Mommy Make-Over (Tummy Tuck, Lipo, and Breast Lift (No Implants) - Minneapolis, MN

Had my first consultation on Thursday, 7/18/2013...

Had my first consultation on Thursday, 7/18/2013 at the Edina Plastic Surgery Center. I've had two close friends have procedures there and the center has many impressive credentials. Dr. Leigh was very friendly, had a nice sense of humor- he was approachable (I felt comfortable asking all of my very personal questions), yet absolutely professional.

I am a mother of 3 (a 6 year old and infant twins). I am 5'9 and 165 lbs. I gained 60+ lbs with each pregnancy. I carried the twins to 38 weeks. Surprisingly, I am now in the best shape of my life sans the loose skin on my tummy and less then perky, deflated breasts. My family is vehemently opposed to cosmetic surgery, so I'm doing this on my own (my husband is supportive, not my mom, whom I am extremely close to, certain friends, etc).
I am just not ready to say good-bye to feeling 'normal' and good. 60lbs in my belly created three beautiful children and I'm very blessed. I'm also thrilled to be able (in the near future) to be confident in a bikini.

Before Pics of Tummy

Others' stories helped me make this decision; I hope my less than glamorous, but honest photos will help some else as well.

Pre-Op (Check!) Payment Complete (Check!)

I'm officially without a lot less money :) You only live once though and I am SO excited to feel good at 31. I am so anxious I am eating everything in site; I need to knock that off as it won't help me in the long run. I keep thinking that I should start eating super clean now, then think, the doc is just going to suction it out anyway (lol). This of course is an unhealthy mentality.
I had my pre-op appointment today. I felt a little bit as though my primary physician, *not* associated with Dr. Leigh, was a bit judgmental. She even went so far as to ask how much I was spending on the procedure. I'm going to be optimistic and pretend that she was inquiring for personal reasons... perhaps we'll see her before and after on real self.com next ;)
Less than two weeks to go! I am excited. I have arranged for two close friends to come live with me the week following the procedure. My husband works long hours and I don't want to stress him out... plus, my girlfriends are more fun to lounge around with, snack, and watch bad tv series with. I'm hoping to scope out Game of Thrones and Justified, attempting to avoid thoughts of swollen stitches!

I'm wondering if I should leave my recliner downstairs in the family room or carry into my bedroom for sleeping at night? Recommendations?

The Countdown Begins!

Less than 10 days to go! I am SO excited and so scared! I am choosing to not focus on the 'what-ifs' and instead focus on the results. I can't believe this is really going to happen! I find myself reviewing Before and After pics here and cannot believe that I may have awesome pic to share soon, too. Yay!!!

1 Week! Holy Moly! Anyone have experience with BL on smaller breasts?!?

One week from today! Holy Moly! I am so excited! I am really in disbelief that this is happening! Thrilled and a bit nervous. I'm choosing to focus on the positive and not the potential negatives.I know they're there. I read the Informed Consent (multiple times). BUT other then prepare as best as possible and take good care of myself while recovering, there is only so much I can control. I am not going to worry about the things I cannot control, right?!? :)

I am a tiny bit concerned about my decision not to get implants. I am getting a lift and am a flat 34 C, not a 'true' C, but a deflated-from nursing three *wonderful* children C. I am very active. I emphasized (to my dr) that shape is not as important as size is. I would love to have insanely perky boobs (Unnaturally perky? Sounds good to me!) I'm not worried about having a natural droop- its going to happen eventually :) I don't, however want to have nothing left after the lift. I'm not finding a lot of pics of lifts w/out implants on smaller breasts. I love the look of implants, I just don't think they are for me- I think that I would worry (irrationally) about breaking one, my body rejecting one, etc. Plus I'm tall and 'big-boned.' Having really large breasts would make me look too large (I'm 6'3 in tall heels.)
Anyone seen good results on bl on average to small sizes breasts?

Almost There...

* I meant to say that 'shape is more important to me than size* in my last update.... I wish I could edit those... 'eating everything in site v. sight'... Ahh well.

I'm actually less excited/anxious than I was. Only a couple days till showtime! I think that I maybe in denial that all this is actually happening. I went shopping with a girlfriend today and looked at bikinis and just couldn't commit to buying one as I think I'm in a more 'I'll believe it when I see it' mode. I bet it will be real on Tuesday when I'm marked up with a Sharpie and heading into surgery. Ha!

I am dreading the recovery- maybe if I dread it enough it won't be as bad as I'm anticipating. ;)

I think that when I do wake up and realize that with a little tlc, I'll be one hot mama- I will be thrilled. I am really looking forward to Tuesday.

Will I be able to go jogging in a sports bra and shorts? Awesome.

One More Day!

I cannot believe that in at this time tomorrow, I'll be in surgery. I am very excited. I keep having waves of absolute anxiety and fear, but am choosing to focus on the excitement and stay positive. I have a recliner and a list of groceries, supplements, etc. I'm going to head to Whole Foods and Costco in a bit. I put off doing certain preparations till today so that I will be busy and not dwelling on the 'What Ifs.'
Lately, I've been struggling with the guilt of doing this- spending so much money on myself, imposing on close friends for support during recovery, hiding the procedure from my in-laws, and especially placing so much weight on my husband. He is very kind and doesn't complain... Ever. A 'suffer in silence' type of guy. I don't want him to stress out too much. I'm at home with three kids and he is single handedly supporting all of us. I just am preparing as much as possible, lining up all the help I can get, and reminding myself that this (recovery) is temporary. The better I feel about myself, the better mother and wife I'll be. Plus... I *did* have three kids for the man! (lol) And I paid for the procedure with my savings (I've only been at home since last Fall).
I've talked to my son, who is 6 about the procedure and more the recovery so that when I come home he is not totally shocked.... He asks'when am I coming home with my tubes [drains]?!?'

Tomorrow, kiddo.

I Made It!

Surgery went well yesterday (yay)! I'm feeling much better than I anticipated. Still groggy and not typing speedily, but that's ok :)
I have been able to eat, which makes the pain meds much easier on my stomach (that was an issue after my cesarean in March). I haven't seem anything yet; I woke up bandaged like a mummy- and that's alright with me! The bandages and compression garmits are supportive and lessen the pain. I want to stretch out but don't dare till I see Dr Leigh on Thursday (tomorrow). I will post pics ASAP. I will ask my friend to take some of me in garmits tomorrow morning and try to get some without clothing on Thursday. Hope all the ladies that went in on the 6th are doing well!
Also, staff and Dr Leigh were wonderful yesterday, particularly Dr Leigh,y nurse Cheryl, and the anesthesiologist, Gary. They were professional and yet light and humorous, which decreased my anxiety tremendously. Here's to a smooth recovery!

A Little Sore

I Love My New Boobs!

Swollen still. Wrapped like a mummy. Thank goodness for recliners, pineapple, cool water, colace, and awesome supportive friends. And bad daytime tv. Will post more pics soon! Hope everyone is healing well!!!

Breasts: Before and After (Lift, no implants)

Mellow Today, but Feeling Better!

2 of 3 Drains Out Today!

Freedom! I can move about in public without wearing a hoodie in August. Yay! Feeling good. Should slow down a little though as bb is a little pink. Extended the antibiotics to ensure no infection- fine by me. I'd rather proactively prevent then try to retroactively fix a problem. Still swollen and very bruised.

Shamelessly Ordered Itty- Bitty Victoria's Secret Bikini(s) Today...

They were on sale! ;)

I am feeling better. More and more, I am slowly feeling like me. Swelling has gone down. Day of surgery, I weighed 160 lbs. The next morning (1 day post op) 175 lbs. I'm back to 161 and plan to continue to tone (after I'm healed, of course). But having 15+ pounds of water weight will take a toll on a woman, so I'm glad that's filtering out...

Tummy 1 Week Post Op

Last Drain Out Today

... But I have to lay low this weekend. I really don't want any fluid to pool and have to deal with that. If I can be mellow, I may even get the all clear on Wed (fingers crossed)! All clear meaning the ok to stop wearing the CG and do some light walking- I'll take it!
For my mellow Friday night, I'm eating a Sundae Cone while watching Preseason Vikings.

Pic Update

Two Weeks Post Op Tomorrow

Feeling pretty good. I started my cycle today, which only adds to the swell. I'm 159 lbs now, which is great- I haven't been this low since I met my husband three years ago. I'm anxious to see my surgeon on Wed to evaluate my progress. If no fluid, then I can lighten up on my CG (sweet!) and start some light exercise. I love walking an listening to music; it's my therapy, so that is much anticipated. Till then I am being SO so mellow in hopes of minimizing and swelling/seroma/etc.

PS. My bikinis may come in the mail today! Motivation! And I'm going to run a 5k in late October with my little brother (25) and sister (17). The Monster Dash! I'm excited. Maybe I'll run it in my new bikini and decorate my face like a zombie! (I'm not really that obnoxious- ha ha!)

Liking the Ladies!

Has it been 3 weeks Tuesday?

Crazy. I am feeling good. Energy is creeping up. I think since the surgery I have been going crazy with my eating, almost telling myself that I need more consumption to heal and I should probably get a grip on that. Eat cleaner (that's not as fun though).
I'm definitely going thru the typical swelling stages: nice and taught in the morning, swollen like a Christmas Dinner by 3 pm. Oh well- it will pass. Healing takes time.
I have gone on a few light walks however we were just hit with an intense heat wave, so I'm reluctant to push it. It was nice to have that 'me' time. Put on my headphones and go... Fall is just around the corner; that is absolutely my favorite time of year :)
Hope everyone is healing well!

Question...

Is the 'puckering' around the incision normal? It's almost like ruching..? Also, I'm 4 weeks post op; I had quite a bit of MR done. My upper abdominal muscles starting hurting last week, more so one one side, just below my ribs. Is it easy to 'pop a stitch?' Hmmm...??? I see my doc tomorrow. I'm anxious to see what he says.
Edina Plastic Surgeon

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Very inspiring, thank you for the details. Last year I started losing weight. I am 5'3" was 197lbs now been fluctuating between 145-155lbs. I should weight 115 but I can not for the life of me lose it. That being said it takes longer I realize to lose those last few pounds. I eat clean, cardio & core exercise every other day in between days lift weights with one day off. I am not sure if I should continue for one more year or go in & have surgery done. One doctor said get down to weight you desire or final weight. I think I made my final weight. But I can still feel/see the fat. Grr...any suggestions? Should I see doctor again or another one & get advise?
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Just wanted to say, I do have a bit of puckering. I had a couple of really noticeable puckers right after surgery, but they've mostly already settled at 6 weeks PO!! I'm sure your surgeon will revise anything that doesn't settle!! Also, I'm quite certain I've popped a couple of stitches, and had some discomfort, but my surgeon said I won't have done any damage to the results if that did happen. Let us know how it goes tomorrow!
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Thank you- the doc said that the puckering was exactly that, sutures under the skin that start to pop at about six weeks, but that is totally normal. He said that the tenderness is where the muscles are attached, closer to my ribs (I'm not articulating that well, but you gals probably understand that better then I). It made sense when he said it- lol. No core workouts for a bit, but other exercise is a-okay! Yay!
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You're looking great!! I remember after week 3, my energy levels really seemed to increase, hoping the same for you!! I had a period of time after my surgery (for about a week) where I ate poorly. I think I just felt sorry for myself!! lol. I'm back at clean eating now, but it certainly takes a ton of work to prepare healthy meals!! I'm drinking a lot of kale smoothies to help the water retention along :) Keep us posted!!
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You look great! Do you mind if I ask what your bra size is now? I'm just curious. Without before pics, it's hard to tell how much size you lost. Maybe you had great boobs before. :). Thanks for telling your story!
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I am a 34 C. I was a 36 C, however I was not a 'true' C. Prior to surgery my breasts were wide and deflated. They are much fuller and rounder now. I would guess that when all is said and done (swelling gone, healing complete, tape off) I will be a larger 34 B. Mh breasts look larger now then before just because of their shape. I am very tall and have broad shoulders; my goal was small perky breasts. When my breasts are much larger, I start to feel too domineering. I don't have my before pics anymore, otherwise I'd be happy to repost. :(
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You look amazing! These results are inspiring. Thank you for sharing.
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Thank you. That is very kind of you to say.
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You look amazing! I am having the same thing done on Sept. 9 and am freaking out! I am scared I am going to swell up forever...I just lost 50 pounds and I know I will freak with the post fluid weight..lol..Did you lose any cup size with the lift?...my dr. says I will not but I do not trust him since I have tons of extra skin..I own a business and have to be back in a week...with the drains my dr. says have to be in for 3 to 4 weeks...
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Don't be nervous! It is *intense* but well worth it. I would recommend 'overstocking' on help the week following surgery. Anyone that wants to hang out and watch movies, etc was greatly appreciated initially as doing little things even was a challenge. I was feeling good at a week, but to head back to work after week would have been tight for me. If you can work from home, or have extra staff to help out, I would. You might be just fine, but my main 'advice' (as if I'm some old pro- lol) is to over prepare rather then not. If you have too much help, you are much better off then not having enough, right?! :) I'm excited for you! Losing 50 lbs is not easy- you can tackle this! Regarding my cup size- I think my breast look fuller post op. I was very nervous about just getting a lift, but they look much rounder then before. The shape is nicer. Good luck! Keep us posted!! :)
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Congrats on the weight loss. I agree with momma. I thought I would be ready for work and I was only doing part time admin. I was so wrong. I took 2 weeks off and had help the whole time. I sure did need it. I feel like why take a chance of delaying your healing, swelling more, or some other unwanted result. I did however do work from home and that was easy however with my meds I found I made some mistakes ;) Good luck with everything and cant wait to see your results!
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are you putting anything on your breasts yet? Ive got my tape off too, and I am starting to get dry feeling. You look great by the way! Happy healing!
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Sorry for the delayed response! So? The heavy duty tape from the actual surgery came off, doc says that usually happens 2-3 weeks post op. I am, however still using tape, just a lighter tape to support the incisions to reduce scarring. My doc told me not to use lotion, etc yet- just tape. I am eager to ditch the tape and lather the scars with vitamin E. I am so itchy! :(
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I will definitely keep you updated. I've heard that when you start running again, of course you're a little bit slower than your previous norm, but most noticeable is a lack of endurance- that after a procedure, you're just more tired, which would make sense. I'm eager to get some fresh air!
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Wow! You look really good! Can't wait to see the new bikini's! So exciting trying them on and seeing the new hour glass figure. I would also love to hear how it goes when you start running again. I'm nervous for when I start back up. Keep healing!
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Running a 5k! Awesome goal!
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Starting to see that beautiful hourglass! Looking great!
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You look amazing! Congrats! I have a question. It seems like there are so many ladies with a vertical incision coming up from their TT incision. How were you able to avoid this? Is it because you are so tall? I'm 5'7" but have a very long torso (like "Weebles Wooble but they don't fall down" long. :) And I am hoping for similar results to yours. Thank you for the update! I'll be following you as a fellow "no implant" girl. Love your perky girls! Be well! :)
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My ps said it all depends on how mych skin they can pull down creating your new belly button and taking the incision from the old one. We were thinking I had enough skin for mine, but when I got done found out there wasn't as much as it looked so ended up with the t incision. Also, I'm 5'9, I was told I had a high bb and with such a low incision it might be unavoidable. He said it should heal really well though and be barely visable.
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Thank you! Quick question, do you know when swelling peaks? I feel very taught and swollen everywhere, but I'm wondering when do you start to see where you're going to be at? (I'm not articulating this well.) I'm thrilled with how I look- is this what I'm going to look like or am I still uber swollen? Does that make any sense? (I was going to sort thru some clothes and was unsure as to if my shape will still change significantly or if I'm where I'm going to be?)
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Oh girlie! You are only like 12 days postop! Your tummy already looks fabulous and it'll change everyday--looking better and better! I was in a super bad mental state at that time so keep your chin up; itll fly. i didn't swell like others did but I looked on labels for sodium. I know salt intake makes you swell. Also if u are working and moving a lot keep a pressure garment on your incision area for a few weeks. This is embarrassing but I bought super pads and opened them the long on my incision under my cg til like 6 weeks:) and never ever swelled!!! Hope this helps and keep me posted!
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:)
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I had to wear that spandex for 8 weeks!!!! Just took it off and I feel so free going to the bathroom:) u look awesome! Glad to hear u are doing great
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Wow! You look great. I love the hour glass contour your getting. Looks great!
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You look great! The belly button takes the longest to heal but it will stop bothering you soon!
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