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And So the Flat Side Saga Begins... (Tummy Tuck (MR) with Lipo to Flanks) - Columbus, OH

Hello ladies! First off some background! I am a 32...

Hello ladies! First off some background! I am a 32 year old mother of an AMAZING little 3 year old who is the light of my life! I am 5'8 (technically 5'7 1/2 but I'm rounding up) and about 185 pounds. I carry most of my weight in my belly, flanks and upper thighs (doh!). I have yo-yo'd over the last few years and at my highest I weighed 200lbs. After the birth of my little sunshine, I managed to get down to about 156lbs about 2 years afterwards (all by running 6 days a week) but have steadily gained weight since then. I had a C-section and gained a TON of weight which led me to have the dreaded mother's apron I have today. There was only a brief time in my life where I have been truly happy with my body, which was in my mid-late twenties. I have been thinking of getting a tummy tuck for about 2 years now and finally pulled the plug on it. July 22 is my surgery date and I feel....fear, excitement, apprehension, dread, elation, hope... it's a little overwhelming to think that in just a few days I could be on the road to finally feeling the way about my outside as I do about my inside :) It's 4 days until my surgery... I'm at work and I can't concentrate on ANYTHING except looking through posts/ pictures and imagining my own results!

Things I am looking forward to the most: Running and not having my flab wave at passerbys, running in only a sports bar, having a 6 pack, not being shy naked, enjoying more sex positions and not feeling self conscious (hello, doggie style ;), confidence, better fitting clothes, being able to wear tight shirts, not having to suck in all the time, wearing sexy lingerie.

The "before" pics. Or as I like to refer to them: flabby, fat hellasciousnss

This is my least favorite part.... that pesky "before" part where I have to put my body "out there".... a body that even I myself don't even like to look at without clothing. I hoping that is going to change. Enjoy the rare peek under my clothes, ladies (and gentlemen?!), because this is the last peep show before the closing act! Adieu, adieu... parting is such sweet sorrow! Oops! Typo. Parting is such SWEET, HEAVENLY BLISS!!!!

The strip tease continues.... more "before" pics....

More before pics?? How about some nekkid ones?

Please disregard my *ahem* unshaven "indoor picnic". I decided that if I can't shave, I might as well join the yeti club sooner rather than later. I like to think I'm giving my plastic surgeons something to talk about while they're sewing up my guts. Kinda like coffee talk, if you will.

Ode to my navel ring

So I took my navel ring out last night. I've had it since I was a senior in high school. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little bummed out about it. As the years wore on it became less about having to look sexy... it became a part of me. With it out my tummy looks sad...like it lost its best friend - ha! Scary to think that here in almost 48 hours that navel ring hole will be at the top of my mound.

On a side note, I am seriously almost busting out of my size 12 jeans. As stated before, I carry most of my weight in my midsection. Oi! This surgery can't come soon enough. Must get this skin removed!!!

Sx Day is here!!!

Well... here it is 5am. My ride is picking me up in 30 minutes...surgery starts at 730 and should be about 2.5 hours with a 1-2 hour recovery window. Oddly? I'm not nervous. I feel ready. I've waited for this for so long and its so exciting to think the next time I sit in this chair, I'll be able to look down and not see a roll. What will that be like???? What will it be like to be happy with my body?

Bring it! I'm so ready!

Mission Flatside: Completed

I'm on the flatside, ladies!!! I feel kinda great, actually... but I do have a high pain tolerance. I'll write more and post pictures tomorrow. Just wanted to say I had a GREAT experience with the hospital and PS. Couldn't have been happier with my treatment and my PS is da bomb! I'm sore but comfortable and I'm too chicken to take my binder off to see anything....

On the flatside and LOVIN' IT!!

I can FINALLY update!!! My laptop broke down and I was unable to write an update and upload pictures!

D\First off, my experience was AWESOME with Dr. Donaldson! He is awesome at what he does and he's just a nice, sincere person. In the operating room, i was scared and while they were giving me anesthesia, he held my hand until I passed out - very comforting. I woke up and voila! New tummy!! I LOVE my new belly button, too! That was a huge reason I went with this PS - his "after" pictures showed awesome belly butttons :) The first day was a piece of cake (mostly bc I was on the heavy stuff). Day #2 was the WORST. Today has been better but I'm trying not to do too much. I'm kind of surprised... I thought the drain would be bugging me but its not.... its the binder that has beena little bitch. It's making my flanks sore from where there was lipo and all the fluid is going to my hips so I'm super swollen. I havent had back issues just yet but I've been using a heating pad when I've been in my chair. I got my first look at my new tummy today when i went for my appointment. I was shocked. It almost feels like its not MY stomach... such a bizzare feeling! Anyway, I've uploaded some pics and will do more as my swelling goes down. Right now I can say I am SO GLAD I got lipo to my flanks area. Totally worth the extra money.

Healing thoughts, ladies!

PO Day 2

My laptop busted and I wasn't able to give update for the 2 weeks following surgery but...

Here's an update!!!!

So I am PO and totally on the flat (er... swell? side. SO far I LOVE my results. Honestly speaking?? I thought this was going to be way more difficult than it really was. I'm not sure if I tolerate pain well or if I'm a fast healer or what but I have found that recovery has been a breeze for me - even after extensive MR and lipo of flanks. I am 3 weeks PO and feeling great. 2 days ago I slept without my CG for the first time - it was heaven. I had to sleep with it last night due to the swelling - I'm in swell hell and it's horrible. The drain removal was not bad AT ALL! The thing that hurt the worst was removing the stitches where the drain entered. I couldn't feel her pulling the drain out at all. I am able to do everything I did PO except exercise but I can start light cardio at the beginning of next week which will be 4 weeks PO. I'm hoping to get the go ahead for running at 6 weeks. My incision looks FANTASTIC. The surgical tape just fell off and all thats there is a thin scar line. I'm a bit worried I may have a dog ear, though but I am swelled pretty badly. I still fit the same as I did in to my pre op pants so that's a little frustrating. But here are some pics 4 days PO. I'll post more soon. Happy healing!

More Pics

More....

Wow, long time, no write! Sorry, ladies!

Hi there! I have gotten a few kind requests from ladies wondering about my recovery and requesting updated progress pics. So I have come to deliver!

First of all, it has been 1 day shy of 3 months since my surgery and I am doing FANTASTIC. My scar looks great, no more tightness or soreness. The only thing I am dealing with is swelling, but like you may have already heard, it mostly depends on what I eat or the amount of exercise I do. I am back in to running about 2-3 miles a day (for about 3 weeks now with no problems). I am planning to slowly get back in to weight lifting as I'd like a killer lower body and this, I am told, can be achieved by dead lifting and squatting.

My recovery was very smooth, although I am sad to report that I gained weight after my surgery. I have been actively trying to lose weight for 3 weeks now (I'm doing keto and have lost 12 pounds so far combined with exercising - it's been great!). Other than that, I really don't have much to report. The pictures attached are around a month post op.

3 month post OP picstures

Hello, Ladies! I'm checking in and updating my profile for some recent pictures of my results. I can't say it enough - this procedure changed my life. After reading about the aftercare/healing process, I actually thought it was going to be worse than it turned out to me. Perhaps that helped me with my relatively easy healing. There are days when my "Ken doll" is freaking INSANE but given the choice between what I had and the appearance of a male doll anatomy part... I choose the former every damn time!

Here are 2 ways the surgery has affected my life for the better:

- I am an active runner and I know longer have to deal with the flab waving in the wind. It was an uncomfortable/embarrassing feeling and I would always "suck in" when I passed a hot runner ;) I can also wear form fitting running tops and they sit flat on my stomach. My goal is to be one of the sexy runners you see in just a running bra and shorts in the summers (I still have some work to do to get there. Ugh, I have a big butt!).

-My lingerie looks SO much better on me. I LOVE lingerie. Having a tummy tuck has taken away some of the self consciousness that was there - not wanting anyone to see what was "under" it. My flat tummy makes me feel sexier and more confident with intimacy and in turn, has actually made me a better partner. I will never underestimate the power of confidence!

-I have stopped obsessing/ being depressed about my body. Pre op, I kind of felt hopeless that no matter what I did, my tummy would *always* be there. I could improve its look, but it would never go away. The tummy tuck has allowed me to take that focus I had on my belly and apply it my overall health and strength and has given me motivation to attain that bangin' body I can be proud of - a body that SHOWS how much work I put in to it. Not having to focus on my belly is probably my favorite thing about deciding to get this done.

Happy healing to you all... I hope

I'm a Real Friend, guys! Look what I got in the mail today!

So awhile back, real self contacted me by email saying that they had chosen me among other reviewers on the site as a "Real Friend". I'm honestly not sure why I was picked but I'm a little excited. I came home today and a package was waiting for me from Real Self! What was in it?! Super awesome samples, that's what - 75 dollars worth! Of stuff I'll actually use! I posted pictures of everything. I got a little book of Beauty Myths, which is actually super cool. I skimmed through and made mental notes already. I also got 4 samples in all:

Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting BHA
Paula's Choice Intense Wrinkle Repair
Antioxidant Serum
Super Skin Booster

Wow, right? The BHA alone has me psyched. I'm serious - 4oz of it runs for about 20 bucks. What is BHA, you ask?? It stands for Beta Hydroxy Acid and it's an Anti -Aginf tool. Anyone who is on the reddit Skincareaddiction subreddit knows all about it. Not only does it help with wrinkles, but I've heard it helps with sebaceous filaments as well - those little things on the sides of your nose that masquerade as blackheads but are totally not blackheads. I am psyched to use this product - it's hailed as the "holy grail" of skin care regime. I shall use it and report back.

The Wrinkle serum I'm afraid I have little use for but I'm going to keep it. 1 fluid ounce runs about 37!! That is nuts! I am 33 and have now wrinkles for now. The brand (Paula's Choice) is petty well known - but I hadn't heard of it before I got in to skincare.

Which is why I am all about trying the Anti Wrinkle sample. 1 oz runs about 24.00 on sale. It's basically an anti-aging serum. According to the reviews, the bad side is the consistency but those are few and far between. The majority are all positive... so I shall see for myself.

The C15 Super Booster is something to brighten skin - I'm excited about this because my skin is sometimes dull, especially in Ohio winter. It goes for 37 dollars for .67 ounces. Overall, it has some pretty solid reviews on effectiveness. It's also an antiaging serum.

I feel like I won a jackpot after doing this research and finding out how much all this is worth! I can't wait to try everything- thank you, Real Self!!
Columbus Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Donaldson is a great plastic surgeon and I can't recommend him enough. He is very kind (and cute :) ) and does amazing work. When I was on the OR table and scared and just about to "go under" he held my hand until I fell asleep - that's the kind of doctor you will be signing up with if you hire him. He did a GREAT job on my belly button, too.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (54)

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great results!!!
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You look great! Love the Real Friend gifts! I got an email mine shipped. Can't wait! Thanks for posting, I was dying to know what's in it!
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Thank you!! They were not lying when they said 75.00 worth of stuff!!!! SO awesome!
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Looking great girl!
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Thank you for the positive vibes! For the first time in a long time, I feel like I do!
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Awe you're welcome! :).
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Oh my goodness , we are neighbors ! You are a stitch !! Love your pictures in the public bathroom , sooo fun, your aft pics are amazing, do you notice any puffiness under your breasts ? Hoping mine is swelling and will tighten or I will be working out to make it happen.
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Haha! Public bathroom pics are my specialty! Thank you for your kind words! I have not noticed puffiness under my breasts - sometimes I notice an all around protrusion of my belly when I've had too much salt. My puffiness is normally right above the middle of my scar - that's my problem area.
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You look great! How long were you out of work?
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Thank you! I was out of work for 2 weeks. I have a desk job, though so I feel like I could have gone back half days the second week.
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You look great! :)
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Thank you so much!
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Tomorrow will make 3 weeks (Day 21)... it is encouraging to read you...I am a runner.... and anxious to return to it but I know I have to wait to heal but its nice to hear others returning to their activities. I can see the light at the end of it! :) Thanks again and thanks for sharing your pictures.
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You are welcome! 3 weeks - you are so close to feeling "normal" again! I totally appreciate wanting to get back to running. Before I got the tt it was so hard to imagine up to 8 weeks without physical activity. Time goes faster than you think it does, doesn't it? Happy thoughts to you for faster healing so that you can gently return to running! Thank you for the comment!
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Started speed walking in the last three days ....5kd at a time only ...feeling better everyday! 1 month 1 week soon...anxious to jog but not ready even though my doctor gave me the ok. :) you look awesome! Thanks for sharing your story & pictures.
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Hey there. So glad you updated. I wondered what happened to you. Glad you're healing well!!
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Thank you!! When my laptop died, I lost motivation to post and I'm a little disappointed I didn't follow my progress here. But healing has been pretty spot free and I'm happy with what was done.
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Yes you do look great!
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Thank you! I still have some more pictures to take at 3 months post op. So happy that I did this.
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You look great! You started running again about 8-9 weeks po? I'm anxious to get back in my routine.
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Actually, I felt great after 5 weeks I did very light running on the "ok" of my PS. By light, I mean super slow and short intervals. I wore my compression garment, too, but swelled any way. About 3 weeks later (so about 2 months PO) I could have started running again but didn't. I'm now 3 months PO and running every day. I'm slower and honestly it took me awhile to learn to "breath" with my new tight tummy, but I'm good as gold now :)
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you look great, how are you doing now???
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Thank you! I am going very well. My recovery period was easy and I didn't run in to any complications! Just dealing with swelling now from food and exercise! I feel great - no pain, no tightness!
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Wow! Your after pic looks amazing! Can't wait to see some more! How are you doing?
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How are you doing??? Loving your new shape I am sure! Checking checking in with you and your reocvery progress. Wondering if you are going to post anymore after photos??
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