Saturday, May 25, 2024 -
Print Edition

New year . . . new face?

My mother wore her wrinkles with pride. She was vehemently anti-plastic surgery. My oldest brother, whose legal expertise focused on medical mishaps, was likewise strongly opposed to unnecessary surgeries. As for me . . .

Well, now that I’ve reached what is euphemistically called “a certain age,” I’m not so sure. At 69, my jowls have headed south, and my neck waddle rivals a turkey. As a result, I’ve become plastic surgery “curious.” Very curious.

For a few years, I’ve toyed with the idea of a lift here or a tuck there but was too scared to explore the urge further. I was happily held back by the family’s anti-PS bias. 

Even though my mother and 21-years-older big brother are long deceased, the mere thought of their disapproval was enough to stop me in my daydreams of renewed facial tautness and glory.  

Additionally, I delayed exploring the idea because, honestly, who do you trust to weld a knife and carve into your face? They might call it a scalpel, but if it’s sharp, cuts and draws blood. Well . . . 

Anyway, Cher looks great. Madonna (the singer), no! Jennifer Aniston looks sorta good, but not quite herself and she’s way younger than I am! So, what’s an almost-oldster with wrinkles, a harsh magnifying mirror and too much vanity to do?

My dilemma recently became more complicated because I identified a doctor-with-a-knife — i.e. a plastic surgeon — of high repute who I met with and trust.

I went in hoping he would tell me I was being too harsh on myself. I went in hoping he’d say I look great and don’t need to do anything. At minimum, I hoped he’d say I don’t need much done.

The appointment began on a promising note. 

Dr. S told me I had great hair. Hooray! Then, he added that the way I styled it would be perfect for covering the initial scars I would have after surgery! 

After that “compliment,” it was one long list of improvements he recommended to “refresh” my face. It was a doozy of a list. It made my head spin. My jowls wiggle. My turkey neck wabble. The worst part? All the suggestions were appropriate. Moderate even.

I can assure you this “to-do” list wasn’t about the doctor running a tab. He’s a close friend of a family member and is kindly offering me a ridiculous discount for his services.

So, I’m conflicted. I’m vain. I trust the doctor and I’m game. But . . . 

It’s admittedly unnecessary surgery. In the grand scheme of things, is it right to tamper with what G-d and Mom gave you?

Also, no matter how great the surgery goes, I will not simply look “refreshed” but somehow subtly different. How will I feel about that? How will my husband feel? 

You might wonder, how does my spouse feel about this entire issue of plastic surgery? He’s not thrilled. Sweet man that he is, he thinks I look great, but you know what they say, “love is blind.” Still, non-judgmental person that he is, Jon also says if I want to do it, then I should.

So, there you have it. 

It’s decision time and the decision’s all mine. As we all face a new year, I’m debating whether I want to face it with a new or, at least, a “refreshed” punim.

Copyright © 2023 by the Intermountain Jewish News

Avatar photo

Read more of Karen Galatz’s work at https://muddling. me or contact her at [email protected].

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *