"Bell's Palsy," she said.
I had always been told I had gorgeous eyes. Now I couldn't even stand to look at them. The palsy made them crooked and droopy. I could not eat. It turned me into a shy, quiet girl -- something I'd never been before.
Even after I regained full use of my face, my eyes were never the same. The left was definitely smaller than the right. Yet, life carried on. Twenty years and five kids later, I had no time to fixate on how I looked. Bell's Palsy was a thing of my past, and I never had to worry about it again. Or so I thought.
When I was pregnant with my sixth child in 2009, my left eye started twitching. It got worse and worse, and when I went to see my family doctor I learned I had contracted Bell's Palsy a second time. I had to hold my cheek to keep it still. Then an opthalmologist recommended I see an ocular plastic surgeon for Botox.
What? Botox? I didn't understand. Apparently, Botox was developed to help stroke victims and people with palsy. It helps calm the contractions of the nerves. On my first visit, he said I was the ideal candidate. Not only could it help the twitching, he said, the Botox would open up my eye and make the eye more even with the right one. I couldn't believe it. There was actually something that would help me. I recieved the most minor of doses all around my left eye. Within three days, my eye had opened up and the twitching had subsided. I couldn't stop looking at myself.
For 20 years it had been my dream to have my eyes back to normal and these injections made it possible. I felt like I had gotten a part of my life back. I could finally stop thinking about my face. I'd gone blonde for a while to keep the focus off my eyes, but now I went back to my natural dark hair. I try to accent my eyes instead of hiding them, using a black liner on the top and a dark brown on the inner lids. I dress in solid colors, like navy blue and emerald green, to play up my blue-green eyes. I used to dress mainly in black, with sunglasses from early morning to past dusk.
I go back every 4 months for injections. Sometimes people in the waiting room snicker when they hear me say I am here for Botox injections. But I don't care. Ironically, Botox has helped me have a life where what I look like is not the first thought for my day.
Got a makeover story you'd like to share? Visit Seed.com to find out how you can contribute.