is a mendatory luxary and it is good that you are back to afford it. Millions across the world are not even aware that they are suffering with this deadly disease.It is our duty to talk about it and make others aware equally. Great post.

  4. Having so much sleep debt is bad so sleep regularly for a few days. Everything will feel a whole lot better afterwards. The last time I had too much sleep debt, it felt like the whole world was collapsing on me and didn’t feel satisfied in everything that I did.

  5. Jim Ralston says:

    Shelby, I recently had the MMA. The worst part I hate is that my lower lip, whole chin, and part of the area under my left eye is numb. It is also tingling in these same areas. The surgeon said he had to repair two nerves he cut during the procedure. Did you have problems sleeping due to the wierd feelings in the lip and chin?

  6. Shelby says:

    I’m sorry about the numbness. It’s not uncommon. I did have trouble with the weird feelings of numbness. To be honest, as I write this I can say that I still have some numbness in my lower lip and definitely inside my mouth on the palate and gums. It takes a long time for nerves to come back. But they do. My doctor gave me neurontin for the nerve pain, but I don’t think you’re having pain, just really weird feelings? Talk to your surgeon about it. Good luck! It gets better!!!!! How’s your sleep? I mean aside from the numbness, is your apnea better? When did you have the surgery?

  7. Jim Ralston says:

    Shelby, sorry for not replying sooner. I had my surgery Nov 18. Unfortunately, something happend with the soft tissue pulling back on the top jaw, and the bite is off so much that I will have to have another MMA. The surgeon is also going to try to repair the nerves by recutting the nerves, and taking a section of nerve from another part of my body and doing a nerve graft repair to my chin/lower lip area.
    He said he is only going to advance the upper jaw enough to get the bite lined up this time, and does not intend to work on the lower jaw. I am not looking forward to another six weeks of rubber bands, but it will have to be I suppose. The revision surgery is scheduled for March 22. My sleep is better, and now I dream, which is a wierd experience I must say.

  8. Jim Ralston says:

    Shelby, I am back from the hospital today. I had my revision Monday. The surgeons besides correcting the bite issue that was a complication of the first MMA surgery, also advanced the bottom and upper jaw again. They also took a nerve graft from my leg to try to repair the nerves since when they cut the bottom jam they saw the nerves were apart. I am back on the syringe again, and a depressed, but hopeful. I feel so self-conscious wearing the jaw diaper, how did that make you feel. Did you wear it all the time? I really hope I don’t have to go through this again. Also I am not happy about the widening of my nose due to the advancement.

  9. Susie Williams says:

    I know about the widening of the nose. I told my surgeon before time that I did not want my nose any wider so her took some kind of tuck and also he cut my jaw in 8 places – so I have 8 plates 32 screws. But my nose is not any wider. I am 6 months post op.

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