So today is two weeks post op for me!! :) I am going to recap my experience a little bit for people who haven't had it yet.
I went into my tummy tuck very nervous about the pain, anesthesia, scar, incision, binder, sleeping, pain pills, everything. I was excited, but nervous. After two weeks, I can honestly say it has been no where near as bad as I imagined. I must admit, the first two days are a haze to me. Right after anesthesia my doctor told me he was "only operating on 24 year olds from here on out" because of how alert and pain-free I was...for example, the male nurse asked my pain level when I woke up and I said it was a 4, which may have even been an over-exaggeration, but I knew I had a 45 minute car ride so I took one Percocet (my dosage was two ever 3-4 hours or less, as needed...plus valium for other times). I was talking to my mom and best friend in the recovery room and when I got home I was talking to my mom, dad and sister for quite awhile. After that though, the pain meds took over and I was zonked. Because my parents were responsible for doling out pain meds, I think I was getting the recommended two Percocets every 3ish hours, which basically knocked me out. One of my best friends stopped by on my second day and told me later that it was a little "scary" seeing me like that, kind of like a bad episode of intervention -- I kept falling asleep mid-sentence, etc. Poor thing. But, on the bright side, I only barely remember the Sandy Hook/Newtown stuff...so heartbreaking, I'm very glad I wasn't able to fully pay attention to all of it, way too sad.
Day 3 post-op, I turned a corner. I cut back on my pain meds and started staying awake for muuuuch longer periods of time. BUT, I believe that was the day of my first post-op BM which was AWFUL - just as bad, or probably worse, than everyone says. It hurt so so so badly, but boy did I feel better after. Day 6 post op was my appointment and my drain didn't come out :( but I was cleared to shower, which I did on Day 7. Showers are nice, but tiring...I actually brought a cane in on the last one so I could lean on it while I rinsed my hair and body, it hurt too much to stand hunched for so long without it.
Now I'm two weeks post-op and doing great. One big, big, big regret I have is that ever since I was able to eat normally again (around day 3), I did a complete 180 of my pre-surgery habits. I ate anything and everything I wanted. We're talking like 6 or 7 cookies in a day PLUS unhealthy meals. UGH. Today I am going cold-turkey 100% back to healthy eating. I know I will feel better both physically and mentally, my swelling will decrease, my bathroom trips will be more regular and less difficult, and I will thank myself for it come summertime. :)
My drain is still in and starting to drive me crazy. Luckily, up until now, it hasn't bothered me as much as I had read for other people. It is pretty far back on my right side, literally on my butt-cheek. I have dealt with a LOT of leakage from that (soaking through many pj pants and onto the sheet covering my recliner, but we got all the stains out) but other than that, it didn't bother me. Now though it is starting to annoy me - hurts sometimes when I sit, etc. Hoping it comes out soon. I thought it would come out this week, as on Christmas Eve I was up and around more than normal (we have a big 22-person family Christmas Eve party at my house every year) and I only drained like 30 CCs. But, I totally forgot that TWICE on Christmas Eve I had thanked my lucky stars that I didn't just start spilling fluid everywhere, as I had found my drain open and popped out (you know, with air) on both occasions. That must be why I drained so little -- no suction! Yesterday I was back up to 40+ CCs. Ugh, hoping this thing comes out soon!! That will also mean I can switch from this binder to Spanx. Although the binder doesn't really bother me - in fact, I feel kind of weird without it. I almost passed out at my first post-op appointment on Day 6 when I took it off for the first time! It must have been the rearranging of the blood flow or something...who knows. Anyway, after my showers, I put a tank top on under it which has helped SO much with the itching I was having around PO Day 5 and 6, and am eager to get the binder back on. I like how secure I feel in it.
I am still sleeping in the living room recliner with two pillows behind my upper body (one for lower back, one for my head) and three pillows under my knees. I only take pain medicine at night (I still have so many Percocets left because I was never in any extreme pain, so I cut back on them early) - and I just take one Percocet...mostly so I am able to sleep since I am basically sitting up. :)
All in all, this has been a great experience. My incision has pretty much completely scabbed over and flaked off, and I think it is going to look great. I know Dr. T apologized for having to make it so long - he said the more he takes of the skin, the bigger the incision needs to be...and mine goes pretty much onto each butt cheek, but I am so so happy with it. I mean, I was going to have a scar anyways, who cares how far back it goes? I think it is going to heal well and be easily hidden under a bathing suit...as you can see from my one-week pictures, it hides nicely under my underwear - so it shouldn't be any different with a bathing suit! He does such a great job with the incision line, making it very thin and low, and with the belly buttons - mine is so adorable! :) Can't wait for the next 6 months of swelling to go by so that I can see my final results...but I KNOW I am going to be so happy!!
I got a lot of gift cards and money for a new wardrobe for Christmas (that was my "big gift" from my parents...yes, they still do give my sister and I lots of gifts even though we are 24 and 25 lol they're the best) and I got some stuff that will be great for when I get back to the gym (can't wait for that!!) -- a Six Pack Fitness Bag (basically a giant lunchbox that will hold all of my meals and I can bring with me to school...it has 3 slots that hold tupperware, and both sides have dividers for protein shakes and water bottles; plus the top opens for supplements and two ice packs that cool the entire bag) plus a Polar Heart Rate Monitor watch! :) So excited!!! and lots of yoga pants and workout gear. :) Getting back to the gym will be TOUGH after what will most likely be almost 8 weeks off...but I think the heart rate monitor will be a good motivator in helping me track my progress and getting me back into the swing of things. Also doesn't hurt that I have a huge crush on one of the personal trainers there! ;) lol
Okay, loooong update over! Hope everyone had a very merry christmas and happy holidays. Happy healing, ladies!!!! :)
Also - as a quick parting note for this post...I just want to say how grateful I am for this site, connecting me to you guys. I have made some really great friends/pen pals in this process, people who have made my recovery so much easier and more exciting to share with. :) What a great website! xo