Enjoying my new shape!

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I have two wonderful children which I breastfed...

I have two wonderful children which I breastfed each for one year. My body recovered quite well after the first one, but not after the second.

My weight has been stable for several years and I have decided I can no longer stand the tire around my waist. I thought well, if I'm going under anesthesia for the tummy tuck, I might as well get the lift also.

Reality is setting in. Labs- done Payment-...

Reality is setting in.

Labs- done
Payment- done
Mammo- tomorrow
Post-op Rxs- done
FMLA paperwork- done
Supplies for home- in the process

I don't think this is something I could have done without RealSelf. I have always had the mind set that this was something I had to live with. It wasn't until I discovered RealSelf and all the other moms that I realized this was attainable.

Reading stories from moms and physicians responses to questions along with before and after photos helped me to make the leap to do this. I feel as if I am prepared for the journey, physical and emotional, thanks to the website and everything that everyone has shared.

My anxiety is at bay and I hope that it stays there until they put me under:) I feel as if I am nesting, trying to get everything done at work and home so that everything will run as smoothly as possible while I am out.

I have posted a couple of pre-op photos. Was that ever a reality check! I can say that I spent a lot of time trying to find pictures of people that were similar in me to build so that I could imagine what I might look like after my Mommy Makeover. In the back of my mind, I'm hoping for a miracle, but am also realistic in that any change will be an improvement.

Many thanks to everyone that has gone before and shared their experiences.


Getting close and my dear friends have been asking...

Getting close and my dear friends have been asking if I am nervous. Feels kind of weird that I haven't freaked out yet. I'm sure it will take me by surprise.

The labs came back and everything was good. The doctor even ordered an MRSA culture and that was negative. Mammo is pending radiology read and it should be done tomorrow. Talk about a thorough work up. More than my annual!

Picked up my post-op prescriptions and packed a bag. Packed a gown, robe, slippers, and couple of plastic bags. The bags are in case I get sick on the way home in the car. Better add some fishing magazines for the husband to read while he is in the waiting room:) plus list of important phone numbers.

Working on all of my legal documents (power of attorney, medical power of attorney and will). Probably seems like overkill, no pun intended, but being in healthcare one should always be prepared.

The doctor's office called today and the surgery time has been moved up by 2 hours. I was teasing and said that I was glad because I didn't want everyone to be in a rush to go home at the end of the day (I had a late start time). Guess my dry sense of humor wasn't too funny and she told me that really it meant that I wouldn't be starving since I won't be able to eat after midnight.

Almost ready, just need to clean the house and make sure they send the mammo results to the PS.

Good Night and best wishes to everyone.


Proudmomma was so nice to help me get my count...

Proudmomma was so nice to help me get my count going! ::))

I decided to add a little more to my makeover....

I decided to add a little more to my makeover. Today I went to my hairdresser and had 8 inches of hair cut off! Went from long hair below the back of my bra to a short bob.

Hubby told me yesterday that if I don't like it, at least I was at home and it would grow back. Guess guys have no idea how long it takes to grow long healthy hair!

Went to lunch with the girls today and they offered to help an any way. Even offered to come over and help me wash my hair. BFFs are the BEST!

Still 4 more days. Going to seem like an eternity

Scheduled for tomorrow afternoon:). Didn't...

Scheduled for tomorrow afternoon:). Didn't quite finish everything I wanted to but, oh well.

The anesthesiologist called tonight and we went over a few things. Toughest thing will be no cream in my morning coffee, which I must have before six in the morning. She told me to have a nice/big dinner tonight but considering the tummy tuck I felt guilty and thought I should eat light. Not to mention I don't want to deal with any constipation after surgery.

I asked about nausea after surgery and she said she puts a sclodipine patch on her patients. Sure hope it works. Don't want to be sick after all the major work on the tummy.

Also, getting nervous about how I will feel after surgery regarding my appearance. There has been some advice on here about making sure that your PS knows what you want. Plan to have that conversation again. Hope that he can work his magic to meet my expectations.

Going to have a tough time going to sleep tonight. Hope not to have so much anxiety that I can enjoy a good book or movie!

Will post as soon as I can and will definitely try to get pics up.

Day 1 post-op was a lot of sleeping, going to the...

Day 1 post-op was a lot of sleeping, going to the restroom and just plain LOOPY from the meds. Family got a kick out of my loopyness. Thirsty as could be and drinking so much.

Day 2 post-op I took off the scopolamine patch yesterday and cut the pain meds down to 1 pill every 4-6 hours. I was having such a hard time focusing and hated that feeling.

The doctor's office called yesterday and said I could take off the bandages today and start applying neosporin. Got the bra and top bandages off ok, but took off the binder and thought I was going to faint. Needless to say I got the binder back on as soon as I could and promised my husband that I would take it easy and in stages. Don't think he is up to removing the bandages.

Not really hungry, but forcing myself to eat so that I can take the pain meds and antibiotics.

I was really impressed with the staff for surgery. I got on the OR table and thought to myself that I could back out and live with this fat. Haha. The anesthesiologist told me that she gave me some good stuff and then asked me to breath into the oxygen mask. From there on, don't remember a thing. Not even getting into the car to go home. So glad it went smoothly.

Posting one new picture from this morning.

Having a bugger of a time. Obviously not ready to...

Having a bugger of a time. Obviously not ready to wean off pain meds. Also, almost fainted again when I had to put neosporin on the incision sites again tonight! Going totry and sleep in the bed tonight. So tired of sitting in one of two chairs:(

Hubby goes back to work tomorrow and I'll be on my own. No dressing changes without him!

Here's to a better night.

Well the Bed didn't work out and ended up...

Well the Bed didn't work out and ended up sleeping in the chair. I believe you ladies said that day two was the worst. I sure hope so. I could stand for things to get better. The breasts don't bother me at all. It's the abdomen that causes so much grief:(

Long days. The blues can really set in when your...

Long days. The blues can really set in when your limited in your independence and stuck in the house. Trying to just chalk up one more day of recovery.

Still have the drains. The amount coming out is decreasing but will be stuck with them until at least Tuesday since Monday is a holiday.

Belly button looks off center and high. Hoping that it will improve as the swelling goes down. Guess we just ride the road to recovery....

One of the drains is leaking around the insertion...

One of the drains is leaking around the insertion site and doesn't appear to be working. I have left a message for the on call PS. Will see what he says.

The on-call PS called. The drain needs to come out...

The on-call PS called. The drain needs to come out and the site dressed with neosporin and gauze. We decided that I would cut the suture and remove the drain myself. I can say everything went well and I had no problem getting it out.
Still left with the other drain. Can't wait for it to come out and the swelling to come down.

I feel like day 6 has been my day to turn the...

I feel like day 6 has been my day to turn the corner. Finally not sleeping all day, got the bowels working (sorry for the tmi, we all know how important it is), took a shower and seeing a very slight decrease in swelling:). Hoping for an even better day tomorrow.

Getting around more these days. A couple of days...

Getting around more these days. A couple of days ago the muscle spasms were pretty intense, but not painful and they are starting to pass.

I've had a slight problem with my belly button since the weekend. The tissue around it was red and warm. Tuesday (since Monday was a holiday) I called the doctor's office and his nurse suggested I treat it with iodine and scheduled my post-op appointment for Thursday. By the time I went to my post-op appointment it had started to drain. At my appointment, the PS used peroxide and removed the crusty stuff and wanted me to continue using the peroxide, iodine, and let it air dry. When I was cleaning it last night I noticed two itty bitty sutures poking out of the area that has drainage. (I had searched belly button drainage on RealSelf and many of the PSs said that it could be a retained suture.) I pulled the sutures and am hoping to see an improvement.

At my appointment, we ran through all my questions. The PS said to get a bra without an underwire, continue wearing the binder for a month, and start the silicone strips after a month. He, also, said to start massaging the incision sites. They are rather hard and he said they would soften up with massage.

I asked about the location of the scar because I it is a little high. He basically said that any lower and it would be in the pubic area and that he was limited to the location because of the crease in my skin. I have read that is one of the factors and I am still very excited to have my new tummy and breasts.

I have posted a picture from day 8 and plan to post a couple more later today.

Today has been the best day yet!! I feel like I...

Today has been the best day yet!! I feel like I had the blues from about day 4 to yesterday. Forced myself to get out a little each day and that really helped. It's hard to stay positive when you don't feel well. Plus, your swollen and know that it will be 3-6 months before you see the end results. When I had the blues and everyone was so happy I couldn't understand until today. Today, I feel great and am so, so happy to have had the surgery.

As moms we never want to spend the money on ourselves or not be able to take care of everyone for a couple of weeks. I have to say that I wish I had done this sooner. My youngest is 10 and I just think about all the years for hating my body, trying to hide the rolls and lift the boobs with certain clothes, not to mention the low self esteem. If any of you are having second thoughts or are not sure, rest assured that this has been one of the most gratifying things you can do for yourself.

Ok, I'm off the soap box:). On to the physical aspect. My belly button has stopped draining just as the PS said it would. The muscle spasms are decreasing and I'm able to stretch more everyday. I have been getting some twinges in small isolated spots. Any of you have that? I wonder if they are those quilting sutures. Doesn't really hurt, just feels strange. One of the best improvements is not feeling like my incision is going to split open at the ends whenever I move to sit or stand.

I picked up an exercise binder from the athletic store. It's very
firm but the problem is that it doesn't breath at all. I plan on ordering another surgical binder on-line today.

Thanks to all the ladies that have shared and helped carry us through the toughest times:). Happy weekend and hears to a little more rest and recovery.

Everything is going well. Breast lift incisions...

Everything is going well. Breast lift incisions are looking great and I'm very pleased with the results. The tummy tuck incisions are also healing well. I have an occasional burning/pulling sensation at the ends when I get up from sitting. It's getting less and less as each day passes.

Only thing that is having a little difficulty healing is the belly button. At my appointment last week the PS had also said that it was liquified fat. So, guess there is a little necrosis?? It is drying out nicely, but looks a little small. It's making me wonder about a suggestion I've seen on this website about using a marble. I guess I'll revisit that once the skin is completely healed.

The binder is definitely my crutch. I am wearing my pre-mommy makeover clothes. The tops fit fantastic. I went from a 38G to 36DD! The pants are OK considering I have a tank top and binder underneath. The hubby told me that the pants look like they are going to fall off. I think once all the swelling is gone I'll go from a size 14 to a 12. That's good enough for me right now. Maybe a year from now I can report that I am a 10:)

Everyday is getting a little easier. The hardest part now is making sure that I don't over do things. Want to make sure that I'm ready to start back to work next week.

Best wishes to all my friends on RS. Your sharing and support has been priceless.

I completely understand the emphasis behind...

I completely understand the emphasis behind "Swell H*ll"!! I started back to work yesterday and had the full experience of swell h*ll last night. I basically walk and sit at work, so there's not a whole lot of strain. However, I was absolutely miserable last night. It was so uncomfortable I was almost in tears and couldn't get to sleep. I decided to do whatever I could to avoid that today. So today, I tried to make sure that I didn't stay at a 90 degree angle while sitting. I tried to stretch in my chair and lean back. I also decided to be extra careful with lunch and make sure that I kept a close eye on my sodium intake. This evening is a little better. Not quite as bad, but still a significant amount of swelling. Guess only time and compression will help.

I picked up a Spanx this weekend and am planning to start wearing it next week. I hope that it gives enough support.

Last time I posted I mentioned that my belly button was having a difficult time healing. That is getting better and one of the two spots has closed up. The other is getting smaller, has no drainage and I'm hoping will be resolved soon.

Best wishes!

Sooo much has changed since I last posted. I...

Sooo much has changed since I last posted. I don't have to wear anything anymore unless I want to. However, I will occassionally wear the Spanx during the day and I always wear the old surgical binder at night. I notice that I am much flatter in the morning when I do.

I've been running full speed at work during the day and everything in the evenings with the family. I can say that I still notice more swelling at the end of the day. Also, it seems I can feel an occasional pull or twinge, most noticable when the swelling is at it's maximum.

As far as the scar, the breast (which are the anchor type) and the tummy have done great. The skin has a nice transition and the scar is very thin and smooth. I had started to use the silicone strips on the tummy scar, but it was so smooth that I figured it was a waste, not to mention that I had a hard time keeping it from rolling under the Spanx!

The belly button scar is giving me a little trouble. I had trouble with it healing anyway and now the scar is tight and a little wider/thicker. I have started to use the silicone strips on it and have seen an improvement. I go back for to see the Dr. Meade in December and am hoping that it looks better. All the scars are rather dark, but I am sure it will lighten within the year and can hardly wait.

I was given the go ahead for exercise but won't start until November. I signed up for a couple of classes and they don't start until then. I figured if Dr. Meade could do everything he did, then it was up to me to get the rest looking great.

List Pros & Cons, Advice you can offer others

List Pros & Cons, Advice you can offer others

Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift List of Supplies Suzy...

Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift List of Supplies
Suzy in Dallas, RN

1. ****Chlorhexidine also known as Hibiclens**** one of the most IMPORTANT things you can do
Use the chlorhexidine, which is a surgical soap, in the shower for 3 days before surgery. Be sure to keep it out of your eyes, it is harsh and also very drying. Before surgery and after avoid lotions. Make sure that you are using the shower and not the bath tub (fewer germs that way). I only showered for 6 weeks after surgery and trust me, I love my baths. I also kept a separate towel for myself that the rest of the family did not use.

2. ****A prescription for oral antibiotics**** INSIST on this with your doctor if he does not provide it. This is for after surgery. If he does not provide it, find another doctor.

3. Soft cotton underwear

4. Soft cotton tank tops – I really liked being able to wear these under the binder and bra.

5. Comfortable gowns

6. Paper tape – it’s easier on the skin if you have to use any type of bandage.

7. 1 box of sterile 2x2 gauge – only buy one box, if you need another someone can go out and buy it.

8. 1 tube of triple antibiotic ointment, generic or Neosporin/Bacitracin

9. q-tips

10. Tylenol – you can’t take anything with aspirin or ibuprofen for 2 weeks

11. Shower seat – the cheap one is a wonderful investment. Now I use it as a step stool in the closet:)

12. maybe….hydrogen peroxide (if ok with your doctor) used to clean anything small that opens

13. maybe….iodine (if ok with your doctor) used after hydrogen peroxide to kill germs and dry it out

I was sent home with a surgical binder, but ordered another one on-line so that I could wash and dry, yet have one to wear. The surgical bra got me through the first week, then I had to go out and buy a soft cotton no wire one.

I didn’t purchase any additional pillows than what I had at home. I did spend the first week sleeping in chairs with ottomans and pillows. That was sufficient for me and I did not see the need to go out and buy a recliner.

Congrats on your decision and best wishes!

Suzy in Dallas, RN

I feel like things are coasting along. I have...

I feel like things are coasting along. I have minima6l swelling at the end of the day and have slept without a binder a couple of times. In the morning I can notice a difference when I wear the binder at night versus not wearing the binder at night. I'm sure it's only something "I" would notice as we tend to be more critical of ourselves and all the small details. Overall, if this is 2 months out, I can't wait for 3, then 6, etc. I have posted a couple of more pictures of the healing scar around the aerola and breasts. Wishing everyone the best.

I've started the Zumba classes back up. That's...

I've started the Zumba classes back up. That's the good news. The bad news is that I have had some pain on the right side of my belly button for about a good 8 inches. It feels like it runs up and down. It also seems as if that side is more swollen. Don't want to give up the exercise, do guess I'll try to skip the stretching and arm raising etc.. So sad that I can't hit it 100% and hoping I haven't messed anything up:(

Six months came and went quickly, February to be...

Six months came and went quickly, February to be exact! I took pictures and lost the camera. Luckily I found it last week. Here are the pictures I took at the 6 month mark.

Everything is back to normal but even better. I have no twinges or discomfort at all. I have started back with golfing and started up with walking/jogging. I was also able to enjoy snow skiing this past winter. What a difference it makes to not have huge breasts and a panus in the way.

The best part about everything has been about feeling good about myself. Everyday I wake up and every time I go somewhere, I don't feel ashamed about my appearance. Being given the freedom and happiness has translated into a happier me and a happier family:)
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

Looking for high quality care and artistic ability led me to Dr. Meade. There are so many doctors to choose from in the Dallas area and being a nurse, I have to say that I believe Dr. Meade is the best. He has an uncanny ability to make everything look so natural. I trusted him so much that I told him, “I don’t care what you do, as long as you make it look right.” His staff is absolutely wonderful. Janie, in the front office, is so personable and always a joy to speak with. Becky, who handles OR scheduling and paperwork, covered every detail and worked a miracle with the OR schedule so that I could return to work by a certain date. Chris, his nurse, was always readily available for any question and very knowledgeable. The OR staff, anesthesiologist, and the facility itself was great and I can’t thank them enough. Dr. Meade’s ability to do great work and his awesome support staff exceeded my highest expectations!

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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