Category: Loving yourself, surviving a illness, scars,

This Princess has Scars 


I have scars some have been the result of a terrible rare disease that nearly destroyed the right side of my face. I was only 11 years old when this disease without a name suddenly appeared. I was seen by so many top doctors and specialists in NYC and nobody could diagnose what was happening to me.

Running out of options my desperate parents were recommended to see one of most respected innovative Dermotologists name Norman Oreintriech . His client list included Elizabeth Taylor, Andy Wahol , Cary Grant and so many others.


Dr Oreintriech was intimadating when my mother took me to see him for a consultation when I was twelve. He took a look at my face and told my mom “I have    never took on such a young patient, but, I am willing to try to fix the damage done to her face because even though she has terrible scars I can see how beautiful she was and will we be again.” Then he added “Honestly, if I saw no potential and if she was below average looking, I would tell you to not waste your money and your time and just take her home.” I still remember how those words changed my life and how it to be given “HOPE.”

       Dr Norman Orientriech gave me my life back. He slowly filled up face with small monthly amounts of silicone every month. I waited for hours sometimes in his waiting room filled with well dressed very attractive NYC socialite types of women. When I finally saw the doctor he would take photos of my face and inject over 100 or so painful silicone injections into my right upper lip and lower cheek and chin area until the small vial containing the carefully measured monthly amount of silicone was empty.The whole routine took about 5 minutes.  He would barely say anything to me or my mom except “See you next month.”

I teenage years were taken away from me socially. I still had tons of girlfriends who were “True Friends” and never left my side while I was disfiqured. They treated me exactly the same although there lives were all about going to parties and having boyfriends. I wasn’t jealous, I listened to their stories and was happy for them. If somebody in school made fun of me or called me things like “Scarface” and one of my many popular friends were present they would defend me and verbally attack  these few immature mostly male bastards.

Over 100,000 dollars and over a 100 or so monthly trips to Dr. Norman Orientreich , my face was finally almost scar free. The scars I endured battleing this illness emotionally would still haunt me till this day.

I was 22 years old, engaged and well, okay quite beautiful the last time I saw Dr. Norman Orientriech. I was all grown up and Dr. Orientriech looked younger every time I saw him over the past 10 years. He was now developing skin care products for Nuetrogena and Clinique . That day we both decided that I didn’t need any more injections. His job was done and the promise he made my mom and me over 10 years prior came true.

Mr. Orientriech wished me well and hugged me tight and like always he was in a rush to see his next patient but I could see he had tears in his eyes.

That was over 30 years ago.

On this Father’s Day I want to dedicate this post to Dr. Orientriech a dedicated dermotologist who invented so many skin products and procedures years before other top doctors in his field. He is also a loving father. His son David and daughter Catherine are both Dermotologists have their practice in the same NYC office.

I saw David Orientriech a few weeks ago for some touch-up work on my face. He told me that his dad was now retired and 90 years old.

At the end of visit David Orientreich looked at me closely and said to me “I finally know who the girl in the photo still sitting on his father’s desk for so many years is!”

“It’s you!” The girl in the photo was me indeed. What a honor!

Happy Fathers Day Dr. Norman Orientriech ❤️

 

 

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The Swan Princess

Growing up I had a few minor hook-ups mostly when I had a little too much too drink at a club or a party. I basically spent most of my teenage years observing and listening to my popular girlfriends telling me every intimate detail about their boyfriends.
I learned to be a good listener and even offered my advice if they asked me. I wasn’t ever bitter or jealous of my friends who had boyfriends because I knew I my time would come when boys would start to notice me.
The summer before I started college I worked in a camp as a life guard during the day and at night went to many parties where teens from many local north shore camps would meet up in a local club. One night I went with my close friend “Karen” to a small club that somehow survived the post disco era. My friend karen ,who like me had never had a “real” boyfriend , spotted this hunky dark haired guy who really wasn’t my type. She must of caught his attention because he was walking towards us and karen got all excited. OMG she whispered, ” he is so hot and I think he is going to ask me to dance.”
Then he approached us and introduced himself to us. His name was Jeff and he was from Jericho. Then he asked us our names and I let Karen do all the talking. Then the strangest thing happened, Jeff asked me to dance and not Karen. She gave me a nasty look but for the first time in my life I put myself first and spent the rest of the night feeling like a princess at her first ball.
Karen however made quite a few nasty comments about Jeff on the drive home. “He’s never going to call you any way” she said.
That’s was the moment I finally stood up for myself and replied, “It’s not my fault he was more attracted to me than you!”
The next day Jeff came over my house to go swimming in my pool. I answered the door confidently in a white bikini. “WOW! was Jeff’s response.
After years of feeling like a ugly duckling I finally became a swan.

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Mirror Mirror on the Wall

My mother told me more than once I changed everything about myself when I started my first p/t working in a posh upscale north shore boutique.
She was partially right. The two thirty something owners were both tiny, clever and very intimidating. I was totally shocked when “Dina” a size 2 petite brunette hired me after my interview.
Still lacking confidence in myself and my looks, which radically changed through my teens. My facial disease seemed to go into remission when i was about 14 and every month since then I was getting silicone shots to “fix” the damage to my face. Unlike botox and other modern fillers where you see instant results, silicone was administered in very little amounts each month and it took years and over 100,000 dollars until nobody noticed anything was wrong with my face. Everyone but me. Going through the trauma of being told I was going to die by the age of 15. the sheer terror of people staring at me and going through adolescence with a facial deformity was always going to be part of who I was forever. I scars were now almost invisible but I was and still am scared forever.
Sometimes good things come out of very bad experiences. I believe everything happens for a reason.
I learned that “looks” are not what truly make you beautiful. I was a absolutely gorgeous child and even was scouted by Ford Models at age 5 while walking with my dad in NYC.
Suddenly anyone at anytime can lose their “looks” like me. It happens. I depended on my family, friends, my outgoing personality, my love of playing the violin and tennis to get through the hardest years of my life.
Suddenly I realized It was time to look in the mirror again. Ironically I had no choice, the entire store’s walls were completely mirrored, lol.
I guess this was a sign from God that it was time to look to the future and leave the past behind.
That’s exactly what I did…..

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