SKIN DEEP

WHEN I WAS FIVE YEARS OLD, I BROKE MY NOSE

Ottawa Magazine - - This City -

in a backyard ac­ci­dent that in­volved a pic­nic bench, an old swing set, and a face plant. Sev­eral doc­tors later, I learned my bro­ken nose re­quired surgery that could be done only af­ter

my face had stopped grow­ing. When that hap­pened, in my teens, post-sec­ondary de­ci­sions and travel plans took pri­or­ity over track­ing

down an ear, nose, and throat spe­cial­ist. But then my face started grow­ing again — when I got preg­nant. My face swelled up so much, I looked like a whale. Look­ing back at photos of me and my new­born, I men­tally crop

out the chubby rolls around my post­par­tum smile. Those photos got me won­der­ing about my de­vi­ated sep­tum. I no­tice that there’s an in­dent on one eye­lid and that my eye­brows are asym­met­ri­cal, as if I’m al­ways rais­ing an in­quis­i­tive brow. I build my case for surgery. It’s not cos­metic surgery if it was rec­om­mended back in kinder­garten, right? Maybe I would sleep,

sing, and swim bet­ter. Maybe even look bet­ter. I got a re­fer­ral and made plenty of notes about my “con­di­tion.” I ar­rived at my ap­point­ment ready to fight, but my doc­tor was dis­arm­ing. He took one look at me and told me the nose looked

pretty good. He lit­er­ally told me to suck it up. Now I’m preg­nant again and think­ing about big things like the health of my un­born child — plus, I’d rather my kids see me with a dou­ble chin than wrapped in ban­dages.

~ By Dayanti Karunaratne

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