Well, what a whirlwind the past few weeks have been. I was contacted at the beginning of January by a lady from Caters News Agency. She had seen my blog and Facebook page and wondered if I would like to share my story with the national press. At first I was really nervous and wondered why anybody would want to read about my story. What if they poked fun at me or bullied me like some people have? Then I remembered why I started this blog, to help other people who are going through the same thing as me or people who can relate to the issues I have had to overcome. If I could get my story out there, more people would be aware and it would probably help raise awareness for people who are in the same boat and felt alone on their journey.
So after I built my confidence up, I bit the bullet and called the lady back. I spoke with the lady for over an hour about my story and she asked a lot of questions. The next week she had sent over a draft copy of her article and needed it edited and returned for the next day’s press. I was so stressed. I really did not want the article to glamourize corrective jaw surgery and I most certainly did not want to come across as a victim of circumstance.
The Original Daily Mail Article: http://goo.gl/6rxypV
Recently, I have been reading a lot about the latest trend in Asia (especially in Korea) for young women to undergo jaw surgery to achieve a more western looking facial profile. This really makes me sad. This is a huge operation and there are so many risks. I personally believe that you need to be comfortable in your own skin and address the underlying psychological issues before undergoing any life changing surgery. I am not against cosmetic surgery. But I feel a lot of people do it for the wrong reasons. For me personally, I would like to arrive at a place where I am confident and happy in myself naturally, not because some doctor changed my outward appearance to fit in with society. We are all beautiful and unique. Why would we all want to look like clones?
South Korean Presenter Ruins Face Article: http://goo.gl/FZNRYm
Throughout my blog I have never really talked about the bullying or the hurtful things people use to say to me before the operation. And I never feel the need to discuss the attack that took place when I was 17. In my opinion these people took enough of my time and emotion and do not deserve to have their egos inflated any more. They thrive on attention. To be honest they will never think they are in the wrong for singling people out for the way they look or act. And the root of their issues come from a place inside themselves which is unhappy. To treat others in this way means that you have no respect or love for yourself or anybody else. You do not live in a state of love but a permanent state of fear, where your ego is in constant defence mode. I do not wish any ill to these people, for I can see why they behave the way they do.
As many of you who know me have stated, the paper does like to make the story seem a bit more dramatic and theatrical than it actually is. But that is what they have to do to sell papers. I just wanted to reinforce the fact that I did not have this operation for any type of cosmetic reason; it was purely from a health perspective. For all the lovely people who read my articles and took the time to comment, I thank you so much. Especially, the people who stood up for me and corrected others, who maybe did not fully understand why I had to undergo this surgery.
If you did not know my story, I was born with a birth defect and as I grew my upper jaw was quite compact and my lower jaw was very asymmetric and prominent. This in turn, meant that my back teeth did not meet at all and my jaw joints were under a lot of pressure from the inability to function properly. I had a slipped cartilage on my right jaw joint and by the age of 21 they were starting to show deterioration. Alongside this, my jaw would click and sometimes I would find it hard to eat and speak. At the age of 21 I developed severe and constant left sided facial pain. Literally, even a slight touch or a breeze would cause the pain to sky rocket to the point I would be in tears. I was put on a lot of medication to try and dull the pain. But that only made the muscle spasms and exhaustion worse. Alongside this, I was still trying to complete my university degree and work to support my family. With that in mind, the last thing on my mind was the way I looked. I just wanted to be out of pain. After having severe, constant and crippling pain for over 2 years, I was suicidal and desperate to try anything that would help me.
Although the operation was a huge success in correcting my bite and taking pressure of my jaw joints, I still suffer with pain every day and I still take high doses of pain medication. I undergo psychological therapy and most recently have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, agoraphobia and PTSD (from the attack). I do not think these illnesses will be with me forever, no matter what the hospital say! They are simply my markers to steer me in the right direction at the moment.
My story will also be featuring in UK pick me up magazine and I will be doing a more detailed article for the Sun Newspaper’s health section. I will let you know when they are released. In addition to this, I would like to thank everybody who has been investing in Jaw & Face charity project through eBook sales and donations. You are all truly amazing and I am sure the information provided will help you through your Orthognathic journey.
If you have not already, join me on social media 🙂
Love Steffie xx