To Be Or Not To Be.....

Well to be honest I was never against plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, enhancements, per se…. But!

My Father had an enormous and fairly fat nose and both my sister and I had the misfortune to inherit it, no mistaking the milkman, the gamekeeper, butler etc in our household – just for the record my Mother has an elegant aquiline nose.

When my sister was about 23-24 she had cosmetic surgery by a surgeon whose main occupation was treating cleft pallets, facial disfigurements etc in children and freelanced with the vain on the side.  Her nose looked great and I have to say at 17 I was pretty jealous and envious!

Still, as she lived abroad at that point I didn’t really spend too much time feeling rubbish about it.  My friend at around age 19-20 had a breast reduction and became a much less self-conscious person because of it.  And as far as I was aware, on a personal level, that was about it for about 15 years.

In between that time I had read about the horror stories, the supremely strange stories – who has forgotten the face of “cat woman” - and the good stories of how cosmetic surgery gave a huge boost to women’s self esteem and gave them a new lease of confidence – way to go I shouted from the sidelines!

Then in my mid 30s I had compacted sinuses, a deviated septum and polyps all of which required surgery.  I casually said to my ENT, “is there any chance of having a nose-job whilst you’re there” and to my enormous surprise he answered “of course, it’s quite common to do it all at once”.

I won’t bore you with the details, but all was jolly, my sinuses are now clear and trouble free and my nose is smaller, only slightly thinner perhaps but fits my face!  Have I had a huge self confidence boost, can I face the world on a different level?  No actually because I’d lived with Serrano De-Bergerac for such a while, it didn’t particularly hinder me.  I used to say I was given a large nose, so I wouldn’t have a hang up about being flat-chested.  But that didn’t really bother me either.

Meantime our mid-life crises began to take shape.  My friend state-side revealed she’d gone to a local high profile cosmetic surgeon regarding a face-lift and she is so one person who doesn’t need it, another friend had a tummy tuck and a friend came to visit from the UK and told me she’d had Botox and filler in her eyes and suddenly I felt sort of betrayed.

I felt betrayed that my friends were succumbing to the pressure of our society to always look young, we should only have surgery if it was life threatening like my friend recovering from viscous breast cancer, why couldn’t we all grow old gracefully, why was this happening??

You can tell I don’t live in LA can’t you?

At Christmas time I went back to visit my family and of course saw my friend again, who once again revealed she was having eye-bag surgery and a boob-job just after the holidays.  Again I was horrified and felt betrayed again, why was everyone so secretive about it, why not just tell me, did they think I would disapprove? 

Maybe so but I didn’t and don’t disapprove I was just disappointed that these lovely women were altering their physiques.  I also began to feel a certain pressure that maybe I’d have to have my face “done” or something.  I stewed on this for a couple of weeks and realized it’s the bags that make a person look old and I don’t mean last season’s Gucci darling!

I also realized it was actually none of my business and if these friends wanted to do that, why not, why should I interfere or express my horror/surprise/fear/betrayal.  After all I’d had my nose done and one could point out how very hypocritical of me to now cast judgement!

Feeling good about ourselves is imperative for us to succeed at whatever route we choose, so a little surgery, filler, laser action who’s to say that’s bad, you’re letting the side down, no one that’s who!

I would love to be one of those women whose genes give them a serene beauty at any age, but I’m not and every time I put my hair up in a towel after washing I think to myself “would a face lift look like this?”

We all do different things for different reasons and sometimes it can be just about your post/zip code, where certain things are the norm.  So far my alterations include my nose reduction, my teeth whitened and of course my long term commitment to my hair colour – who knows about my under eye-bags, it is awfully tempting but fortunately I have 2 significant supporters my fiancé (who, by the way, recommends a boob job) and my accountant who just says No to anything not related to SoffiaB.

So be as Mother Nature intended or grow up old gracefully however you choose, but what’s most important is that whilst it’s lovely to look gorgeous, it’s even better to FEEL fabulous!

With my best wishes - Sophie

Look Gorgeous, Feel Fabulous

P.S.  In case you were wondering James-Oliver (my wee cat above ) has had enhancement surgery of a sort, as a stray he had terrible ear mites and when rescued the fantastic vet did what she could to keep as much of his ears as possible - so he too can feel as good about himself as possible!

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