I can only describe my body as being destroyed by...
I can only describe my body as being destroyed by a single pregnancy. That really is how it feels. I gained 70lb during my pregnancy in 2011 and I have lost 84lb in the 3.5 years since then. My stomach was stretched beyond the point of elasticity and it hangs from me like an apron of blubber. I have exercised and dieted like crazy and although the 'apron' shrank a lot at first it has now been stuck as it is for 5 months. Having major surgery that costs the earth really was the last thing I wanted to do but I have now come to terms with the fact that this belly is going nowhere naturally and that if I am going to reclaim my life I need to have this tummy tuck.
It's 10 weeks until my surgery which is giving me a lot of time to think. Some day I look in the mirror and think "is it really that bad, am I crazy having this surgery?"....then I go clothes shopping and I think "yes you absolutely need to do this!!!". I have to buy clothes that literally hang off me in order for them to fit round my tummy. It's like my stomach belongs to a different, far larger, person. I know I'm never going to look like a supermodel, but it would just be amazing to wear something other than a pair of stretchy leggings and a smock. I'm too young for smocks! Haha.
I am lucky to have an incredibly supportive husband and mother who are 100% behind my decision and poised to help me out during my recovery. I wouldn't say I'm excited about the surgery, more looking for to it being over :-)
57 days to go...
I have now paid for my surgery in full and it's all starting to seem very real.
Here is a photo of me sitting which shows my 'landslide' of blubber. It doesn't behave like a fat stomach which forms rolls when sitting...its so soft it just kind of flops haha. You can see how out of proportion my belly is to the rest of my body. My nearen't and dearest keep telling me I'll have a wonderful result and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they are right.
I'm off on holiday on Friday (vacation to all you Americans out there :-)). I'm looking forward to it but it always makes me a little anxious as I tend to stray from my diet when I have the holiday feeling. I'm normally very disciplined with what I eat but it goes out of the window as soon as I'm away from home. I'm hoping I don't do too much damage as I want to get my weight as low as I can before my TT in 52 days.
Back from holiday and...
...I really enjoyed my food when I was away. Fish and chips, pizza, Devon fudge, cream teas, roast dinner etc!!! I gained 4lb which is extremely good for me and have already lost 3lb of that since I got home.
My op is in 6 weeks and I have begun the final push to lose some more weight before surgery. This means no alcohol until then which will be hard as I do enjoy a cocktail or two on the weekend but those cocktails, as we all know, are full of calories and you then of course want to eat loads of rubbish the next day if are feeling ropey! I am going to concentrate on getting in the base shape possible for a good recovery :-)
Ready for my workout
I don't look so bad with my gym stuff on. If they all knew what I was hiding eh?
Any compression garment recommendations?
34 days until my op and I was wondering if anyone could recommend any compression garments suitable for after a TT. I know I will be given a garment by my PS straight after surgery but I have seen other patients on here with less 'brutal' looking support for further down the line. There is lots of talk of fajas on here but I'm in England and not sure what they are? Are they corsets? Waist cinchers? Many thanks :-)
Not sure why I am typing this as no one seems to read or comment on my posts...this shall be a diary for myself to look back on I guess :-)
After calling MYA Cosmetic Surgery constantly for weeks to get a pre-op consultation with Mr Marcellino I was finally given an appointment for today. Surprise surprise one of the vacuous patient co-ordinators from MYA called yesterday afternoon to say my appointment had been cancelled and moved to Thursday when there is a tube strike in London and it will be incredibly difficult to get there. If I had cancelled the appointment at that short notice I would have been charged £50. It's fine for them to mess ME around though. Really not pleased and rapidly losing faith in the very people who I am trusting with my life.
Pre-op done - 23 days to go
So I finally saw my surgeon yesterday and I left feeling a little down. He wobbled my belly and said "can you lose weight by August?". I'm slimmer than when I first saw him in March and he didn't seem to think it was a problem then so Im confused as to why he is asking me to lose weight 23 days before my op. Later we were talking belly buttons and I said I wasn't keen on the ones that look like coin slots and he said "only thin people get that". Someone who has lost over 6 stone really doesn't like to hear that and, well, I just felt like pigging out when I left :-(. He also told me he wouldn't be able to give me a flat stomach. The first time I saw him he said he would and that I should have a very good result. Is he trying to bring me down so i'll be more pleased with my results? I'm not sure...its bad psychology though.
My pre-op with the nurse went well. She was very friendly and professional. We ran through my medical history and then she weighed me, measured my height and took my measurements for my Macom compression garments. She said I have a tiny waist which made me feel a little better after my surgeon's comments. Bloods were taken and she ran through my dos and don'ts before the op. So that's me set for the 3rd August!
An old photo
I wonder if I'll be able to get this dress back on after my TT... The sad thing is i remember feeling fat at the time. I would kill for that little waist now!
Some good news
MYA cosmetic surgery are knocking £150 ($233) off the price of my procedure as a goodwill gesture for messing me around. I have gratefully accepted this and hope that things will run smoothly from this point on. I think it's great that they have acknowledged where they have gone wrong.
Old me and the new me
There are very few photos of me at my heaviest as I avoided cameras like the plague. Here is a rare pic of me at 252lbs, six months after my daughter was born. The other pic is of me a couple of months ago. I have now lost 90lbs since January 2012.
Recliner/riser chair - Do I really need one?
I have been debating whether to get a recliner/riser chair to aid my recovery. I can hire one for about £150 including delivery for 2 weeks. Alternatively I can buy a secondhand one off Ebay or Gumtree, although I'd then have the problem of how to transport it to my home. After my c-section I was in hospital for a week and found my electric bed a real help so I am tempted to get a chair for home. I will be in hospital for 2 nights after my tummy tuck though...so will I even need the recliner once I get home? Those of you that have or had recliners, were they worth it? Or shall I not bother? Many thanks in advance :-)
8 days to go...
8 days to go and my riser/recliner chair arrived today. Here's the cat checking it out :-)
3 days to go...
I have my admission time for Monday - 1.00pm. That gives me the whole morning to freak out! Haha
I randomly saw this cartoon on Facebook this morning. It's me on Monday!!!! Hehe
My final day with THE BELLY!
Today was my final full day with the belly. Bye bye flap!!!!!
Feeling much better today
I'll write in more detail once I'm at home with my laptop and don't have to write on this piddly little phone. I had an uncomfortable night and I was pretty sick which was very painful. You can see from my pics that the flap is gone (Hooray!) and I am already standing pretty straight. So far it has not been as bad as my emergency caesarean. I think I expected this to be worse so I am pleasantly surprised. My husband visited earlier and I swore at him for tugging on my drain when he helped me to the loo. Feel a bit bad about that now lol.
I have been on shed loads of laxatives and have had a bowel movement which is a relief as I got anal fissures after my caesarean which required surgery. On the whole I'm feeling positive.
Thank you for all the lovely messages, it means a lot. Xx
A couple of pics from this morning...
I will write properly soon. I am just so so tired.
Sorry I haven't updated for a few days...I have mostly been asleep. I will attempt to let you know how the last 6 days have been. Sorry if this is a long one!
On the day of the operation (Monday 3rd August) my husband and 3-year-old daughter drove me to Euston station where we said an emotional goodbye and I walked the short walk to the Fitzroy Hospital in order to avoid the congestion charge. I didn't feel nervous at all, in fact all I could focus on was the crashing headache I had from not having eaten or drunk anything for hours. On arrival at the Fitzroy I was promptly taken up to my room by a nurse and told to change in to a gown, surgical stockings, paper knickers and hair net. I wasn't finished changing when my surgeon, Mr Marcellino, arrived to see me. He marked me up for surgery and we had a short chat to confirm what I was having done. He said I'd be going down to theatre in about 30 minutes. Mr Marcellino left and I took some photos for you guys and posted them here on Realself haha. A nurse came and walked me down to theatre. Still no nerves. I met the anaesthetist and was introduced to the whole team who would be there in theatre with me. Everyone was very friendly and put me at ease. I told the anaesthetist I couldn't wait to go under to get away from my dreadful headache. I was walked to the operating table where I lay down and felt a painful prick in the back of my hand. The rest is a mystery until I woke in recovery!! I was so tired I didn't even open my eyes as I was helped in to my Macom garment there on the table. It was very tight and painful and I had a little weep straight after but the extra painkillers they gave me soon sorted that out. I was wheeled back to my room via the lift and had to shuffle myself from the trolley on to my own bed which wasn't too bad as I had a lot of morphine in me at that point.
More to come later...
Before and after (day 6 post op)
I took my compression garment off last night to wash it and took a pic. Here is a before photo and a 6 days post op photo. I am very swollen but as you can see it is still 100% better than it was. I am particularly pleased with the way my surgeon has shaped me with the vaser lipo around the flanks.
Day of operation continued...
Once I was installed in my fully adjustable electric bed (a Godsend!) I asked for my phone so I could ring my husband and then my mother. I didn't really feel up to chatting to anyone but I felt I had a duty to let them know I had survived haha. Whilst on the phone to my mother I was overcome with the strongest feeling of nausea and had to literally throw my phone to the end of the bed to avoid vomiting on it. I had one of those papier mache bowels by the side of my bed luckily. I felt a lot better after being sick!
It was a strange night falling in and out of sleep, having my observations and being helped to the toilet. The drains were a real pain and made it impossible to even attempt to go to the bathroom without assistance. I had boots on that squeezed my legs at regular intervals which I found quite pleasant; they did't bother me at all. I felt no pain from the lipo at all or the first two days.
I had a slice of toast and a cup of tea at about 7.00am and I wasn't fed again for almost 9 hours. Not impressed. I ended up having to ring my patient coordinator in the office almost in tears and she personally got me a sandwich and ran up to the ward with it. I was very shaky and tearful by this point.
I filled the day by going on here, watching a little TV, talking to family etc. I had brought a novel with me to read buy I was so busy trying to survive I didn't have the concentration to even attempt to read it. I was in pain but I kept taking my painkillers and, well, I had expected to be in pain so I just got on with it. It is NO WAY as bad as a caesarean.
My surgeon came to see me and said the surgery had gone "fantastic" and that I would be "delighted with the results". He wasn't happy with my compression garment which was strangling my thighs which had become very swollen. He asked the nurse for a pair of scissors and promptly cut the legs off!!
The second night was similar to the first except I didn't have the boots on. I'm trying to remember details for you guys but to be honest it's all a blur!
On the morning of day two a nurse came and took my drains out. That's right...I didn't go home with my drains. Lucky I know! She then changed my dressings and I saw my surgeon one more time before my husband and daughter arrived to pick me up. I was not at all prepared for how awful the drive home would make me feel; I was very nauseous. We drove past London Zoo and my husband joked "do you fancy going to London Zoo haha?". I couldn't believe he would be so stupid to say that in front of a 3-year-old. Cue a tantrum all the way home because she wanted to go to the zoo. Arrrrgggggghhhh!
First look under the dressings
I had my dressings changed by the nurse yesterday and saw my incisions for the first time. It all looks healthy. The bruises are from the vaser liposuction. I have to go back in a week to have the stitches out.
This is surreal
Well the belly has gone. This is surreal...
I am 2 weeks post op today and I went to have my stitches out. All looking good apart from a red patch so I've been redressed and will return in 4 days to see how I'm doing. I'm pretty swollen at the moment. I've been wearing Spanx and a Macom binder as my compression garment was damaging me.
I can wear jeans!!!
For the first time in years I can wear jeans!! No muffin top!!! :-)
I took my daughter to a birthday party today and for the first time I felt like a yummy mummy :-) You can't put a price on how good that feels.
I have mow lost 98lb (7 stone)
I took my compression garment off to weigh myself this morning and I have now lost 98lb (7 stone). I'm sitting back on my recliner in a tight dress and there isn't a single roll of flab on my belly. Plus I have a waist!!! It's like a dream come true :-)
A couple of photos
This is me at the end of the day so there is some swelling. I have a tiny patch on the incision that is still healing, hence the dressing. That isnt bruising by the way it's shadows ;-)
I am very pleased with my results so far :-)
37 days post op
I saw the nurse today who said I'm doing great and that I can finally have a shower. Hooray!!!
Attached is my latest photo. Nurse said I still have a lot of swelling so it's just going to keep getting better. Over the moon!!!
Fame at last...
I saw this advertisment on instagram yesterday and thought it looked familiar. That's me!!!! :-)
I saw my surgeon for a follow-up today. My only concern was that my belly button sometimes bleeds so he took a look and removed a stitch from the very bottom of my belly button which he said had been causing the problem. He has signed me off and I am now free to exercise once I feel ready.
I am very happy with my result and been busy buying cute outfits like the one in the attached photo, in UK size 10 (US size 6). Over the moon :-)