1 Year PO

I am 38 and married. I have 3 kids; a 10 year old...

I am 38 and married. I have 3 kids; a 10 year old and twins that are 6. I was 4 ft around 2 weeks prior to giving birth to my twins and I am only 5 foot tall. So, my belly was huge. 6 years later and my belly still shows it. I tried working out with a trainer and nothing worked. I finally had enough and decided I'm going to bite the bullet and get a Tummy Tuck. My normal physician even asked me if I thought about getting a tummy tuck and my answer to him was "every day". There isn't a day that I don't think about it.



I am nervous, I have tons of thoughts going through my head. I'm excited, but also feeling many things like: I'm being selfish, I could use this money for my kids education, what if I die, how is this going to affect my work, and so on...



Looking to find others who are feeling the same things that I am. I'm not telling many others that I'm doing this. So I don't have anyone I can talk to about this that can relate to my feelings and the many thoughts that are running through my head. I am a planner and think every detail through, so I'm sure I will have lots of questions in the forum.Updated on 24 Oct 2011:Well, it's getting closer to the big day. 55 days to go. Made my payment for the PS, I just need to pay the OR in a month. This was scary, it made it so real, like it's really going to happen. Hoping nothing big happens and I wish I would have had the money saved back for that emergency. Not feeling like I'm getting much support from my parents, so that has been bothering me too. However, my friends and husband seem to be supportive. I've started my list of things to start purchasing and getting ready. I'm feeling really excited, but right now wondering if I'm doing the right thing. I think the money thing is the scariest part. I'm just hoping I'm not kicking myself later and having my husband mad at me or we are wishing that we had the money for something else. Sigh... I know this is part of the emotional process that most people go through, but I'm just praying, I'm doing the right thing.Updated on 3 Nov 2011:Well, I started a cycling class this week. I thought running and P90X were hard. Wow, cycling sure gives you a workout. I'm trying to get my metabolism up for the surgery so hopefully, I will bounce back quicker.



I started buying some of my surgery items: A wedge, bromelain (spelling?), arnica cream, spirometer (just want to be safe) and make sure I do my deep breathing to prevent pnemonia (spelling?). I also have my prescriptions from the PS. I just need to get them filled. I have also bought some after surgery comfy clothes and have started my list of items to pack, have setup for when I get home, etc. There are 45 more days until my surgery. I'm getting excited because time seems to be going by pretty fast. I'm sure with the holiday's it's really going to go by quickly especially with all of the running around with the kids, holiday parties, etc. Not real nervous yet.



My biggest battle has been trying to figure out what to tell people for why I won't be able to help out at church for Christmas Eve service, and Christmas. I run the soundboard and computer and I need to find a backup for a couple of weeks. They usually make a big deal and pray for anyone having surgery. I don't mind the prayers at all, but I just want it to be low key. I don't want people to know I'm having surgery and I can't lie if they ask. So, that has been the biggest issue so far. Most likely I will tell them I'm having surgery and I really don't want to discuss what it's for. And that I don't want anyone to know about it. They (preacher and wife) on their own, but I don't want people at church to know about it. It's hard keeping this from people, especially people I care about.Updated on 6 Nov 2011:42 days to go and I just had my first weird TT surgery dream last night. I showed up at the outpatient surgery completely unprepared and the PS was upset with me because I didn't have everything ready. I'm glad it was just a dream. Who knows what other ones I will have between now and the surgery. LOL



I can't believe how fast time is moving right now. Of course, with my job and my kids activities, that helps take up all of my time. Getting anxious.Updated on 26 Nov 2011:I can't believe I only have 3 more weeks and it will be the big TT day! I have wanted this for so many years and just never got up the nerve. Feeling like I have tons to get prepared for and so little time, especially with Christmas, New Years, and birthdays (all 3 of my kids in Jan) coming up. I have started working on my lists and have started crossing some items off, but seem to keep adding more to the list. :) Anyway, I'm starting to get very excited!Updated on 6 Dec 2011:12 more days until my TT with MR. I've gotten most of my Christmas shopping completed and wrapped. I've already gotten my bags packed for the 2 night stay at the hotel. At times it seems like time is flying by and other times, time can't go fast enough. I still can't believe I'm doing this. I'm soooo excited. I keep thinking about what I will be able to wear this summer. I won't have to worry about my belly buldging out through my shirts and swimsuits. I'm so ready for the TT day to come. However, I'm still a little worried about something bad happening. I've been praying a lot, so I'm hoping God blesses me with a good TT surgery and that my recovery will be good. I also have been praying for all of you too. I'm so glad for this site.Updated on 13 Dec 2011:Only a few more days and the big day is here. I'm waking up all through the night. I'm even dreaming that I've had the surgery. I'm doing crazy things like climbing mountains (the day of the surgery). The best part was looking down and I was laughing, because I was so happy with the results. I hope that I have the same response in real life.



I'm trying to get everything ready. I've got my recovery area all ready, my bags packed for the surgery and hotel, and lists all done. Christmas shopping is done and presents are wrapped, as well as all 3 of my kids birthdays. All are in early January.



Overall, I think I am ready. I've been struggling with whether or not I should be doing this, but I think I've finally accepted that it's okay and I'm excited. So, it's all good.Updated on 20 Dec 2011:Surgery Day 12/19 - the experience couldn't have gone any better. The staff at the Surgery Center, PS nurse, and PS was awesome. I was very nervous, but I was so happy that I woke up and was on the other side. I had the TAP Block so, my pain level was very low. I went home that day and slept pretty much the entire 1 hour ride home. The rest of the day was pretty blurry. I slept for an hour or so, woke up, and went back to sleep, woke up, etc..



1st Day PO - 12/20. This morning the TAP Block started to wear off, so now I am feeling some burning and a little bit of pain. When I take my percocet, the pain is level is good. However, when they start to wear off, the burning sensation comes back. I've got a lot of gas, so I'm trying to walk, drink plenty of liquids, taking stool softners, and taking my vitamins to hopefully allow me to go #2 and get over this gassy/bloating feeling.



Overall, I'm feeling better than what I expected. At this point I am very glad I had a TT. I still don't know what I look like under the binder and won't know until Friday. I have one drainage tube in. I'm not sure if the drain will come out Friday or not. I'm still draining between 20ml to 10ml every 6 hours. So, that will have to go down in order for it to come out by Friday. I'm taking this one day at a time.



BTW, I would recommend a lift recliner. It has been a Godsend and I'm very glad I have it, it is making getting up and down so much easier.Updated on 22 Dec 2011:3rd day PO 12/22 - I had some nausea this morning due to forgetting to eat with my percocet. I was able to get it under control before throwing up. I still have not gone to the bathroom #2 yet. I'm feeling really gassy. I called the PS and they said to get some senokot, collace, and ducolax. After I did the docolax, I was able to go, but it's still not naturally happening. Overall, today has been the worst, but nothing like what I thought it would be. So, that is good.





4th day PO 12/23. I feel really good today. My incision feels sore, but the pain in my abdomen is almost gone. However, my back is killing me. I've been trying to put my back up against a wall to straighten it out. It feels good when I do that, but as soon as I have to start walking it starts back up again. I've been using a heating pad on and off so that is helping. I have my first PO appointment tomorrow at 11:00am. I'm looking forward to that to see what everything looks like. I'm a little nervous, but excited. I'm not sure if my drain will come out. I'm still draining about 10 ml every 6 hours. I think it has be less than 30ml for an entire day. It would be awesome if it did come out tomorrow, then I could get a shower on 12/24. I'll keep you posted.. Have a good day everyone!

6 days PO - My tt pain is not bad at all. Right...

6 days PO - My tt pain is not bad at all. Right now it's back pain. If I try and get up to do anything, my back is killing me. I'm also having problems going #2. I've have tried so many different things. I'm hoping the collace starts kicking in and I can get this bloated feeling over with! I'm hoping to get the drain out early next week. It's not bothering me too much, but I just want to get a shower!!!

I'm feeling down today. It's Christmas Eve and we usually go out for breakfast with the family. This year we couldn't because of the TT. I'm really wishing I could go to the Christmas Eve service tonight, but can't go to that either. So, the family will be going without me. :( I would love to go, but I don't want to get sick, plus nobody knows I had the TT. They would want to know why I am bent over. So, overall I'm feeling okay, but just feeling down, because I want to be normal again.



I haven't posted any PO pics because I'm afraid to look. I don't want to see my incision. It makes me nervous for some reason. Maybe next week when my drain comes out. Sorry. Right now, I feel very insecure without my cg, so I'm not taking it off.

8 Days PO - I got my drain removed today. I was...

8 Days PO - I got my drain removed today. I was expecting it to hurt and I didn't even feel it. I'm feeling really good. My pain is only in my back when I try to get up and move around. I'm also lying down somewhat straight and am no longer relying on the lift recliner. I just got my first shower today after the TT. It was nice feeling clean, but without the binder I don't feel like I have much core control. So, I move very carefully. Overall, the shower wasn't as enjoyable as I was hoping.

My tummy is flat. I just started looking at it and don't feel so scared of it. My belly button is an inny. I've never had an inny bb before. So, I'll have to get used to that. My belly skin is a little wrinkly, but the ps said it would get better as I start to straighten out. The skin is a little gathered in a few places. I was expecting something like that due to how stretched out I was with the twins. I'm just happy because it's flat. We'll see how it looks as the weeks go on. I'll try and post some pics in the next few days.

Posting 11 Day PO Pictures

Posting 11 Day PO Pictures

16 PO - Today was my first day back to work. ...

16 PO - Today was my first day back to work. After a 9 hour day, I'd have to say I am exhausted. I wasn't able to sit in my office chair like I normally do, due to off-site meetings, so I think I over did it. I'm hoping things go much the rest of the week.

I'm able to stand up straight about 90%, still not perfectly straight. I have to really concentrate on being straight and putting my shoulders back. My upper belly by my ribs is still a little sore. My incision area is swollen, but I think I have overdone it the last couple of days. I'm still not able to sleep in my bed comfortably. Sleeping on the couch/recliner is much more comfortable, due to the back of the couch supporting me when I sleep on my sides.

Overall, being only a little over 2 weeks PO, I think I'm doing better than I expected. Still very happy, I made this decision.

I'm almost 4 weeks po. Time has flown by. I'm...

I'm almost 4 weeks po. Time has flown by. I'm feeling really good. My first week back to work (2nd week po) went pretty good, but I got real worn out and my incision and upper section below my sternum was very sore. But, the 3rd week po at work went much better. I felt little pain and only had little discomfort. I've been wearing a flexees during the day and then at bedtime I haven't been wearing any cg or flexees. During the day I have also been wearing Gelzone over the scar. It gives it some extra protection as well as heals the scar. Everything has gone really well. The only potential issue "may" be that I am noticing some skin gathering at the end of my incision on the left side. I'm not sure if it's becoming a dog ear or not. I will ask the ps the next time I go in or I may take a picture and send him an email to see if he wants to see me sooner. It's not bad, but it's not flat so I'm going to check. I'll try and get updated pictures here soon.

Posting new 5 week PO pictures

Posting new 5 week PO pictures

I'm 6 Weeks PO and feeling great. I am so happy...

I'm 6 Weeks PO and feeling great. I am so happy with my results. I read some of my earlier comments and all of those worries, questions going on in my head, wondering if God would approve, etc.. I'm so glad I didn't let any of that stop me from going forward with the TT. It was not as bad as I thought it would be. Yes, there was some pain after the surgery, but that is such a distant memory now. I still do not have much strength in my abs. I figure that will all come with time and the fear of hurting something goes away. I still take it easy with some things, but a lot of times I forget that I had surgery and surprise myself that I actually did that without it hurting. Anyway, I'll stop blabbin'. I just thank God everyday that he gave me the opportunity to do this. I really makes me feel much more confident now.

It's been 2 months since my TT surgery. I'm...

It's been 2 months since my TT surgery. I'm feeling really good. I have been trying to not wear my cg. My belly is still numb so it feels very weird without something pressing on my stomach. The numbness would be the only thing I would be complaining about, but to be honest it's been an awesome overall experience.

It's been a while since I have updated and I'll...

It's been a while since I have updated and I'll try and get updated pictures on here soon. On the 19th I will be 4 months PO. Time has flown by. I am SOOO happy I made this decision. Several weeks after the surgery I lost a total of 13 lbs without even trying. However, I've gained about 5 lbs of that back. So, I'm down to 126 lbs now. I would love to get down to 120 lbs. Anyway, my belly has healed up rather nicely. My scar is flat, but at times is darker than other days. My belly is still numb. That takes some getting use to, because it's such a weird feeling. I'm hoping that by the 1 year mark, I will have full feeling back, but I'm not sure if that will happen or not. It has started to warm up here a little in Ohio and it has been awesome being able to wear tight fitting shirts w/o a bulging belling showing through. I had to by new shirts because I had oversized shirts to cover up the bulge. Now, if I wear those older shirts, it makes me look bigger than I am. It makes me feel so good to look down and see a flat stomach. I can't describe the feeling. So for those who are thinking about having a TT, if I had to do this over again, I would do it again w/o hesitating. Just prepare yourself, that it's going to hurt for 2-3 weeks and do everything you can to make the healing process as best as it can be.

I have added my 1 year post op pictures. I'm...

I have added my 1 year post op pictures. I'm still very glad I did it. I still have quite a bit of numbness in my belly. It's takes some getting used to, but most of the time during normal activites I don't notice it.

I have been working out with a trainer since September and I don't feel any different than before I had the surgery. I was a little afraid that I wouldn't be able to do the things I did before. However, I've had no problems at all.
Columbus Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Donaldson, his nurse Bobbie, and the Riverside Outpatient Surgery Center were awesome. The entire process has been awesome. They have given me their email addresses and within an hour, I usually have an email reply back or a phone call from either the Ps or nurse. Dr. Donaladson and all of his staff are outstanding! I would recommend him over and over.

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 tmes
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Comments (76)

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I had twins to and my stomach looks a lot like yours when bent over. Did you stretch marks prior to your surgery? Because I can't really tell from your pics but after pics looks amazing. Love it. I have a consultation with the same Dr next week. I could only hope to look as fabulous as you do.
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my surgery is in 2 weeks (march 12 2014). seeing your results is keeping me focused on the positive - something I really need as I get closer. thank you for sharing!
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You look GREAT! I am scheduled for March and am getting really nervous. I am concerned about the long-term results (1 year and beyond), so thank you for posting an update and giving me encouragement.
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Looking good what did you use for scar treatment
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I used gelzone. (ordered off of Amazon.com) I cut strips to the length of my scar. It just sticks to your skin, but does not hurt coming off at all. You can wash it and reuse. I had a couple of strips that I just switched out. The cool sensation of the gel felt good. Other than that, just normal lotion (Lubriderm). :)
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Looking great!!!
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Thanks, encouraging for us newbies!!
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You look great! Thank you so much for posting a 1 year update!
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You look awesome!!
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I can't believe the difference in your tummy! You just look AMAZING!!!!! I hope I turn out that good!
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Thanks! I wish you the best on the 2nd. Everything will be just fine.
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You look GREAT! your results are incredible. Must feel good to say "good bye Twin skin!"
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Thanks. Yes it is very nice. What is weird is that it feels like it's still there. Then all I have to do is look down or feel that it's gone and it puts a smile on my face. I just feel so much more confident now.
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I am 40. Married for 22 years. I have a 21 year old son and 17 year old twin daughters. I never thought about having a tummy tuck until one of my daughters had to have corrective surgery and we had to see a plastic surgeon. I have already been to my consultation and surgery is scheduled for Feb 15th. I have been worried about the post op pain, but reading your story has made me feel so much better. I have a pretty high tolerance for pain as I am a migraine sufferer. I've had several surgeries, but I've never had anything like this before. I didn't even have a c-section with the twins (oh natural)! My surgeon has advised that I will be cut from hip to hip, which I'm fine with...so many stretch marks, I just don't care about the scaring. My stomach muscles are shot and any kind of excercising would and has not helped. I thank you for posting your story and results. You have given me new hope! I truly cannot wait for the surgery and am looking forward to having my stomach flat again. BTW it's nice to know there are other Christians out there who've had similar problems like me. Thank you again! God Bless!
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Wow! You have to be thrilled w/ your results & your incision looks shorter than most. You look awesome!
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I really hope I don't feel like eating after surgery. :) If I get results that are anywhere near as incredible as yours I'll be super happy!!
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My average weight was between 127-133 lbs. Right before the surgery I dropped to around 125 due to nerves and not feeling like eating. I'm around 124 right now, but I have a lot of swelling. Let me know if you have any more questions. Wishing you the best on Tuesday. You will be happy you did this.
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Wow, your results are amazing! I'm only 5'0" tall and I've carried two sets of twins -- topped off at 53 inches around each time. Can I ask what you weighed going into your tummy tuck? I'm having mine Tuesday, and I'm really trying to get an idea of what I'll look like after. Holiday eating hasn't helped, but I've generally been around 132lbs for the past year.
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I forgot to hit reply on this comment. I replied below.
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I had 2 sets of twins too! After my TT and lipo I've found it a little easier to loose weight the first few weeks. I went in at 123 and 6 weeks later I'm down to 114. I asked my PS how much he took off during surgery and he said about 4 lbs. The other 5 I've lost so far has been from eating a lower carb diet. I haven't started exercising yet. I still get pretty swollen after just walking around the mall. Good luck on Tuesday!
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Minitx, I saw from your review that your doctor prescribed a low carb diet. Did you do it pre-surgery? I hate low carb diets - they work, but they make me crabby. I've been eating mostly plant-based, very little meat or dairy, and mostly unrefined, unprocessed food, which works pretty well. I want to lose a few pounds after surgery, but I don't want to go back to low carb hell, I need my oatmeal. :)
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I understand I need my oatmeal too and bread and pasta and cookies and.... My PS didn't tell me to do it untul the day of surgery. I'm a bit upset we didn't discuss it before so I could prepare. Good thing I wasn't hungry those first few days. I was strict and kept it under 50gms of carbs a day for a while but only for a couple of weeks. It was causing too many problems. Now, I'm including more carbs each day, (closer to 100gms) but watching the calorie intake to be close to 1100 a day. It has not been easy around the holidays but I've maintained at 114 while splurging a bit.
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I don't eat pasta or bread, or most processed carbs. I generally live on unprocessed carbs - oatmeal and quinoa, brown rice, beans, and then fruits and veggies, and nuts. I do eat greek yogurt and occasionally seafood, but I'm hoping to lose if I'm careful with my diet (which I haven't been in December!). Hoping my dr. doesn't tell me to do anything different!
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The pain pills cause constipation. Drink some prune juice - it really helps. Do 1/2 glass at a time, it's really strong.
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Looking good! I'm 6 weeks post op now and each day still continues to get better and better. Hope your recovery continues to go well!
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