37 Yr Old Mom of 3, Kettlebell Fan - Minneapolis, MN

I am a 37 year old mother to three children, ages 11, 9, and 7.

I am a 37 year old mother to three children, ages 11, 9, and 7. After
losing roughly 30 lbs and maintaining that loss for over two years, and
working extremely hard to tone with kettlebells and cardio 4-5 days a week,
the skin on my belly wouldn't budge. I always had a tummy tuck in the back
of my mind after having my first child because that was the 'straw that
broke the camels back' for my body per se as my weight gain and overall
health with my last two kids was much better. However, I had never given
weight loss an honest effort until about 3 years ago, so once I saw results
and proved I could maintain it-it justified the surgery in my own mind. I
was the healthiest and strongest I had ever been going into the surgery, at
5'4 and 152 lbs.

The best advice I have for those considering this is to go into this
procedure with a realistic point of view: the entire process from pre op
to post surgery recovery will take over 4 months-be patient. It is
literally a process with many stages, this is not an instant gratification
surgery. While RealSelf is an amazing resource of both doctor and personal
experiences-take any questions or concerns you have to your doctor, don't
substitute your doctor's experience and education to the general public on
an online forum where there are many variables. If it's feedback you
crave, your doctor should be more than willing to get you in contact with
past patient's that have had the same procedure, I feel that's more
valuable than reading about othere's experiences who could be completely
different than yours from beginning to end.

You will read of all sorts of lists of must haves, again I feel like the
surgery is so different for each individual that I would suggest getting
things your doctor suggests. Some of the lists could lead you off spending
tons more money that you might need, in my situation I wanted to be as
independent as quickly as possible with regard to using the bathroom and
getting in and out of a chair so the only big ticket item I purchased was a
toilet riser, and moved my recliner to my bedroom. If you want the whole
nine yards of an electric chair, hospital bed, etc. by all means, go for
it-while they are nice, their convenience will only be needed for such a
short period of time (2-3 weeks MAX), you will easily get by with items you
already have around the house such as stools, pillows, and your regular bed
and the pieces of furniture you already have.

Items of clothing, again-very individual; you will want comfortable, loose
clothing. Chances are that your pj's are just that. I wouldn't go out on
a big shopping spree for underwear, tops, pants before the surgery. You
don't need a whole wardrobe of comfortable clothes to get through those
first couple weeks, you can easily get by with what you already have. Once
you get a little further into your recovery you will know what makes you
feel comfortable-so I'd make purchases then cause your size will also
probably be a little different as well.

The surgery itself: those first couple days are going to be hell in some
way or another, no matter your pain tolerance, what pain meds you're
taking, if you have exparel or a pain pump. Go into the surgery knowing
there will be some level of discomfort for probably a couple of weeks, take
any questions or concerns you might have to your PS.

Recovery: every day will get a little easier. Every body is different in
the recovery process, but usually there are milestones that you will hit
that will 'turn the corner' for either pain, discomfort, lack of/quality of
sleep, standing straight, moving in general. Some weeks will go slow, and
other's quickly-when you are struggling emotionally, just try to remember
your reasons for doing this and that it truly is a process-and you are just
in the midst of it with the worst behind you.

I have absolutely no regrets having this procedure done, I'm only starting
my 4th week of recovery but already the confidence I feel about myself is
so much more than it was pre op. When I first came here all the
information was a bit overwhelming-my husband warned me not to read too
much because everybody is so different. I appreciated his concern, and
everything I read was taken with a grain of salt. The support here is
wonderful; however, I can't stress enough how you've entrusted your body
and a large sum of money to your PS-someone who is experienced and educated
in this area, ultimately all questions, concerns, and faith should be put
in that professional with regards to your procedure.

5 Week Photos

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Rocheford does beautiful work, and has a wonderful bedside manner. She gives patient's her utmost attention, and makes herself available at any time. She doesn't rely on an answering service or support staff for after hour/weekend needs, she makes herself available and responds within seconds literally. She's very black and white and doesn't sugar coat anything with what to expect for this procedure, and that's what I really like-I wanted to realistically know what to expect going into it, with little surprises. I drive over 5 hours round trip for any appointments I have; however, knowing what an amazing all around doctor she is makes it all worthwhile. Often times I will arrive early (sometimes as much as 45 minutes) because I want to allow for enough travel time or any issues that might arise en route, and the staff always brings me back upon arrival. While they don't know it-it makes my commute and coordinating my kid's school schedule/pickup that much easier, and I really appreciate it. Bonnie is also wonderful, she will answer any and every question you might have and makes you feel very comfortable and informed throughout the whole process. In the months leading up to my surgery, I sought feedback from other patient's of Dr. Rocheford's who had had the exact same procedure as me so Bonnie coordinated the communication. It was a matter of a day, and one of her previous patient's contacted me and gave me the feedback I was looking for. She continues to answer any question or concerns that come up post op, and never makes me feel as if they aren't warranted or she's bothered. I can't praise Dr. Rocheford and her staff enough, and can't wait to see the final results of my tummy tuck!

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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