Completing My Transformation - Flowood, MS

Since January 2008, I have lost 103 pounds of fat...

Since January 2008, I have lost 103 pounds of fat and gained some muscle. The weight has come off slowly since I am a Type 1 Insulin Dependent Diabetic, but that's fine with me. I think it has a better chance of staying off. As the weight came off, my abdomen began to protrude, especially on the left side of my navel. Scar tissue from insulin injections. I also developed the hanging apron.

I would joke that I would need surgery one day to "fix" this, but never really considered it. Now I wear an insulin pump and for the past 7 months, I've been having difficulty wearing infusion sites in my abdomen due to the loose skin and scar tissue. After discussing with my family, my endo MD & NP, and the PS I chose, it seems like this will help me in the long run. I know I won't be able to use my abdomen for awhile, but down the road is better than not at all.

What's funny is I never even realized the "cosmetic" aspect of it until my husband and I were picking up some postop pajamas. He said, just think how many inches you will lose in one day. I had never even thought about it. I wore a one piece swimsuit last year for the first time in 6 years and to think that one day I could actually wear a two piece - wow. It's funny because I went into this just with the idea that I was going to help myself in the future with my diabetes, but I will gain so much more. I'm now saying that my transformation will be complete.

Right now I'm anxious due to anesthesia, the wound itself and possibly complications. I'm worried because I have taken time off work - 3 weeks- and I don't even call in when I don't feel well. But, everyone at work has been very supportive. My husband is awesome. He is off the week of surgery, which is scheduled July 3rd. Also, my mom, who is also a nurse, works weekends, but she has taken the two weekends after surgery off, so she will be moving in for a couple weeks to help .

I'm also very stressed because I won't be able to exercise the way I do now. Which will be good for my body to rest itself, but exercise is what has changed my life - for the better. So, I will be so ready to get back to it once I'm able to. I started in January 2008 weighing 278 lbs with 56% bodyfat and I currently weigh in at 175-178 with 29% bodyfat. My goal weight is 165, so I'm close enough to proceed at this time.

So, here's to using this site as more encouragement and support to get through this. I'm adding my before and my 100 pound off photos and will add the before surgery photos as soon as I can.

Tomorrow morning is my preop visit. I believe I...

Tomorrow morning is my preop visit. I believe I have all the necessary postop supplies at home. Paid in full. I am starting to get very excited. Going to spend the weekend getting my house good and clean. Also going to spend a little time taking all the photos of my belly that I didn't like for people to see. I guess since it won't be there anymore, I better get them while I can. I can't believe it's only 6 days away now. It really helps coming to this site and reading updates and others experiences. The support here is awesome. The support I'm getting from everyone else is awesome as well. I guess the final countdown has begun.

Pre Op is over and done with. Got all of my final...

Pre Op is over and done with. Got all of my final instructions today. Wow. This morning on the drive to the office, I think it actually sunk in that it's here. I still have alot to do to prep my house and just be as organized and ready as I can be.

I am overwhelmed by the support I am getting from family and friends. It's so awesome to have such wonderful people in my life. As scared and anxious as I am, I feel like if I believe everything "bad" will happen to me, then it'll be alot easier once I crossover to the flat side.

Less than 24 hours I will be on the flat side. Oh...

Less than 24 hours I will be on the flat side. Oh my! I can't believe it is finally here. It truly kind of snuck up on me. It's almost like I've been in an out of body experience the past week just getting my house ready. Spent some time getting some final pictures of my girth in this morning. I can't believe this bane will be gone forever. I don't know what else I could of done to prepare myself. I'm still scared and nervous, but very excited at this point. I'm looking forward to September - once a couple months have passed, I'm sure I'll be feeling better and hopefully will be very happy with the results.

Well, it's been almost 24 hours since I went into...

Well, it's been almost 24 hours since I went into surgery. Everything yesterday went without a hitch. The surgeon and other staff were awesome! He said he removed a "foot and a half" of mostly skin and scar tissue. Said I didn't have alot of subcutaneous fat. He also did "light lipo" on my flanks to give me a better contoured look. I can't wait to see the results. The recovery nurse and PS couldn't believe how well I was doing when I woke up. So far, I'm taking my pain meds on schedule every 4 hours for the first 48. I'm "living" in one of those reclining chairs that actually lifts you up as well. As long as I'm in the right position I don't hurt too bad, but getting in and out of it to go to the bathroom sucks. My wonderful husband and mom are with me. I hate asking for help with anything on a regular day, but right now I'm giving in and being a little less independent. Hopefully later today i can see my abdomen. My mom saw it last night giving me the lovenox injection. I couldn't tell anything cause I was lying back in the chair. She said I looked very thin - cant wait.

Saw my new stomach for the first time. I love it!...

Saw my new stomach for the first time. I love it! I can't believe how good it looks. Pretty swollen but what a difference. I have a couple pics but haven't gotten to the computer to upload yet. Yesterday I pretty much slept on and off. Couldn't pay attention to the tv or my book. Very short attention span, but I'm attributing that to the pain meds. Going to space them out more starting today. Luckily, my pain has not been too bad but that's because I got on a med schedule as soon as I got home.

Well, my second postop appt is today. I can't...

Well, my second postop appt is today. I can't believe I haven't been on my computer in almost 2 weeks. Needless to say, when my PS told me to be still and let my body heal, I took his words seriously. I came home the day of surgery and propped up in the recliner and started my pain med schedule immediately. The only time I got up was to go to the bathroom. The only time I opened the binder was when it was time for a dressing change. I have even been using my grandmother's wheeled walker to assist in the 10 steps it takes to get to the bathroom. So, I gave up my independence and let my husband and mom help me.

At my first appt on Tuesday, he said he couldn't believe how fast I was healing and how good the incision looked. He even pulled out his own pre-op photos taken in the office and said he couldn't believe how good I looked and that I may set a record for fastest healing. Being a Type 1 diabetic, I was thrilled to hear this and we did do an second round of antibiotics just to be on the safe side. I had one drain (the one that I could feel) and my sutures removed that day. Went back home and got back into the recliner.

I have showered every other day, had the dressing changed everyday. I haven't been in any pain (except my hunched over back). I have eaten well and made sure I had lots of veggies and protein. Also drinking my water everyday. I have gotten pretty uncomfortable in the recliner and bored at times because I never watch TV, but I have done nothing but watch TV and read. But I never have time to read either and I've finished 2 books so far.

I have been using my phone for emails and checking the site, but today came to the computer. Just wanted to send a real quick update and the only photos I've gotten of my belly so far.

Back to the PS today for the fourth postop visit....

Back to the PS today for the fourth postop visit. This past Tuesday, he thought I may of developed a seroma and attempted to drain fluid, but there wasn't any free flowing fluid. I didn't even feel the shot of lidocaine since my belly is still numb. I'm trying to stay away from sodium and I'm back up to my gallon of water a day, so hopefully this helps. I know the swelling comes and goes for a few months, but I'm still very excited about my results even with the swelling. I haven't even attempted to put on "real clothes". I've been living in nightgowns at home and tshirts with athletic shorts when I venture out to appointments. Crossing my fingers that the swelling will be down a little today so my PS can tell how I'm healing and maybe get cleared to walk a little bit more.
Jackson Plastic Surgeon

If you ask anyone locally who the best person to perform this surgery would be, it is always Dr. Runnels whose name is mentioned. My endocrinology NP suggested him as well when when we discussed the possibility of this surgery.

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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Awesome! how are you now. I am considering using Dr Runnels.
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You look so awesome! Glad that all is going well!! Glad that you don't have a seroma!! =) Hope the swelling subsides!!!
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you look fabulous! Congradulations on all of your hard work :) I am 13 days po and it seems to be harder as the days go on to push the water like we should. But lets keep chugging. I am excited for you and your new lifestyle and all the wonderful things that come along with it. Rest,heal, and enjy the fruits of your labor.
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Thanks so much and you rest yourself up and being so busy already. You look fabulous - you're so tiny in your photos. Great job!
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You look great!
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Thank you so much. You are looking awesome yourself. I love the newest pic - looks like you're finally dropping down. Sounds like you've been up and about and doing well minus the drain. Good job getting it pulled today. Hope your healing continues to go well.
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WOW....your tummy looks amazing! :)
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Thank you so much. I still can't believe it when I look at pictures my mom and husband keep taking. I think my mom is more proud of it than I am. She told me "I hope you don't mind I'm texting everyone your pics." Good luck recovering and I love the pink flower print on your bikini.
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Hi Hollyjanelle Congrads on your weight loss and your decision for surgery. I myself did the same thing after being overweight for 12 years decided enough and started my new life. I lost 40 pounds and had a TT with lipo. Like allot of others I think I worried allot before the surgery but the only first two days were rough. Like you I'm a very active person but leason to your body it will tell you when it needs rest. I'm 6 days post op and was outside watering flowers this morning. Lol I said good grief ok time to sit. It is totally worth it and I'm loving my results already no more what I use to call my Butt up front. Lol Happy healing and hugs to you. We all need those Love Healing Hugs.
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Just looked at your pics and love your polka dot bikini. I've definitely been more active the past couple of days since my PS said I can now do "moderate" activity. I'm staying pretty swollen under my belly button right above the pubic area. My weight is down 3 lbs since the day of surgery, but it has been up and down. I'm going to step away from the scale and let nature take it's course. Congrats on almost hitting your goal weight so soon. Awesome job!
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Praying for everyone to have a successful surgery today!! On my way....
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Hope you are doing well going into almost 3 weeks po. I've been slacking way too much on the boards. I did like my PS said and stayed relatively still. Now I'm up and moving and resembling the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. But, it will subside. Hope you are well and progressing.
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Your story is so similar to mine, Congratulations on the weight loss, We will be leaving behind our old appendages and I gotta tell ya I wont miss it one bit! ;D Goodluck tomorrow see you on the flat side! Hugz and Prayers coming your way!
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Are you ready???? Are you excited???? I was super excited and no nerves at all....but then they seem to have hit me today. I think just knowing we are going "under" tomorrow has finally hit me. Can't wait to see all our results. There are several of us going in tomorrow eh. YAY!! Hope everything goes smoothly for you and you recover well. x
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Yeah, the whole "after" effect is in my mind now. One thing is for sure, I've picked the right time of year to be locked up in the house. The heat is atrocious. Good luck. See you on the flat side!
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Wow..congrats on weight loss.i see your leg muscles are defined!you will look awesome!
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ooooh, I'm 3 July too. That's 3 of us at least. "a new me Regi" is due on 3rd too. Will need to keep an eye on everyone's progress. :)
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Yes, it does look that way. What's funny is at first, my PS was booked until August, but they called me the next day and said there were so many people needing/ wanting surgery, they were opening up 2 extra days and I was the first one they called. Yay! It worked out perfectly because my husband is already off the entire week and isn't having to take off any "extra" time.
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Oh that's excellent. My hubby is having to work but they are allowing him to work from home so if I need anything he will be there. He goes back the following Monday. Are you excited. I've gone crazy cleaning the house. LOL
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I have gone crazy trying to organize, but the cleaning starts today when I get off work. I figured it would be the best way to keep me sane over the next three days. Just to keep me busy so I'm not stressing anymore than I already am. But, as nervous as I am, I am starting to get very excited as well. :-)
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Well I was meant to be away for weekend but not going now as i twisted my shoulder and it locked in wrong position, finally after hours it clicked back into the right place but was excruciating pain. Although it is back in position now it still hurts a lot, Docs told me to rest it for few days as i've pulled ligaments, tendons etc so it will hurt. Means I couldn't drive out so our weekend is cancelled. I would have waited to clean up's just gonna get messed up now with us being at home. Oh well. Need to rest this arm so it's good for Tuesday. :)
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Hi HollyJanelle, you have an awesome story! Like you my tt is scheduled for July 3rd in Memphis, TN. I'm both excited and scared at the same time. We can get through this together!! This time next week, we will be on the road to recovery.
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Awesome - looks like there are alot of people scheduled for the 3rd. I joked and said I wouldn't be having any cocktails or bar-b-q on the 4th this year. But, I would sure be liking that next year I may be able to enjoy the 4th in a bikini.
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I will be at the hospital by 5am and my surgery is scheduled for 7:30am. I was told that it should take no more than three hours. In addition to the tummy tuck, I'm having a hysterectomy. I was told this would be the ideal time for the tummy tuck. I can't think about food or anything else as I'm getting really nervous. However, I'm still committed to getting this done. No more dunlap for me!!
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Good luck! Can't believe it's now time to countdown in hours. No more dunlap - like that one.
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