Pregnancy is Great - Looking Prego 3 Yrs Later, Not So Great - Hartford, CT

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I'm two weeks away and getting excited. After...

I'm two weeks away and getting excited. After meeting with my PS last week for almost an hour I've felt ready and excited about my big day. He's prepared me for the worst but the part that makes me feel optimistic is that they actually want you to walk around. Sitting around would make me crazy. I know I'll need to listen to my body but like with my two c-sections I didn't push myself I just felt good and walking the day after each I feel was the key. We'll see! He did tell me that the drains could stay in for 2-3 weeks and that sounds longer than anyone I've read on this site but again he's preparing me for the worst. The hospital called today to do pre-admission stuff so that's all set. I'm again thankful for the 1 night stay in the hospital. I'll miss my husband and the kiddos but I think it will give me peace of mind. OK , not much to report on at this point just babbling. My Grandmother is letter me borrow her leather power recliner that I love and sleep in every Sunday that I'm at her house. That will be a good thing I think - it hoists your butt all the way up to a standing position so should help me take it easy on my newly flattened abs! :~)


1 week away

Its been a whirlwind since my last update. My husband and I celebrated our 10th anniversary and our oldest just turned 5 yesterday. I can't believe I'm 1 week away from my big event. I went to dinner tonight with friends and I'll be spending the weekend with friends so I'm happy to get some social stuff in as I'm assuming I'll be laying low for at least two weeks. My husband treated both of us Sunday to a wonderful day at a new spa in town. We had an hour massage, hung out in a whirlpool and then sat in a relaxation room for an hour. I really needed that as I am stressing about the surgery and being put under. I'm excited but as it nears I see myself getting scared again. My family is being super supportive but I just don't want to regret anything or have any issues because outside of a prego looking belly I'm in good shape, an active person and feel good. I just don't want to open the door to problems that I would have otherwise not had if I didn't go through with this. I'm the only one who's unhappy with how I look. Just being truthful - but in the next breath I get excited about having my pre-prego body back again and I trust the surgeons I have and I'm optimistic about my recovery. I started to go towards more of a liquid, light diet today in preparation for next week. I ate haddock for dinner but otherwise soup, yogurt and lots of water. I'm going to pick up smoothies, fruits and bars because I know I'll start to drag eating like this. I also found out that fresh pineapple, which I love, can help with swelling so you guessed it I'll be all over that. I need to finish up on getting everything I need tomorrow so I'm prepared because we have another busy weekend coming up. I'm making sure I try and snuggle with my kiddos each night in the rocking chair because I'll miss that for a while. Ok that's it for now.

Big Day!!!

Well I'm about 15 hours away from surgery and feeling amazingly calm. I'm just ready to get on with it at this point. I'm not as excited as I was with my BA but I think I'm really hung up on the down time I'll experience and all of the initial inconvenience of the whole thing. I'm just hoping all goes phenomenally well and that I have a super speedy recovery. I do however have cramps for some reason in my pelvic area on the right side. Not quite sure what that's about but I'll fill my docs in on that tomorrow if its still around. OK, I'm going to jump around with my kids and get as much of that in that I can. Best of luck to all my TTers out there! Wish me luck!

I did it!

It's 3 am and while I am crazy, crazy sore physically, mentally I'm walking on sunshine!In my update yesterday I was complaining of a cramp in my right side. I was so bummed because up until then I felt like a million bucks and was so ready for surgery. Well the pain got worse to the point that when I checked in to the hospital they weren't sure if I was going to be able to have the surgery. But my docs ran tests and determined that my appendix needed to come out SOOO I had a hernia repair, TT and appendix removal - what are the odds! I swear you cannot make this stuff up. For all the many times I had doubt about surgery and then feeling that pain right up until it seems that this was all the right thing to do. So now I'm wide awake having slept all day and in a lot of discomfort but HELLO this is a major surgery. I can say that I've now gone to the bathroom 3 times now (pee) and each time I get up it does get easier. Hurts laying back down but I can still feel it getting easier. Tomorrow they'll have me walking around more and hopefully I'll get to see my super flat belly. My PS was awesome and said he was really ecstatic about my results and that I will be too. But for the time being I do not have a belly button. That was discussed prior to my surgery many times because of my previous hernia surgery being unsuccessful under the hands of a bad doctor. My PS said he'll modify some thing later but I may be OK with how it looks so we'll see. I think there's a super model out there with no belly button so hey maybe I'll join her ranks - LOL! Good luck to those ladies I've been talking with who are going today. I was so scared of being put under but WOW what a great day's sleep. I really feel so refreshed. Oh, I did get the pain pump put in at my PS' suggestion and I think that was a good move. It may have been because my surgery had more components to it but it can't hurt to ask about it for those of you who are coming up on surgery. I'll update photos as soon as I can. Best of luck to all and please continue to pray for a speedy recovery for me as I will be doing the same for you.

Day Two!

Feeling a little better today. I have enough of an appetite to eat some cheerios but I'm still keeping it super light. The binder makes eating feel weird, like the food get stuck so I tend to eat and walk around after in hopes it will eventually make it down and out. I'm taking my Colace but still nothing yet but I do hear some gurgling so I'm hoping "that" will be soon. My family has been fantastic - the kids had flowers for me when I got home, my mom in law went above and beyond cleaning and my Grama and cousin kept the kids busy. My mom will be in tonight for the weekend so I'm really just going to take it easy. I'm on valium for muscle relaxation and have taken myself off Percocet and now taking 1600 mg ibuprofen and then the Keflex antibiotic and Colace. I hope this gives me more awake hours because I've been sleeping a lot which has actually made my face look 10 years younger LOL - I haven't slept like this for 5 years so I also look like I had a face lift LOL!!!! Honestly I'm just really happy to be on the other side of this and I just hope for all of us TTer's that the healing/recovery continues to go well. I'll try and post some pics later as I haven't seen my belly yet and my PS said I look like a Barbie doll so I've gotta see this!!!!

Getting better all the time!

Day 4 and it just keeps getting better. I went for a walk at 7 a.m. and walked around my neighborhood for about 20 minutes. Then I took several more walk today and even put the sprinkler out for the kids. I sat on the deck with my mom and cousin watching them and reading Vogue and dozing on and off because the weather was beautiful. Then took a shower but honestly those drains hanging out of my body like the matrix gross me out so no pics yet , BUT I am super psyched about how my tummy looks. It looks like it did before I had kids. Scar and all I feel so sexy again. The shower felt good and then I refreshed all my dressings and put on my brand new binder. I can't remember if he said I had lipo or not. I don't think I did because I'm not seeing any marks and the only thing that I really feel is the muscle repair. The hospital gave me these throw away undies to shower in that work pretty well. You can stuff all of the drains into them so if like me you're paranoid about getting too involved with the drains this works out really well. It was a great day and it was nice to be awake for most of it. I'm now just down to Ibuprofen and Keflex and I will take the valium at night because I think sleeping on my back would be worse without them. I can't wait to see my PS and any of he staff that was a part of my surgery and thank them. I really could not have asked for a more professional team who was with me every step before during and after. I never went more than 2 hours without seeing one of the surgeons or doctors of the surgical team and they all had incredible bedside manner as well as supportive advice for good healing. As I stated before I currently do not have a belly button because of my previous botched hernia surgery but my PS will make me one and we'll discuss that tomorrow. I hope to get two of my three drains out tomorrow. The third drain is for my hernia and I won't see my general surgeon until Thursday for that. I'm really happy and just looking forward to posting some pictures and hear feedback.

No more drains!

I had my first follow up with my PS today and he took all of my drains out. I had 3, two for the TT and 1 was for my hernia repair. I was running late so I didn't get to eat breakfast before we went and I'm kind of glad I didn't. It doesn't hurt - well the hernia one kind of did - it just feels super, slimy weird. It takes seconds for them to come out and my PS was laughing at me because he's like after all you just had done this is what you're scared of? My answer was Yes, yes I am - LOL. Great to have them gone. I have a steri tape over my incisions that will take about 1 month to come off but for now I can shower and in two weeks I'm clear for the beach and pool. I'm walking pretty upright and my back isn't really giving me too much trouble. I feel a little bloated but I know that's normal for now. Still going to take Colace 2xs a day to keep "that" in check.

Old bikini new me!

The last time I wore this I was 20 something and now I'm back in it at 41! I bought this on a road trip I took with 4 of my girl friends to Nashville so it brings back hilarious memories and well YOUTH! Its funny that I still have it I rarely save anything. As I explained earlier my belly button died from a botched hernia surgery in 2010, so my PS and I will work on creating a new one down the road as I heal. I feel bloated today and that's normal but probably also due to the 1/2 strawberry shortcake I treated myself to at lunch. I eat really well so that would've bloated me even before the surgery. It was worth it! I'm super happy with the results and I'm only 5 day post op. I'm challenged with the camera but I'll try and get some other shots later of my scars. It was a busy day but I feel great - took a little power nap and now just catching up on movies and relaxing.

Am I doing too much?

I'm at the 7 day post op mark and feeling fantastic. I'm just taking a valium at bedtime to help me stay comfy in the recliner. Finished my antibiotics today and I just feel good. But I'm wondering, even though I feel so good should I be taking it more easy and getting my feet up? I wear my CG all day and night of course and I'm pretty swollen still. I know this process takes time but wondering if I should slow it down even though I don't feel like anything is really holding me back. I see my other surgeon tomorrow for a check up and I'll see what he thinks. I didn't have any liposuction, PS said I didn't need it, so I'm just hoping once the swelling goes down I'll see more of an hourglass shape. I can standup pretty straight so nothing feels overwhelmingly tight. Its just kind of freaking me out since this time last week I was howling in pain. Each morning I walk my dogs around our smaller block and that feels great. It seems like I'm them kind of on my feet or at least not sitting with my feet up again until bedtime and I wonder if that's too much even though I feel fine. I'm just swollen, that's the only issue. Any advice or does this sound on point? I also wanted to post a few pics of my scars. Its hard to get a good picture but they're covered in steri tape and will remain that way for 1 month. Showering is no issue and I don't have any weird feeling with the water hitting my belly. I just don't scrub of course at that area, just squish my washcloth and make sure soap is hitting everything. I'm definitely getting my belly button done as soon as possible. I miss it but I know there was no choice on how to handle that situation. PS and I will talk about that when I see him on July 8th. Happy healing to all my TT sisters and to those of you getting ready for your big day get excited!

Back to regular routine

Tonight I'll go it alone with the kids for the first time since surgery. My husband works in the restaurtant business so he leaves at 4:00. I will have my Mom and Grama around until dinner time but then they'll go home. Between my family and my husband's family someone has slept over every night to help me with the kids and housework since the 19th. I drove yesterday for the first time and that felt fine. My husband, as he always is, has been awesome. Our kids are great and have been super - big helpers while Daddy's at work, so I feel like its time to get back to our old routine. I have been eating alot of fruits, fibers and veggies and also taking Colace 2x a day but I have to say I'm not feeling the need to go to the bathroom??? Its been two days, but before surgery that wasn't a daily "duty" (total pun intended) for me anyway. I don't feel crampy of anything but if I don't go tonight I guess I swig back some MOM before bed. I hate that stuff it's so gross but it seems to get the job done. I'm still off from work until July 9th and my inlaws have a house at the beach so I'm looking forward to taking up most of the week down there with the kiddos. Can't swim yet but watching them on the beach will be good enough for me. That's it for now. Hope all are healing well and feeling happy!

CG for 1 more week!

Totally forgot to update my doctor's visit on 6/28. Went really well. This was with my General Surgeon who performed my hernia repair. She said 1 more week with the CG all day and night and then I could go without. My intestines are filled with air so she credited that for the majority of my swelling but other than that all is well. I see my PS on Friday (moved my appointment up). So I'm trucking along and still feeling great. I feel slightly less swollen today so that's reassuring. Happy healing to all and Happy 4th!!

3 weeks and 3 days PO

WOW I've been such a slacker with my updates. I can't believe 3 weeks have gone by already. I'm flattening out more and more each day. I had a DRs appointment yesterday with my general/hernia surgeon and they explained that I won't see my full results until about the 6 week mark based on the umbilical hernia surgery performed. The area around my once, belly button is still numb but feeling everywhere else has come back. I still have the steri tape on my scar which is the black covering you'll see in my photos. That is not my scar - my scar is looking really small from what I can tell. I tried to get a picture of my right side where a small piece of the steri-tape peeled away. If that's how the rest will look than my scar will be almost non existent. My lower belly and intestines are still healing and deflating more or less from surgery and I also have my period so everything being a little swollen right now makes sense. I go back to my general surgeon in 3 weeks at the 6 week mark. I'm happy already with the flatter belly I've gotten from this. No more of the looks at my belly fist and then at my face and then thinking "HMM is she having another baby?!" My CG fits under my clothes no problem and I'm wearing a size 4 so I have no complaints there. I've been cleared to not wear my CG unless I'm being active, but I can't go to the gym yet or pick up anything heavier than 10lbs until my next visit. I honestly just feel more comfortable with the CG on. My son is a bruiser and he loves to run into my legs and hug so it also serves as a shield. I weigh 129 right now and my goal weight is 125 which is were I was when I met my husband 12 years ago. I can't wait to see the rest of this transformation in the coming weeks but above all of that I feel great, my recovery is going extremely well and I'm just really happy that this has all gone so well. Oh I went back to work last week. I took 2 1/2 weeks off so it was good to get back. Ok well that's it for now. I'm looking forward to catching up on all of the updates I received over the week on everyone. Hope you're all doing well and feeling good.

More photos

Sorry messed up uploading my pics

Two Days no CG

Well I've now gone two days without wearing my CG all day and into the evening. I've been wearing it to bed and that's primarily because my husband always ends up throwing and arm over me in his sleep and it feels funny on my skin. I feel really good and seem to be getting flatter each day too which is nice. My next follow up visit is with my general surgeon on August 5th and I'm hoping they'll remove my weight limitation at that time and allow me to start working out. I've been paying really close attention to my diet and walking every night but I'm ready to get to a gym and start taking some classes. Ok, that's it for now - Happy Healing to all.

I think my MR woke up!

No pics, everything is still looking the same. I still have the steri strips on and will keep them on until I meet with my surgeons again on 8/8 (my appt. was moved) unless they start come off. I am however going to call my PS tomorrow and ask his opinion on whether I should just pull them off to begin using Maderma or silicone strips. From what I remember he said this steri tape is supposed to minimize all of the scarring so I shouldn't need Maderma or strips, but I need to hear that again :-) So I think my MR woke up. OH man!! I spent Saturday night with a bunch of girlfriends at the casino for dinner, dancing and YES I finally had a few drinks!!! But OH MAN I've been paying ever since. We laughed entirely too much and of course in a club you're screaming to hear each other - well let me tell you my MR has been achy ever since. I've also been coughing like a freak because the weather lately has been all over the place and that always bugs my throat out and makes it scratchy. Its totally bearable but I'm like WOW I clearly woke up the sleeping giant this weekend. It was worth it though hee-hee! Ok, I will definitely have pics on my next update, which will be after my 8/8 appointment. Happy healing to all and to all a good night!

Steri tape no more!

The tape is OFF and I'm very pleased with what I'm seeing. My scar is super flat and in these photos it looks darker than it appears in real life. I've just started putting coco butter on today so I'm hoping it will fade out. When I removed the tape there was a drain incision still slightly open right under where my belly button once was, called the nurse and she said to keep it covered and apply a little aquaphor. It's already looking better today (pics in the black undies). On another note, I have been putting this entire surgery to the test. After waking up my MR with my girlfriends the week or so prior, I caught a cold shortly thereafter. I've been coughing, sneezing and blowing my nose non stop and my stomach is so achy from all of it. I feel like I'm actually swollen because I'm coughing so hard. I'm on some super cough medicine now that I started to take yesterday and I'm not such a hacking mess today but OMG this has been one sore week. All that aside I'm so happy with my results. We had a wedding this past weekend to attend and my husband commented that he was so happy to see me comfortable in my own skin again. He went on to tell me that for the past 5 years he's missed watching me get ready and I realized he was right. I had gotten so used to heading straight for the bathroom to perform the ritual of trying on least 8 different shirts before I'd settle on something that was usually less than flattering but covered my gut. It never took me more than 5 minutes to get dressed before kids and it feels so fabulous to be back on that time table again! Not a day has gone by that I don't appreciate the simple act of throwing on 1 t-shirt and heading out the door. This entire journey is amazing and even thought I still have a ways to go, there are no words to express how happy I feel with the instant gratification this process has allowed me to experience. I went into this process doubting my decision and questioning myself all the way through. Was I being stupid and vain? Why do this, you're the only one complaining??? You're being irresponsible, you have two children what if something goes wrong??? These were constants that played out in my head daily. Being a pretty cautious person I tend to stay away from options that could result in a negative, but something kept pushing me forward and I'm so glad whatever that was, did. Having the surgical staff I was blessed with and more importantly the amazing family support has really exceeded all of my expectations. I always thought I was just doing this for me, but I now understand that being comfortable in my skin again has been advantageous to everyone around me. I wish all of us continued success in our healing process and for those of you in the planning stages I hope this little bit of honesty is relatable as well as helpful. Happy healing to all and to all a good night!

Moving along

Hi All hope everyone is well. It's been a while since my last update but everything has been going great and honestly just flying by. I feel awesome and I'm happy with the way everything has been healing! I was cleared to start working out completely in October. Due to this being my 2nd hernia repair I was advised that concentrated exercise on my stomach wasn't such a great idea. So crunches are out but mini sit ups are in so I've concentrated more on my form, resistance and tighten my abs when working out. I do alot of kickbox cardio, with most of my focus on lower body. I feel like I'm keeping things in check. I tried a low ab workout a few weeks ago and found that my incision bulges for a few days afterwards, so I'm staying away from concentrated ab work. I did great with diet over the holidays but after the holidays I gained about 4 pounds - go figure. I weigh 132 right now but I was maintaing 129 until my 4 pound blow out and happy with that so I'm shooting to get there again. I do feel that I'm building muscle so I think that's what's taking so long to hit those last 3lbs. We've had alot of parties the month of January & February so this is my first week back on a protein driven diet and consistent working out. My scar has healed well considering there is a vertical scar from the hernia repair. I'm happy with everything and at this point I've opted not to have reconstructive surgery to create a belly button. Its just not that important to me after all and when I look back on what I had and where I'm at, it keeps me in check with how far I've come. My horizontal scars are low and I can wear a bikini around the house but at the beach I think I'll try one of those high waisted numbers this year because that will cover everything and if it doesn't I'm not opposed to the tankini or skimpy one piece, there are options :-) Well that's it for now. I hope everyone is healthy, well and happy! My best to you all and stay beautiful!!
Dr. Steve Smith

I have two surgeons which is why the cost is drastically reduced for the TT/muscle repair. One surgeon is taking care of the hernia and that cost is paid for by my insurance. Having the hernia repair done in combination with PS allowed for a reduction in cost to my ps. Both surgeons are great and have been very forthcoming about the pain to expect and recovery time. I'll spend one night in the hospital which brings another level of comfort to me. I'm happy with their staff as well and feel very at ease calling them. Dr. Smith was fantastic and had a super bedside manner. He's always reassuring. He was with me every step of this process. He visited me often and if he couldn't be there he sent another MD member of his staff. I was under the care of two amazing physicians and in total visited by 8 MD and 2 PAs during my overnight stay. I would recommend them in a heartbeat. They made this experience the best it could be and looked out for my best interest and comfort in the healing days ahead.

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 Time spent with me
4 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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