This all began last May with an innocent dentist appointment. Dr. McCarty was my new dentist so I thought I'd ask him a couple of questions regarding my smile. I've always had a "gummy smile" that I've hated. I asked him if there was a way to do gum recontouring with lasers. He told me that I actually needed braces instead. Are you kidding me?! I'm 26 years old and need freaking braces?! Ugh. So, then I proceed to the orthodontist. Upon my intital consultation, the first thing out of his mouth was that I would need orthognathic surgery to get me the results that I wanted. Not only would this correct cosmetic problems, but also the way my teeth fit together. My jaw is too long on the top and too small. I had adjustable retainers when I was little, but everything has moved back since then. So, then I go to the oral surgeon that was recommended to me by my general dentist. He was going to be taking out my wisdom teeth anyway, so I thought he could be my first to ask about the surgery. Geez Louise, this guy obviously does not do very many jaw surgeries. He told me that it would be an easier recovery than getting my wisdom teeth out. I'm beginning to think this guy is on drugs or something. Is he serious? Obviously, I'm in need of a second opinion. My orthodontist referred me to another oral surgeon that is supposedly the "jaw guy" of Austin. It's basically all he does. I had a ton of questions and he had an answer and then some for every one. However, he has more planned for my face then I thought. Instead of just having the upper jaw done, he wants to do upper, lower, and a genioplasty. I'm glad about the genioplasty (which I refer to as a "chinectomy") since I've always been a bit long in the face. So, now he will be cutting across the front, down the front, and twice across the top of the roof of my mouth to widen the entire upper jaw. I didn't think my mouth was that small! As far as the bottom, I think it's going to be moved up a bit and then take a chunk off the chin. He said on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the most difficult), that this would be an 8. Yeeozah, like that made me feel any better. Then, you all know what happens next. The pre-determination letter gets sent to the insurance company and then you wait...and wait...and wait. I think they got tired of me calling because I got an answer in less than a month. I used to have to fight with insurance companies when I worked at a pharmacy so I learned early that more gets done when you wear them out. Well, obviously the surgery is going to be covered. The genioplasty will not since it is considered cosmetic, but I'll just be saving my pennies until then so I can get this all knocked out at once. I have to admit that I'm a bit freaked out. I mean, they are basically breaking the entire lower half of my face and putting it back together. My doctor said that there will be quite a dramatic change in the shape and contour of my face. So, that is background. I've been braced since last Wednesday (which sucks) and can't wait to get this metal out of my mouth. Between the braces and the spacers before that I haven't been able to eat right for two weeks. I guess at least I'll be losing some poundage while on this escapade. I have my next appt with Dr. Quaroni (oral surgeon) next Thursday. The surgery hooks on my bottom braces are still cutting into my lips quite a bit but its nothing that a few Mexican martinis can't make better.