Time to Be Happy with the Body in the Mirror... - Linden, NJ

After taking care of my family, kids, surviving a...

After taking care of my family, kids, surviving a divorce...It is time to do something for myself. Weight gain and loss and a C-section left my mid section looking very stretched out, a lot of loose skin, and in general - unsexy. Exercise, diets, no carbs just do not help. I have bird arms and bird legs AND a Roly poly middle that not even SPANX can help. I hide behind jackets, scarves, ponchos and anything that will hide that problem area. I have wanted a tummy tuck for years but always felt guilty because I had other more pressing obligations. My youngest is a teenager and I feel that I can do this for myself now. So, here I am! I am hoping to get a flat belly with no marsupial pouch, and a tiny waist. I am praying for a healthy non problematic recovery. I am wishing to WEAR clothes and accessories rather than having to HIDE in them!

Me and my bod

Ok, so...i am not brave enough to uncover my areas of shame YET...but here is my SHAME undercover. I took the scarves, jackets...off to uncover my potato on a stick physique. As my date gets closer, I will post o'natural...lol...

My feelings exactly...

I saw this pic...and thought of me...lolol

Only 95 and a half days left!!!!

Well, my magic day with Dr. Alkon is creeping up slowly but surely. I have been taking my vitamins, trying to lose some pounds and making preparations for my care afterwards.
I drove over an hour away to see a surgeon about hernias. I found out that, yes, I have them and need repairs. I just want the day to come, so that I can get it over with and start healing. I am so tired and discouraged with my tummy. It's getting warm and I am agonizing over outfits again! I have no doubt that this surgery is what I want and need!
My ps is over an hour away from my home. I am hoping and praying that it won't be an excruciating ride for post op appointments.

Only 90 days left!!!!!!!!!

I CAN NOT wait to get there and get this over with!!!! Dressing in the morning with the warmer weather-rots! Trying to lose these pounds that I want to lose before surgery. Getting desperate here as the scale ...
C R A W L S ever so
S L O W L Y . Then sometimes, it even jumps up!!!!! So, today I am trying 2 protein shakes and a regular meal (salad). I am also annoyed. All of these months, my monthly visitor comes on the 22 or 23. I can set a calendar by it. I set my surgery for the 16th of June with this purposely in mind. Why did it arrive on the 16th this month?????? REALLY!!!!!! It's like it KNOWS what I plan to do and is trying to sabatage me or at least psych me out! Not going to work because this is going down on JUNE 16th!!

80 days left...

Ok...not doing well with losing weight at all. I usually do well once I put my mind to things. My mind is not on anything lately. I can't seem to concentrate and get things done. Idk what my problem is. I haven't changed my mind, but it is stressing me out. All I keep thinking about are all of the things that I have to do before my surgery and it is really overwhelming me!

74 Days Left!!!!

Ok...I finally have my nervousness/anxiety under control. My eating is in check. I lost 3 pounds in 2 days, eating proteins, non starch veggies, one fruit and one milk serving per day. Also, lots of water and back on the elliptical. I am very carb sensitive. When I cut flour, wheat products, corn, starches out of my diet along with sugary junk, no fake sugar either, I lose inches fast, pounds follow. It does take discipline and every once in a while I fall off of the wagon and it makes me gain weight, feel BAD, makes my skin break out, causes bloating...arrrggg.

Anyway, I still feel nervous but I have fulfilled my financial commitments and saved enough for my final surgery payment. Whew...big load off of me!!!! My caregiver is all arranged. I bought a blank little book at the dollar store today, so that I can keep a running list of things to buy, things to do, arrangements left
to make as I think of them.

Since my surgery is June 16th, I am trying to do my summer preparations ahead of time. My caregiver (ok boyfriend) would love to jump in and help but I am an independent kinda girl. My guy is great, unfortunately, now I am very cautious. I look ALL FOUR ways and UP and DOWN before crossing the street nowadays!

OBSERVATION AND CONFESSION

Hey everyone out there! Hope everyone is happy and healing. It is springtime but still cold here. I am thankful because it buys me more time to hide my middle area with its built in floatation device. I am steadily keeping up with my diet. Whether I was having surgery or not, at this time of year, I seriously try to lose pounds so that I can at least wear dresses (with a spanx in the summer heat) and feel ok about it. I have lost 8 pounds so far. 12-15 more and I will feel REALLY REALLY good while being wheeled into that operating room!!!!!

My Observations and EMBARRASSING CONFESSIONS...

Funny thing about a pouch is that some women naturally have a roundness to their abdomen but with a pouch you actually have a crease!!!! So, if you wear a tight dress, the dress doesn't just drape over it. The dress tends to mold around it and curve under it like it would curve around a full firm butt or a breast. Even with spanx, it looks that way to me. I had wanted a tummy tuck since I had my son. It's always the same story though, it's too much money, gotta work, have to take care of kids...so you put what you need aside.

The final straw was a little over a year ago when I had an event to go to. I was at my goal weight!!!! I looked good but that flappy pouchy, flub a dub thing was still there! I put on my dress and there it was... the pouch. Ok...I must admit my ex husband was going to be there. Not that I care...but I do care ...because I will NEVER forget when that man cheated on me and told me that I skeeved him out, among othe hurtful things. NEVER AGAIN!! I know that he was trying to hurt me, break me and justify his cheating/getting caught. It worked though...it hurt...it cut into my memory deeply and I NEED for him to EAT those words every time he sees me - doing well, succeeding, looking good, holding my head up. (Pause for a musical interlude with Gloria Gaynor "I Will Survive") ANYWAY... I WAS DESPERATE TO HIDE THE FLUB A DUB!!! Well, ok ladies...don't try this at home...but I duct taped my pouch down at the crease, then put on my spanx, then my dress. It worked. I didn't sit down that evening for fear of wrinkling the tape or hearing it crinkle ... but it worked. Problem was taking it off! I had to soak until I was a prune not to mention the chemicals that are probably in that stuff that were on my skin!!!
After that crazy shtuff... I started looking, planning and decided that I had to do something no matter what the cost because I had reached an all time desperate low with those hijinks! The tape thing was unhealthy and crazy and ridiculous and embarrassing but it was a turning point for me.

Ok...I have never ever told anyone about any of that. I was too ashamed and embarrassed. But, I woke up after dreaming about that moment and needed to let it out. I knew that I could be real and share it on Real Self. Thanks for reading...

49 Days To Go

Ok...i guess that once you get into the double digits, something happens and time just flies by. I am a little stressed right now. I am having gynecological issues that I am trying to deal with before my surgery date. It seems like all was well...suddenly...I plan this surgery and all kinds of issues appear! Crazy!!! I am trying to get things in order but the more I do...the more is left to do. I have been a total failure with my diet. I was doing well, then I fell off the wagon. It's nerves and anxiety!!!!!

Only 43 days left

Ok, so...after tests, appointments and lots of stress...I have found out that my crazy issues are due to perimenopause. I do not have to do anything at all as long as I am willing to accept that my body will not be on its usual clock anymore or always be so predictable. If I decide that I can't accept it, I have options later. I was soooo happy! I can accept being 45. I feel a huge relief now. I can actually concentrate without feeling the dark cloud hanging over me. God is good and I feel so thankful.

960 HOURS, 40 DAYS, 40 NIGHTS, OH MY!

My obgyn was worried that my surgeon was a little far from me for follow up appointments. He asked if I was able to stay with family and friends up there in the area. I really could, if I wanted to but I DON'T! HAVE HOME, WILL TRAVEL!
I believe with all of my heart, that Dr.Alkon, with his serious face, is really worth the discomfort of travel. I am ABSOLUTELY sure of him.
I am NOT as sure of me. Like, I am horrified of the belly button thing! That is freaking me out! I have a very deep and cute belly button now. I can't even touch it without feeling nauseaous! What will I do with a gaping hole that is changing color and shape? SCARY STUFF!! And...can I pop a stitch yelling at my kid? Can you bend over at all? Will I be wearing only slip on shoes? I am really having anxiety about these little details.

Happy Mother's Day Real Self Community

God bless you all today and always. Have a beautiful day!!!

37 days...who the heck sped up the clock?

Ok...so...I was in such a red hot hurry months ago, even weeks ago, even days ago...but now I feel like I am trying to pull a car back from going downhill. Arrrggg...

34 Days Left

On the 24th of this month, is my appointment with my doctor for clearance and my EKG. I am so nervous. My diet is going well now, finally. I feel more committed now that I only have a month left. I am motivated now and have lost about 7 pounds. I would like to lose 10 more. I am no longer tempted by those carbs...I am so nervous that I am not actually tempted by anything. Everyday, when I get dressed, I cannot wait to get rid of this flubadub. I get so excited just thinking about how nicely I will fit and look in my clothes!! However, the rest of the time, I am terrified at each step. Terrified of my doctor finding something and not giving me clearance. Terrified of not being able to have it done. Terrified of things not being right and Dr. Alkon calling it off. Terrified of having it done as well.

25 days left...YAY!!?? or ARRGGG!!??

It's getting closer. I go for my medical clearance on Tuesday. It won't be truly real until I do that. I am nervous about that step. I had to buy a new scale. I was literally crying while standing on the old one. All of my work! All of the exercise! The deprivation of my favorite dessert! All of the time on that gosh darn elliptical machine! And it wasn't moving at all! I started getting VERY suspicious! Finally, today I had had enough. I bought a new scale. Sure enough, the old one is apparently dead. I felt better. I am still not where I want to be...but at least now I know exactly how far I am and I can see my progress. I feel paralyzed with anxiety. Yesterday, my niece was taking pics of us and recording me acting silly with my great niece... This is a first! She has never done anything like that! Suddenly, out of nowhere, it occurred to me, was she doing this because she fears that I might DIE!?" I was devastated but I went along with it! WOW!!! Now, thinking clearly after the shock...I understand. Two of her aunts, 2 out of 3 of my sisters died unexpectedly. She only has one aunt left - me. My great niece is 8 and she only has one auntie-me! I guess she doesn't want to take any chances on not having final memories with me. AGAIN WOW!!!! And NO, it was not a "before surgery" type of recording with me baring all. Lololol!

Wow 20 days!

I wanted to update because this the last day in the twenties!!! Tomorrow will be 19 days left. Well, I went for my primary for my clearance. Everything went fine except for the EKG. I have been having a lot of anxiety lately but I was calm until the nurse said "Oh no." I thought that it was me!!! I was worried and scared, like cancel Christmas Dianne! Ends up that it was because the sticker things weren't staying on. However, it was too late. I was panicking! Heart racing...arrrgg. My hemo was only a twelve so he gave me super duper iron pills. So...i have to go back. I got alot done during the last couple of days. My anxiety is much better now. Ironically, I wasn't where I wanted to be weight wise at the doctors office but now the scale is starting to move!! Today, I picked out some supplies.

14 days!!!!!!!

It is 14 days!!!!! All I have left is my preop testing. I signed away flubadub yesterday. It's official they will find him a new home in two weeks. I am so excited. The pictures were enough to kick my anxiety in the ass!!! All of a sudden, I could think clearly and ask questions!!! I didn't know that I had questions! But I had them! Good ones too!! It was like an out of body experience. I was like, wow is that me being funny, laughing and having questions...cuz just a couple of hours ago my butt was breathing deeply from a paper bag in the car so that I wouldn't hyperventilate! Thank God that Dr. Alkon was packed last night!!! I had time to read my Stephen King novel (my favorite one, IT) in the waiting room and it took my mind off of things. By the time I got in there, I had jokes. (Not good ones but still). I did find, that wrapping things up at work for the end of the school year and this visit yesterday were the cause of alot of anxiety. I feel amazing today!
So, yesterday I paid for my procedure, signed lots of papers. The nurse went over anything financial and insurance related. She told me about fajas and binders, what to take and not take, do and not do... She put it all in a neat folder for me. Later, I donned on some sexy mesh panties and had an amazing photo shoot! Lololol! After receiving my "proofs", trust and believe, I felt READY FOR THIS SURGERY!!! Nothing like a close up 8×10 to set you straight about WHY you need to do this and IMMEDIATELY!!!! Then Dr. Alkon came in. I was the last person there and I know that man had a long day yet still he answered 5 million 8 hundred and 57 questions as if I was the first person there. He kept telling me that if there was anything that I did not understand, that we would go over it. He really set my mind at ease and I feel great today. My preop testing was set up. I have to finish up some shopping, finish supercleaning and grocery shopping. Then, I am ready to go to the flatside!!!!! YAY!!!!

12 days 5 hours...

Hello everyone! The clock is moving. I can't believe it. I am getting things ready with cleaning, shopping and organizing. The anxiety has lessened quite a bit now. I am starting to feel like...wow this is really going to happen?! It's very hard to imagine me laying low and not running around. I am a pretty hyper person. I am gathering new things and favorite things to read. I dvr'd a few movies that I could watch. I have pictures that I want to organize, so I put them in an accessible place. I have summer projects in mind that don't require lifting, bending or contortion (sewing, filing, research...) I want to keep busy. I know that once I am past those first few painful days, I will be climbing the walls until I am cleared to lift and be normal.

Omgosh, 3 days and 13 hours!!!!!

Ok, these days are truly flying!! After my preop testing, my anxiety has subsided substantially. Ok, my preop tests were done at Trinitas Hospital. Everyone was soooo nice! The nurse/ patient coordinator, I guess, said that all looked well and she taught me some relaxation techniques. It helps that school is over tomorrow, and that I am almost finished getting my house in order. I have been so busy, that I haven't had time to actually THINK about it. On Wednesday, I am having a spa day to relax before surgery the next morning!

Tomorrow is the day! 20 hours !!!!!!!!!!!

First Thank You to all of you for supporting me throughout this leg of the journey. I will be faithful in my updating. I cannot believe that all of those months and days have gone by and that it is finally MY time! It doesn't even seem real. All of these months, i have been excitedly following. It seems surreal. It is really me this time. I keep looking at my flub a dub in the mirror and saying tomorrow is the day that we will part ways, with God's help. I got my house in order and paid my bills. I did everything that I needed to do. I even cooked some meals. I am getting my hair cut as I update this. I got a pedi and a massage this morning. No mani because I can't have polish or make up on. I have to get up at 4 am to be there, on time, at 6 am! I am excited to be FIRST PATIENT OF THE DAY! The hospital, the hernia surgeons office and Dr. Alkons office ALL called to remind me of my surgery. OF COURSE I REMEMBER! I HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO TAKE MY MIND OFF OF THIS FOR THE LAST 6 MONTHS! Lololol. I hope Dr. Alkon is a morning person!!!!! READY OR NOT, HERE I COME FLAT SIDE! Later, I will post my last flub a dub pic in a dress that I wear with a shawl to hide my tummy. Also ladies, please help me! WHAT DO I WEAR THERE? I have a long ride!

Ok...i am here

I am at the hospital now. Nerves have set in. I was just fine and dandy until I saw the hospital beds in a room. I have my bracelet. So long everyone. See you on the flat side. I am in prep.

Flat side

Yesterday was the big day. First, I love Dr. Alkon and love Trinitas Hospital. They are all so awesome, sweet, attentive. I can't say enough nice things from registration to leaving the hospital. When I went into prep, I got changed did another urine and blood sample. They hooked me up to some fluids. More papers, questions and double checking. The Dr. came in and marked me. Then we went back to the operating room. The anesthesiologist put something into my iv and I remember he said, you are going to feel this... I said, Whoa I feel burning and that is all I remember ladies! The next thing I know, they were waking me up. I asked the doctor if he did it! He said, yes you are all done... Then, I rested and later was put into the recovery room. Ladies, when I went to use the ladies room, my flubadub was gone! Even with all of the bandages, dressing, binder thing, drains...i can see the difference!

Very swollen

Today at my appointment, he took off my wrap thing. I am very very swollen and numb . I don't regret it but I am uncomfortable enough to wonder how long this pain will last. I can't do anything. I am sooo happy that I took care of everything before I had the surgery. I feel like a turtle flipped onto my back. Helpless! My guy is awesome, he has been wonderful.

Day 2 after tt

Thank you. I can't sit up or stand by myself. Is that normal? Once up, I can walk slowly. It is tougher than I thought. But no regrets! I feel relieved that I took the time to do what was needed to prepare the house, shop, fix meals because if I had not, I would be stressed right now wondering when I would feel well enough to do it. I feel very relaxed. I am itching like a crazy woman and I am swollen beyond belief. I can feel and see the almost concave area where my pouch was. Above the belly button is very swollen (front and back.) So, I can't see flatness there.

Day 3

Hello everyone! I am staying on top of my pain meds. By rolling to the edge of the bed and using my elbows, I am able to get up by myself. I feel exhausted. I get up, urinate, take a stroll through the house and my body tells me to get back to bed. My torso gets so tired. I am sleeping alot, like I haven't slept in years. I itch like I have fire ants crawling and stinging me under my skin, so I am taking benadryl. I also feel a strange burning sensation on my back. My skin is numb on the surface of my tummy. I can't really see my results except that the pouch area is gone! My tummy is very swollen and feels very hard. My drains seem to take turns. Sometimes the left drains significantly, sometimes the right drains significantly. At this point, my drains are not bothering me. I have so many feelings and sensations occurring simultaneously, that I can't isolate the drain discomfort. I feel very sleepy. I am not sure if it's my body needing me to sleep to heal or the medicine. From what I see, my belly button is centered and the sides show the possibility of an hourglass shape. It is just so hard and swollen. I am drinking about 8 large glasses of water per day. I am eating alot of protein like Boost protein drink and Chobani yogurt. I am eating a bowl of raisin bran each morning for fiber and some grapefruit. I haven't gone #2 yet but I do have gas-yuck!

First day post op

Day 4

Today, it's like someone flipped a switch. I feel no REAL pain. Pressure, tightness, bruised, sore but nothing like the other days. I downgraded to Tylenol instead of the percosets. I had my first BM (we won't speak of this other than to say that I lived and did not need to call EMS). I walked around my house this morning but my torso gets heavy and tired and I know that it is time to lay back down. It seems that some of the swelling is going down because I feel less lumpy under my compression thingy. Wow, I never thought that it could be this hard sitting or laying here watching tv, reading, doing puzzles...it is day 4 and I am restless.

Day 5

OK, today was a kinda sad day. I don't know why I cried but I did. Again and again. My pain for the most part is gone ,Thank you God, but ALOT of discomfort lingers on. My incision feels decent. Its not oozing or painful. My drains are still draining. Tomorrow is my appointment but I dont have much of an illusion of them coming out. They don't really bother me. I HATE GETTING UP AND DOWN! USING THE BATHROOM SUCKS. ALL OF THE COLACE FINALLY CAUGHT UP AND DECIDED TO CLEAN ME OUT. Yuck!!!! I take a benadryl at night to help me sleep and relieve that constant itching in my back. My skin has a weird feeling, swollen texture. The compression thingy, is definitely love hate. I dare not take it off but I did slide it down. Wearing a tank underneath was one of the best tips that I picked up from RS. I can't imagine not doing so. The air conditioning has been my best friend as well, I lowered the temp. I cannot imagine all of this and being hot too. I have a small fan that blows right on my middle section just in case my body even thinks of sweating! I don't have much of an appetite. I am trying to drink water and take my vitamins.

Day 6

So, I went for my second follow up. I love the way Dr. Alkon keeps his eye on my healing. I am grateful because this is new terrain for me. I was not able to have either drain removed. They are both draining. That was fine. Everything is normal. I was really suffering with the pins and needle burning like feeling in my back. I remembered that someone on RS had written about Arnica creamon lipo areas. I got some today. That cream is amazing. Please keep this in mind ladies!! I did and, I am sooooooo grateful. I cannot believe the immediate relief and how the swelling has decreased. Of course, keep it away from your wounds. I am going to lay down and enjoy this feeling-or lack of it! Sweet dreams and happy healing!

Drain Free Day!

Today, I went to see Dr. Alkon. He removed one drain and the tape on my incision. The drain didn't bother me and I didn't think that I cared one way or the other but when he took it out, I felt strangely, hysterically happy. Those emotions again. I think that I was so happy because it is one step closer to feeling normal again. Obviously, my highly emotional body recognized this as a milestone. Yesterday, I went to see the hernia specialist for a follow up. He was so funny that by the time I left his office, my tummy was hurting from laughing. OK, so these doctors are a bit over an hour away from me and I have these frequent appointments. On my first follow up, the day after surgery, I was thinking "oh no, this is a long ride, what was I thinking !" However, I must say that I start feeling really crummy at home and sad. Then, I start thinking and worrying. The appointments force me to dress, do my hair and make up and get out of the house. Sounds pathetic, but I don't really want to go anywhere. I am so swollen and worn down. My boyfriend or my dad take me to my appointments. They make me a nest in the car and I am comfy enough. The appointments are quick and within three hours, I am back. Then, I need a long nap but I think that the change is good for me. Each day gets a little better. Each day, I see the swelling subsiding just a bit. Ladies, do not forget the arnica cream! Sweet dreams and happy healing!

Shower Day

Everyone was right, that first shower feels great. It wore me out. I have such an energy lag. I get tired so easily. As you can tell, it has been a roller coaster day. I am still swollen like the stay puff marshmallow man in Ghostbusters. Yuck!

Fashion Show!!!

How cool it is to get out of bed by myself take a shower and walk around freely. I was feeling much better today! My sides feel all bruised and of course there is THE swelling. This morning, I had a small personal fashion- featuring -ME. Even with my compression garment, swelling AND the drain, my dresses looked better and flatter. It really lifted my spirits. I know that I have a long way to go, but it helped to see that I am getting there.

Stay puff marshmallow

Today, I woke up early, showered, dressed, did a little bit of light housework and cooked breakfast, lunch and dinner for later. On the downside, my period was a week early, and by 4 o'clock, I was swelling, cramping and done! What a double whammy! Yuck!! But I am grateful that I was feeling energetic enough to do those things.

Torture Devices

So, Wednesday STARTED well. I showered, dressed and got ready to see Dr. Alkon. My one drain, had been draining less than 10 for days now. DO NOT ASK HOW...but by the time I got there, a whole lot of clear fluid had come directly out of my drain incision and soaked my precautionary gauze, my tee shirt over it, and my faja over it. It did not amount to much at all but it made a mess! Dr. Alkon was great, he said that it was just a pocket of fluid right there... Anyway, my drain was taken out and I had my first massage! The massage, by Isabelle, felt great. I had been dreading this, thinking that it would hurt, but it wasn't bad at all. OK ladies! This is the crazy part! THAT DAMN FAJA! WHAT IS THIS? I FEEL LIKE I AM BEING EATEN BY A GIANT BOA CONSTRICTOR! WAIT! AND I HAVE MY PERIOD! WELL, MY PERIOD GOT SCARED AND LEFT AFTER THE MASSAGE AND THE FAJA GOT TAKEN OUT!! THEY ZIPPED ME INTO THIS THING LIKE A GIANT BURRITO! NOTICE, it is already Thursday! It has taken that long for me to reconcile with this. At first it was terrible. Then, it felt kinda good as I got up and down and it supported me. Now, trying to SLEEP, I HATE IT!!!!!!! I don't think that I will ever sleep again.

"OK, Maybe I like it", "No, I hate it"

Ok, I have to admit that it must work! Today, it feels looser. Also, I feel softer on the sides and there is UNMISTAKABLE curve forming on this body!!! I went for a haircut and a mani and pedi today. I was careful. I'm not setting the world on fire but it was nice to go out. I was slow and stiff, but still trying to be graceful. Don't want to be obvious! I wore a dress, I dare not wear pants. Because I am almost 4 11, the legs of the faja go down below the dress! So in order to not look crazy, I had to roll the legs up under the dress. Sleeping is a bear but having it on during the day isn't sooooo bad. Seeing changes in my body - is a wish come true.

Approaching 3 weeks!

Seeing difference between week 2 and the approach of the end of week 3. I am still swollen but see more curviness. I am flat and even with the swelling, it is crazy how I look in my dresses that I once wore a scarf, shawl, burlap bag or parka over. Lol! I am so pleased. Yes, I still feel some discomfort, it feels tight, burny, pins and needle like and numb in a band that goes all the way around me. I am still draining. My incision is closed but clear liquid seeps out. I keep gauze over it. Nothing big. Yesterday, the Fourth of July, I over did it. I was up for way too long. I am so used to being hostess. My family helped but I am so obsessive compulsive. I did too much walking, standing and sitting. Last night I had to take a pain killer for the first time in a long long long time. I have been taking Tylenol since the end if week 1 but yesterday Tylenol was NOT going to do it. Today, I don't feel too great. I feel worn out, sore and tired. On the positive side, I had on a dress yesterday, no surprise, I am a dress kinda girl. I feel more comfortable, especially NOW because in a dress there is no waistband. I don't think that I can handle pants or shorts over this burrito casing. Anyway, my family was ecstatic over my tummy. They were touching, looking at me up and down and sideways, inspecting, hugging and so excited that I looked pre pregnancy and wasn't hiding in an apron! I love my family! They were so sweet. I am used to my dad, my man and my son being sweet, supportive and cute but it was so nice to have the rest of my family so happy for me. Ok...so...thank you Dr. Alkon...cuz I looked pretty damn good in that dress!!! I told my family that I was swollen, especially when they were hugging the damn fluid out of me, but either they didn't see it or they were being wonderful and pretending not to see it! I will post pics soon. I feel funny because without clothes, you can see the swollen areas.

Down and Out Today

On the night of the fifth of July, my German Shepherd got scared. He galloped thru the living room and knocked over a decorative wrought iron lamp post that I have in my living room. When it crashed down, it fell on my left leg. As the days go on, not only am I really crazy bruised but it is swollen and hurts. Now, it hurts deep in my calf too but that's not where the thing fell or hit or bruised. I am quite nervous about this. I go to the Dr. tomorrow. I hope that everything is ok. I was on a blood thinner for ten days. I know that makes you bruise easily but it's been a over a week since I stopped taking that. I hope that I don't have a blood clot or anything. My leg just seems to be doing and feeling too much as the days go by. Last night, I rubbed icy hot into it and elevated it. My appointment is at 9:30. I know he is going to ask why I didn't call. I know that I am really paranoid but I hate to show it to every one else and call attention to it.

My Friday Appointment

Dr. Alkon noticed all of the bruising and asked what all of that was. I explained what happened. He immediately gave me a script to get an ultrasound so that we have piece if mind about this. I went to the imaging facility but found out that I need an appointment. It is closed today and Sunday, so I haven't had it done yet. I will have it done on Monday. In the meantime, I went to the minute clinic and got it looked at ONLY because I want a paper trail from someone besides my plastic surgeon in case it becomes an insurance issue. So, she documented the dark bruising, swelling, hardness of bruised areas and sent it to my primary caregiver. I know it sounds like overkill, but I do not want insurance issues over my battle with a lamppost. I don't want to take a chance that they blame my surgery and not cover me.

Anyway, the two draining spots in my incision stopped and are magically dry and invisible now but another spot has sprung a very slow leak of clear fluid. The rest of the incision is very low and drying up. I continue my cleaning and neosporin routine. I put gauze on the leak, put a long tee shirt over it all, pull my faja over it and am happy as a burrito! My belly button is very dried out looking, flaking happily.

I was happy then horrified to learn from Isabelle that my faja has gotten too loose for me. This means, that now that I am comfy in it...it will be altered to make me feel uncomfortable! Lolololol, after my massage, she asked if I needed help to get into it. I said "No, it's very easy now!" STUPID ME!!!!!! She turned right around and watched me zippity zoom zoop it up and said "No, no, it's not supposed to be that easy and loose!" So, as of Wednesday, I will be uncomfortable and complaining once again!
Massages:
Ok, every painful, hard, numbish spot is where Isabelle focuses. She has a radar for these spots and works them tirelessly! It works ladies!!! I thought that I would have iron sides and be bloated and swollen forever! I was a little scared! I have seen her three times and I see and feel a BIG difference. The hardness in my sides is gone! I have a few little spots left, but it is nothing compared to how it was. I can lay on my sides now without feeling like I am laying on a brick. I feel flexible again. I was skeptical because I consulted with a few plastic surgeons and not all of them even mention the massages. Maybe some people don't need them, but I REALLY did! I was hard, stiff and swollen. That's just how my body reacted. Dr. Alkon includes 2 in his price. Those two massages CONVINCED ME so I am continuing!

I think that I covered everything that has been happening to my post tummy tuck body! Signing off Ladies! Good Luck, Positive Vibes and Happy Healing!!!!

A couple of pics from day 1 post and day 10 post!!!!

Today is a Good Day!

This entire journey fluctuates so much from day to day. Yesterday, with the entire leg thing and feeling so burny and sore, I felt so discouraged. Also, the fact that where I was draining stopped and it started in another spot. On top of that, last night, when I took my faja off to clean my incision, my tee shirt pulled off a couple of scabs and it bled a bit. When I went to bed, I was kinda down and worried. This morning, I got up and my leg didn't hurt anymore. The bruises are still there but the swelling and pain were gone! I was so happy and relieved! My little spot is still draining happily. I tended to the two spots where the scabs ripped off and also to my belly button after my shower. I took some pics to post and went out to run errands. When I got back, I decided to rest because my torso was burning like I did lots of sit ups. I also don't want to push the leg thing. I am scared that it will swell up again. It's such a roller coaster of feeling almost normal then suddenly not feeling normal.

Three and a half weeks!

It struck me funny today how I was counting down from 200 days and now, I am counting up and away from my surgery date. I remember it like yesterday, I couldn't wait to say goodbye to my flubadub! I was so tired and sad getting dressed and trying to decide how to hide it each day. Now, I cannot wait to get dressed and see how things look. Now, I don't get upset about how I look in clothes, I do get upset sometimes with the VERY slow recovery process. I have not once tried on a pair of slacks, shorts, jeans or sweatpants. I am scared! It looks uncomfortable to put something else on over this compression. Plus, I wonder if they would fit. I am flat, but I am swollen.

At three weeks, I am pleased. Again, I must say, it is more uncomfortable than I ever imagined. I thought that by now, I would not be feeling so much! I have a burning feeling, stiffness moving from one position to another. I am standing straight now, except for when I get up in the morning, when I move from sit to stand or lay to sit, lay to stand. I feel all stiff and I hunch until everything stretches. I also get these involuntary stretching spasms in my tummy muscles when I am laying down. My abdominal muscles seem to stretch and contract. I do not like that! It arches me and I am afraid to open my incision. I also get zinging pain in various areas. This may he too much info but I have been going to the bathroom ALOT. My incision is scabby in most places. The draining has not stopped but it has slowed down. I still put gauze on sensitive spots, then I put my tee shirt on top and then my faja.

My leg was hurting again this morning. There was no swelling, and the bruising is lighter. I wrapped it in an ace, took ibuprofen, lay down (sitting up of course) and elevated my leg about an hour ago. It seems to have went away again. I don't know what to think. Today , I am calling the imaging place and begging for an appointment today. I need my mind put to rest about this. Maybe my leg is crampy from not doing my 4-8 miles per day on the elliptical machine.

Hooray!

I did get an appointment for imaging immediately. I was sweating bullets!!! Thank God, there was nothing. I did not have a clot. They looked carefully because of the bruising and swelling where that lamp post fell on me. I am fine, thank the good Lord. I cannot express how scared I was. The PS had even prescribed 10 days of blood thinner injections to start the day after surgery to be safe because I was adopted and have no medical history. I was beside myself thinking that despite precautions, I was having an issue. I wrapped it in an ACE bandage for a few days as I was told, took ibuprofen for my inflammation. My dad brought me Ubre De Vaca for muscle pain... I rubbed that in and a few days later, it is gone. I feel blessed and relieved. Yesterday, I had my massage, cleaned my house up and made dinner. Apparently, that was too much because today, I feel worn out! Uggghhhh!!!

Back to Me

Hello everyone! I posted again,but it got eaten. After I hit that one month mark, I really wanted to try to get back into my routine. Out of nowhere, the tiny spot that was still draining, dried up and stopped! Just like that. My entire incision is all closed and I have just a couple of scabs left. At the same time though, a tiny part of my belly button was not healing nicely. It scabbed then the scab softened and fell off, leaving it bare. So, I left off my cg for a few hours for a couple of days - holy swelling batman! I got a bit swollen BUT my belly button scabbed nicely. Hopefully, it won't soften again. It makes me nervous seeing it soft! It doesn't smell nor is it infected but it looked gooey right at the tippy top.

Anyway, I went on a real date filled weekend away from home with my guy and dressed up this past weekend. It was awesome! I have been trying to slowly get back into the swing of my life. I wake up early, do some housework, exercise lightly on my treadmill and elliptical, make meals, take my boy out extreme Pokémon hunting, and on photography expeditions, then I go lay down by about 8 or so because I am exhausted by then. I started wearing a different cg but went back to the original one because the new one leaves off mid back and it really bothers me because I swell up above the cg! Anyway, I feel great. I listen to my body and stop when it tells me. I still stay away from anything salty, especially french onion soup, because it swells me up like crazy. I have to get better with my water intake. The massages have been a tremendous help.

6 and 1/2 Weeks

It's so hard to believe that all of this time has gone by so fast. My incision is closed and I am putting bio oil and this other type of scar oil on it. I tried the embrace scar tape, but when I took it off to shower, I found that the part that had had the drain had gotten softy wettish. Hmmm??????? I decided that maybe I am not ready for that tape quite yet. So, I am sticking to the topical stuff on my scar. The outskirts of my belly button finally scabbed up completely! Without help from worry wart me, it just closed. I went from an xl faja to a medium. The medium has space (when I am not swollen). I had bought a faja that came up to the bra line and was shorter on the legs and didn't like it. Then, I bought the one that comes all the way up the back and has longer longer. I found that the full body one is great during the day and keeps my swelling down BUT if I wear something short or sleeveless by day or when I go to sleep at night, I like to wear the short one.
Swelling is a bear! I think that I have NOT mastered salt consumption! The stretch marks that I have left (in my pubic area) even fill up with fluid! I can see it on the scale!! There are a lot of foods that make me swell. Milk is even creating a noticeable bloat and gas. I absolutely love my new body though. I now fit into my pants again sizes 4 thru 6, with space where my flub a dub once was. My shirts don't have to hang low anymore to hide me. It is nice to wear what I want and not feel ashamed or hide. A hidden benefit of my tummy tuck is that my waist is shrinking so much, that now I look like I have a butt and hips (which I never had)! The faja really accentuates it but it looks really cool even without it (until I eat something-like feta cheese on my salad- and I swell up!) Lol! Happy healing everyone. God bless!

7 weeks

I wanted to post a progress pic. I am a bit swollen here. It is after lunch and of course I had French Onion soup. Arrrggg...no croutons, no cheese but damn that salt!!!! My incision and belly button are both completely closed. I have been slathering bio oil all over. It feels much better and looser.
Newark Plastic Surgeon

I did a great deal of research and loved his pictures, his instagram and the way he answers people back! His results seem very consistent and are exactly what I would love to see when I look in the mirror one day. I left my info for an appointment on his website and he text messaged me a little confirmation that said that his office would be in touch soon... I thought that was such a nice personal touch! When I met him, he went through the entire procedure and even drew me a diagram. He kept stopping to see if I had questions. (Oh and by the way, he has real robes! The better for me to hide in!) I am VERY SELF conscious but his encouraging words made me feel like he could help me get the look that I wanted. I opted for a full tummy tuck with lipo. Everyone at the office was very sweet! I like the way his prices are posted. I have gone to several other consultations and they come up with a figure after looking at you.

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