Local News

Raleigh Woman Decides On Emotional, Physical Makeover

Posted November 4, 2003

— Many people say they have experienced it -- a midlife crisis. For men, a new car may be the therapy of choice. For some women, the answer is sometimes plastic surgery. A Raleigh woman is beginning a journey to rejuvenate herself -- inside and out.

Cheryl Hardy, 53, enjoys tea with her sister -- her older sister, who, thanks to plastic surgery, many people say looks younger.

"Most people say, 'Oh, you must be the older sister.' I've never heard that before," Cheryl said.

Hardy jokes about sibling rivalry, but she is drawn to tears when she thinks about her husband who committed suicide nearly 10 years ago.

"You know, some vestiges are still written on my face from going through that kind of sudden loss," she said.

Hardy said she is now ready to wipe away those vestiges in more ways than one. She moved to a new home, started working part time again, and decided to fix what she calls her emotional and genetic signs of aging.

"We've seen it happen to aunts and grandmothers and I'm really tired of it, and if there's a way to take off that in one day, I'll do it," she said.

Dr. Roger Russell will perform plastic surgery on Hardy -- a $10,000 procedure that is not covered by insurance.

"I thought that she would be a good candidate for a face-lift, a brow-lift to improve the appearance around her eyes and around her lower face and neck," he said.

"I couldn't have done it last year, so this is probably the soonest I could have done this...financially," Hardy said.

Hardy said she knows the cost and the risks, including scarring and infection and knows what Russell is going to do, so now it is just a matter of time.

Once in the operating room, Hardy gets an intraveneous anesthesia, her face is marked and the surgery begins. Seven hours later after undergoing liposuction, a brow-lift to brighten her eyes and a complete face-lift, Hardy is ready to go home.

After two days, the bandages come off. Russell and Hardy get their first look.

WRAL will meet with Hardy again in a couple of weeks and show her makeover after it has had some time to heal. We will also follow Hardy as she undergoes cosmetic dental treatment and perhaps even LASIK eye surgery.


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