33, 3 Kids, Did it! - Hoffman Estates, IL

The Beginning Of This Journey

Hello! I've been reading posts, off and on, on this website for years, debating whether or not to have a tummy tuck. Now my surgery is all scheduled for August 11th! I'm having a full tummy tuck with muscle repair and lipo of the flanks. I have three boys, 10, 7, and 3 years old. My first was born a week early at 10lbs. 9oz., second was also born a week early 10 lbs. 2oz.! My third was almost a month early and my smallest :). The big babies took a toll on my tummy though. I'm 5'8" 155 lbs. and I exercise 5-6 times a week. I feel the strongest and healthiest I have ever felt in my life. That's when I decided that I've worked so hard becoming healthy and fit, that my body is ready to take the stress of surgery! Can't wait to get rid of this extra skin and see my new tummy! Excited to share my journey with you all and look forward to any advice :)

Tough Morning

This morning I went to get my toddler out of his crib, one of his only cuddly moments lately. Realization set in that I'm not going to be able to pick him up for 6 weeks :(. Started getting emotional. Countdown is on though! Getting more and more anxious, especially after seeing so many of all your beautiful "afters"!

Only 2 more Days!

Getting so excited and so nervous! Trying to think of everything I need to get done before surgery. Can't wait to get rid of this extra skin!

24 Hours....

24 hours and I'll be at the surgery center prepping! I plan on spending today having fun with the kiddos, going to church, and enjoying "springing up" to do things for one last day :).

My parents have been so great! They offered to take the kids for a sleepover tonight and tomorrow night so I can get some rest. I'm so very thankful that they are so understanding.

I started having an irrational fear that my belly is just big and even after the tummy tuck, I'll still look and feel awful :(. I completely trust my surgeon, don't get me wrong. I just can't even remember what my pre-baby belly looked like! It's been nearly 11 years!

Here's to one more day of feeling uncomfortable with my doughy belly!

As they say....

Made it to the flat side! So far, so good! I went in to the surgery center at 6am. The nurse was fantastic and got me prepped. She had a hard time getting a good vein for my IV, so anesthesiology came and decided to do it on the underside of my wrist. He numbed it first so I couldn't feel it. Then Dr. Patel came in, took photos, and marked me up. He really calmed my nerves, he's so patient and just a great doctor. Then I was wheeled in the OR and the next thing I knew, I was awake in recovery! Pain felt like nothing, more just sore from the MR. The nurses were all shocked at how well and quickly I recovered. They were amazed at how well I did. The nurse said I look awesome! Hard part is, I can't take anything off until Friday when I go back in to get my drain removed. Can't wait to see it!

Day 2

Day 2, I was a bit more sore than day 1. The night of my surgery I slept a bit, but woke up every hour. Day 2 I was hit hard with nausea. I think it's because I wasn't eating enough. I'm so tight and the cg is so tight it doesn't feel like their is room for food! But, I definitely recommend eating a slice of toast or cracker with your meds. Even if it says you don't need to take it with food...like mine does.
Today, so far, I feel more of my incision than the muscle soreness. Still muscle sore though. I can now get to the toilet by myself, but i need help getting out if bed. I have found it the most comfortable to be in bed instead of the couch and last night I slept for 2 1/2-3 hours at a time! That made me feel better. Thank god for my husband, he's been amazing. The kids got back home last night, so I'm sure there will be a lot more activity in the house today :)
I'll try to add a pic today, although I still can't touch anything until I go in on Friday!

Day 3 photos

I have foam boards underneath the binder.

Oh My Gosh! Finally saw my new tummy!

I looooooooove it!!!! Finally got to see my new tummy today! It is soooooo swollen, I feel like I'm about to burst. But, I love it!! It's so flat, even when sitting! I'm so happy!
Recovery is going really well. Taking pain meds every 6 hours, but expect to take them less. I feel tight and a bit sore, but, no pain. The swelling is the most uncomfortable thing for me. Any tips?

One week later!

It's been one week since my tt, the time has flown! So...a week of recovery under my belt....how has it been.
Everyday truly does get better and better. Everyday, I feel my muscles healing a bit more and getting less sore. The incision site is mildly sore like it has been all week. I have no pain and I'm no longer taking any pain medication! Last night and this morning, I was able to maneuver myself out of bed without any help from my husband. I can't just sit up yet, I kind of look like a turtle on its back, rocking a bit until I get my arms underneath me right to help myself up, haha. Oh! I can even laugh a little bit now! Swelling is the biggest thing I'm dealing with right now, and I have a feeling it will be something I'll be dealing with for quite some time :/. It gets worse throughout the day, but as long as I take it easy (mostly sitting and laying down), it's bearable. If I'm up walking around the house too much, I find myself hunched over and swollen to the max!
Here are some week 1 photos! There is not much of a difference between today's photos and day 5's....but, I hope to post weekly photos from now on to see a nice progression :). I took my measurements and stepped on the scale yesterday. So hard not to!! My waist is the same as pre-op....31in. And my hips are 1in. Bigger than pre-op...41in. I have lost 5 lbs. though!

Week 2 PO

Wow, do I feel different this week! Feeling back to my normal self. I definitely do hit a wall though. My scar is healing nicely, muscles are feeling less sore, lipo bruising is fading away, and my swelling has gone done a bit too! I'm still swollen, more around my belly button and below, and a bit above my belly button. One worry I have is my flanks. I feel like my left side is bigger than my right. Hoping it's swelling, but, I'm not sure. I'll ask my ps, but I don't see him for another two weeks.
On a side note, I haven't told friends or family about my surgery, just parents and bf. I really didn't think anyone would notice right away or maybe ask if I lost some weight. It has been the first thing out of people's mouths! Not even hi! It's, " Wow! You've lost weight! You look great!" I really didn't expect that. So, that makes me happy :). Here are some week 2 photos!

Week 3

I'm starting to feel completely back to my old self again. If I do too much, I may have some sore muscles in the evening, but overall, I'm feeling really well! My swelling has felt a lot better the past few days too! My husband goes back to work tomorrow, so I'll have the kiddos and all the responsibilities back to myself. Kind of looking forward to it. These past two weeks have dragged on! I'm feeling so bored and my husband won't let me do a lot. Here are some updated stats (yay! Losing inches!) and pics! Have a great holiday!
Stats:
Waist-29 in.
Hips-39 in.
Weight-151

A little photo fun :)

This morning I woke up the flattest I've ever been, so little swelling! Thought I would post a before and after pic :)

4 weeks

4 weeks

2 Months

Why am I sore today? Why am I swollen today? I found myself asking these questions...then duh...you had surgery just two months ago! I've been feeling so good, that it feels like ages ago since I had my surgery! I've started exercising again and wow that's a bit tough. It's hard to use my core, but, I know it will strengthen. I do have some days where my muscles are sore, but they are few and far between. Also, I have swelling in my lower belly, my surgeon said it will be the last place to go away. I've had a burning sensation at my hipbone on the incision. I've woken up feeling like its ripping apart, which is painful, but again few and far between. My surgeon said to massage it, that it's a nerve. But, under jeans, I can't even tell. Here are some new pictures! A lot of times I feel like my belly is still there, like I can feel it. Then I look down and I'm so flat! Crazy! Guess my brain hasn't caught up with my body yet :). I still love the way I look! I feel like it looks very natural and I feel so much better in all my clothes (well the ones I fit into. I have to go shopping for smaller stuff!).

One year later!

Mostly all I can say is that I am so happy that I did it! My brain is finally catching up with my body, so I'm finally feeling comfortable in my skin. Here's a before and recent after pic. Still wish more was liposuctioned from my love handles and I plan on bringing that up on my next visit. All in all though, I'm happy!
Recent measurements:
Waist: 28in.
Hips: 38in.
Weight: 145 lbs.
Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon

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