I'm 39 (almost 40) 5'2", and currently 160 lbs. ...
I'm 39 (almost 40) 5'2", and currently 160 lbs. Ever since I had my daughter 10 years ago, I have struggled with maintaining a healthy weight. A little over a year ago, I dedicated myself to eating better and becoming more active. It has taken me a while, but I have lost nearly 50lbs. When I hit the 30 lb loss, I became very aware of how flabby my belly skin was. I had gained a lot of muscle, and was feeling more confident about how I looked in clothes, but was annoyed at the lengths I had to go to camouflage my midsection. I'd have to go up a size in pants to accommodate my gut, and wear long, loose tops. It was at this point that I decided I wanted to get it fixed. I had worked too hard to be uncomfortable in my own skin-I felt great about my accomplishment, and wanted the outside to match the inside!
I spent a lot of time stalking this site, and reading hundreds of reviews. I consulted with 5 different plastic surgeons in my area before I decided on Dr. Fryer. He and his staff are very patient with my million questions, they're close to my home, and came highly recommended by a co-worker. I will be having an extended TT with lipo of my hips and thighs.
My work is very flexible, so I will be taking the week of surgery off, and working from home the following week.
My husband was skeptical about it at first. Of course he tells me that I'm beautiful, and don't need to change a thing. After a little time, he came to realize how much it meant to me to have this done. I took up running when I made my lifestyle change, and I can always count on him to be waiting for me at the finish line. He is being very loving and supportive, and I'm so grateful that I will have him here to help me through the recovery process, just like he has supported me with my running.
My daughter spends the summer with her dad out of state, so I scheduled the surgery while she is gone. That way she won't see mommy in pain, and I will be able to focus more on taking care of myself.
I have my pre-op this afternoon, and will have my husband help me take some "before" photos for me to post.
My birthday is on July 22nd, so I'm hoping to be pretty well healed in time to celebrate the big 40. Nervous and excited...this is finally going to happen!
PO Day 1
Ok, so I'm a liitle loopy. I posted my update as a comment Let's try this again..
PO Day 1 This last week has been a rough one. Friday afternoon I got a phone call that my mom was being rushed to the emergency room for chest pains. She was very lucky that it wasn't a heart attack, but they did find two severe blockages that needed to be cleared. She had 2 stents put in, and was able to come home on Monday. She felt really bad, because she was planning on helping my husband take care of me PO. I'm just glad that she's ok now! Now for my surgery story: A couple weeks after I scheduled my procedure, I called in to Dr. Fryer's office to see about adding lipo of my inner thighs to the list. I was told that I didn't need to schedule an additional consultation for that. The morning of surgery, Dr. Fryer saw in my notes that we were doing extra lipo, and was bothered that another consult wasn't scheduled. He informed me that the skin of the inner thigh doesn't snap back like other areas of the body, and if he did lipo, I would lose the bulk, but have loose skin. I opted not to have my thighs done. Figured I would rather have thick legs than saggy ones! The procedure went well, and in the process my entire birthmark was removed. That kind of made me sad, but it's a small price to pay for a flat tummy! Pain has been manageable, and I was able to pretty much sleep through the night in my recliner. If I hadn't needed to use the restroom, I could've stayed there all night. Yesterday the nurse instructed my husband to give me one pain pill every two hours for the first day home, but today I'm only one every four. I'm hoping that I can get off them by tomorrow, and strictly do Tylenol, because the Percocet makes me itchy. I am having some leakage from my drain sites. My husband taped a piece of gauze over them so it wouldn't leak through my clothes, but I'm wondering if I need to go back in to have them looked at? While I was at my f/u appt today, I got to take a peek at my new belly....and it looks amazing! My husband said he hasn't seen my face light up like that in a long time. The nurse pointed out that even though I was swollen, it still looked fantastic. I'm so glad I did this!!
I was feeling pretty great after my f/u appt, and decided to try taking only half a pain pill at a time. Not a good idea. It's not excruciating, but I'm definitely more comfortable when I take a whole one.
My husband is the best! He's been taking such good care of me (and my mom.) I don't know what I'd do without hi,m :-)
I took a shower, and had my husband take a few pics.
I'd finally had enough of the itching caused by the Percocet, and have been strictly Tylenol since PO day 2. The pain isn't bad at all, my biggest issue is nausea.
I'm sleeping through the night, and my drain output is decreasing. But, I get nauseated every time I start moving around after having been still for a while. I haven't vomited (thankfully) but the nausea is frustrating. I've also developed queasiness when it comes to my drains. It didn't bother me at first-my husband would do one side while I did the other, but now the sight of them makes me gag.
I'm also getting antsy from always sitting/laying in the same position. I keep telling myself that it's getting better every day, and soon enough this will all be a memory.
Oh, and coughing is a nightmare! I started choking on a drink of water last night, and that was the most horrific pain I've experienced so far. I held a pillow against my abdomen and leaned against the back of the couch. I got through it, but I don't want that to ever happen again.
I've heard a lot of people having issues with moving their bowels after surgery, but I haven't had a problem. I think the fact that I wasn't on the pain meds very long helped that out. Also, I've been eating a cup of Activia yogurt every day, and took a dose of milk of magnesia the night of PO day 2.
The highs and lows
Overall, I'd have to say I feel pretty good. But let me take a minute to tell you about all of the things that keep me from feeling great:
1- Soreness from the hip lipo has set in, which leads to number...
2- I can't find a comfortable position to sleep in. I had been sleeping great in the recliner, but now that's not even working. I sleep for an hour or two, and wake up with a stiff neck, and struggle to find a new position.
3- My abdominal binder won't stay in place. I try to keep it pulled low enough to cover my drain sites, but no matter how much I adjust it, it shifts upward.
4- My lipo swelling has settled right below where the binder sits. Since the freakin thing keeps riding up, I have this large bulge at the top of my butt that makes it look deformed.
5- I still have both drains. I go back to work on Monday, and I really didn't want to still have them in. I have an appointment Monday morning, so I'm crossing my fingers that they'll take them both out then.
On the plus side, the nurse got me a prescription for a different pain medication. I have only been taking Tylenol occasionally, but I really needed something stronger to get me comfortable enough to sleep at night. Also, today was the first day that I woke up and did not have nausea!
It's been 12 days since surgery, and my output hasn't decreased enough to get them removed. I had a couple of days where I was hopeful, but then it picked up again. My co-worker said she was ready to have hers out in 5, but her surgeon had a 10 day rule. My surgeon said he's had people keep them up to 4 weeks!
I'm curious as to how long others had to have them in?
One down, one to go
Yesterday I was able to have my right drain removed. I was pretty nervous about it, because I thought it would hurt. I didn't feel a thing! My left side is still putting out too much to even consider removing it. At this rate, I'm thinking it will be at least another week.
Being back at work this week hasn't been too bad. I have found that if I don't get up and walk frequently that I stiffen up. By the time I get home at the end of the day I'm exhausted, though.
I took this with my phone, so it's not the best quality. My incision is healing up nicely, and my swelling isn't too bad these days.
19 Jan 2014
6 months post
I have been meaning to get back on here for a very long time, and I'm finally here. I could write a novel about everything that has been going on, but the main point of this post is that I'm fully recovered, and completely thrilled with my results!! I will never regret it, and will sell this procedure (and my surgeon) to anyone who will sit still long enough to listen. :-)