I am 60 years old (for 1 more week). I never had...

I am 60 years old (for 1 more week). I never had kids or gained/lost a lot of weight. I have almost no excess skin and no stretch marks. However, I had a hysterectomy in 1987 at age 34. Ever since, I have had a poochy stomach from loss of muscle elasticity. I feel like my insides have fallen and are protruding.

I have a pretty serious auto-immune disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis. Basically, it causes spinal fusion. It is also a systemic disease, meaning it can affect tissues throughout the body, not just the spine. Accordingly, it can cause inflammation in and injury to other joints away from the spine manifest as arthritis, as well as to other organs, such as the eyes, heart, lungs, and kidneys. I am on some pretty serious medications for this disease.

I've always been extremely self-conscious of my stomach that is out of proportion to the rest of my body. My ex-husband even told me I looked pregnant while having an orgasm. yep.

I've always wanted a TT but never really investigated it. In the last few months, I've met several women that have had them and would do it again in a heartbeat. So, I bit the bullet and saw two surgeons that did friends.

I liked them both, but each had a distinct difference.

Surgeon A: Very highly rated and good. My friend said he was an artist. My concerns with this doctor is he looks at it as an artist. He wanted to do a breast lift along with the TT. He said I was not a candidate for an implant due to extremely dense and conical breasts. I did consider that even thought I do not want my nipples cut. He didn't discuss my medicatons or how my disease might cause problems. Procedure would be done in his operating room at his office, which is certified. I would be transferred to a recovery center for one night.

Surgeon B: Again very highly rated and good. Both doctors agreed about implants and how dense my breasts are. B said he absolutely would NOT do a lift at the same time as the TT. He said that as tight as my stomach is with no loose skin, etc that pulling down for the TT would affect the lift. He also spent a lot of time talking about my medical issues and medications. Procedure would be done at a well known breast cancer hospital with 2 nights in the hospital.

I decided on Surgeon B. I know that A is an excellent surgeon but I felt B looked at it more medically than artistically. I believe 2 nights in the hospital is better as well.

I'm nervously excited!

Interesting reactions.... mostly positive

I'm very open and just tell things like it is. I went to lunch with my dad, stepmom and aunt for my dad's 85th birthday last week. I told them I was having a TT. Of course, I got the "you don't need one" comments. Now keep in mind we were at a busy very LOUD restaurant and non of the three hear well. But they were supportive and said if I want it, I should go for it.

Then my dad says " I want smaller boobs and a bigger dick". omg... Could you say that any louder? My aunt says; "I couldn't hear you....what do you want bigger??". My dad: "A bigger dick" in an even louder voice! The waitress is laughing her ass off!!! As she serves his salad, she says "I heard that!". I really wanted the floor to open up and swallow me!

My cousin told me that she didn't understand why I was having one and she works hard with hers with diet and exercise. I told her I wasn't her and I did need it.

My mom was like: If you want it go for it. So was one of my sisters.

Friends are supportive but some don't understand why I need it. Well, it's because they never see the "real" stomach. Since I have no extra skin, I can suck it in and look ok. Just can't breathe!

I'm obsessed with this site and really enjoy reading all the journeys. The tips and recommendations are awesome!

I'm going to call on Monday and see if they can move up my date if they get a cancellation. There are probably a ton on that list ahead of me, but it's worth a try.

Have a great Sunday!

Bed and leg lounger - Anyone heard of or used?

I found this product on line and it looks interesting. Has any one used this?
Thoughts?

Stole this from a male tummy tuck review.

So when I spoke with my primary doctor about this, I'm a guy and she's a she, the look on her face was worth a couple extra quarters in the slot. She said I should spend the money on travel. I told her I have traveled everywhere and lived in 3 foreign countries, speak 2 languages but I travel to the bathroom mirror everyday and it's a trip I hate.

I LOVE this response!

Bought the Bed Lounger

I took the plunge and bought the bed lounger and leg/knee support.

61 years old now!!! My wishes.....

This is me in the orange dress at our birthday Happy Hour with friends. I do love the dress and can clean up well. But....I so can't wait till I don't have to wear dresses to hide my stomach. These are some of my wish dresses!

RealSelf has been such a helpful and informative site. Thank you so much for posting tips, lists, good wishes and of course, your journey's.

Bed lounger

Received the bedlounger. I like it. It's light weight and can be positioned for what makes me most comfortable. The leg lounger is good too.

Guilt and shallowness just hit me!!!

My husband's wife fought breast cancer for 5 years and was then diagnosed with ovarian cancer and lost that battle after 6 years. 11 years of fighting cancer.

A couple of years before her death, she was struggling to keep her hair for their son's wedding. One night, hubby took her hand and led her into the bathroom. He shaved her head and told her she was beautiful with or without hair. He offered to do the same. She said not to, but he shaved his pubic hair.

That night, they cried and laughed together, each sharing a new baldness. That is the kind of man I was blessed to marry. She was an amazing woman. No one noticed her baldness... only her personality and the love she gave.

I was relating that story to a friend and it hit me. She lost her life to cancer. Suddenly, I'm feeling very shallow about my desire to have a flat stomach. I can't seem to stop crying. wow.

Cost of TT vs dental bridge

My hubby lost a 3 tooth bridge. The cost to replace is $5500. The cost for dental implants is $8800. HOLY COW!!! Makes a TT seem like a bargain!

That's all I had to say today!!!

Incisions and Scars.....

As I read reviews, I see over and over how so many expect their scar to look better than it does at 1-4 weeks. Remember, it takes up to 2 years for nerves to regenerate.

My hubby just had full knee replacement and his scar took 5 weeks to heal. I had major jaw surgery in march of 2013. It took a year for it to almost disappear and even now at 16 months, my jaw still feels a bit creepy.

I've attached some photos of my jaw just to show how it looked after surgery and now.

So, even though I have not had my TT, I do have some experience with incisions and healing. Be patient, give your body time to regenerate nerves. Be good and kind to yourself. It will pay off in the long run.

My "goal" dress.

My pre-op appt is this Friday. I am 4 weeks away!

I have been away for 10 days to Vegas for a business trip. 12 hour days and no fun. But Hubby joined me on Friday and we moved to Mandalay Bay for the weekend.

I have followed the advice here and have not bought any new clothes. BUT!!! I walked by a store and a dress jumped off the rack and screamed my name! I had to look at it. I loved it! Then I looked at the price! OMG!!! I have never spent that much on a dress so I walked out. My wonderful, loving hubby told me I should try it on. I resisted! I kept saying not before surgery, I won't know what size I'll be, etc.

The next night we were walking around again and he told me to try it on. Ok, a couple drinks later and I did. I really, really loved it except for the pot belly sticking out. The sales gal brought 3 more as well. I kept saying I was not going to buy one because I don't know what size I'll be.

Then when I tried on the 3rd dress she brought, I caved. It was amazing like when you try on THE WEDDING dress, you know, you just know. Needs to be shortened but still amazing. I still hate the pot belly, but know that will be gone. The look and smile on hubby's face said it all. He said I needed to get it and it's my "goal" dress for after my surgery. I so love that man.

I'ts black and white. Elegant, Audrey Hephurn type dress. Mmmmm, you young kids may not know who she is. lol Fit's like a glove! I would never wear one like it now. I actually bought a size smaller as the size I usually wear was too big.

I have sooooo much to be thankful for and sooooo much to look forward to!!!

Today is Pre-op Appt!

I read all the paperwork again today and my pre-op is this afternoon. After reading the paperwork, I am even more ready but got a little emotional.

I'll let you know how it goes!

Pre-op appt.

It went well. He just got a Vectra 3D machine and took images of my body. Then seeing my body on the big screen, he showed me how I'll look after surgery. If it goes like that, I will love it!

He said he will pull up the Mons area and my labia will be higher. He said he had a patient that after the TT said she had her first orgasm during intercourse in her life. I don't have a problem with that, but more is always better!!!

My belly button will be in the same spot and he does most the stitches from the inside so I won't have an incision around the new one. I think I remember that correctly.

The scar will be very low, below my hyst scar and only inches higher from start of labia opening.

One of my friends that was with me had her boobs done by him a year ago. He asked her how she was. She said great except for a scar. He said let's see. She whipped up her top and showed him. He said it was an easy fix and to call to set an appt. lol 2 for 1 appt! He's a great guy and a great surgeon!

Everything is all paid for, I am ready and soooooooo stoked!!!

Belly button

I met a woman on Friday that had a TT in the early 90's from my doctor. She had nothing but praise for him. I asked how her BB is and she showed me. It's beautiful! I hope mine is half as pretty as hers!!!

I've lost 15 pounds since early June.

2 weeks, 2 days left!

A suggestion... wax your pubic hair

I've read a few reviews about how itchy and irritating the pubic area feels with the hair growing back. I know what that feels like from my hysterectomy. It was worse than the incision. I recommend getting it waxed before your surgery if you usually shave or leave it natural.

When waxed hair grows back, it's finer, softer and does not itch at all. It's the stubble that itches. I lost all my pubic hair in front after my hyst due to no testosterone, but have been getting the rest waxed off for 10+ years.

I think it would make a big difference in comfort.

Be good to yourself and be patient!

This isn't an update about me as much as it's an observation and gentle reminder.

We all think we are capable of doing more than we probably should. I read a lot of reviews where someone thinks they can do things 5 or so days after surgery because they are feel so good. Then they realize that there are consequences like swelling and soreness. Even a friend of mine who had her TT 2 years ago said a doctor could tell she tried standing straight before she should have based on how her scar looks.

I've also read where those that don't do too much seem to not swell as much or are as sore.

Sometimes,it can be from guilt, whether conscious or not, that the kids need us, hubbies need us, family needs us, work needs us, etc. So we feel guilty laying there not doing anything. Other times, boredom sets in.

Remember, beautiful ladies....your body needs you to put it first. Please don't try to do too much too quick. Your kids, hubby, family, work will be there after you heal. You've invested lots of research, money, emotions and physical pain in this.

Be kind to yourself! This is YOUR time and YOU deserve it! Let others do for you! There will be plenty you can do after you are all healed.

Following my own advice!

So yesterday, I met with my boss. I told him about the surgery but didn't go into a lot of details. As we were parting, he asked when I was going to a particular town. Here we go.... MY guilt set in and I'm thinking of how quickly I could go there after surgery. I told hubby and said there is no way I can go for at least 4 weeks, especially since I have heavy samples and things to carry. So...I am going to follow my own advice and NOT stress about it. I will make sure I"m healed before going.

Nesting!!!

I am nesting! I have a zillion things to do before. I want everything neat and clean. So today, it's the garage. yes, I even scrub the garage floor!

We are having a pool party on Saturday as a last blast before I'm out of commission for a while.

Have a great day!

Craziness!!!

Yesterday I got waxed and had a pedicure and manicure. I left off all polish. Figured it was a good time to "let them breathe".

I went to several stores to get stuff for the party tomorrow. Today I will prepare for the party.

I'm definitely nesting!

I've done a lot of stuff around the house this week. Why do I feel the need to get certain things done because I'm having surgery when I wouldn't if I wasn't having it??? lol

We have an upstairs that is not used because the kids have moved out. So why did I find it important to wash all the sheets on beds we don't use? Plus all the sheets in the linen closet? Not only did I wash them, I put them in clear plastic zippered bags like they came in from the store and labeled them "queen fitted", etc. Seriously. I'm sick. Oh, I washed all the towels as well. So! My upstairs is nice and clean and organized and no one will be up there!!! lol

In addition to all the food I'm preparing today, I'm marinating pineapple and watermelon in pineapple vodka for the pool party. lol... Probably won't be checking in tomorrow but I will be having fun!

Have a mammogram (not surgery related) in an hour and afterwards will get my car washed. Then home to prepare the food, set buffet table, clean the patio, patio furniture, backwash the pool. vacuum the hot tub and basically get the yard ready for the party.

Wish you all were coming to the party!!

A dose of reality...

As I sat waiting for my mammogram, a friend texted to tell me her biopsy was positive for breast cancer.

I am so sad for her. It also reminds me how blessed and lucky I am and grateful for all I have.

Oh crap, as I am writing this while I wait for results, the radiologist wants more shots and maybe an ultrasound. There is a small nodule on my left breast.

ALL IS GOOD!

Whew!!! They did the ultrasound and it turned out to be dense overlapping breast tissue! I feel so much better. I was so scared. I kept thinking that I didn't want to cancel my TT.

I believe God is watching out for me!

Onward, ladies!!

35½ hours!!!!!

The party was a huge success!! Lots of friendship, food and fun!

We are tired today!! I have 6" bedrisers that we don't use. I put them under the legs of my recliner because it's small. But I have no idea how I'll recline back because it's a push-back recliner.

I'm not really nervous. Maybe I'm too tired.

Tomorrow I will get all my supplies together and the stuff I'll take to the hospital. My friend who is an RN is coming to stay with me on Friday when I'm home.

I'll update more tomorrow with last minute stuff!

Thank you all for your support. That means so much to me and I know it will help me recover. You all the best!!!!

Hugs to all of you!

It just hit me....

Quick update, more later with photos.

I'm getting my room ready and doing stuff around the house. About 1pm it hit me and I got nervous. My hands started getting shaky and I was dropping things.

I am ready!!!!

I think I'm all ready. If I'm not, it won't matter! I have hubby and friends to help me. Here are photos of my room. I have black out fabric covering the doors to make it darker. I put the recliner on 6" bed risers. Not sure it will work but we'll see.

I thought I'd model the amazingly stylish and sexy recovery clothes! lol I showed my husband and his reply was "oh baby baby"!!! lol I'm thinking a call from the Lane Bryant modeling agent is eminent! lol Ok, I can't even say that with a straight face.

I am going to enjoy a glass of wine and relax now. See you on the flat side!

mmm.... I'm getting error messages trying to upload the photos. I'll post this and keep trying.

Photos

Finally was able to upload them.

This is it!

I am at Piper and waiting to be taken back. I am calm and neither nervous or excited. Just ready.

See you later ladies!
Hugs!

Made it!

Quick update. surgery went easy and not as long as anticipated.. Had a hard time waking me.

Pain level is low from all the meds. . Just put dilaudio pain med in IV.

Doc even has bed adjusted to how he wants it.

Said he successfully did what I wanted to look like. Lol

So glad I'm in the hospital!

The pain meds are flowing as often as I need them. They make me sleep too. But I slept in 2 hour in increments.

I accidentally coughed a small one while asleep. HOLY CRAP!!! Felt like a chain saw cut me open! Now I have the hiccups!!!

Forgot to add:

I am so glad I am in the hospital! I can't imagine being home. If you can stay 1-2 nights, do it!

But even with that, they just showed me how to get up and sit. They help minimally but want me to to do it on my own. Laying down is the hardest.

They take the catheter out his morning.

I had a headache all night. I'm itching all over either from the anesthesia or pain meds. The pain med is Dilaudid which is stronger than morphine.

Post-op pics

They started me on Percoset to see if they work. If so, the IV can come out!

My day nurse changed the dressings and I got a look.

Saw the doc.

Said my separation was 4" and the biggest there is. Said I was a model surgical patient in terms of how the surgery went. Said my waist will be smaller. Was very happy with his work!

Said I can go home after he sees me at 7am and the nurses can get me out of here.

Thank you !!

Keep falling asleep so can't post. You are woo great and I appreciate it!

I turned the corner!!

First of all, please forgive me if I don't personally respond to all the comments below. My mind is still a bit fuzzy and the stuff that comes out of my mouth is pretty funny. Oh and if I keep repeating myself, just laugh and ignore it!

Doc said he removed about 660 grams or 1.45 pounds of "stuff".

On Wednesday in the hospital, I had a turkey sandwich for lunch and a little soft stuff for dinner. I got so bloated that I couldn't breathe and was hyperventilating. I was in so much pain and got a killer headache. The night nurse finally gave me some iv pain meds that they were trying to wean me off of. The next morning at 7am the doc came in and was not happy that I ate. He said to go back to liquids which I gladly did. But he released me to go home.

I got home about 1pm. My friend came over and once hubby got me settled he had to go to a meeting. My friend was awesome. I kept her laughing with what came out of my mouth!

The Bed Lounger pillows I got did not work because I could not move enough to get into position so I have been in the recliner the whole time. Honestly, it was the headache that hurt more than anything.

I slept most of the after noon. I see I posted but have no recollection of it! lol I do remember telling my girlfriend that I needed to make sure I sent steak to my mom in Mexico! lol

Friday:
My Friend was with me all day. She gave me foot/leg, hand/arm massages. She also gave me a 45 minute head and neck massage that was wonderful even though I fell asleep. omg...I've had so many friends text me and I'd try to reply but I'd fall asleep in the middle and send just nonsense.

My body and lower back and sides were soooooooo itchy. She rubbed my lower back, butt and sides with benedryl cream which was heavenly!

I didn't eat anything all day. I drank Gatorade and water till last night when she made me some cream of wheat that was very thin. I could get that down.

I didn't have any nausea or dizzyness.

Hubby got home and took over. I am so blessed to have her for a friend.

My last percocet was at 9pm. At 2 am I only took some tylenol and slept till 7:15. My headache was gone!!!! What a great feeling.

My belly button looks good. Incision looks good too.

I can't imagine anyone doing anything after surgery. As I type, I'm watching my husband change the sheets and straighten the room . He is THE BEST caretaker and I love him so much! Oh, my kitty is helping with my recovery too. She lays on my lap on top of a pillow. Right now, she is on the recliner between me and the arm of the chair.

My best advice is rest, drink fluids, walk, use the breathing device. Let others do for you!!! Don't force yourself!

I will post some photos as soon as I get them on my computer. `I'm rambling, so I'll sign off and work on photos.

thank you all for your caring support!

Finally!!!

You know the feeling when you finally potty train a toddler and they say "mommy I just pooped"? LOLOL Well, I do now!!! Didn't hurt a bit either!

Pics from today

So swollen but I think it looks good! My BB looks great!

One happy camper!

I have so much to share. Hopefully, it's not boring and will help you along the way.

First of all, I can't not emphasize enough to NOT DO ANYTHING!!! I really believe that is why I am doing so good. I am letting hubby and friends do it all. If something doesn't get done, then so what. I'm more important than laundry or a clean house. Is life going to end if you don't exercise for 2-3 weeks? No. But your body will heal better if you don't. I have some, but not much swelling and I intend to stay that way. Is it the end of the world if you are bored? No. Better to be bored than suffer the consequences of going to mall, or taking the kids for a walk. This is YOUR body and you just spent a ton of money on it so protect your investment.

I decided that the granny robes and big underwear were not necessary for me. I found that wearing just a soft tank top was the most comfortable for me.

I also discovered that taking too much laxative isn't real smart either. I won't go into those stories either! lol

Wow...what an amazing 24 hours this has been. Some funny, some not so funny and some just plain emotional.

I'm off the strong pain meds for the most part. Last night about 8, I had a pillow on my lap and my cat was laying on the pillow. Well, the drain sites are starting to come "alive" and she moved and I felt it pull on the drain. I tried to push her off and she hunkered down and then when I pushed harder she sprang off when I yelled in pain. She jumped onto the TV tray next to the chair and knocked it over. There was a big glass of raspberry iced tea and red Gatorade which went EVERYWHERE!. Hubby comes running, I'm a mess trying to pick things up. It was pretty comical. He makes me sit as he cleans everything up.

So we get everything settled. Cat is banned from the room. I fall back asleep and have a bad nightmare and start screaming. Hubby comes running again. I have no idea but it was like I was having a seizure in my dream and no one could hear me telling them so I started yelling. He settles me down again. Then he goes to bed and is snoring like a freight train and I am dreaming that a train is heading towards our house and I can't get out of the way. lol omg... All this from about 8-11pm. Finally fall into a peaceful but wild dream sleep. I wake at 2am and was very uncomfortable. Can't pinpoint any one thing, just uncomfortable. The slightest noise from me wakes him. Remember, he spent many years as a caretaker for his wife when she had cancer so he's very in tune with what's going on. He immediately gets up and asks what he can do for me. I decided I needed a pain pill and took one that wasn't as strong as the others even though it had been well over 24 hours since I had one. We all fell back asleep till 7:30am.

This morning after we woke, I needed to walk so got up and walked around a bit. Honestly, the worst part is the left side of my back that is all messed up from the disease I have and has been spasming a lot. I've been using Arnica cream and it really works. Then my sweet, sweet hubby got the kitchen sink set up to wash my hair and give me a sponge bath. He takes such good care of me. On the other hand, I will owe him forever!!!! Kind of a private joke between us.

We head to our bathroom where I sit on a stool and he cleans the drains and my new bellybutton. For the first time I got a full naked view of my surgeons handiwork. I burst into tears. It is amazing. I never, ever dreamed I could look like this. I am swollen but it's not that bad. My incisions are not read or inflamed at all. They look great too. Love my new BB!! What an emotional moment for me. Basically, a 26 year old dream just came true!

First post-op visit

My first post-op visit was today. Dr. Shaw was very pleased. I have a small area that is "stressed". He said I need to make sure that I stay hunched over and not put any stress on it. It's where my old BB and an old incision from another surgery all come together. He wasn't overly concerned but wants to make sure I don't stress it more.

The drains are still in. Maybe, hopefully Wednesday, but we'll see. I don't want to do anything premature.

As we were leaving, I picked up my small purse and he took it from me and handed it to hubby. That again reinforces that WE all need to make sure we don't do anything to hamper healing. I'm being a good patient and following my own advice to let others do for me! All of you should too. If you are bored, get online and write a review or send me a note!

My girlfriend came over and washed my hair and gave me a sponge bath today. She also massaged my back muscles. That felt so good.

I'm back in my recliner, hunched over, resting. Friends are bringing dinner tonight. It's amazing how little I can eat.

So, I'm happy that he's happy!

Don't have any photos right now but will post some when I get them.

Incision and Bed Lounger

I've had some questions about the bed lounger. It's not working for me because I feel very confined in it and it's just too difficult to move around in bed to get it positioned. The recliner is much easier. However, my friend that stayed with me loved it. I'm 5'9 and weigh 160. She's 5'3 and weighs 115. I think it's sized better for more petite people.

Here is the photo of my incision from today. Looks good except for the area of stress. So we are to keep anti-biotic ointment on it. Doc was not overly concerned and I am darn sure going to make sure there is no stress on it. That area is where my old belly button was and an old incision from where another surgeon took fat to make a new disk for my jaw. That was a difficult place to make it all come together. Over all I think it all looks good for 1 week.

Friends brought dinner from Maggiano's tonight. It was good but I could only eat a tiny bit. It was nice to see them and visit.

Photo didn't post

Try again.

Forgot to tell this about my Dad....

So my dad has been checking in every day to see how I'm doing. He's not seen any photos so he really doesn't understand. I asked him if he wanted to see photos. He said sure. I sent him some before and some after. Then I called him. He answered the phone "hi my hot daughter" lol. We talked about the procedure and then he said "I have a tummy. Could I get a tummy tuck? " omg.

I said "Dad, you have thousands of blood clots in your body and no surgeon will touch you, you're 85, and you'd need to lose about 75 pounds." God love him!

On August 12-14th he and I went to to our home town of Chicago to revisit our past. We did 85 years in 2½ days. It was an amazing trip of memories. I am so glad I was able to give him this trip. So here are the photos of us going and coming home dead tired or pretending to be!

My temporary Home Sweet Home!

I figured as long as I was confined to my recliner, I'd post a photo. See? I'm being good! I also posted a photo of the incision and the bad spot.

Drains and stitches are OUT!!!

Yea! Drains came out and that hurt! Stitches came out and that was no big deal. I can't believe I have ZERO bruising!

I saw Dr. Shaw's nurses today as he is in surgery and they are awesome!

Next appointment is Friday. I'm hoping he'll give me the go ahead to sleep in bed laying down in the fetal position as long as I keep tension off the bad spot. But if not, no biggie but I am tired of the recliner.

My friend came over and she washed my hair an dried it straight. I look more "normal" though normal for me is very subjective!!! lol I feel so good but tired.

I get it now.....

Every woman I know that is a friend and had a boob job have no problem showing the off. I didn't quite understand that. But I guess if you paid good money for them you want to show them off. Ok, I get it now.

Friends came over last night to see how I'm doing and just visit a bit. She is the one who had a TT and Boob job from the doctor I did not use. Anyway, I couldn't wait to show her! I took off the CG and as hunched over as I was, showed off my new flat stomach! lol She couldn't believe how amazing I looked.

So now I get it! Well, it's not like I'm going to get naked and show strangers or anything but my girlfriends? Yep!! I hope anyway. lol No, don't worry, I'll wear clothes!!!

Yep, So now I get it!

I'll try to post some more photos later. I still have that yucky spot but I think it's getting better. I'm still staying hunched over and just chilling in my recliner. I'm not going to do anything to hinder the healing.

Whoa Mama!!!!

I am taking photos every day of the stressed spot in my incision to compare them. Today I got more than I bargained for! Without the drains, I got a good shot of the front of my pubic area. Holy Moly!!! So THAT's where it's all supposed to be! Hubby is going to have to learn some new territory! I love it! I showed a friend and she wants me to ask my doctor how much he'd charge for a pussy lift!!! And we're not talking about taking her cat to the vet!!! I sure wish I could post the photos but I do have moments of "mmm.....maybe I'd better not". Amazing!

A Banner Day!

Had my 3rd post-op today and 2nd with surgeon. He told me I looked great, that I could start standing up straighter (thank you God!), sleep in bed and drive! I still have the compression garment for another 2.5 weeks but after that it's up to me. He wants me to keep putting Triple Antibiotic Ointment on the not so great spot but it's really looking pretty good.

I tried on my "goal dress" but was so hunched over, I took it off. It will have to wait. BUT....I had to try on a bikini. Same yellow one in the before photos but without the stomach. Remember, I'm still very hunched over, tire and had to sit on a stool but no belly! I'm a little swollen but not bad.

We went out to happy hour with friends to celebrate and I am one happy camper. Now, remember, I'm still going to rest and take it easy. I don't want the swelling to start or to backslide.

Ok, overdid it a bit!

After the doctor's appt yesterday, hubby and I went to Happy Hour with friends. I think the being up more than usual plus the standing up straighter was a bit of an overdo for me. I was asleep by 9:15pm and not in my bed. I tried, but ended up in the recliner.

My stomach muscles are a bit sore today so just relaxing and taking it easy. Swelling doesn't seem to be real bad either.

What I've learned.....

I've been thinking about the realities of my TT versus what I heard or thought about it.

I always heard it's the most painful of surgeries, the scars are horrible, you're down and out for months. There was nothing that encouraged me to even think about it. I also didn't know anyone who had one.

The realities are so much different. Is it an easy surgery? No, but it's not near as bad as I expected. Why was that for me? Or course, all this is just my opinion and may not apply to others. Everyone’s experience is different and circumstances are different.

1. I've had 2 other surgeries that were horrible: jaw and hemorrhoidectomy. So I was used to post-surgical pain. This was uncomfortable and my stomach felt tight, but I really had zero incision pain.

2. I did not have a lot of fat or loose skin. I believe, mine was mostly muscle repair. Dr. Shaw may disagree and he’s the expert! From what I've read here, lipo is really painful and I didn't have that. Being at ideal or close to ideal weight makes it easier as well.

3. I followed doctor's orders. I gave into the fact I needed to do nothing. I did not do anything I wasn't supposed to. Ok, maybe the turkey sandwich the next day at the hospital wasn't smart but that was a short lived bit of uncomfortableness. I took pain meds as needed. I stayed hunched over. I walked. I slept. I really believe that doing too much too quick slows down healing. They tell us what to do for a reason. As I sit here and type this, my wonderful hubby is doing laundry, dishes, went grocery shopping, brought me flowers and is taking care of me. Do I feel guilty? A bit. Am I going to give in to it? No. I'm resting and healing. lololol...ok, I know I'll owe him plenty when this is over!!!

4. I do not smoke.

5. I am realistic about what I wanted. My doctor wouldn’t do a TT and breast job at the same time. There is a reason for that. Our bodies can only handle so much.

6. I went to the best. Were there less expensive doctors? Yep. Are they as good? Maybe but probably not. This is my body and I only get one. If I felt I couldn’t afford the best, then it would be in my best interest to wait and save until I could. I don’t mean for this to sound snobby but I won’t sacrifice my body to save money.

7. Spending two nights in the hospital was so worth it. I feel I came home 3 days ahead of the game. I can’t even fathom going home the same day from this kind of surgery.

8. Have a friend to help. My hubby was awesome but he did have to work. So when he was at work a friend spent the days with me. She washed my hair, gave me sponge baths, massaged my back, cleaned my drains, fed me, dispensed meds, laughed at my funny comments, took me to the doctor twice for post-op appts and was just there for me. I do love her!

Here is what I learned that worked or not:
• Raised Toilet seat. Absolutely essential.
• Walker: It helped especially when spasms were bad but really didn’t use it that much.
• Recliner: Absolutely essential. I could not lie in bed regardless of how many pillows I had and I had plenty (10+).
• Oversized Granny under panties: Never wore one. Anyone need any? Lol I found that just wearing a soft tank top with the CG was all I wanted. I put a hubby’s t-shirt on the seat and back of recliner. I had a knit twin bed flat sheet to cover myself and a throw if I got cold.
• House dress (robe): Only wore one home from the hospital. Have two unworn ones hanging in my closet. Same reason as the panties.
• Arnica cream: I believed this helped with the back spasms more than the prescription.
• Arnica sublinguals: I am not sure about this.
• Laptop/ipad/cell phone: yep. These kept the boredom at bay and me connected to the world. Although my friends say I sent some pretty humorous texts the first day or two. Have chargers set up and ready for when you come home from hospital.
• Grabber: A long thing with a handle you can squeeze to pick things up. This was great so I didn’t have to reach or get something that had fallen to the floor. Also good for hitting the bed next to the recliner if hubby was snoring. Ok, I really didn’t do that.
• 36” high Stool: Absolutely essential so I could sit when brushing my teeth or trying to groom myself.
• TV trays or something to set things on next to the recliner. Command central, if you will.
• Waste basket next to chair. No explanation needed??? Lol
• Bed lounger/Leg lounger: I think this may help some but not me. I felt too confined and I could not move enough on the bed to get into it. Also, I’m 5’9. My friend that came over to help me is 5’3 and she loved it. I think I’m too big.

Ok, I’ve gone on long enough. I hope some or any of this helps at least one person.

Oh my...hubby washed CG and I looked outside and he hung it from our umbrella to dry! It made me laugh!

Updated incision photos

Here are some updated incision photos 10 days post op. The part in the center that looks bad really looks worse in the photo than it is. It's healing nicely but was a tricky spot.

I am tired this weekend! I can feel my body healing and after HH Friday evening and having friend over for several hours yesterday, even though all I did was move from recliner to sofa, I am beat.

I think the skin at the top of my thighs were also stretched upwards and that feels sore. I feel more of an overall soreness now. More so now that I am standing up straighter and moving more

It still wasn't near as bad as other surgeries though. I am a very happy at how thin the scar is on the sides.

My hubby calls the drain sites "evil eyes"!!! lol

Glad yesterday is over!!!

It wasn't a real bad day, but I was tired and my body was telling me sleep was my best friend. Hubby was sweet and wonderful as usual. He always makes me feel so loved and cherished.

I took a Percocet about 8:30pm. I was kind of testing it too. I hadn't had anything in about 30+ hours. But my stomach felt like it had done hundreds of crunches. lol... In reality, I have never done one! Moving on.... I was so tired but the Percocet did not let me sleep. It put me in the LaLa Land between sleep and wake. I know I did sleep because I dreamed. But I woke a lot all night. So NO MORE Percocet for me at least at bedtime.

I feel much more rested today. Hubby dressed my wound before he went to work. He asked if I wanted breakfast. I said not yet. When I got up to eat something, he had set out the Raisin Bran, bowl, sweetener and 2 different sized spoons so I had a choice. Is that sweet or what? I am so blessed!

I also thought I'd share a pic of my sweet cat, Missy. She loves to lay next to me in the recliner. Well, more accurately, she lets me sit next to her!!! I love her softness and warmth.

I weighted this am with the CG and a tank on. I'm 2 pounds lighter than surgery day. YEA!!! I do feel swollen too so I'm very happy. I think my bad spot is getting better too.

My whole agenda today is my girlfriend is coming over to help me shower, wash and dry my hair and give me a massage. Otherwise, I'm resting! It's all about me!!!

1st Shower!

I can't believe I had my first shower since surgery. I have a huge seat in the shower and 2 shower heads: 1 is a hand hel that adjustable up and down a bar and the other is fixed to the wall. I sat on the seat and used the handheld. My friend washed my feet, lower legs and back for me.

Then I dried my hair! WHEW!!!! That took it out of me. But it's clean and semi-styled.

Then she gave me close to a 2 hour massage. I laid on the bed on my side hugging a big firm pillow. She worked my shoulder, neck, back butt, legs arms and hands. I zoned out a few times it was that good. Then I had to get up and change to other side of the bed for her to do the other side.

She also did some lymphatic massage.

I am jello! So nap time here I come!!!

Something weird has come up...

Two nights ago, my labia felt dry and irritated, probably from the stretching. So I put organic coconut oil on them. I felt some lumpy bumps inside the right outer labia. It's pretty noticeable when palpating the labia. I think it's better today but not sure. I bet it's fatty tissue or maybe a hematoma from the surgery. I sure hope it goes away.

Otherwise, I need to tell my PS on Friday that I have a Lumpy Labia. lol

No photos, sorry!!!

My friend...

My wonderful friend that has been so good to me went to see a colorectal surgeon (mine) today and called to tell me she's having a hemorrhoidectomy tomorrow!!!!! Yikes! I will not be much help to her during this surgery. I'm glad she's getting it done quickly though. I had that surgery in 2011 and it is awful.

I am much better today. No pain pills or even Tylenol. My skin feels very sensitive. I've been resting in the recliner almost all day.

I know I'm healing well, my scars look great but bouncing back? I'm 61. It's takes us oldies longer. Would some of you "less than" 40 something's send me some energy? Many thanks!
Hugs!

Bed and Organic Coconut Oil

First of all, thank you to RealSelf support staff! I emailed them about using the "less than" sign and got an email back within hours that brackets are not allowed as they could signal a HTML code. They fixed my review that kept deleting the text.

I rubbed organic coconut oil on my tummy last night. I hated touching my tummy. If felt so raw and creepy feeling. So I used a very light touch.

Best news is I slept in bed till 4:30 am! First time since surgery. Then I dreamed that I had to pee really bad and that woke me up because I think I was ready to!!!! So I got up and just didn't want to disturb hubby getting settled in bed again so back to the recliner it was.

I think my tummy skin feels better. I'll try to rub some more OCO on it in a bit. I can't take off CG because I can't get it on myself and no one is here with me today.

Have a great day! Hugs to all!

Body photos

Here are some photos I took today. I'm swollen but I'm so very, very happy! I think my butt looks flatter which I hope is just from the being hunched over still and that it gets rounder as I heal and the swelling goes away. It could also be the way the panties fit. Oh well....I have a flat stomach!!!

THE DRESS!!!!!

Even though I'm still a little hunched over, I had to take these!!! I also know this dress may be too "old" for "you youngsters" but for me? I love it!!!!! No more dresses designed to hide my stomach!

Took a walk....

I walked down the block to our mailbox, got the mail and back home. Then had to talk a nap. I was able to sleep on my side pretty comfortably. My cat, Missy decided she needed a nap too.

Not a good night...

I went to bed about 9:30 and played a few games. Turned on my side, got settled and bam....wide awake. Eyes wide open kind of awake. I could not sleep for anything. Finally about 12:15 am, I moved to the recliner and dozed off sometime after 1am. Woke at 6 am and moved back to the bed and slept on my side till 8. Why could I not do that last night?

Doctor appt update

I showered and dried my hair and felt much better. It took me about the normal amount of time with almost no discomfort. I actually put makeup and jewelry on! I took a pic and sent it to my hubby and told him his wife was back home!!

Saw Dr. Shaw. I didn't realize it but my upper abdomen was full of fluid. He took out 45cc's of redish fluid!!!!! Have to go back on Monday for recheck.

Said I could sleep in any position I find comfortable.

I told him I felt like I could use my stomach muscles without pain. He said a little is ok, but not too much.

That's about it. Oh, keep ointment on the bad spot. Looking better every day but may take up to 6 weeks to heal.

OH, OH, OH....I sneezed 2x today! Didn't hurt near as much as I thought it would.

That's all I can think of today! Have a fun and safe weekend!

I always have more to say!

Ok, thought I was done. It was a big day. After the doctor, I got a pedicure and manicure. That felt wonderful! I texted hubby and told him since I had make up on, we were doing Happy Hour at one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants. He came back and asked how he would recognize me? lol Isn't he just the cutest thing ever!!!

I'm still a little hunched over. Need to work on my posture!

It's been a long day. I'm taking an Ambien and hopefully going to sleep 8+ hours in the recliner.
Good night all!
Arizona Plastic Surgeon

Consultation:                                                                               I know others that have used him. He has a great reputation and I know will do a great job! As I tell friends what I'm doing, every single friend says they've heard how great he is. Hubby and I were so comfortable with him.                                                                                             I look at it like a wedding dress. When you put on “THE DRESS” you just know that no other one will do. Dr. Shaw is my wedding dress!!! Ok, maybe not literally, but you know what I mean! He doesn't tell you what you want to hear. He is honest and up front. I like that he was very concerned with my medical issues and medications and went over every one thoroughly.                                                                                                                                                                           Surgery: Surgery was 9/2/14. Dr. Shaw is the best! He answered my questions before surgery which I can't remember now. Lol                                                                                                   Bottom line is he did a fantastic job. He is very particular and even had the bed in the hospital room positioned the way he wanted it and the nurses knew not to move it. I look at that as being through from beginning to end. You can tell a lot about a surgeon by the way the nurses talk about them and respect them. His staff is just wonderful too! Professional, friendly, caring, competent and make me feel welcome and valued as a patient.                                                                                               He made my 26 year old dream become a reality. Thank you so much Dr. Shaw!!! You have no idea how much that means to me.

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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Comments (601)

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Awe That was so cute what your hubby said. :) Love the Maxi dress and your Beautiful Smile WoooHooooo!
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Beautiful! Love the dress, and the color fits you well. Nice cleavage . Looking good
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You look beautiful great color on you! I'm looking forward to a nice evening out with the hubby.
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45cc's! That's an ounce and a half. A small seroma. Very common. I had a couple of fluid aspirations after my first tuck as well as after my second tuck. So now you're probably 45cc's flatter!! The flatter, the better! Awesome!!
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Yep! Doc said after he aspirated it "NOW you look like you did when I was done with you!" Flatter is better! Except in pancakes and butts!!!
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So true. Speaking of which...I've got a flat butt. But oh well...it doesn't bother me. You however, have a perfect body...nice butt, legs, arms and face! Lucky you!!! If you were to enter a beauty contest for sixtysomeyearolds you'd win!
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Wow! 45cc's is a lot! Glad it wasn't painful. Being flatter is a good thing! I can't wait to be able to put make up on. Right now I just don't have it in me. But I think I'm doing pretty good for 11 days out. Sneezing with minimal pain a definite sign of healing! So happy for you. I have to say when I engage my tummy muscles they don't hurt. But I know we need to let them heal. ...your husband must've been so happy to get that picture! And it must've felt even better to send it :)
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Doc said it was quite a bit. I have not worn make up and didn't even think I'd have the strength to dry my hair today. I leave it curly sometimes. It did feel good to send it! I'll post a cute comment he made in an update.
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A little more stamina will come back everyday...looking forward to your update!
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Hope you post the new photos. Enjoy your weekend too
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The photos of the dress look great, it looks great on you. The before and after is such a transformation. Hot mama!
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Thank you, my sweet friend!
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Aww, what a sweet kitty! :) I know how you feel re: sleep deprivation. Glad you were able to doze off finally. Not being able to rest fully can get maddening. Have a wonderful weekend!
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Thanks! Same to you!
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I can not wait to sleep on my side .....omg can you say sore back too!
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Me too! Keep the CG on and knees bent with a pillow between them. I had a pretty firm memory foam pillow that I had between my legs and hugged it tight. One company I worked for made pillows. I have about 10 different kinds of foam, memory foam, poly/foam pillows of different sizes that were samples. They came in handy trying to figure which worked best.
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Memory foam perfect , I will use the ones in our guest room and try it tonight. Thanks!
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Nice :-DSuzy
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Thanks! She's a cuddlier....when SHE wants to be!
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Looking rocking hot in that dress! Makes me want to buy a dress, although I rarely wear dresses.
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Thank you!!! go for it! I love wearing dresses!
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I love dresses too! Lately though I feel like I've been wearing a lot of moo mojo's, lol! I really wear a lot of maxi dresses! I can't wait to feel more confident in other styles!!
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You look great in that dress !!!!! Love it ! Love it ! ...... : )
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Thank you!!!
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Adorable dress, you look Amazing And Happy!!!! Good for you :-)
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