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Linda Briggs  Cosmetic Surgery & Dentistry in Budapest Hungary
My Cosmetic Surgery in Hungary :: with Linda Briggs
2nd February 2009

 

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A face lift in Budapest, Hungary in Real People Magazine

A Face lift in Budapest in Real People Magazine

   

 

 

Kyra thought her biggest problem with her hair was how to wear it on her big day
Thumbing through a bridal magazine with my daughter, Rachel, 18, I felt spoilt for choice.  In just over six months, I'd be marrying Joe* (name changed), 33, in the town hall in the beautiful Maltese capital of Valletta.  We'd chosen it for its warm and romantic location.

Gazing in the mirror, I played with my long strawberry-blonde hair.  'Should I wear it up or down?' I asked Rachel.  'Mum, you've asked me that so many times,' she laughed.  'You have beautiful hair. It'd look best up, with a tiara.'  I'd met Joe four years earlier in 1999, at the parcel delivery company we both worked at.  I was a line supervisor.

The attraction was instant -and mutual.  Whenever I was near him, I felt like I'd been plugged in at the mains.  Within weeks, we were spending every spare moment together.  We soon decided to rent a one-bedroom flat in Huddersfield.  And, nearly two years after we'd started dating, Joe said, 'I want to spend the rest of my life with you, Kyra. Let's get married!'

Ecstatic, I agreed, and he pulled a beautiful diamond engagement ring out of its box.  I think I'd prefer a small, intimate affair,' Joe said. 'Just the two of us.'  'Let's get married abroad,'  I suggested. 'Somewhere hot'

After saving hard for two years, we finally had the £5,000 we needed to pay for everything. So, we booked the service for 15 August 2005.  Next, we bought our air fares.  We didn't invite any guests.  Instead, we planned to pull a couple of witnesses in off the street.  We decided to choose a hotel nearer the time.

I'd been married before, to Rachel's father, Jim*(name changed), but it didn't work out  This time, though, I knew it was for keeps.  But the preparations started getting to Joe.  'You're doing my head in, Kyra,' he moaned one day in February 2005.  'All you talk about these days is dresses and flowers!'  'I'm just looking forward to the wedding,' I protested.  'Well, I've had enough of if he snapped.

My heart lurched. It was so out of the blue.   From then on, Joe started going to the pub after work, leaving me sitting at home alone.  Feeling wretched, I'd text him every evening, but he wouldn't reply.  When he came home -mostly late - he'd flop into bed without a word.  Making love wasn't on the agenda, either, even though our sex life had been amazing before.  I was sure he was up to no good... But I had no proof.  Then, at the end of that month, he announced, 'I just don't love you any more.'  Despite my tears and pleading, he packed his bags and left.  Shortly afterwards, I found out that he was seeing a barmaid from the pub.  I sobbed until I had no tears left.

Rachel tried to console me, but I was heartbroken.  'He got cold feet,'I wailed.  For weeks, I was unable to eat or sleep properly.  Joe left his job, so at least I managed to avoid bumping into him at work.  Within four months, I'd lost 2st and had shrunk from a size 12 to an eight.  Even my beautiful hair looked lank and lacklustre.  By August, the month we'd planned to marry I was a self-pitying mess.

One night, I came home from work and ran a bath.  Yanking the elastic hairband from my pony tail, it came away knotted with strands of blonde hair.  Sinking into the warm water, I reflected on my miserable life.  Then, as I towelled myself dry, I noticed more wet strands of hair plastered against the enamel where my head had been resting. 'That's strange,' I thought.  Over the next few days, I noticed more hair loss.

At first it was a handful of strands on my pillow.  Then more hair than usual, knotted around my hairbrush.  Then it became more obvious - huge lumps blocking the plughole in the shower and thick tufts lying on the carpet.  Panicking, I went to the doctor, who said it would probably grow back.  But within weeks, the bald patches had grown and actually joined together as one. I'd lost all my hair.

After being forced to wear scarves to cover my bald head, the doctor referred me to Huddersfield Hospital.  Tests revealed I had stress-related alopecia, a skin disorder that caused hair loss.  'There's a chance it will grow back,' the consultant said.  'But I'm afraid there are no guarantees.'  Weeks later, I was applying mascara when I had another shock.  My eyelashes were falling out' 'Oh, God; I cried.  Soon, I'd lost every hair on my body - even my nasal hair.

'At least I needn't worry about shaving my legs,' I joked to Rachel.  But inside I was crying.  My face was like a blank canvas - it was as if someone had rubbed me out.  I tried to make the best of myself, getting eyebrows tattooed on and wearing false eyelashes and a long, blonde wig.  But I didn't feel like me.  It was several months before I had the courage to join the girls from work on a night out  There, I spotted a gorgeous bloke standing at the bar.  He had dark hair and twinkly blue eyes.  We chatted all night and, at the end of the evening, he asked me out on a date.  But a few nights later, when we met in a pub, I confessed.  T-there's something I have to tell you...' I stuttered.  'I wear a wig.  I lost all I my hair. I hope that doesn't bother you.'  His face fell.  I'll need time to think about it, he replied.  'Well, take the rest of your life,' I snapped, storming out

That night, I sobbed myself to sleep.  My confidence was at rock bottom.  'I just want to feel like a woman again,' I thought miserably.  Two years passed, and I tried to get used to my new look.  But it was difficult  In the summer, my wig felt unbearably hot and sweaty  'People will have to get used to me like this,' I told my bald reflection defiantly.  But nothing prepared me for the stares and sniggers whenever I ventured out without it.

One evening, I was at home when I heard a couple arguing loudly on the balcony below.  'Can you keep the noise down?' I pleaded, poking my head out of the window.  'Mind your own business, you bald cow!' yelled the woman.  I turned back into the room, tears stinging my face.  Looking in the mirror that night with my saggy chin, droopy eyelids and bald head, I looked 72, not 52.

The next morning, I went online and found a website advising people who wanted cosmetic surgery  I called the number and spoke to a woman called Linda.  'I want to look like me again,' I said.  Linda explained that an ordinary face-lift was out of the question because the scars are hidden along the hairline - and I didn't have one.  But she put me in touch with a surgeon in Budapest, Hungary who'd developed a technique to hide any tell-tale marks behind the ears.  I could have a face- and neck-lift and an upper and lower eye job for £4,600 - half the price of the same procedure in the UK.

I paid for it on my credit card there and then.  It was a lot of money, but I planned to put £400 a month from my earnings at the mailing company aside to pay it off .   I flew out on 8 June last year by myself, and was wheeled into theatre the next day.  During the four-hour op, the surgeon cut around my ear and pulled up the saggy skin around my neck. She tucked it behind my earlobes and tightened the skin across my cheekbones.  Then she removed the flabby flesh from my eyelids.

When I came round, my face was throbbing and felt horribly tight.  Had it worked?  Five days later, the bandages came off, and the row of staples behind each ear were removed.  'It's amazing!' I said, choked.  Despite the bruising, my face looked younger and firmer.  'Mum!' Rachel beamed when I got back to Huddersfield.  'You look 20 years younger!'  Walking back into the office a few days later, I wasn't sure if anyone would notice. But everyone did a double-take.  'Wow,' one male colleague cooed. 'You look stunning.  What have you had done?'  No one could believe the difference.

Its now been eight months since the op, and I'm still on a high.  It's really boosted my confidence.  I've had my blonde wig cut into trendy layers, and I'm enjoying experimenting with new make-up.  Then, last week, I was walking down the street when some builders wolf-whistled at me 'Oi, oi, blondie!' they shouted.  'Sexy lady!'  It was cheeky of them, but it did give me a lift.  I'm not sure if, or when, my hair will grow back.  But I've decided not to worry about it.  'Life's too short, Mum,' Rachel tells me. 'You're already fending men off with a stick!  What more could you want?'  She's right of course.  I should be happy with what I've got now.  Besides, my credit card still needs paying off, so expensive holidays, clothes and further beauty treatments are out of the question anyway!  Having a new face is enough to satisfy me.  At last, I feel like a real woman again. And now I know that whatever life throws at me, I will survive!

Kyra Newton, 53, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire

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