Over the past several years I've lost 120+ lbs and...
Over the past several years I've lost 120+ lbs and have had 3 children - so needless to say my stomach is gross mass of saggy skin. I worked very hard through the years to lose the weight by following Weight Watchers and sticking to an exercising program, and I've have kept it off for a few years now. I went from a size 26/28, to a size 4... and although I am very proud of my accomplishment, I'm still not happy with how I look. I still have to be very selective when choosing clothing styles, including underwear. I hate when my loose skin sticks out the bottom of my underwear band, or when my shirt rises up past my waistband, exposing my stomach. I know that no one is perfect, but I'd love to be able to wear a skirt/dress and not worry about it being too clingy on my lower stomach, or put on a tee shirt, and not have to do the "arm lift test." ... Despite MUCH hesitation, I finally scheduled my tummy tuck! T- 2 weeks... and I'm excited, but also SO nervous! I've had 3 C-sections, so thought that I had an idea of what to expect... but then I read more forums, and am starting to think "what am I in for?!" I know it'll be worth it.. at least, I hope it is! ....
1 day post op
I had my TT yesterday -- arrived at the surgery center bight and early st 6:00 am. Was on my way home around noon. Although I was VERY nervous, the staff was great and my Dr is awesome! I was beyond tired the rest of the day and basically slept in our recliner and go up to go to the bathroom and walk around the house a little. Sleeping last night was a bit difficult - I think I slept in 2 hr increments, and needed to take my pain meds in the middle of th night too. I can take them evrery 4-6 hrs, and so far I've needed them every 4. I have 2 drains, and it's not as bad as I thought it was going to be. This morning I had a slight tickle in my throat and had to cough a little ---- yikes!!! Than hurt! I had 3 C-sections before this procedure, and although the pain and discomfort is similar, this is a bit more painful. I feel like I did a million crunches! But... Although I'm swollen and wrapped in a binder, I know it's all going to be worth it!!! I'll post my before pics sometime soon -- after pics will come once the binder is off.
3 days Post-Op
3 days post op and feeling better than I expected. It's definitely not an easy recovery, but it's not as bad as I thought it would be! I'm able to space out my pain meds and muscle relaxers more now, which is good - and I'm starting to stand up straighter. My back was really starting to hurt from being hunched over. I can't stand up for too long, but I just listen to y body and rest when I need to. I'm used to being very active, don't feel lazy right now - but I just keep reminding myself that my body is working overtime to heal after this invasive surgery. I take quite a few naps during the day but again, the sleep is important to healing! I was able to ward off the dreaded constipation by washing down every pain pill with Milk of Magnesia and prune juice. Neigher are exactly my favorite choice in beverage ... But it sure beat the pain of that first BM after being constipated! I remember that from my c-section, and it was terribly painful! My appetite is slowly coming back. I've been keeping up on fluids, which again is very important to the healing process! I know it's going to be a while before all the swelling is down -- but I can't wait for the Dr to take the binder off and I get to see the results!!! Speaking of swelling -- I can really tell how swollennin since I have he binder and am wrapped with cotton u Dee the binder -- but I'm wearing size M in comfy PJs. I was a S before the surgery. Just to give you an idea on how your size may temporarily change. The binder, packing and drains take up a lot of room. Can't wait for my 1 Wk post op apt on Monday!!!
These are pictures before my Tummy Tuck. I lost approx. 120 lbs over the course of 10 years (I had 3 children via C-section during that time).
1 Week Post-Op Tummy Tuck
Well... it's been 1 full week since my Tummy Tuck, I still have my 2 drains in and I'm still quite swollen ... but I have to say I'm very happy with the results so far! The recovery so far?? ... I'm not going to sugar coat it - this past week has been a tough one! It's hard to move around and I can't stand up for more than a min or 2 at a time. Walking is easier than standing, but I can't do that for very long either. I've had 3 children, all via C-section, and this recovery is a bit harder than those. I think it's because of the muscle tightening - my entire torso is tight and sore, not just down by the incision. I can't quite stand up straight yet either, but each day gets a little better... and I KNOW it will all be worth it once I am healed!!!
Side by side Pics
I'm kind of obsessing over the "pouch" that's still there -- I know I'm only 1 wk post-op and it's just fluid, but I had to do some side-by-side comparisons to show (myself) just how different I really look! So happy :)
2 wks post op
Well... I'm 2 weeks post op, and the drains stay in for another week :( Not the news I'd hoped for, but that's how it goes.
5 weeks post op pics
I'm 5 weeks, 2 days post op and am so happy with my progress so far! I can't wait to start working out again bc I'm feeling quite flabby in the legs and arms. I did a few squats this morning, and felt good, so I'll probably start doing those regularly again. Going to start walking/light jogging soon too. I'll listen TJ my body and definitely won't overdo it -- don't want to pull something or increase the swelling.
6 week post-op update
I haven't been too great at posting regularly, and I've read so many other reviews - that were so helpful with my journey - I wanted to be better at posting... So here's my 6 week post-op update:
Feeling great!!! I've been wearing my compression garment daily and taking it off at night (as the Dr told me to do). I wear a garment that only covers my mid-section bc that's what works best for me. No annoying panty lines and no issues with cup sizing. It's like a corset but pulls up instead of snapping or tying. Love it! I haven't experienced much swelling -- hopefully I don't gynx myself by saying that! My drains were in for 3 weeks and 1 day - so maybe that's why I'm not swelling too much now. Idk, but I'm not complaining! Don't get me wrong... I'm more swollen before be than I am when j wake up, and I definitely work at keeping my water intake up. I've been able to pick up my toddler son (30 lbs) and carry him for a little while - not nearly as long as I used to. As soon as I start to feel it in my abdomen, I put him down. I haven't really worked out since the surgery. I've gone on a few casual walks and do housework and such -- but I plan on starting a walking/slow jogging schedule tomorrow. I need to be able to run the annual Turkey Trot in November! All in all ... I am THRILLED with my results!!! I LOVE being to to throw anything on and not have it hug the excess skin like it used to! I LOVE that it doesn't take me forever to find underwear that I like! I LOVE that the waistband of my pants/jeans/skirts doesn't get "hidden" in the skin when I sit down! I LOVE that I can tuck my shirts in and they still look good when I sit down! I LOVE that skirts fit the way they're supposed to! I LOVE that I am more confident and am happier with my self image!!! I know that sounds shallow -- but I was picked on for so much of my life because of my size. I worked SO hard to lose the weight -- but I still was down on myself bc I still didn't look like a "normal" person who was my size. I know what it's like to feel good about myself, and proud of my hard work and dedication .... It's Finally paid off!!! I'm 6 weeks post-op ... Can't wait to see my results at 6 months! ????
7.5 wks post op
I am about 7.5 weeks post op and healing up wonderfully! I was hoping to start scar therapy this week -- but then realized my Dr apt isn't until next week ???? Oh well! I'm slowly getting back into the exercise routine and hope to be able to do the annual Thurkey Trot in Nov (8K). Here are some progress pics and some of the compression garments I've been using - and LOVE!!! I hate the panty gerdle bc it gave me horrendous panty lines, lol! These do the job really well, without the lines! Mine don't roll down at all and cover the incision - the 2 guidelines the Dr told me to adhere to ????
8 wks post TT - just started working out again!
Well I'm 8 wks and 1 day post op and I was feeling great ... until this morning ???? I exercised yesterday for the first time since my TT, and boy am I feeling it today!!! I walked/jogged for 2 miles. I took it easy - at least I thought I was. I walked 2 minutes at 4 mph, and then jogged for 2 minutes at 6 mph. I kept alternating that pattern until I hit 1.5 miles, and then I jogged rest at 5.5 mph. I felt fine during the workout, and ok after - a little sore before bed and tired of course. Today I feel swollen and my lower abdomen is sore. I'm not overly sore, and I know my body has to get back into the workout groove - but I am more swollen today than I was yesterday, or even last week. I'm hoping as I make this more of a routine, my body will get used to it. All in all, I'm healing nicely! Scans are gone with the exception of one stubborn one. No issues with my belly button - I'm SO happy to have a belly button!!! I go to the Dr today... hoping to start scar therapy!
9 weeks post TT
I'm 9 weeks post op today... and recovery is going very well! I started scar therapy - I've been using BioOil twice a day. I hope it works bc I'm not too crazy about my incision line. The one side is ok (nice and low) but it comes up a bit higher on the other side - but it's MUCH better than the ugly skin that used to be there!!! If anyone has any other products that have worked well, let me know!
I walked a 5K over the weekend and felt great after! I'll start jogging a little more, but will ease into it at a skier pace than I did last week. I was sore and swollen for about 2 days after that time on the treadmill. I'll get there though ????
My happiest moment so far -- I went to a gala over the weekend and wore a dress that I had purchased over a yr ago. I haven't worn it before bc it looked terrible on me -- but I didn't want to get rid of it bc "it'll look good someday." Well -- I wore it to the gala and felt so awesome! ????
Meltdown City!!!! ????
I got up this morning, 9 wks and 1 day post op, and all of my work skirts and pants are tight! What?! They've been fine so far... what happened overnight to cause this?! I had a serious meltdown while getting ready for work ???? I didn't wear my usual compression garment yesterday - I wore a compression camisole instead. Does the garment have that much of an effect?? We had Mexican for dinner - I had my usual, a taco salad (in a bowl) with grilled chicken. I did endulge in some chips and quacamole. Could they have done it?? The added salt?? Maybe if effected my body this way before, but there as so much extra skin I didn't notice?? The scale didn't change -- but I had one hard time buttoning my dress pants! Back to my usual compression garment, and watching my salt intake today in hopes that tomorrow is a better day! ????