We are so pleased to feature Barbara as our a featured patient in our Real Patient Stories video series! Our Real Patient Stories series focuses on candid video testimonials from the patients Dr. Walden has treated in her Austin, Texas cosmetic surgery practice. Real Patient Stories are “in their own words” patient experiences.
Barbara is a 64 year old woman who was seeing the signs of aging when she looked in the mirror. She was concerned with her sagging cheeks, jowls, and neck when she came to meet with Dr. Jennifer Walden. Barbara wanted a conservative and natural appearing facelift, neck lift, and eyelid lift which is what Dr. Walden performed on her, as well as a breast augmentation procedure. To this day, friends still don’t believe Barbara’s age!
Below is Barbara’s story, in her own words:
“I’m Barbara Franklin, I’m 64 and I had an eyelid lift, a breast augmentation, and a facelift…
…I had actually been to a couple of other doctors knowing I really wasn’t ready to do it, but I just wanted a little bit more information on how it was done and the cost. Then I sat down, we started discussing, and I just knew [Dr. Walden] was who I wanted to do my surgery. And the timing was right, I actually was ready to go in when we got done. I said could you do it tomorrow? She [Dr. Walden] said no, but I could probably do it on Friday. So I was in surgery just a couple days later.
I loved the fact that she had worked in New York. A lot of the the, I know everybody says accomplishments, but a lot of the accomplishments she had there, who she worked with, I was very impressed by the biography and the information I had. She’s a woman and I felt like she could relate. What I really liked about the time that I spent with her in consulting as to what I was gonna have done is, I’m in sales, have been all my life, and she wasn’t trying to sell me anything. I think she really listened to what I wanted. She just made me feel very confident in the fact that she was going to do for me what I wanted and not over the top.
I went in knowing that I wanted a facelift, and well no, I didn’t actually know that. I had many friends who had, over a period of a few years, had different procedures done that weren’t surgery. The first time I thought, well that looks pretty good. But when they went back, they all had the same sort of look, and it wasn’t permanent and I wanted something a little more permanent. The women all tend to after they had done a procedure 3 or 4 times with the fillers and the botox take on a very similar appearance and for me I didn’t like that. So when I went to see her [Dr. Walden] I put my finger here and my thumb here and I pushed up, maybe not even half an inch, and I said Dr. Walden, this is what I’d like it to look like. She said I could do that, but there’s only one procedure that will work for that, and that is a facelift. I think in the back of my mind I knew that, but I trusted exactly what she told me. The way that I explained it was that your born with the framework and the bones. Over the years gravity takes hold and it [your face] drops some. I wanted to see my own structure again, which was me. All I wanted was that bit of a lift so that my frame was my frame, and it was my natural frame.
Another thing that really impressed me about the research I did with her was that was she’s known for a natural looking facelift. We’ve all seen pictures and maybe even know women who have them, and they don’t look natural. I think the thing that impressed me about Dr. Walden is she didn’t turn our consultation, she didn’t sugar coat anything, she didn’t try to upsell me on anything, she just really listened to what I wanted as my end result and gave me the options to choose from that would get me there.
All of a sudden it’s like I’m going under why not have it all done? So we talked about that. I’d always been an A and I had to children so up until a year and a half ago, maybe two years, I liked they way I looked. They were firm and they were little, but pretty and I liked it. Then I told her, gosh, over the last six months something has happened. They’re are just not full and I did not want something that didn’t feel natural to me. You know, if could be a full B i’d be happy with that. So, she gave me before and after pictures to look at. I went home and I didn’t really find anything for me that was just right. So her assistant told me, maybe she told me the day I was in there, she said just go to any website, any book, whatever and find something that you like and go ahead and email it to Lauren. I had about 3 photos and 2 days later when I came in for surgery I saw them blown up. Dr. Walden said I see what you like and I could definitely do that. I don’t know why this takes the cherry, but I went in on my second or third week when I went back into to see her. She is very business like, she has her Doctor coat and I don’t know her as a personal friend. I think I kinda took her off guard, but I kinda gave in and I gave her a hug, a teary hug and I said there are plastic surgeons, but you are an artist.
She really did give me everything that I had asked for. Not so much that it was drastic, that anybody else goes you know, oh what did you do? For me, I’m still really active at 64, and I feel young at heart, and I just didn’t feel like I was looking that way anymore. It gave me a lot of self confidence. As far as the facelift goes I think my timing was perfect for that. But with the breast augmentation, I kept looking in the mirror, saying why didn’t I do this before? The timing was just right.
You know, when you hit a certain age you kind maintain for a while and then, all of a sudden, over a period of a year or two, there are more drastic changes. I think that also, just looking at pictures the year prior, I really started to notice the sagging and it was catching up in a hurry and it happened over a frequent period of time. Now I look at pictures and I think wow, what a difference. It really took about 10 or 15 years off. I think the biggest compliment to her is when you have it done, it really does look natural. You do look younger, but people who don’t know you very well just think you look fabulous for your age. Or people who do know you think, oh my goodness, you just look so rested and happy.
I was at a Christmas party just a couple nights ago and we were seated at a table where I didn’t know anybody. Our hostess was so great, she tried to pair people up with similar interests. There was a couple there our age. They got to talking about medical insurance and turning 65. The gentlemen said I can’t wait, this year I get free medical, meaning medicare I guess, and I said oh my gosh I can’t wait either I get one more year. Then both he and his wife goes you’re kidding. It kind of took me off guard, I said no. He said no, you can’t be 64. I just thought Dr. Walden, I look back and I’m grateful I picked her to do my surgery. I am so pleased with it. I would do it again in heartbeat.”
Thank you, Barbara, for sharing your amazing story with us!