Hi everyone! Sorry for having kept you peeps waiting for this post yesterday. The last 2 days have been hectic but so amazing. A crazy- happy get together with friends at The Pool Club on the eve of my birthday,
*special thanks to my cousin Erik Cua, Ryan Singh, as well as to Hennessy Philippines*
followed by a wonderful surprise birthday lunch thrown by my dearest Simon and Alex on my birthday,
and a really lovely gathering of my beloved family for dinner. Yesterday, I hosted an intimate champagne- tea gathering at Blackbird for my dear friend D of Crystallarium, where we were all treated to crystals prescriptions session (check out her instagram for more details– www.instagram.com/crystallarium). Crystals reading and prescriptions which can positively affect your personal life is a gift that Rodina has, and most of my friends who have had their readings done were just as shocked at her accuracy as I was when I first agreed to have her work on me, albeit begrudgingly haha, because it was really something I had no knowledge of, except that it was a little too… new age-y for me. D is honestly one of the few people who have been instrumental at helping me maintain a positive outlook and gather positive energy especially when I am faced with seemingly insurmountable challenges.
Anyway go check her out for yourself because only another lengthy post will do her work justice 🙂
And now, the main event of today’s blog post: The Nose! Friends from Facebook will remember in December 2014 that I’ve posted a status message that said “All I want for Christmas is a new nose.” Hahaha I put it out there. To be honest, I was deathly afraid of getting a nose job. And the fact is, I knew I didn’t “have” to have one. It was not a life and death situation, and quite frankly I thought a 2nd Loewe Puzzle bag
or a pair of Aquazurra flats would be much nicer *hahaha let’s not get me started on that *.
Do you know what though, my baby potato nose had its fair share of bullying. Yup! Well apart from my own bullying i(haha and remember that time when my baby potato had an overstaying and unwelcomed resident of a pimple which I named Fabio lol), I also got cyber bullied because of it. Baby potato has been subjected to some rather unpleasant name- calling both online and in real life (behind my back haha—because these people were too cowardly to say it to my face haha). Was I affected by that? Was the bullying the reason I decided to get the nose job? The answer is a solid NO. It was never the reason—nor should it be for peeps who are considering it. I refuse to be eaten up by negative comments like that—if we all were affected by all these comments about our looks, then we’d all end up looking like Jocelyn Wildenstein (see below), trying to achieve “perfection” by repeatedly getting something aesthetically done.
So don’t ever let any negative comments about your looks affect you. Never. I’m also lucky that I eventually developed a thicker hide haha. Because when all that name- calling, bullying, and what- nots cease to bother you, you know that you are on your merry way to a happier life. 🙂
I never considered a procedure on my nose seriously. I never have. I may have talked about it, but it was never really something I followed up on. I never even did any research on it! Because I just thought, why get a nose job, it’s painful and it’s bloody expensive. And besides, I am Chinese, and the older Chinese women (like my grandma) often said that the luck of a person is bigger with a bulbous nose—the bulbous nose seems to “gather” much more luck than a small or thin one. Doooon’t ask me how logically sound that is. The only things I can think of that gather much more with a bulbous nose is mucus when one catches a cold hahaha!
But last December after that facebook status I posted, people really began asking me if I was serious about this nose job. I even got a sponsorship proposal—hahaha a free nose?! No thanks haha! I knew nothing about aesthetic surgical procedures. And while I knew people who have had nose jobs (and most of them pretend they “woke up like that”), I never dared ask anyone about them. I felt that I was invading their privacy by asking about it (the Philippine society can still be quite conservative about topics like cosmetics surgery– not all are willing to openly admit to it, hence the refusal as well of many local thespians to disclose their procedures). And then I found out from a friend that luxury lifestyle magazine Lifestyle Asia featured an industry friend Cat Antonio who opened up about her procedure. So I summed up my courage and sent Cat a text message while I was in San Francisco over the Christmas holiday in 2014. Cat was very encouraging and recommended this reconstructive surgeon.
Sooooo, I finally had this doctor’s number. New Year’s came and so many other events happened, a few of which included eliminating negativity and drama from other people. I focused on bettering myself internally and tried to understand what it was that I wanted to do—I was at crossroads with a lot of things in my life, becauseI realized I was already entering the 4th decade of my life *midlife crisis much? hahaha* I actually forgot all about this doctor. Until May came, and my dear friend C tells me that we should do something different for our milestone birthdays– she and I both share the same birth month and year. Somewhere in our conversation, I remembered about this reconstructive surgeon! So I said, come, for kicks let’s go get a consultation for this doctor. You for your eyebrows, and mine for my nose. We laughed our buns off as we talked about it, and we set the schedule with the doctor one Friday in mid- May. I told my mum about this consultation that was about to happen, and obviously she was not pleased. She said it was ridiculous because I have to openly accept what was given to me when I was born, and surgeries are not always 100% successful. I reassured her that it was just a consultation. No guarantees I was ever going to do it. At least let me do my homework and look for other surgeons right? I was not going to jump the gun and just go for it. Up until that point I still knew nothing about nose jobs. Nada. And again, I never bothered to research. That’s how serious I was about all this. NOT 😉
The consultation happened. Together with my friend C, we went to see Dr. Alex de Leon of La Nouvelle Image at Linden Suites (7th floor) in Pasig City, Philippines.
The consultation lasted all of 10 minutes. He asked if I brought any photos of the nose I wanted. My mind went blank. Ummm no. So I asked him if he will just photoshop my face to include a less bulbous nose. He said that was actually what he doesn’t do because he doesn’t want raised expectations about the nose job since photoshopped- in “ideal” noses never really end up looking like the real deal post- op. Dr. de Leon was a realistic reconstructive surgeon. So I told him, I just really wanted smaller sides on my nose because it looked like 1. A baby potato;
2. An onion bulb.
LOL pick one.
He said what I needed was some alar trimming since I do have an existing bridge on my nose already.
The “sides” of the nose are called alars. Ahhhh ohhkay. Right, I just need my alars trimmed. Like my hair needs a trim because of my split ends haha. My friend C was actually the one who asked all the follow- up questions regarding duration of procedure and downtime. I was just there, listening 😀 *Earth to Ingrid—haha to be honest, I was still distracted and was secretly laughing about having massaged a silicon implant for a good amount of time while waiting for our turn at consultation. Hahaha I was saying to C, “OMG it’s so soft, it feels real, OMG but holy crap this goes into the boob?! OMG I can’t!!!”*
As we were walking out of the office, having told Dr. de Leon that I’ll “think about it” while C was referred to another doctor for eyebrow implantation, I was joking around with C still about the consultation. And I also told her that if I was serious about this, I’ll probably still shop around for a doctor and find out more about the procedure. As we walked out, Dr. de Leon reiterated to us that he makes plaster molds out of his patients’ noses to see how he can make them look better, but he is not one of those docs that do the photoshopping.
C nudges me and says, why don’t you get a nose mold done now. A-hah, easy peasy! Ok let’s! Me thinking this was just going to be a quick one and it will be painless hahaha. And I don’t think this will be as expensive as a nose job hahahaha.
I got prepped for the plaster mold– a very thick coat of petroleum jelly was spread across my face. Eww so thick and sticky! Then the nurse plugged 2 cotton balls on my nostrils to prevent the mixture from getting inside my nose. I had to breathe through my mouth. It was uncomfortable. I couldn’t talk for a few minutes while the mold was forming over my nose area. After 15 minutes, the formed mold was pulled off my face and I was left “blind” because of all the residue petrol jelly. I had to be assisted to the toilet to wash my face (I washed it 4 to 5x hahaha).
Ok I did NOT like the temporary blindness. C was laughing at me for complaining like that. I said “how on earth can I even cope with a nose job when a plaster mixture poured over my face already freaked me out hahaha!”. I had to pay for my mold and my consultation. Jing, the very kind nurse told me it was going to cost PhP 15,000 (US$300+). Whaaaaaaat???? *Jawdrop moment!!!*
LOL. Apparently you get a mold done when you are already sure of getting a nose job. And umm…. Newsflash, I was not ready. I was really, really not ready. But haha I need my investment back. Hey, $300 ain’t cheap. I want to secure my investment. So I guess this could just be an expensive little consultation hahaha. Nooooo. I want my money to work for me!!! I was like, “Holy crap the mold’s not cheap!” I shot C a dirty look (she egged me to have the mold done and I didn’t even bother to ask how much it was hahaha).
So now I asked Dr. de Leon when is his next available appointment and he tells me he will only be in Manila until Thursday of the next week because he flies out for his annual summer vacation. I was like, hooooly crap, I don’t even have time to think this through, do I? He was coming back to Manila mid June, which means if I get my alar trimming done that time, I’d still be bleeding on my birthday. NOT GOOD!
Me, wailing: “So the only window for this nose trim is 4 days?!?!” (no clinics on weekends) Doc: “Yup! At least you’ll be healed by your birthday.” C whispers to me: “You not doc shopping anymore?!” I GUESS NOT! I need to protect my investment (hello my$300 lol). If I had the surgery, they deduct the amount I paid (for the mold). Hahaha it’s a “consumable” amount. So with a heavy sigh and a LOT of caution thrown to the wind, I said it out loud, “Let’s do it on Monday.”
I told a few friends about it over the weekend, and they were shocked. Like, really shocked. Especially my doctor friends because they knew I was very, very squeamish around blood. One even told me the graphic procedure of a surgeon using a scalpel to pull the skin off the nose—“You won’t feel the pain, Ingrid, but you will feel the pressure for sure.”. GULP. I DIE.
Weekend was uneventful but I already had that nagging mental picture at the back of my mind. Ewww. Skin peeled back to expose nose tip. Ewwww. Ewwww. And then I finally googled what a person would look in the days after the nose job. OH MY GAWD.
Monday comes. I was early for my appointment. Two of my closest girlfriends came with me to support me—and haha I think to make sure that I don’t faint (because of the sight of blood) on my way to the car post- surgery. I got prepped pretty quickly. Just changed into a hospital gown and was ushered to the operating theatre. I was going to be awake for the full length of the procedure. All 45 minutes of it. GULP. Buuut anaesthetics will be applied locally. So no pain whatsoever on the face. But I will still be able to communicate with my doctor. I told Dr. de Leon I do not want the pinched nose effect. It looks too fake. The good surgeon told me he doesn’t do that either because he wants it as natural as possible. And soooo, after 4o minutes (yup, only 40 minutes), I was out of the operating room and was given instructions on how to clean and “dress” my slimmer nose hahahaha. I honestly didn’t look any different hahaha. Well I felt nothing. But I had stitched- up alars. Very Frankenstein-ish! This on the right was my last photo with the baby potato. The left is the photo 40 minutes post- op 🙂
Alright guys, this post is getting far tooo long already. I think I will need to continue this again tomorrow. And tomorrow you will see the day- to- day (side- by- side) progress photos of my nose post-op. If you have read this blog post in its entirety, then you’d have just experienced what it was like to be with me throughout this decision- making process about my nose trimming. After four weeks post- op, it did look like my nose went on a proper veggie diet 😉 The sides of my nose are still quite red, and I still walk around the city without makeup on (I’ll share about that tomorrow, and it’s really an experience to share as well). Thankfully I don’t have any major complications after the procedure, but the whole maintenance thing post- op is really quite a handful.
More deets tomorrow, promise!!! 🙂
P.S. I will re-edit this blog post in a bit to work on my grammar structure. Haha this was like a long draft that will need editing. Thing is, I have to rush off now 😀