Tummy Tuck scheduled for 1/27/14 I'm 47 yrs old. ...
I'm 47 yrs old. I have a soon to be 21 year old daughter. I'm scheduled for a tummy tuck January 27, 2014. I've been wanting to do this for 20 years.
Pregnancy destroyed my body. I was small before and my body never recovered. I worked hard to lose the weight and I did but my stretch marks and the tummy area never tightened to where I felt comfortable. I've since hid my stomach in one piece bathing suits, lose clothing, larger jeans....sometimes having to tuck my stomach into my jeans. Yuck!
My insecurity with my tummy has affected me in all areas of my life and most recently I have seen the negative impact it has on my romantic life.
I've started dating again from a 3 year hiatus and met a wonderful man who accepts me tummy and all. I can't get past my issues and realize I need to either get over it or do something about it .
I started researching tummy tucks, breast augmentation (I need that too) and mommy make overs. Ive had many friends have plastic surgery procedures locally and honestly never felt the outcomes they received plus the time and financial obligation was worth it for me. I Stumbled upon Real Self and by reading reviews and what I needed not only from the surgeon but the staff, I found Dr. Kaufman in Folsom ca, 5 hours away.
Since I'm such a distance from Folsom Dr. Kaufman called me on my cell for the consultation to make sure we were a good fit. He asked what I was looking for and was interested in my life in such a way to make sure this was what I wanted and why. And if I recall it was on a weekend night. He made me feel important enough to make the time to go meet him in person.
A few weeks later I went to have my in person consultation. At the time of the consultation I was wanting breast augmentation as well. My top and bottom never matched. Dresses never fit. My hips and thighs are on the thicker side whereas my waist and breast are on the smaller side. My goal is to go into a dressing room and have clothes fit....or at least better.
After my consultation with Dr. Kaufman I decided on only a tummy tuck. He knew financially the both would be hard on me so he was honest to say if I had to chose between the two procedures, he would go with the tummy tuck. He thought I had "modest drooping" and would be pleased with the tummy tuck on its own.
So, here it goes.
My Pharmacy Surprise
A New Year and a New Me
I don't know why or if this is normal but I've gained weight since scheduling my tummy tuck. I haven't been as strict and have been eating uncontrollably and have gained close to 5 lbs since starting this journey. Anyone else had that experience?
The closer the date comes, the more emotional I get. I want to cry. I'm excited but really scared and anxious about aftercare and my work. My work is based on timelines by the federal government and I only have 2 other team members to help out in a large county, so I feel a little guilty for that.
But mostly I'm trying to look out for my primary caregiver - my boyfriend of only 6 months. He is going to be with me thru the entire process. Trust me...I've considered calling my best friend, my mother, my daughter...anyone other than putting him thru this. Let's just say that we have a "romantic period" coming up of him helping me to the toilet, bathing me, changing my dressings, my drains, my stitches, my everything...
Happy New Year!
Questions for doctor at pre-op this Thursday
I haven't even started a list of questions to ask. Anyone have suggestions on what to ask?
10 days and Pre Op done!
What I didn't count on was the emotional release that happened after the call. I think it was a combination of the emotions I've been stuffing and the reality of having elective surgery. I've not been sharing my emotions simply because I haven't shared this journey with my support circle, only my boyfriend. And it's not fair to lay it all on him, it's girlfriend stuff. I have extreme anxiety having elective major surgery. I've never had major surgery before and I'm wanting this!
Then I read RS updates and photos and see all the amazing flat tummies and the anxiety disappears for the moment. I can't wait to be done with this stomach!
Tomorrow is the big day!
One thing I know for sure. Dr. Kaufman was absolutely the right choice and he is a wonderful man. As I am traveling to him for surgery he has taken time to call me on his personal schedule to be sure all my questions are answered and that I feel prepared. He has assured me that I will be ecstatic with my results and has really made me feel good about my decision. His gentle way even comes through over the phone and its so appreciated.
Leaving in about two hours to make the trip to Folsom for my big day! I'm excited. :-)
Wish me luck!
This is her BF posting on her behalf and she is out of surgery and sound asleep in our hotel room so she asked me to post an update. The surgery went fantastic and the doctor said she is going to be absolutely thrilled with the results. He said he could not be happier with how the procedure went.
She was an absolute riot when the meds kicked in before surgery. She woke up pretty groggy and in some pain but overall doing well and in great spirits. Hopefully she gets some sleep now and can sleep off the meds from surgery.
She got one drain put in and has a pain pump inserted as well. Overall the practice was incredible and everyone was so kind. Dr. Kaufman has been doing some commenting on her story on his own Facebook page so check out his video he posted this morning on the results - https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10153760480160612&set=vb.405481615611&type=2&theater
More later as she wakes up and is up to posting her post surgery thoughts.
Post op day 1
Post op day 3
Trying to schedule my one week appointment for next week and dreading the drive. My poor boyfriend. He's been so good, anticipating my needs before I have to ask. I'm in good hands. He's looking forward to removing my pain pump line. I'll be sad to see it go.
Hope everyone is healing well and will post pics once I can shower.
Post Op day 6
Day 8 post op goal
Drain is out!
Day 12 Post Op
Yesterday I drove for the first time since surgery and I felt like I was 16 yrs old taking my parents car out for a drive. I felt giddy! That was a bit of independence that I needed badly. However good that felt I did pick something up that must have been more than 5 lbs unbeknownst to me....and ouch! Felt like I tore something. And I did more walking, climbed stairs and in general more than I had since surgery. I felt it at the end of the day. I was not only exhausted but in pain. I overdid it.
Last night I questioned this entire process. Everything from is the pain to losing 2 weeks of my vacation time worth it? Inconveniencing my boyfriend and not being able to laugh without crying worth it? Ya know?
I am truly lucky to have the best boyfriend. He has taken exceptional care of me. He hasn't once made me feel like a burden or guilty for not only putting myself thru this but, putting him thru it as well.
I didn't sleep well last night either. I'm still in the recliner.
I took a shower this morning. I'm still not able to stand the entire shower time. Showers have never felt so welcome. My skin is incredibly dry and itchy. I have major swelling and bruising. So, after the shower I wanted to take a couple cute photos with bra and panties that I've seen others do. Ha ha. I'm so swollen on the back side that cute panties aren't quite my thing just yet. (Sorry Honey but I don't think cute bra and panties are gonna happen for Valentines Day either).
I did put on my regular panties and bra and my boyfriend snapped the attached photo. I wasn't feeling good about it and wasn't even going to post it on here. I was having a pity party. But then he came in and showed me the photo of my before and today and I almost cried with joy! I had a genuine smile on my face and was honestly able to say it was worth it. So worth it.
15 downs out and this is what I know so far:
Smooth Move Tea. MOM. I tend to be constipated so this part of the recovery I was worried about. My doctor indicated it was normal not to have a BM until day 3 or 4. I didn't worry until day 2 knowing something needed to move. First I did the tea alone, nothing. Next day I tried tea with MOM and sure enough.....felt better. I still have the tea about every 2 days cus I need it. But just the tea.
Saltine crackers. For day 1 until about day 3 this is about all I could handle. I was incredibly nauseous. Thank goodness I never got sick. But boy it sure felt as though I would. I think the saltines helped.
Water. Lots of it. You'll get dehydrated. Drink.
When allowed to shower sit down about 5 minutes between removing your garment and showering. First few showers I didn't. I also about fainted after the shower because of it. Freaked me out. I recommend anytime removing the garment to sit tight for a few before getting up.
Pillows. Lots of them.
Step stool if your small and have a SUV. My boyfriend has a Suburban and brought me home in it. Without the step stool I wouldn't have been able to get in and out of it.
Avoid sodium. For me it's been hard. I love salty fried foods. I have to believe the strong possibility I am up in weight and swollen is diet. I haven't been as careful and I need to get on track quick or why did I even do this?
Strengthen your back prior to surgery. Your back is going to feel the brunt of it for the first week for sure. For me, it's still going on. I was super hunched and at the end of the day I hunch and my back feels it. I didn't workout to strengthen any part of my body prior to surgery and regret it. I got lazy.
Take the recommended vitamins from your PS. I took vitamins and still do and feel this helps me in recovery. I took Organic Life liquid daily, probiotic, vitamin C and B, calcium and magnesium with vit D.
Get outside when you can to breathe in fresh air and feel the warmth of the sun.
The medical assistant at Dr. Kaufman's warned me that about week 3 not to be alarmed if you get emotional for unknown reasons. She says she has seen multiple women lose it in the chair when they came in for their post op appts. I have been up and down....all over the place.
That's it for now. If I think of anything else I will add. Happy healing!
23 days out
On my way for 4 week post op appt
And I got a speeding ticket :-(
I haven't really updated my profile lately cus going back to work has left me exhausted at the end of the day. I will try though.
All I can really think of to say was February 15 I had an emotional break down. I pushed myself physically for 2 days prior and on the 15th I hurt bad. Felt like I took 5 steps backwards. I cried like a baby. I didn't think I was ever going to return to normal and it's was hard.
Today, I'm feeling so much better. I've taken it slow and easy and feel everyday I'm stronger and that much closer to normalcy. Baby steps and listen to your body.
I'm bummed I haven't lost weight. Shame on me though cus I haven't been eating clean. I'm over it! When I see Dr. Kaufman in July I want to look awesome so I am going to start paying closer attention to what I eat and start increasing the cardio.
I'll try to update weekly with photos.
I did my research. I researched PS's from the LA area up to the Bay Area as well. It didn't occur to me to consider the Sacramento area - so happy I took the few minutes to broaden my research. I stumbled upon Dr. Kaufman's site- best happy accident of my life so far. Reading his bio was incredibly interesting. 3 of 4 brothers of mine served in the armed forces and I know what special men they are so this was a major selling point. Dr. Kaufman's photo gallery speaks for itself. He is a true artist and it was clear to me that he cares for the outcome of the patient and not wanting to run patients through as quickly as possible. One obstacle for me was I have always had female doctors. Always. He does share a practice with a female doctor however I felt a strong pull to at least have a consult with him. Just because of my issues with male doctors I shouldn't let that be a factor in deciding the best doctor to perform this very important life changing surgery. Since I live 5 hours from Dr. Kaufman he was agreeable to having our first consult over the phone after I sent him photos. He called at a time convenient for me. He was incredibly kind and thorough answering all my questions. His bed side manner was apparent to me. So, along with this and his photos of previous patients, I decided to move forward with him. Oh, backing up a bit....I also had other consults with a couple other PS and didn't get good vibes starting with office staff to the PS. Dr. Kaufman's staff was also friendly, efficient and professional. On the day of surgery they all took very good care of me. Explaining everything as it was happening. Loved knowing Dr. Kaufman's wife was my nurse! And a good nurse she is! They took the time to explain aftercare to my boyfriend so much so that I swore he had a nursing degree. I've had 2 post op appointments so far and everything has been seamless and they have worked with me by combining appointments so I don't need to make the long drive as often. Dr. Kaufman has been available by phone or email. Always getting back to me the same day. If it's a silly non urgent question the staff is always available and willing to answer my questions. They told me there are no stupid questions. I return for another post op appointment on the 25th and will update.