Mommy Makeover: StoriesWrite a Review
5 weeks PO Flying out for revisions Saturday!! New Pics
- posted 3 months ago
- updated 22 days ago
- Not Worth It
- Cost: $9,825
- Kevin Ciresi, M.D. (Bakersfield, CA)
I was the fat kid. You know the one that everyone...
- 24 Feb 2013
- 21 days pre
I was the fat kid. You know the one that everyone called shamu in the pool and tripped down the hallway just to see how loud it is when I hit the floor. I was that girl in high school that never had any issues dating, not because I was good looking or popular but because I dated the guys that no one else wanted. I was a beautiful, talented, responsible, and goal oriented girl trapped in a body that made me invisible and miserable. I didn't know any better, I had been "chubby"for as long as I could remember and I suppose I just thought I was doomed to stay that way. I tried various things at different times but it didn't seem to make much difference. I don't know about you but when I look at the TV stereotypes of fat people I feel cheated because I for one never sat around eating buckets of chicken or hoards of candy bars. I was a lifeguard,I played soccer, I swam on the swim team,and worked almost full-time through high school. What I didn't do was eat or sleep and I was under a lot of stress 100% of the time because of my family life. When I did eat it wasn't whole foods and it was at all the wrong times. My life was a recipe for physical disaster.
Now that I am 30 years old and a mom of four kids I look back and wish I could go and hug that sweet, desperate little girl and tell her that she was worth it, she was special, and that she deserved to be healthy and happy. If you had asked me even a year ago if I would ever be getting cosmetic and corrective surgery I would have probably laughed in your face. Two years ago last September I woke up one day and made a small change, I continued to make that small change and a few more in the following months and before I knew it I had lost 30 pounds. I didn't tell anyone or shout it high from the mountaintops of Facebook. I kept it to myself. There was no major turning point or goal I just wanted to become a person who had control over my body, my relationship with God, and how I felt about myself.
Now two years and a few months later, 90 lbs lighter, and roughly 6 sizes smaller I am a new woman! I am trying to figure out who I am and who I always have been under a blanket of insecurity, ridicule, and self-loathing. My decision to seek surgery was not a light one. I have gone through the whole range of emotions from "what will people think", to "how could I be so selfish even thinking about spending the money", to "what if something goes wrong or it cant fix what is wrong with me". Yep I have thought it all.
What it comes down to is that I have a significant amount of excess sagging skin that has begun causing me lower back pain, female problems, infection at my c-section, scar, and complications with my umbilical hernia. That being said, even if none of that were true I would probably still have eventually made the same choice. It is difficult psychologically and emotionally to work so hard and to transform your body only to find that you will never know what it is like to have a normal tummy. I have had an apron belly since I was about 9 years old. Ironically, my belly looked better before weight loss than it does now because of how floppy and wrinkly it is. Running is basically not happening because my belly thinks it is an opportunity to fly!
I work out 5 to 6 days a week and have completely transformed my life and in order to continue with my fitness goals my tummy needs to go! In order for me to move past the trauma of obesity and embrace how far I have come my tummy needs to go. My husband is exceptionally supportive as are most of my friends. Some people I thought would be supportive are the total opposite and others in church et. cetera also have their own judgments. However, I have decided that anyone who really loves me and remotely tries to understand what I've accomplished is completely supportive. Even if they weren't / aren't it's my body, my money, and my decision.
The girls are purely a gift to me (well, or my husband if you ask him haha) for coming this far and making a LIFE change not a temporary change. I never EVER thought I would have implants but you know what I seriously can't wait!
I am flying about 800 miles away for my surgery and am extremely nervous about even doing it much less being so far from home. I will stay 8 days and then fly home to finish my recovery. I came here because I need support, advice, and a place to share this experience with people who understand. If you have done a long distance surgery please share any tips or advice that will ease my mind. I have 4 children who are 2, 5, 7, and 8. I have arranged for full-time help for the first 3 weeks and am promising myself that I can stop being super mom so I can heal. I have a very hard time not being in control or when things aren't being done but I know this is a test in patience and faith.
The surgeon doing my work is a vascular and reconstructive surgeon, he had a plastic surgery practice for 17 years but moved into reconstructive to help people who have been disfigured get their identity back. Because we don't have insurance, we have 4 children, and my husband and I are both full-time students he blessed our family by taking off 60% off of his fee. He is a long time family friend of my best friend's and I am so fortunate to have him as my surgeon! He currently teaches plastic surgery in California and serves on numerous boards in the field.
I look forward to being part of this community, I know it has and will continue to be an encouragement and help to me.
My surgery is exactly three weeks from today and...
- 25 Feb 2013
- 20 days pre
I am trying to organize my thoughts and my life at the same time and it feels a bit overwhelming but I know God is on my side so I can rest in that assurance. I am getting a pantelectomy, tummy tuck, breast augmentation (475cc's) a mini lift, and hernia and muscle repair. He does not think I need any liposuction on my hips or flanks but I am hoping he will do a little on my inner thighs. I have loose skin there too but I would much rather have loose skin without fat than with it! I am 5 '6 and 152 lbs but honestly people usually freak out when I tell them I weight more than 135. Despite my height and weight I wear a size 4/6 jeans. I am very broad shouldered, muscular, and barrel chested but I cant give any credit to my tush or my breasts for my weight, it is my large bone structure and muscular build; at least that is the only thing I can figure. Even at 229lbs the largest size I wore was a 16, most 18's were too big but a few did fit.
My husband just started a new job today which was a totally unexpected blessing; sooo in the midst of school (he works full-time and is a full-time student too) ,planning for surgery, and life in general, we are also adjusting to a new job with a 100% different hourly schedule. He goes in at 2am and gets home at 11am. Very different from the 7am-3:30 schedule he had before. It just means everyone is in bed a little earlier (kids always had a 7:15 bedtime anyway) and gets up a little earlier. This is a big season of change but it is all for good reasons. My business has also begun to explode, I help others in their weight-loss journeys which is something that I never thought possible but absolutely LOVE! In the coming days I hope to get to know some of you better and get some tips on how to get it all together before S day. DunDunDun.....
Until next time...
New pictures today! I need friends...do I have a...
- 26 Feb 2013
- 19 days pre
I spoke to my surgeon today and was able to get...
- 27 Feb 2013
- 18 days pre
I was concerned that he would not be fixing my girly parts along with my tummy (you know the saggy skin and little pooch there) but he confirmed that he will correct that as well. I wont need to purchase any garments for my tummy or breasts, he said he will provide that which is great; especially since they are really expensive and I need to purchase new clothes as it is. I am telling you it stinks losing weight and not being able to afford new clothes! I feel like I reinvent my clothes everyday because I need to be creative with the same few things haha.
I could gripe all day but you know what I have so much more than so many and my surgery requires great sacrifice and the new clothes will come! Besides, my hope is I will need a smaller size anyway! I have been daydreaming quite a bit about what it will be like not to look like a woman with a mans upper body. I have such broad shoulders and such toned pectoral muscles but small breasts. You can literally see the definition of my pecs so between that and my giant arms and muscles I kinda look manly. That is a serious issue because I am quite the girly girl. I mean I will climb trees, sling, mud and sleep in a tent but I am still a girl and want to look like one naked as much as clothed!
I have been praying that I wont let this part of my journey take over my life and detract from my spiritual and family life but I am afraid I have not been very successful so far. Anyone else find that this process consumes you? I will continue to make an effort none the less because in the scheme of things this should not be a top priority. I dont want to lose sight of what really matters because my last wish is to become prideful or unrealistic. I dont want it to change who I am but enhance who I already am. I cant strive for perfection because it will never come, I can be thankful for the blessing of what I can do and learn to accept, love, and embrace what I can't fix.
Oh what a jounrney, I am ready!
I am kinda bummed I have not made more friends on...
- 4 Mar 2013
- 13 days pre
Hey ladies, I am feeling a little bit better, my...
- 4 Mar 2013
- 13 days pre
"Mom of four dies tragically during a routine...
- 11 Mar 2013
- 7 days pre
The ironic thing is that the only person really making me feel guilty is myself, my husband is totally supportive and my kids don't understand but they are all in for mom anyway. I am not good at being good to myself, I can easily spend and buy for someone I love but when it comes to me the price is generally too high. Not this time, this time I cant imagine living without having this surgery. I never imagined I would even be in a position to need it much less to discover that I want it. Being overweight my entire life the idea of being fit and toned just wasn't in the cards. However, now that I have spent over two years training and trying, and watching my body become less and less visually appealing the decision wasn't all that hard. That being said, I am fraught with frustration and sadness tonight at the realization that even with my tummy fixed and my breasts nice and round my legs and my arms are in equally bad shape. I still wont be able to wear a bikini with confidence or tank tops without feeling like floppy the arm elf.
I am having one of those "I hate you for being fat" days. I am 30 years old and even this young I will never be able to see what my body should have been. I cant justify more surgeries and they may just make me look worse, who knows. I guess I am just feeling sorry for myself. I look at these photos of so many of you beautiful women with lovely legs and small arms and it makes me so sad. You can go on to achieve these beautiful bodies that I can not realistically hope for.
I suppose that some of this may be normal, the fears of my body not looking like I think it will or want it to or fearing death because I would never want to abandon my family. Maybe this just means that my period should be starting any day? Who knows but I just need to say a lot of prayers and seek some inner peace. At some point I just need to love myself as is or it will never be enough. So I may have flabby, skin wrecked, inner thighs and jiggly arms but I am healthy, I am strong, and my husband thinks I am sexy, right!?! Just 6 days until MM day..... I am so excited and yet so scared and I guess that is why im rambling on like I am. I am praying for all of you who have gone in already and those of you who will be very shortly, here is to taking the bull by the horns and just doing it!
I can't believe it is actually happening and I...
- 12 Mar 2013
- 6 days pre
Tomorrow morning at 5:30 am I go in for surgery....
- 17 Mar 2013
- 1 day pre
Recovery was rough, I got very sick and I'm in...
- 18 Mar 2013
- On day of treatment
I don't know how so many of you report no pain, I...
- 19 Mar 2013
- 1 day post
Today is day 3 post op and it has been a big...
- 21 Mar 2013
- 3 days post
Post op day 4, I saw the doc today, my drains...
- 22 Mar 2013
- 4 days post
I would like to start by saying that the...
- 3 Apr 2013
- 16 days post
My physcial healing has been coming along quite well with the exception of my breasts.Ironically this is the one thing I was not concerned about. The Dr. was confident that my breasts would be exempliary and I was pretty confident in his confidence. However, though I paid for a lift he did not wind up doing one. He said he found that with the size of my 475cc implant and my small natural breasts that I would not need it. I trusted his judgement despite something inside me feeling uncomfortable with it. I should have trusted my instincts!
It appears that not only are my nipples too low (which he said he can fix with a local anesthetic procedure which is free so its not a huge deal) but I have the beginnings of what is called a double bubble. I was not aware of this complication until I started researching what is happening on my right breast. There is a VERY prounounced indentation forming on that breast right below my nipple. It is the length of my index finger and it is as deep as half of my finger in width. This is a PROBLEM. This is a serious deformity which requires invasive surgery to fix. It is most ofter caused by a lift NOT being done when it was necesary and the mammary tissue folding or the natural breast line showing above the implant. There is no easy fix and it can become quite unsightly. It has already begun to show its ugliness and I am just two weeks post operative.
My expectation that he will will fix this for free but I have a feeling this is going to get complicated real quick because it is invasive and he does not have a private surgical suite he working in a hospital setting with a contracted anethesiologist. So there will be anesthesia and facility fees I dont think I should have to pay! The lift was part of my payment contract and wasnt done so what are your thoughs?
I just feel sick, I didnt pay thousands of dollars to fix things only to have something else to be embarassed and ashamed of. Walking around naked and feeling confident was my purpose for doing this. I realize it is early in the game and sometimes these things work themselves out so I am giving it to God (well trying) and trying to be patient. Anyone else had a similar experience that did or did not work out? I am genuinelt so defeated right now, I dont feel like myself and I am so afraid to gain weight back and lose all that I have worked so hard to accomplish. Ladies I need a hug!
I have posted pictures of my indent and progress up to this point please provide feedback and if it looks awful be honest! One the bright side my tummy is looking pretty great, I am experiecning a lot of swelling but as far as my belly button and incision it is low, thin, and looks and is healing great so far. I ordered a real compression garment from the Leonesa website advertised here and I will let you ladies know what I think once I give it a try. The one the dr gave me just isnt working anymore it is bunchy, hard to get tight enough, and it is uncomfortable and in no way flattering. I plan to start walking some tomorrow for exercise, I would like to get active but I dont want to push it and I have help with the kids right now so I would be stupid not to take advantage of the rest I have this week!
I pray the rest of you ladies are healing and doing much better than I am this morning.
Ok so I knew that I was in total panic mode and so...
- 3 Apr 2013
- 16 days post
I am fortunate, I have a wonderful support system, a husband who is busting rear to help me in any way he can, friends who are bringing me meals and checking in on me to make sure im ok, people I can call in a panic that dont make me feel insane, a mom who is taking care of my kids until my husband gets home so I can get the rest I need, an entire gym full of friends who have called in groups to tell me they love and miss me. I should have zero complaints yet here I am finding things to obsess over. Being human is annoying sometimes isnt it? Crisis averted for now and hopefully for good! Thanks for listening!
At this point (3 weeks PO) I am not sure if this...
- 8 Apr 2013
- 21 days post
I absolutely hate my breasts, especially my right one, it looks strange and I fear it will be noticably smaller than the left with a deformity. I am hoping that my new garment will help with swelling, back pain, and feeling more confident in my clothing. I feel so exhausted but I have done more in the past few days than I had been. I even did a little bit of housework today like folding laundry and straightening up. That felt good. I feel like I am so far behind the rest. I was in the best shape of my life so I feel like I shouldnt be so tired. Some of you were already back to work at this point and I just cant imagine.
Am I just being a big baby? I genuinely feel exhausted, I get pale, and I am constantly swolen and achey all accross my incision site. I cant help but feel defeated, I wish I absolutely loved my results but so far I just feel like my body is just as awful but in a different way than before. I am sure that isnt true and a lot of this has to do with not being able to work out, move around, and do all of the many things I was accustomed to doing before. I am terrified of gaining weight and it is becoming stressful to have to think about every single thing going into my body. In some ways I have actually derailed the past few days and made some bad choices because I am so scared to gain (makes no logical sense but has happened none the less).
My surgeon cleared me to start waking a week from today so I think that will be really good for me. Getting active again will help with the depression and frustration of being limited. I will also take back over the full responsibility of all four kids again so it will be a big week. I keep thinking that I should be so far progressed but it has only been 3 weeks I shouldnt be back to normal right? I feel like such a Debbie Downer, I am not sure what I expected. I was actually overjoyed with the way my belly looked on day 5 I was really excited but as the weeks have gone on and the swelling gets worse I think it has really messed with my mind. I have never been happy with my breasts and I think its only getting worse. I know my surgeon will fix them so I shouldnt be so down about it; however, the cost of flying back, having to endure more pain and down time, and the possibility that they will never look beautiful has me bogged down.
God is so good and I know he is trying to teach me patience and to learn how to love mysef in the skin im in. I am beginning to think that in my own mind I will never be good enough. I need to conquer those deamons because if I dont, no amount of progress will be good enough. I realize that I muse be honest with myself about why I did this and accept the reality that I will never have a perfect teenage of 20-something body. I was 100lbs overweight, I have had children, I am 30 and aging and I just need to embrace myself where I am at. Much easier said than done! I look forward to reading about your journeys each day, they provide so much insight and encouragement to me. Thank you and happy healing!!!
Today is 3 week post op exactly or 21 days. I...
- 9 Apr 2013
- 22 days post
All I can do is just be patient and cross that bridge in a few months when I come to it. Besides I am not trying out for playboy! I ordered some special cremes that I intend to use on my legs and arms to help tighten the skin and reduce cellulite. I am going to take weekly progression photos while using it and thought some of you might be interested in seeing my results. I have read great things about people using it after extreme weight loss or if they have had cellulite problems or stretch marks. I cant work out but I can sure apply some creme to get ready for swimsuit season! I figure between that and hitting the gym hard once I am cleared I wont lose too much ground from my down time.
Anyone else having a hard time saying no to chocolate? I have never had issues with that but for some reason the post surgery blues have me craving and even giviing in to it. I have been a critical negative Nellie long enough, it is time I just celebrate the little things and give the rest to God. I am mentally starving for some lovin but I know my body isnt ready, im too afraid I would spring a leak haha. Besides I am a little numb in the area...I know TMI. Anyway, today was a good day and I have posted a couple of pictures of my morning belly...its not major but its an improvement over the morning swelling I have been experiencing. I hope all is well with the rest of you!
So I was right I have a major sernoma in my tummy,...
- 14 Apr 2013
- 27 days post
This has really taken a toll on me emotionally, I am on bed rest at almost 4 weeks PO and with four children and a husband working 50 hours a week and going to school that is not good. It's affecting everyone n my life. I know that this severe depression is also affecting my sleep and my ability to heal. I know that depression is common after surgery but with complications immobility, and stress it is exacerbated. I am trying to be proactive in asking for something to help with it and staying on my ps to take care of my sernoma. Tomorrow I will be contacting a counselor and seeking a local dr who can take over my post op care. In 3 months I will be scheduling an appointment with a local ps to survey the damage and discuss a second opinion about how to correct my breasts and my tummy if it is needed. I did go with a board certified ps who has done work on my best friend but I will never ever go against my instincts ever again or base my decision on someone else's faith rather than my own. The amount of money I saved is not worth what I'm afraid it is going to cost me. I am seeking the Lords comfort and peace at this point. All I can do is try to make things better and heal. Being negative isn't going to change my circumstances and as a therapist I know that depression is beyond my ability to fix so I am doing what I need to do to get the appropriate solution. It is very humbling to be a mental health professional and experience what clients do yourself. I pray that the rest of you continue to heal and enjoy the results!
It could be worse I could have infection so I'm going to focus on what I have to be thankful for.
I fly out Saturday morning to have the fluid...
- 25 Apr 2013
- 1 month post
My Doctor: Kevin Ciresi, M.D.