48 YO, 2 Kids, TT W/ MR and Lipo to Hips and BL

I went for a consult on 7/14/14 for what I guessed...

I went for a consult on 7/14/14 for what I guessed would be a BR. Everything has been moving very quickly since then.

First, some background. I've been married 24 years to my wonderful husband. He loves me for who I am, and tells me I'm perfect the way I am. He also supports my decisions. I also have two great boys, 19 and 15. The had them both vaginally. Well, the first one weighed 10 lb, 10 oz and the second one shot out and a mere 10 lbs. (haha). I also gained & lost about 50-60 lbs with each them.

So fast forwarding, I am left with very saggy breasts and a pooch for a tummy. I got serious about getting fit two years ago. I exercise with a trainer 3x/week (weight training & cardio) plus cardio or yoga an additional 2x/week. I'm 5'6" and 151. I am trying to eat clean and lose another 3 lbs before surgery. I'm working out more to get in better shape to make my surgeon's job and my recovery easier. I'm obsessed with reading everyone's stories, so I am prepared.

At my consult, the doctor told me a BL was more appropriate than a BR. Although I wear a 34DD bra now, most of my volume is excess skin! A BL would leave me small D cup, maybe even a full C cup. While I was there, I asked about my tummy (thinking it was hard-to-get-rid-of fat). He told me it was extra skin and it was quite obvious that I had muscle separation that could only be repaired through surgery. I've had chronic shoulder and lower back pain. My Dr. believes it will be resolved with the surgery (fixing abs & reducing breast volume/pulling). It took me a few days to think through the information & talk with a few friends who I knew had been through the surgery (one with the same doctor). The final decision is really about me being in "fix-it mode". I'm only 48, so why not make my body function properly and be happy with with how I look? So, my surgery is scheduled for 8/28.

Looking forward to the little things...

I'm looking forward to the little things:
- No more bra marks digging into my shoulders
- No more breast pain after running
- Not having to use talc under my breasts to avoid sweating
- Not having my underwear roll done below my tummy pooch

Geez, and that was just after the gym this morning! I'm so excited! Moving forward...

Life is Good

So the new recliner was delivered (see pic). My husband has always wanted one. I always envisioned the the one my MIL had. Ick. No way. Not in my house. So... When I read RS suggestions about getting one on Craigslist, I thought that was the perfect, TEMPORARY solution. Then I could sell it later. haha. Well, marital compromise had us shopping away that weekend. Win-Win.

So, as I was working out yesterday, I was annoyed with the jiggly roll under my arm that was above my bra. I'm going to ask my PS to lipo it. My back is pretty buff, but what's with that hideous flab roll? Moo.

Pre Op

My Pre Op went well. PS and his PA were patient in answering all my questions. PS amuses me. You can tell he pictures surgery & outcome when he looks at me. His enthusiasm is infectious!

Surprisingly, I do not wear a binder until my drains are removed. The logic is they don't want anything to interfere with the drain sites (that's the priority). Did anyone else experience this? Also, I will have four drains: one in each breast (surprise!) and two for the abdomen.

I asked about the lipo on the jiggly underarm area. PS said it would most likely be addressed with BL, but if not lipo it is. The camera lady was amused because she said there was nothing to take a picture of. I offered to put my bra on. haha. I may be over-analyzing, but want to get it right the first time.

More info (measurements):
Bust 39.5" (wearing great support bra)
Under bust 33"
Waist 35"
Hips 40.5"

Thanks for the encouragement!

Relieved...

I called the office this morning to confirm if I would be in a binder coming home. The answer was absolutely yes! My midsection would have a binder and my breasts will be taped and bound. Ok, I feel MUCH better!! Thank you, 5lbHatchelFlax, for nudging me to ask again. I have no idea what his PA thought I was asking, but at least all is well now.

Mental Support

I've got great friends! When I decided to do this surgery only a few weeks ago, I decided quickly and was ready to tell everybody. Shortly afterwards, I had gotten a somewhat negative reaction. While I like to think I don't care what people think, this reaction came from a good friend of mine, whose hand I held during cancer. So, why wasn't she being supportive? It stung.

Since then, I've been selective to whom I've told about the surgery. I want to surround myself my positive people. Everyone has been fantastic! I am a lucky girl.

It's hard to explain this surgery to someone, because it is physical and emotional. The reason I was able to quickly decide to do it is because i want to correct the things I cannot fix myself (abdominal muscle repair) and I want to be a better and fit me. It is not to be instant sexy, nor is it for weight loss. It is to please me alone. Does that make sense?

It's the Little Things

I can't tell you how excited I am over the possibility of wearing a cami or even my new Victoria Secret nightgown (in Pic). The nightie is sooo soft and such a lightweight fabric that you can see how ridiculous my breasts sag and my nipples head south. Image how great it will look after the BL!! I never wear a cami and rarely a tank top because it is so hard to find some that are cut to hide a huge support bra. Oh, it's the little things that make me happy.

My husband loves the new recliner! It might have his butt dent by the time I need it. haha

My girlfriend recommended buying a Home Depot apron ($0.77). It carries all the drains regardless of wardrobe and no pinning. For the price, I added it to the collection of supplies.

I have my prescriptions filled:
Ativan - anti anxiety (just in case)
Keflex - antibiotic
Robaxin - muscle relaxer
Zofran - anti nausea
Percocet - pain killer

The Extras

I have the majority of supplies now. Today I added a few of the extras. I booked my massage for 8/25 with my favorite person, 3 days before surgery. I bought two coconut waters to try. I also bought Cold-Eze. (My oldest son had a fever today and I'm paranoid. I'm spraying Lysol every time he moves!)

I pray for no migraines after Thursday (14 day mark), as extra strength Tylenol isn't my go to medicine.

At the gym this morning, I thought about how blessed I am to be able to do this for myself now. I am healthy and fit, and I have support from my husband, a few close friends and my RS family. Yeah me!

Mirror, Mirror

The primary reason I decided to have this surgery was to fix the things I cannot fix myself, especially the muscle repair. Yet I cannot help but wonder if I will truly ever like my body. Maybe it's because I've spent more years being unhappy and self conscious with how my body looked.
How do you retrain your mind to focus on the positive? Recently, my trainer pointed out my hard-earned triceps . Huh. I hadn't noticed them. I am, however, acutely aware of how my breasts hang down to by elbows.

So, I'm hoping that without the large quantities of excess skin, I will begin to notice the positives. Right now, even after losing weight, I just see a lumpy (albeit smaller) me. Mirror, mirror...

The Difference a Year Makes

As many of you on this journey can relate, it's the year of 'me'! Finally, doing something for me. Putting myself together again. Only better!

This time last year, I was in a very, very dark place, as I was sending my first-born off to college. As I was learning to identify with my new role, it was then that I realized I needed to do more for just me. After all how can I make others happy if I am not happy? I plunged back into fitness twice as hard this spring. I do feel good AFTER exercise. haha

What a difference a year makes. We just moved Boy Wonder back into the dorm. This year, I'm good. Evolved. Now, I've got my big girl panties on. Soon enough, maybe I'll even be sporting bikini bottoms!!

Tick, Tock

One more week to the flat side!! It's hard not to watch the clock. It's hard not to look in every mirror I pass by. I close my eyes and try to envision my new body. No can do. I can't even squish in my tummy, suck in my belly, hold up my chest, squint really hard and picture my new body. I need to be patient. Oh my, it's hard.

Good news. I'm back down to 147 lbs. My goal for surgery. I've been doing my happy dance all day!

Finally, I've decided I can live with Vita Coco Lemonade, a lemon flavored coconut water. In mid July, when I decided to proceed with the surgery, I also gave up all soda and salt. This was huge, as my occasional treat was the really salty almonds. Also, I was a Diet Mountain Dew addict. Hey, don't judge... Some people drink coffee, I had my Dew. Anyway, 6 weeks cold turkey and I hate to admit it, but I feel great. Not even a sip of soda! Only water. So, the lemonade vita coco is actually too sweet for me and it have to water it down. Whoa. Who am I?

Nesting and Packing

My house is now spotless and I have 5 days to go! Granted, I have family visiting this weekend, but was it necessary to dust the top of the laundry room cabinets? Someone stop me! My friend left me a voicemail yesterday and also told me to get off the darn treadmill. I was actually outside playing with the dog (because I had just gotten back from the gym). haha

Question of the day: If you stayed overnight in a hospital or surgery center, what did you pack?? Thx

Calmer Waters

Our weekend visitors have left, the washing machine has being running at full tilt for the last 24 hours and is on its last load, the house is clean again thanks to a cleaning service (I cheated and it felt great, haha), overnight bag is partially packed, I got it in my full workout today (felt good after a sluggish weekend off), and most importantly, I had a massage today! Man, what a great idea that was! Regardless of the bruising, it helped relax me again after a crazy weekend. Now just moving supplies to counter tops, so I don't have to bend or reach for stuff I know I'll need.

I got my period today. Oh joy. I actually have it every two weeks. I've been hormonally-challenged, haha, for the last 10 years or so. I had a cryo ablation a few years ago. It helped minimize it a bit. I'm also on two hormones (HRT) to keep migraines at bay. TMUI? Anyway, I hope it stops by Thursday!

I don't feel nervous. I have Xanax if I get anxious. Only sign of nerves is I'm not eating quite enough calories. At least I'm aware of it. Partially, it's because I'm obsessed with only eating uber good things and partly I've been over scheduling myself. So, today I've been packing protein bars for a little extra.

Almost there!!! Yippee!

Last Day Old Me

Enjoying the "lasts" today. Last long run, stretching, arranging everything just so, looking at the old me!

I took my dog (15 months) for boarding (until drains are out). I'll miss her kisses, but she's a spaz.

I've been taking my arnica and stool softener since yesterday. Went to the grocery store and loaded up on last minute fresh fruit and veges, including pineapple.

Arrival time tomorrow is 6:30 am. Ready!

Game On!

About to head out the door. I'm squeaky clean and raring to go! Thanks for all of the kind words, prayers, good vibes and positive messages!!!!

I have my iPad and my reading glasses, haha, packed. See you on the flat side!

Mission Accomplished!

I made it to the flat side! It's amazing! Got a sneak peek on a bathroom run, the nurse made the comment "don't worry, you're re swollen". ha! I'm flatter than a pancake! I cannot imagine not swollen!

Definitely need to keep on top of pain meds and muscle relaxers. I can overwhelmingly tell when they are needed. So, getting in & out of bed is getting easier with each attempt, which is often from IV and drinking so much water. Getting into bed is much harder than getting out. Getting feet/legs up without twisting is what I need to figure out. I'm looking forward to my recliner!

My lipo stick is right above my tailbone and is very tender. it's leaked blood like a sieve every time I stood. I'm talking puddles on the floor. My poor husband was about to lose it. The nurses eventually put a huge bandage over it to provide pressure. Definitely glad i bought the disposable bed pads (24"x36"). I am very bruised on my flanks from Lipo. Makes getting up and down that much more of a challenge. Everything is bearable if done extremely slowly. It's nice to have my husband there for a hand to grab onto, but he can't pull, I need to push, then it doesn't hurt. Glad leg muscles are strong!

When I woke up in recovery I wasn't in pain, but I was having muscle spasms in the center upper abdominal region. Since I was just waking up, it caused my whole body to tense up. Solution was to get a stress ball. That gave me something to focus on squeezing to relax the rest of my body. The muscle relaxers are just as important, if not more, than pain killers. So the PS told me I had about a 2" muscle separation all the way up in upper abdominals. That surprised me, as I thought just lower abs were the problem. Nurse told me later that they were sutured tightly and stapled. Ewwww.

I have 4 drains. Two in abdomen and 2 in breasts. No CG or binder, that comes later. Once drains are less than 30 cc/day they can come out. So breast drains will most likely be on Tuesday, as they are not filling up much now.

I haven't looked much at incision, as I am just glad to make it to the bathroom at this point, haha. I just got home an hour ago. Feels good!! Love the recliner. So much easier to get in than a bed. No twisting or turning required.

I'm also glad I brought protein bars and powder to surgery center. Surprisingly, the only had things like saltines, applesauce and jello. I only got a little nauseous when preparing to leave, since standing and sitting so long. Took a Zofran for the ride home and also ate 1/2 protein bar. Drive was fine.

I have a little but of a fat lip. Must have been from anesthesia or in recovery. Don't remember getting it. At least I look tough now, haha. Coughing is painful even holding pillow to stomach. I coughed up flem yesterday, but seems to be all gone now. Lungs are clear and I can take deeper breaths.

My husband is doing great. Rising to the challenge. Everyone was a bit skeptical yesterday as he took in the reality of the incision, drains, seepage from lipo, etc. poor guy, I know he hates to see me hurting. Nurses warned me 3rd day (tomorrow) is the worst, as everything is more tender and sore. At least I am home!!

Oh, I hate the granny panties. They are too irritating with all the bruising. It's easier to go commando with big sweatpants or shorts.

I think that's it. Thanks again for all the prayers and well wishes! Will get some pics in the next few days as I gather strength. Upward and forward!! Love and hugs.

POD1 pics

Hump Day

Made it through the worst of it, I think. Today, I slept a lot. I could hardly keep my eyes open. My strength was waivering and I was nauceous (even with zofran). So, the solutions were to try and snooze as much as possible, have my hubby support my physically (he hold his hands on the center of my back and neck) when I was getting up and down, and I stopped the oxycodone after 9:00 this morning. I took Tylenol extra strength at next pain time. Still fighting nausea (and starting to panic for fear of vomiting) I took an Xanax (anti-anxiety) to calm me down. We finally called the PS to get another prescription (Vicodin) for bedtime and asked If I could up the dose age on Tylenol during the day. PS said I could now take ibuprofen (which would also help with swelling). So will do Vicodin & muscle relaxers at bedtime for good sleep and ibuprofen during day. I am a warrior! Also tried eating more substantial foods today to fight nausea. I was feeling much better tonight. One day at a time.

Today's surprise

Anybody have this? (See pic). It looks like any enormous blister on my hip where bruising is from
Lipo. It's not next to incision. Holy cow . My husband has a call into the PS.

POD 4.. Goals Accomplished... boom!

Woke up at 7, but held in my pee until 8 until my husband woke up, since I woke him up twice last night. I started my day with my first shower! It felt nice. My husband stood near me as I sat on the built-in bench. I used a hand sprayer to minimize soaking my incision tape. I washed my hair (yeah), no problems reaching with BL. Hubby washed what I couldn't easily reach. Toweled off with two hand towels to be more careful of drains and tapes. I was tired. It was about an hour before I was re-gauzed and comfortably back in my recliner.

Ate breakfast, talked with my college son, watched TV, ate lunch and napped. Then I adventured down the stairs and walked around on the main level. Tried sitting in on the couch. No can do. Too low and caused major pain in incision. So I am still in recliner (an helpless once in it).

A few things of note:
I don't like toilet riser; it's too tall. Prefer regular toilet and use walker to get up and down. Easy peasy.
Walker is great. Almost necessary first day home, but I have a really long walk to my bathroom. I could prob get away with not using it now, but I use it to pull up when getting out of recliner and at beginning of laps until I find my sea legs. It gives me reassurance, even tho hubby is nearby.
If you're having lipo, you need bed pee pads (I got at Walgreens). They are 24"x36". My husband didn't think bloody seepage would ever stop (although paperwork said 1-3 days). It stopped beginning of POD 4. It was a LOT of drainage at first (every time you stand) and got better every day, but you can't wear a bandage so you literally had to hold a gauze will you walk a have a pee pad on chair/bed to it doesn't get ruined. Pad got changed every time I got up to pee (2-3 hrs).

Will call nurse in morning. All drains less than 30 cc/day (I think less than 15), so tomorrow will hopefully be drain removal day. Yippee.

So, upward and forward... Until tomorrow beautiful peeps...

The Sun Will Come Out Tmr

I pooped!!!! My husband just said he hasn't seen me smile so big in a long time. Dang, over poop too!

Ok, moving on, I did check myself out a bit in the mirror. Actually, not too bruised. Spots here and there. The worst is the purple red bruising on my waist/hips (both sides) from lipo. That explains why I refuse to wear underwear or pants, regardless how big. Anything that remotely rubs on my waist just plain hurts. Plus the lovely blister, same size, but not too bad. I have a bluefish black bruise on my right breast by my nipple, but it's mostly covered with tape (by sutures). I'm flat but seem wider in hips and waist from swelling.

My friend went to Kohls to get me a snap front housecoat/moo moo to wear to dr office tomorrow (hopefully all drains out) baggy = comfortable and I probably should not go out in public in a bathrobe and no undies, haha!

Drains Be Gone!

All 4 drains were removed at 10:00 am! Life is good.

The stress of making sure you don't yank on one if them is a bit overwhelming. As my husband was helping me assemble (pin) my drain necklace in preparation for a wardrobe change for the PS office, he dropped a tummy drain!! Holy crap, thank goodness the drain cord was long enough and it hit the floor (I was standing). We both look horrified and what 'might have been'. Needless-to-say, a choice word escaped.

The drains did not hurt at all coming out and it was super quick. To be fair, getting the sutures out wasn't as pleasant as I had begun to heal over them in only 5 days! Ewww. But 'Captain Prepared' had taken a hydrocodone AND and anxiety (Xanax) before leaving for the dr. That helped immensely plus a short deep breathing break between sides.

Then we showed the nurse my blister. Now it is downright amusing. When you tell someone you have a humungous blister , no one expects this. So she tried to hide her reaction, which I just find funny now. Hey, this is minor after all. Anyway, she goes to get a PA for a consult. Haha. She was more subdued in her reaction, but still wow'ed. She bet it would pop today. Again, ewww. Said she'd lightly tape it with gauze in case it popped but no worries. Wait 24 hrs before showering, no neosporin, just gauze to protect.
Well, it partially popped on the way home. And again since then. Now it's about 1/2 the size. Lots of fluid!

Oh, did I mention all 4 drains are out??!!! Man, I do have more energy. I walked a lot more inside today. Almost an hour! Nurse said to make sure I rest too. Going to nap soon.

See PS (actual dr) tmr at 2:45.

Btw, nurse said anti-nausea pills (zofran) can cause constipation. Go figure.

Dead Puppies

I was reading stupid things online and starting laughing, hard. Oh man. Dead puppies, dead puppies! Isn't that what you learned in Fine Arts class in school... to evoke an emotion think of something that make you feel that way. I was going for sadness. Anything to stop laughing and the spasms in my abs. Whoa.

Back to see the doctor today. Not sure what to expect. I prefer no touching. Afraid I'll smack him out of reflex. That would be bad, haha.

My mom is keeping me company today, as hubby is working.

Have a great day!

First PS Follow-Up appt

Appt went well! I attached a pic of my hideous moo-moo in 1x. Hey, it's what they had, it's ridiculously comfortable, and it's great for hot flashes! My husband got a kick out of the rest of the patients/ spouses trying to pretend they weren't staring at me. Yes, waiting room chairs stink on a good day, so I stood some, because it's more comfortable, but you know everyone wanted to just ask me what I had done & where I was in recovery. haha.

Anyway, nurse took off tape from incisions, PS came in and looked me over, answered some questions, welcomed us to call him anytime (we called him twice over holiday weekend), got the two thumbs up, nurse re taped incisions and I was done.

I am attaching some pics finally. These were at 4:30 today after being on my feet all afternoon, so I'm very swollen. I feel it, but it's most obvious in pics in my lower back/hip area, making my butt look funny. We talked about CG today. I go straight to a spanx type garment, but PS said wait til next Wednesday for evaluation when I get re-taped. Normally, I'd start now, but since sooo bruised on hips from lipo on both sides with blisters (and big blister) on left side, he wants to give that time to heal first. The CG would help reduce swelling faster, but no harm if wait a bit, as the rest is more important. Same with bra. Get sports bra, but hold off a bit on wearing until sutures aren't so raw. Just keep everything dry. I've been sweating under my boobs, so I need to wear guaze and change as necessary if I don't feel it's dry. Prevent yeast infection. Boobs are still big. Nipples still point a little downward. PS said he does on purpose with a BL, because the rise with healing. He didn't want them pointing at ceiling at then end. Huh, who knew? I thought my boobs were too far gone and I was still a little too hunchback. Live and learn.

Overall, doing well. Walked even more inside today. Took 2nd shower when I got home all by myself. I'm a big girl now!

CG

I'm overwhelmed trying to decide on what CGs to buy. I need something for next week. PS said it can be any brand (Spanx, Assets, Maidenform, etc), it could even be just under armour. I can chose high waist or reg waist. I asked about sizing and they said get something fairly comfortable, not horribly tight, try them on. Ooookkay, that leaves my options open. Help!

What is your favorite? What's the easiest to get on and off (I always have to pee and the bruises are healing slowly)? Thank you!!

Baby Bird likes her Nest

Today was my first adventure out into the real world (besides the PS office). Hubby took me to Target. I lasted about 15 min. The noise, lack of energy, fear of being bonked, etc was a little overwhelming, let alone it's hot outside in Atlanta! So I got one CG and left. Then made a trip to Walgreens to return some supplies I never used. That did me in. So sad.

Anyway, I have a list of continued improvements & milestones:
- I finally shaved legs today.
- I put on real clothes (T-shirt, short, stretchy compressive tank, and UNDERWEAR) for my outing
- I put on socks and sneakers all by myself
- I got in & out of the car all by myself ( 3 days ago I couldn't raise my right leg into the car). Go me!!
- I continue to bend at waist easier (as I do laundry with front loader). I try not to cheat using grabber or squatting. Hubby likes that I'm back on laundry duty.
- Climb the stairs at least 10x/day (motivation: laundry is upstairs, so is my arnica, haha)
- don't feel guilty wearing nightie all day ; skin is healing (blister finally deflated, now just need to heal)
- underwear wasn't horrible if I wore it over compression tank
- tummy super tight and sore above BB... Provides constant motivation to eat right and drink lots of water and MOVE.
- lost about 2.5 lbs since surgery which doesn't seem possible since I'm super swollen AND I eat like 8x/day (healthy toddler meals)
- I love online shopping even more now. It helps on many levels.
- Recliners are good, if I'm comfortable (I tried the bed for 2 hours last and it was not pretty; my back really paid for it the next 12 hours in the spot where the lipo needle was used. Too much direct pressure.) Patience wins.

Upcoming decisions:
- When to try driving (meds not an issue, but seating comfort is an issue)
- when to being the puppy home (I planned for a 10 day boarding, which means we need to get her on Monday or....)

Patience, I will learn it yet!

Veni, Vidi, Vici

I have mastered the recliner!! I can now get in and out of the (non-power lift) recliner all by myself. Freedom! So now my husband can sleep through the night AND not do laundry. Whoa. haha

The Nike Fuelband has also been slapped back on. Time to start moving more and being accountable. I am not so sure it's super accurate at my slo-mo rate, but it's a start!

Puppy has also returned! Happy day.

Observations

Making notes for my 2 week PO appt on Wed with PS.
- I have a painful bump in my vein a few inches from where my IV was... Googled it and I don't think it's any big deal, but I'm open to suggestions on how to relieve discomfort
- blister has drained & scabbed; bruises slowly healing... Was going to ask permission for arnica gel or creams for itchiness (I know he prefers nada)
- worst bruise, right side near end if incision is still purple/red
- noticed a hard lump on right waist... Probably from lipo? It's very tender!
- I walk like an ape after 5 pm
- I always feel very swollen & uncomfortable ABOVE my BB. This is also the area (upper abs) that I had the most muscle spasms from MR (waistbands are uncomfortable)
- It's very uncomfortable to sit in a normal chair. I need to recline some. I think it has to do with upper belly swelling.
- my boobs are rising and swelling is decreasing
- I have feeling in my nipples (you remember that bad breast feeding latch?, yeah that one...) I guess it's better than losing feeling
- I had my 4th migraine today since surgery. Boo. What's that about? I'm thankful it's post surgery when I can take meds again!
- my silly Fuelband only records about 1/3 of my steps at my slow pace (I am so bored, I started counting!)
- it's feels sooo good to finally be bored and healing!!

Thanks to everyone in this supportive community!!

Not Bionic, Patient

Tomorrow marks POW2!! Also, patience is a virtue. No joke. Each day is better, each week is exponentially better; however, somehow I expect to be bionic. Patience!!

Today was my check-up with the PS. I'm healing well. Tapes came off for a two week break. I have some blisters on my incisions where it has been taped, so now it's supposed to air. In two weeks, I go back and get checked out again and I think re-taped. The bruises are getting better. Incisions are prickly and sore tonight since it's the first time they've been exposed. I'm going to need Ibuprofen soon. Knot in IV vein will probably take 6 months to resolve. Warm compresses for discomfort. My hand and wrist are just as bruised as body; PS didn't seem too pleased with that. I think it's only bothering me because I rely on my arms so much now for getting up and down from chairs & my wrist is very tender. Boo.

Overall, I am stronger, more energetic, and getting more confident with how much I can do. Sitting in a regular chair is a challenge for any length of time. I prefer my recliner or standing/ walking. I stand sort of straight, but by 5 pm, I walk like an ape. I putter around my house until I feel like I'm panting, go 5 min more, then rest. I manage about 5000 steps; Not too bad, considering I don't like leaving my house.

My goals this week will be to start driving, attempt laying in bed again, and find a CG I like and can live with.

Happy Healing peeps!

POW2 Pics

Here's updated pics. My tummy incision is very low.

My waist is measuring the 34" (was 35) in the morning before major swelling takes over, hips 39" (was 40.5). That's nice, because I know it'll only get better. I am swollen and have not worn a CG at all yet! I am 5'6" and now weigh 143 (was 147). That blows my mind, as I eat baby meals non-stop... Especially now that I can get out if the chair by myself, haha! Healthy eating pays off!! My indulgence these days are grapes. Geez Louise.

Random Thoughts & Progress

I drove for the first time today. I took my son to school, 10 min away. It was ok! Note to self: The speed bumps on campus need to be avoided.

I have also spent the last two nights in bed. Wed night was pretty restless. Last night, I wore my new skinnygirl boy shorts (thank you Chiklet) and I actually slept for a four hour stretch. That's about as good as it gets for me at one crack (even prior to sx). Got up and peed and slept for another 3 hours. Wow, sleep is under-rated. I sooo needed it. Now, I'm wondering if the CG had a hand in it. Since yesterday was my first day with one, it's likely. It hurts on the bruised areas a bit, especially my upper abs, where I had the majority of muscle spasms from MR, but I'm getting used to it. The support/stability is amazing. I can see why everyone calls them their security blanket. Sometimes I hold it out though, so I can breath and my abs catch a break. Even my fav yoga pants feel constricting now. That's how tender my abs are....

Anyhoo, I am also a big fan of the cami now. I was always much too large and saggy for them. Bras are still uncomfortable on my incision. I have a compression cami too. It's great because it's snug, but not too tight, and it's super long and even covers my TT scar. It's Tees by Tina. I got it at Intimacy (where I had my bras fitted) a while ago. I just ordered a bunch more from Amazon. Yeah, online shopping!

Happy healing everyone!

Exponential Growth

My surgery was 3 weeks ago today. It's amazing how the human body can heal so quickly!

I sleep in bed now. We also have a 4" memory foam. We had it prior to surgery, but I need it more now for my hips. I can sleep on my side for short periods of time. It's wonderful relief for my back. My hip bruises have faded immensely. My left hip and tummy just requires a lot of lotion for dry skin from tape and blisters etc. No biggie.

I drive now. I try and limit one way trips to 20 min. In Atlanta, that's not far, but the freedom of driving again is great!

I went to the gym this morning for the first time to walk on the treadmill. Nothing heroic. Just one mile at an avg of 2.5. I tried to go a bit faster and it hurt, so I backed off. I got bored and increased the incline to 1.0. That lasted for about 4 minutes, then it started to hurt. I backed off. But I finished my mile and it felt good to be out and about.

I run errands now; stores don't intimidate me. I can even push a grocery cart without it going rogue into the display. haha

I crave water. Maybe it's those memories of being deprived the morning of surgery... I was so happy to take the 3 pills they gave me pre-op with the mere tablespoon of water. Oh, how I wanted that water. How does ones mouth get so dry? Is it nerves? Does the IV suck the moisture out of your mouth? IDK, but I love drinking as much as I want now! It's even better when you can get up out of the chair by yourself! Ah, the little things you appreciate.

I have headaches. I've head 6-7 migraines since surgery. I'm assuming it's my hormones out of whack. I don't know why. I'll ask my PS about it next week. I've read other RS peeps have headaches too.

Tummy still swollen (no surprise), but I see waist definition now. It feels swollen out front, not on sides. My upper abs are still the most sore, occasionally retiring a muscle relaxer (usually in the middle of the night) if I overdo it. No pain anymore, just pings and pangs. Coughing still not pleasant, but I no longer have that dry throat constant cough from surgery. My TT scar is healing well, the center is the scabbiest. It doesn't bother me at all. My tummy sometimes feels tingly, like when your mouth wakes up from novacaine at the dentist; however, mostly it's numb from the BB and below.

My breasts have minimal swelling now. My right breast is still bruised though by the areola. My nipples are not constantly erect anymore either, thank goodness, although they are tender to the touch (including the seat belt). The biggest area of tenderness on both sides is the outside of the scar under my boobs (nearest my underarm). The scar is very thick there. Bras are uncomfortable because it puts pressure on the skin near that scar and my drainage hole scabs. So I'm enjoying compression camis whenever possible.

I still relax the most in my recliner. It's the best position and seems to help with swelling.

I still take Arnica. I think it helps and I take it consistently throughout the day.

I eat small meals like a toddler, but I am hungry! When I wake up in the middle of the night, I now occasionally require something for my screaming belly. I usually opt for 1/2 scoop protein powder mixed with water.

I still need naps sometimes. Even the energizer bunny needs a break. Two words: recliner and pillows. Haha

I am amazed by this transformative surgery. I know my body is not at its final result (thank you, swelling, haha) but I really cannot pinch-an-inch. I have no muffin top, nothing whatever. I know the PS TOLD me it was all extra skin before surgery, but honestly, I didn't believe him. I've grown so accustomed to "rolls" that when they are not there, it's mind-boggling! Even my boobs are a perfect size for me. I don't feel like I'm all chest now. I've probably gone down a size (from 34DD to D). I wonder how long it will take getting used to the new me. Life is good.

Happy healing my peeps. Hugs.

Battle of the Bulge

This morning my tummy was bulged out above my BB more than normal. It's my tender spot where the spasms still hit and has been bruised since surgery. I went to the gym and walked my slow mile. It bulged more. I called the nurse. She had me email a picture. Then she decided she wanted to see me. So, I do have fluid building in that spot, but not enough to stick a needle in yet (thank goodness). The solution is to be active but be very mindful and also try to wear a tighter CG that also does not cut across fluid build up, which could make it worse.
This has been an overly active week. Hubby is traveling, so I have to drive my son to (private) school and activities. I'll chill more during the day. Netflix anyone? haha
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon

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It happens. Just massage it out in the evening while ur watching TV and try to keep ur feet up and relax as much as you can. It's hard to sit still when ur feeling pretty good! Have a good weekend!
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Hope with the weekend off your swelling will come down a little. Listen to your body, and no, no salt! Lots of water and coconut water. Are you taking Arnica?
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Yes, still taking Arnica. No, not eating salt. I need to restart coconut water and get some more pineapple... Back to fundamentals. Good suggestion!!
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Just when we think we are over the hump....bam! Take it easy and enjoy your Netflix! Have a great weekend!
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Great update today! Glad you are doing so well!
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Also wanted to say thanks for chronicling your story so well here! It is so helpful to read what others have been through during this process. I am asking everyone to get a lot of different opinions - now at 2 weeks out do you think you can lift a 20 lb toddler? I am guessing no but I thought I would ask. I won't be doing my boobs so I'm sure that is a factor for you but just wondering about the tummy feelings. I hope you are having a great weekend and recovering okay. I will be following your story!
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Hi FutureMe! Happy to see you were rescheduled! No, I would not lift your sweet toddler. My PS specifically told me not to lift more than a gallon of milk (5lbs?) for 6 weeks. It's not the BL either, it's the TT and probably more the Muscle repair. While I am healing wonderfully, I am still tender in my abs. I had a 2" MR all the way up my abs to under my boobs though. If I overdo it during the day, I still will take a muscle relaxer at bedtime to prevent spasms. So... Just get creative! Rock and hold your sweet baby, but when asleep, text someone else to lift into bed. Or take a nap together in a recliner! You'll find a way to make it work. Looking forward to following your journey! Hugs.
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I just wanted to stop by & say hello, I've been thinking about u & hope all is well?
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Hi, Excited, recovery is progressing very well! I am amazed at my daily progress. Weather is getting a bit cooler here, finally, so I will try to venture outside for more walking. Life IS good. Hugs!!
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Thank you so much for such a descriptive process, I am having my first doctors consult for tt and bl this week and I'm researching like crazy. Just love all your details. Thank you also much and you look great, can't wait to follow your recovery :)
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Congrats, Shan, on taking those first steps for you!! Everyone's journey is unique. I hope you find the answers that best suit you. RS has proven to invaluable to me as a supportive, open forum. I look forward to hearing more about you.
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Looking good Fit! I don't see any signs of infections so the healing is doing its job!! Happy continued healing ^_^ have a beautiful weekend
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Thanks, you too!! ;)
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Oops, I mean Fitbug
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Looking good Dazz, you for sure have some bruising going on. Are you on any blood thinners. My PS is giving me blood thinners to take after POD1, and told me I would for sure have some noticeable bruising. Hugs!
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No blood thinners. The bruising is actually significantly better. The PS jokes that he beat me up really good. I wore a soft (nursing/sleeping) bra this morning and couldn't wait to get it off when I got home & put a cami back on. My breasts have been more sensitive the past few says (nipples, incisions & bruises) since healing than in the beginning. I usually wear a cami and a big, baggy t-shirt (if visitor).
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Keep up the healing, girl. You got this! Hope your wrist feels better soon. Driving was a challenge for me, although I drove at day 6. When you twist to reverse, do it slowly and carefully - I learned that the hard way! To this day, at one month PO, getting in and out of my car and twisting for reverse is not as easy as it used to be. Happy CG shopping!
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Hi Dazzlady: I say, "Live dangerously!" Why bother looking as you reverse? There's a 50/50 chance you'll be okay....then again, the world of hurt you'll be in after NOT looking is simply not worth it. Needless to say I'm joking about not looking as you reverse. I agree--taking it slow is the way to go! (hey, I rhymed!) Hope your recovery is going well too!
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Congratulations, Fitbug, on 5k steps! That's great. Little by little. Patience is one of the hardest things to learn. I think as women it is harder for us to just be lazy. Because we are supposed to be "superwomen" and meet the needs of our family (if you have a family), work, keep house, etc., when it does come time to take it down several notches activity wise, we feel lazy and that is just not acceptable to us. I hit a point where I thought, "I'm going to be lazy and do notta today!"--and it felt great. Giving yourself permission to just relax and take it easy is one of the best gifts we can give ourselves. So...just as other people will send a sick person flowers when they are ill, give yourself a break instead :-) (I know...easier said than done but if you give it a try, you'll love the feeling!) Take care and continue well on your recovery.
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You're doing awesome:):) Just be patient:) Do you have new pics? I hope all the knots and bruises go away soon:):)
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Sounds like you are doing great!! 5K steps is a good number and on the high side so I think you are doing well. I hope that knot in your wrist goes away soonn. They also have an Arnica Salve. I bought mine from the farmers market its all natural and felt so good to massage my bruising. I still look like an ape at 5pm when I walk too much and Im 1MPO! Goodluck with your weekly goals! Happy healing!
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Boo to old-school docs! Mine says nada to all herbal creams and online remedies too! But I figured I bought 2 tubes of arnica gel- might as well use them... and not sparingly either! So right after sx, I started rubbing a dollop of arnica gel into my lipo areas 2x/day -morning and then after washing (POD4). After 1wk, my inner thigh lipo area bruising started fading- totally gone by 1mo. It's cold and a little tingly. I kneaded out the lipo 'knots' ...all gone now. A little hard spot left on my right lower flank still. As for the nipples... YES! Very sensitive- even now at 1mo PO!
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You just massaged the lipo knots? Easy as that?
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Easy as that. I mean, there's really not much else to do while recuperating! ;) Newlook's PS said to try using a rolling pin! Lol. I just used my hands tho. For my flanks, I used my knuckles. They're all almost gone- tender like yours too at first, but almost nothing now.
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Go girl, am sure the pup is happy to be home too
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