I've had 3 totally awesome children in 4 years. ...
On Friday I am getting my CBC drawn by my PCM, and soon I will have my preop visit. I'm looking forward to getting rid of the old lady face on my stomach.
I can't wait to be comfortable in my own (considerably less) skin again.
My parents have arranged to come into town very briefly to help with the kids, and I'm also looking forward to seeing them.
My husband is acting very nonchalant about the whole thing, nothing phases that guy! He is pretty amazing, I'm kind of excited that he will be able to take off from work so I can see more of him. Hopefully he will still like me after I'm all grouchy and weird from the pain meds.
Gutted like a fish, in a good way
So what does a tummy tuck feel like? Like doing a brutal Jillian Michaels ab workout and getting kicked in the stomach repeatedly. I don't feel the incision, just sore as I'll get out.
I'd update more, but I'm kind iof a hot mess.
Starting to feel beter
I have had a few times where I feel like I pulled a stitch, some really sharp and awful pains usually from trying to re-position myself, but I think everything is probably okay. I changed the dressings and got a shower, which was great but short.
I'm having trouble pooping (and I have ibs type d, which makes it odd) probably from the pain meds. I bought some magnesium citrate and hopefully that will help.. I've been religiously popping colace, drinking water, eating granola, no dice. Or should I say no deuce?
Anyway here are some progress pics. I'm pleased as punch.
I plan for today to be my last day of pain meds. My pain is at a level finally where I feel like I can almost deal with it.
Who is off pain meds???
So I am feeling good, laughing is painful and my incision feels hot and tight (but looks good) but that's pretty much the limit of my discomfort. I even managed to cook a fancy dinner and do the dishes last night. And I am getting around like a champ.
I just have to work on making my husband less funny. He keeps saying funny stuff and the laughing brings me to my knees. Laughing is the absolute worst.
I can't wait until I can cuddle the kids more (without them jumping on me) and play with the dog again. She keeps jumping in my lap which isn't cool. Oh well, corgis gonna corg. She's the welsh menace.
I'm so happy
I feel like I made the right decision, for sure.
So, my poor husband has to go back to work (after working his butt off for 1/3 of his vacation taking care of our kids) and we hired our friend who watches our kids sometimes to help me out tomorrow. I'm starting to feel better, like I can get back into baby-wrangling but it is probably better to wait until the doctor gives me the all clear.
My swelling is getting a little better, so I'm posting a pic of my stomach.
Potential tuckers of tummies, Heed my warning and ban everything funny from your house. Make it cold like a Siberian prison.
Where my stitches at?
My binder is way too loose and my surgeon said it didn't really matter much anymore, so I'm toying with the idea of abandoning it on the side of the road, alone, in the rain. That way it can reflect on how it annoyed me, how it clung to me desperately, squeezing my poor internal organs. Just kidding. There seems to be a lot of conflicting information on whether wearing them does much for the results. I couldn't find a single study that confirmed that they did much more than lower blood clotting risk in the first week.
Anyway, I'm feeling pretty good and I am back to changing diapers, walking dog, doing light chores and feeling mostly like a person. It's good too that I am back because the lady that we use to babysit our kids looked absolutely wiped out after one day of watching my 3 little monsters...
2 weeks post op
Look,ma! It's like I never had a billion kids!
One sucky thing though is that I spat two stitches. They eventually merged from 2 pencil eraserish holes to one larger hole. I developed this problem on Saturday and called my surgeon yesterday (Monday). He gave me some really excellent advice that I haven't seen anywhere else here so I'm going to post it here in case it helps anyone.
Spit stitches are little holes in the sutures where your body rejects a stitch. My immune system is crazypants, so it's no surprise it happened to me. Anyway, the typical advice is to dig around in there with some tweezers and cut the stitch and remove it. It does need to be removed for things to heal well. He offered the option to come in, and I declined because it's a waste of everyone's time so he described the following process very well and it worked.
He said to get gauze that's cheese clothish and to dip it in saline/ salt + water mix (even contact solution will do) Then you cut it into small strips, roll it into balls, and press them into the wound. Next you cover them and change them twice a day.
Not even 12 hours into this process, I removed my gauze and low and behold- There was that bugger of a stitch! So, if you're uncomfortable digging around in an open wound or you can't find that bastard of a stitch, you might want to try this method.
"I'm especially good at expectorating"-Gaston, and me apparently
Either way, it doesn't look like everything is coming totally unglued or is infected. I have an appointment with my surgeon on Thursday.
You know what blows? It was such a nice incision until my immune system tried to go full on Rambo. I'm going to take pictures of it until it heals, and pictures of how it scars so that I could hopefully help people going through the same.
The agony and the extacy
My husband was deployed last year and I spent the entire year doing yoga and eating clean (I've actually been eating clean for 3 years, but I had a baby last year so there was +30lbs.) I wanted to look awesome by the time he came back. I can't even describe how hard I worked. One day I was standing in the mirror poking my belly skin and I felt a six pack. I straight up Brittany Spears Ugly Cried for about an hour. I knew it was there, but no one else would.
I did all this research about getting rid of the loose skin. There were all kinds of people selling false hope that it might come off without surgery, things like eating sulfur (MSM) which tastes like actual butt, or bovine gelatin, and rubbing the lotion on the skin until you get the hose again. I think the most outrageous of lies was that if you just got your body fat percentage to starvation levels, your body would reabsorb your skin. Noooo thank you.
I cant wait to get back to working out again. This time I'll actually get to see results from busting my arse. My arms are feeling kinda doughy from lack of chin ups, planks and such as. Anyway, that crap should probably wait until my scar gets its life choices in order.
Things are getting a lot shallower as far as the wounds go but they are just so freaking wide. My scar is going to look terribad when this is said and done. He actually thinks its not going to be so bad and I am holding on to that optimism.
On the other hand I have had the most evil of colds for 2 weeks now. My muscles had been feeling fine, but I am pretty sure I pulled something because I have been in searing pain for a few days. It's right next to by belly button and holy crap when I cough it is miserable. I actually took a Percocet because it hurts so bad. I try to avoid the crap out of pain meds because I've seen enough daytime tv specials to know that's how heroin addiction starts.... ;).
Sometimes when you stare into the abscess, it stares back
I've been using medihoney dressing, IDK if it helps but if it helps stubborn wounds to heal it's probably not the worst idea I've ever had. Keepin' it moist y'all. Anyway, everything is looking much more red and meaty than a week ago, which is good. It also tends to bleed more readily so maybe the vasculature is being restored?
Stitching and moaning
Anyway everything else looks legit. Still happy with my decision, even with the massive scar that I'm going to end up from this stitch crap.
It's been a while
I am doing so very well though. I have worn more bikinis in the last month than I wore in the last 4 years combined. I feel so much better about myself. I'm keeping the scar covered in the sun with the high waist-ed bikinis but I legit feel like I look fine no matter what- period? NO problem, IBS bloating? Nope, still look flat, not gonna stress it. I could do a jig I am so happy with my stomach.
I seriously wish mid-drifts weren't considered slutty and that as a 30 year old woman with eleventy billion kids it was acceptable to wear them.
Anywhoo, I am back to working out too. It feels so much better to be moving around in a body-weight lifting manner, I seriously was getting arm wings and cottage cheese butt. I'm taking it easier on the ab exercises (LEG LIFTS, OMG I AM GOING TO DIE) and adding more planks and such to get stronger again. Back bends are weird they make my scar feel stretched so I am avoiding them too. Basically if it feels uncomfortable, I stop, but other than that I am back full force! RAWR!
Abs so freakin lutely
I'm still very happy with my surgery. One of those blasted stitch buggers opened up again, but it is much smaller than it's predecessors. I see my surgeon in a few weeks for my 3 month visit, hopefully it will close by then. I should probably ask which brand of stitches he used so I can avoid it like the plague in the future.
I'm so glad I didn't get my boobs done at the same time. I don't know why but I feel like it would bother me so much more to have stitch drama on my breasts. My girls convinced me to wait saying they'd get better a year or two after weaning so I am holding out.
3 months post!
I've been sticking to insanity for a while now, and I'm starting to see some sweet stomach results. (Among other things. I just might have taken to flexing in the mirror every time I go to the bathroom) I am going to have that six pack, if only for 2 weeks or so because I really hate being knit picky about my diet. I'll just get it there because I can, and let it go. I'll be damned if I am going to count calories for a long period of time. I'm a lazy jerk.
5 months later!
I'm hovering at 18% bodyfat (measured by the slightly inaccurate bioimpedence)
Now that it's been a while I have to admit that I'm unimpressed with the silicone strips. I was hoping that everything would be lighter and flatter but parts of the scar are still a little raised and for the cost of the strips I can't say the were worth it. If I had a time machine I'd tell myself not to bother.
I did a lot of research before deciding on Dr Stoeckel and I am really glad I chose wake plastic surgery. There are several surgeons closer to me but I chose to drive an hour and a half to see him and have no regrets. I am thoroughly impressed with the results of my surgery. I know everyone thinks their surgeon is the best, and I am no different. I would have no trouble referring anyone I care about to this practice. The practice itself is run beautifully. The staff are flawless. I walked away from every interaction with them feeling more and more impressed. I know someone else on here already mentioned that Janell is excellent, but it's worth repeating. She really helped streamline the whole process.