Ready to Rock a Bikini Again! - Nashville, TN

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I am so excited to finally have a date settled for...

I am so excited to finally have a date settled for the TT! I have a 2 1/2, 3 1/2 and 7 year old sons, all big boys delivered c-section. I am 36 and very active- I work out usually 5-6 days a week doing crossfit, pilates, I teach spin classes twice a week and I am an avid runner! (currently training for 2 half marathons that I will do before the surgery) I have the diastasis recti of my ab muscles and loose skin that isn't going anywhere no matter how much more exercise and clean eating I am going to do. I am constantly putting a purse, arm, or something over my stomach as I walk through restaurants, etc because I am paranoid about it. My friends think I am crazy because I am so in shape and small but as I tell them, You don't see me naked! Luckily I have a supportive husband that knows I am doing this for myself and my self confidence.....I am nervous about not being able to work out afterwards since it a part of my daily routine. But after spending a lot of time on this site, I know that I will need to remember the short term (I hope) recovery is going to be so worth the long term reward of this. I really like the doc I have chosen and she tells me that most of her "fit" patients are able to be moving around decently after a couple weeks and I could probably start slowly walking/jogging around 4 weeks if I felt like it. I am nervous but have been wanting this so long- it's the right time to get it done! And I bought 6 bikinis at Victoria Secret after summer sale a couple weeks now I have to right? :)

Pre-Op Next Week

Just looked at my calendar and my pre-op is next week!! Very excited!! My doctor is using Experel for pain...any of you ladies had experience with that??

Driving n cryin

I cannot wait to be driving down the road and not look down and see my roll!! 2 weeks and 4 days!!!!!

Pre Op Appt Done

I am so excited I can't stop smiling!!! Got my script for my anti-bodic and percocet! Now I just have to wait 11 days....I can't say how much I love my doctor and the fact she is a woman!!! She drew where my scar will be and it is so low- she is going to use my c-section scar area and some of my staple scars will be gone- yay for that!!! I think I am mostly excited for the muscle abs are really strong from all the working out I do, and I can't wait to show them off one day. She did say I can walk/ recumb bike etc in as little as 2 weeks but no core work for 3 months. I can't handle that!! As long as I can get back to running (when comfortable) I will be a happy camper. Again, so excited I am finally "repair" my body from childbirth...every mom should be able to and I am so thankful to have the means to do it!!!

Scar line

She drew with a pen where my scar will be... So happy!!!!

Photo from today

Nice and low!!!

One Week to Go!

Just waiting waiting waiting...feel like I have a few things I need to get but time is moving so slow and so fast all at the same time. Feeling a little nervous when I sit and think about it too much- so I won't!! I have a birthday celebration this Saturday night and plan on "living" it up since I won't be for a bit after the big day!

48 hours to go!

In 48 hours I will be asleep and getting things repaired!

What a week. I lost 5 pounds due to stress (I don't eat when things are going bad in my life) and was told by my husband I should think about postponing my surgery. Um...HELL NO. I have wait too long. I was worried about the half marathon I was supposed to run yesterday because poor nutrition the week of a race is a huge no no. I have been training for this race for months...It was going to be my last hurrah with the extra skin jiggling while I ran...I wanted to PR (personal record )..yesterday was supposed to be MY DAY. Guess what? IT WAS!!! New half marathon PR 1:57:01....I have to say this is why I run. The stress, the emotion...I took it all out on that road and it felt FAN FREAKIN TASTIC. My sister came in town yesterday-she is going to help with my boys and me next week....we went out last night and hit the town...had so much fun. Again, more of my last hurrah mentality as I know I am going to be laid up for a bit and have to deal with some other family issues after.

So now, I am enjoying movie time with my boys..doing some laundry, trying to get things in "order" before my big day Tuesday. I am nervous but can't wait...and keep hear my awesome doctor tell me "you are the perfect candidate"....

One dose of Colace down......

Night Before

Tomorrow is the big day! I am leaving my house at 8:30 a.m. to go to my doc's office to get marked (will post pics tomorrow!) and my surgery is scheduled for Noon. Got the call from the Anesthesiologist weird she told me it was ok to drink water and black coffee up until 8 am...all my papers said nothing after midnight so call my doc to confirm. Yes, nothing allowed...just like when I had my c-sections....very odd. Oh well, glad I knew it was wrong! I am sure I will have some time on my hands to post...

And as we say.... I will see you on the flat side!!!!!

Just got marked...

Just checked into the outpatient surgery center. Still loving my doctors excitement of how good I will look! Not really nervous yet...2 more hours and I will getting fixed!!!!

Headed home

Surgery went great! Nurse said "not sure how small you were before but you are tiny now" music to my ears...pain is all in abs...not too awful... Maybe 7 on scale 1-10...ready to pop a pain pill second I walk in the door!

The Morning After- Day 1

It is 8 a.m. my time, surgery was yesterday at Noon so not quite 24 hours. Slept horribly last night, get a couple hours in, then woke up...was up at 4 and was sleeping wonderfully when hubby walks in at 7 a.m. because I was so quite and he hadn't heard me...ERRRRR. Feeling sore, but not too much worse than yesterday but the day has just began. Plan on laying in bed all day but will be getting up to get my walks in to prevent clots. Can tell I am swollen up (as expected!) and will send over pics next. And I am being a wimp and afraid to look just yet..was thinking I would attempt shower tomorrow then peek.....but I who knows- I may break down later and check things out.

1st morning pics

I can tell I am swollen- like I am supposed to be!

Oops too fast

2 other pics

Changing Pain Meds

Since I am getting no sleep on Percocet my nurse is calling in Loritab. I am so wired on the Percocet my mind is racing! The pain relief is good but must sleep to heal... New meds will be here in an hour, hoping to catch a long nap shortly thereafter!

Day 2

I have to say, I am feeling pretty darn good for just having major surgery. The new pain meds must have helped, got 5-6 hours of sleep in a row last night. Got up this morning standing almost straight- just comfortably not trying to by any means. Made my kids some breakfast, but have to say by the time they left I was ready for some rest time. I took my first shower- had to shave my itchy in compression socks with stubble. I didn't wash my hair (though very able to raise my arms over my head no problem at all), just slowly washed the body. Had to call the doc about my belly button cover because it seem to come off a little and I didn't want wet stuff getting all nasty when I put my compression garment off. Glad I called, it was just gauze and I took it off and poof there is the belly button. I am pleased with how it looks. That was one of my worries..I have seen some jacked up belly buttons on tummy tucks before. And as my Doc told me..."Don't judge the bellybutton too soon!" she said they can look pretty weird at first. I had my first was very uneventful..yay! I have been taking colace for that and last night my stomach was rumbling every which way so added my probiotics back in...I usually take them just because. So at this moment, I am pain free ...sitting back on my bed and about to enjoy a day of silence and rest. Namaste & happy healing.

Day 2 photo

After shower

Not much new here....heal baby heal.....

Well got pretty decent sleep last night, I seem to drift off early (like 8-9ish)..wake up at 1 am (where I then take another pain pill) then sleep until 7. I am a side sleeper so this sleeping propped up on my back is a new world...considering as much, I am happy with the amount of sleep I am getting. So last night I was less propped up and nothing under my legs...felt like I was getting more horizontal and it felt fine. Same amount of discomfort this morning as yesterday...just feeling sore and little bit of lower back pain I have been hearing about. Felt like I was walking pretty straight this morning, reading conflicting things as if this is good or bad but I am going to listen to my body and go with it. Better to be kind to my back/spine then worry about if things are "tight" enough on the belly. And I did "over do it" last night..I had a friend over and was moving around too much...lesson learned was all blown up ...laying down last night felt so good. I remember after having my c-sections, hospital nurses were telling me "we have to watch you, you do too much too soon" I have to slow it down. There is no blue ribbon for fastest recovery...I am just so used to my go- go-go lifestyle this is a change...going to try to enjoy it. I have the house all to myself today, so going to get some work done on the laptop and enjoy the SILENCE and STILLNESS.

Day 4

Woke up feeling about the same..little sore, slow getting up. After being up for an hour, saw it was time to measure my fluid and thought I would take a peek. My swelling is down a touch, not sure if anyone can tell by the photo but I can tell...very excited about that! Although I know it is still so early on, there is a long road ahead of swell hell....Feeling confident I will get the drain out Tuesday at my 1 week appt. My first full day home, I was at 35 ml, second day at 33ml, yesterday at 22 ml and started out today with 10 ml....all those numbers going in the right direction! My doc said my drain can come out when I am draining less than 30 ml and it is straw color. I can see some straw color coming through but still red when I am emptying the drain. Also, going to start spreading out pain meds (if body allows)..took my last one at 2 a.m.....going to see if I can go a couple more hours before popping one. Going to enjoy a full weekend of rest hopefully....I am a real estate broker and one of my clients wants to see a house tomorrow...may let hubby drive me and get out and show it to her...we'll see! Got to make some $ to help pay for my awesome new tummy!!

Last note, hubby came in to take today's pics and said "Wow, it's like you never had kids"....bhahahaha.....not really hon...not really at all... (hearing 3 loud bandshee boys screaming and yelling in the other room as he says this)....

Day 4 photos

Little less swelling- I was in bed all day yesterday and taking down the water!

Happy Day! Drain is coming out soon!

I woke up today without a pain pill since 9 pm the night before and felt ok! A little less sore, but of course it's still there. Yesterday my total drainage 15 ml, woke up today and over night it was only 5ml. I called the nurse to see if I could come in a day early to get the drain removed and she said sure! So excited!! I am assuming she is going to change my tape as well so I may get to see my scar for the first time today...Going to ask her to take pics :) Swelling up top seems to have gone down...still some down below...Very excited and happy though with my mobility and results so far. Will post after I see the nurse later today!! :)

Drain is out!

The drain came out..what a weird feeling. Like a small snake getting pulled out and my belly felt so strange. But glad that sucker is gone! I feel lighter already and don't have to carry that thing around anymore! yahoo! Got to see my line and reminded why I chose Dr. Gingrass...she is amazing. The scar is perfection...of course all scary right now but just now how great it is going to look when it is all healed and done. She got rid of my c-section scar and staples marks- awesome- and got rid of my belly button ring scar. And just when I thought well, I am not that swollen...I see a shot ..and woah am I ever. As expected of course, just seeing a different angle is well different! Still feeling very numb on bellybutton and down below. My nurse said it is really important to keep my binder going now that the drain is out, since the tissue is trying to reconnect to my skin/organs etc and there is that space where the drain was....fluid is going to want to settle there. She said to watch for a sudden major puffy look and or if I touch my stomach and it is like a waterbed...then I would need to come in to drain. Positive thoughts won't happen!

Pictures come next...

Photos from today at PS

Pics from today

Feeling Better Each Day

Woke up today with even less soreness...still can't really sleep on my side, it hurts for some reason, so still sleep with just one extra pillow now. Just taking ibuprofen now for discomfort. The last two days I have been driving and running errands....feeling pretty good. A little slower than usual and ready to take a rest by the end of the day. Feel like swelling above belly button is less, and feel a bit more below the bellybutton...that tubby/barely prego look. Able to wear my most favorite jeans with my binder...which means in a few weeks they probably won't fit...tragic in the best way!! :) Will take a picture tomorrow to share! Happy Healing!

Feeling Good

The last two days have been good. My nurse wants me to keep my scar taped for 4 days, then 24 hours off, back on like this for the next 2-3 months if my skin allows it. She says it keeps the scar flat... I am wondering about scar cremes or silicon sheets too. Luckily I know from past experience I scar well...another factor that helped me decide to move forward with the surgery. Very glad I did it now while I am still "younger" ( 37 next month) for healing purposes and to enjoy the results! If you are on the fence- don't put it off! Some of my best money spent and so glad I did it... And will be healed for next summer time!

Went out last night!

I went out to a see a local cover band play last night and was doing ok! Was able to move around a little- no crazy busting a rug, but moving and grooving and have a fun time with my friends! I did leave the binder off and put on my sturdy is just so bulky and doesn't go well with regular clothes! I was excited to see improvement in the area below my bust, but still have some swelling down below. Just a little impatient to see the results....I wake up each morning and "unwrap" my self and get excited about the future!

Fluid issue

Well it seems I have some fluid and glad I made the call to the nurse. I have a little pooch below the belly button but above the scar. I could tell it wasn't swelling and it moved a little like a waterbed (the nurse told me to look for that once the drain was out)... The nurse ( who is so sweet!) numbed me (although I am still pretty numb still) and stuck a needle in 2 spots but couldn't get anything out. I head back tomorrow at 9 so my PS can give it a try. Just when I was dreaming of Spanx I am now back with a foam piece underneath the binder... Boo!

False Alarm- No Fluid!

I went back today to see my doctor and she said there is no fluid, it is tissue swelling. Yay for that!!! I did have to get a piece of foam put back in between my tummy and the binder for the next few days...ugh... makes me look prego/ thick in the middle...which is what I want to avoid! Oh well...just a few more days. So two more weeks of binder and/or tight spanx (btw, I have one from Victoria Secret that is TIGHT- going to use that one!) she said if if the spanx doesn't feel like enough support, but the binder back on. Then at week 4 she said I can loose the binder at night...looking forward to that very much! Next at week 5 she said to start wearing the binder less during the day....The nurse told me to expect swelling to continue for the next 4 weeks..and I would be approx 6 weeks post op before I could really see a difference. Oh and, I asked if I could try to jog/ walk tomorrow night and she said YES...she said powerwalk for sure and to just listen to my body. Also said I can do some biceps weights..just no twisting around the torso....Guess where I am headed tomorrow?! ha! Will update with a 2 week photo in the morning..things seem to look the best then :)

2 Week photos

Here are my 2 week photos... Took first thing this morning so you can see my sleep marks from the binder! Still pretty numb but soreness is very very minor!

Exercised Today!

I took a spin class in and took it very easy, light resistance and not too much in and out of the saddle. Since I teach it, I am very good at "faking it!"....after that I did some bicep/tricep/shoulder work with dumbells. A little lighter weight than before the surgery, and all felt fine. Just checked and nothing crazy going on with the stomach- so that is good!! Headed out to hang with my running club tonight..we are all dressing up in costume which is fun....but instead of running I will take it easy and walk since I have already done enough for where I am in recovery. This will be my first time with my running friends, so going to use the excuse of my costume as why I am not running....don't want to get it all sweaty! ha!

Embracing the Embracer!

Had our fun Halloween Run last night, and I did a very easy, slow jog for 1 mile, then did some walking/power walking for another felt good on the legs to run, but kinda strange on the tummy..probably with the whole numb sensation etc....Will try another easy mile over the weekend, just to keep the blood flowing and get some fresh air. Saw my PS again today (went in for her botox special...I am new to botox and am in LOVE!) so she checked my tummy and freed me from the binder and cushion...but again, said if you start feeling swelling put the binder back on! Promptly headed to the mall to pick up a couple of the Victoria Secret's "The Embracer"...that thing is TIGHT! Way better than spanx and anything I have found at the department part is it is only $35 and I had a $10 reward on me. They have different styles but if you need something like this, head to Vicky's...make sure it has Firm Control up top with 3 red hearts. Doc also cleared me for lymphatic massage, excited about that! Going in for my first one tomorrow.... Happy Halloween & Happy Healing!

Hot Mama!

Ever since the surgery I now wake up in the middle of the night a hot mess of sweat..and not in a good way.... I am assuming it is because of the compression garment. It is not a nice breathable cotton, it supposed to suck me in....anyways, it is really annoying and I look forward to my first night of sleeping without it (one more week) to see if that ends my nightly hot flashes!

This past weekend was my birthday- went out Friday night with the VS embracer, and of course over did it...dancing, eating, drinking, and staying out too late. Woke up Saturday swollen, so put the binder plus foam piece in all day and that helped. We then went to a house party Saturday night, and again I wore the embracer....nice low key night! Back in the binder as soon as I got home but without the foam piece....plan on wearing the binder all week to help with the swelling.

I haven't exercised since last Wed, so went to the gym today and did 1 mile run on the treadmill (have to say felt much better than last wed) and arm weights again. Going to try a easy spin class tomorrow if time allows and then Wed night is my run club night, so going to try to do a easy 3 mile jog if I am feeling good.

Will post my 3 week post photo tomorrow morning..I got a little excited this morning...I swore I thought I saw an ab!! ;)

3 weeks post op

Healing nicely, right side is more tender than left, able to side sleep on left with no discomfort. Sweelling above my incision still quite puffy, hopefully will get better next week. Abs still slightly sore, I have been doing some light massage... And still pretty numb near belly button but I can tell it is better than last week!

Spin Class Today

Attempted another spin class today and was actually sweating! Was able to crank up the resistance, speed up, slow down, do the hills and felt really good after! VICTORY!! Tonight is my running club night...going to take it easy and jog since I already got in one good workout today. Also did more weights today and felt good... did all of this with the binder on...tonight I am running with my VS Embracer plus the binder, then going to take the binder off after the I am getting sick of this thing!!

4 week update

Slept last night without the binder for the first, it felt so good to wake up free of it. BUT did notice more swelling...humpf. Excercise wise, feeling pretty good for being 4 weeks out. This is the week I am turning up a notch. I did a 60 minute spin class on Monday, today did 1 mile on the treadmill, weights and a 45 minute spin class, and going to run an easy 3 miles tomorrow night. We will see how it goes....abs still feel slightly sore from surgery, still numb feeling near bellybutton but can feel the sensation making its way back! Wondering when the bellybutton will look a little more normal- Would love to hear from someone on this! My "official" photographer is out of town...will see what I can swing on my own photo wise!

4 weeks

Slept Monday night with no binder, woke up with some swelling. Slept Tuesday in binder, woke up flat. Last night no binder and some minor swelling this am. Oh well! Part of the process! Looking forward to seeing how week 6 treats me!

Swell hell is real

Decided yesterday to leave the binder at home and just wear the "embracer". I get dressed up and have support top hose too- thinking I am nice and packed in... Left my house @ 9 am....had a couple meetings etc etc...get back to my house @ 2:30 and I am swollen like never before!!! I promptly throw on the binder, and keep on with my day. Slept in binder and still woke up a little swollen... What gives?? My waist area is looking great- just puffy and swollen above incision area. Was hoping for less swelling in the next 2 weeks... Not more. So back to the binder I guess. And I need a shot of patience :)

6 Week Update

Had my check up with my PS last week...all is healing along nicely. I still have numbness and swelling at incision line and near the bellybutton. I have been sleeping without the binder but still using it during the day. She told me to start gradually using it less but to listen to my body....keep wearing it when I run and exercise. I ran a 5k this past weekend and was at my usual pace- that made me happy!! Looking forward to the spring to see more of the result and get to the beach to enjoy a swimsuit!

6 week photos

Nothing too dramatic here

Exercise Update

Pushed my self the past two days. Taught a 90 minute Turkey Burn spin class on Friday and then ran 5 miles (the furtherest I have gone since the surgery) yesterday....both days the stomach did well. No pain, or major swelling afterwards so yay for that! I wore the binder for both of them. Been massaging the incision area to help with the significant change at all yet...but I know its coming! Thinking about picking up some scar PS has me taped up for 3 days, then 24 hours without but my skin is starting to get irritated by it. Any suggestions? Thanks! :)

8 Weeks

The past 8 weeks did go by fast! Still have swelling at incision line, but feeling better day by day...belly button still feels weird but again, slowly feeling better. Ran 3 miles on the treadmill yesterday with no spanx or binder. Felt ok...did throw it back on about an after the gym. Few pics to share coming next. Hope everyone is enjoy the holiday season!

8 week pics & before after

Here are some pics!

Let go of the binder...

Saw my PS yesterday and she tells me you need to stop wearing that binder (it is starting to look so ratty!) and it is doing more harm than good. Yes, my incision is irritated and itchy, my skin below my belly button is coming off and I have a red rub mark on my side from it. Ok, time to let it go..but I feel so tight and bundled up in it. She is right though, as much as we complain about it, it is hard to let it go. Have gone all day without it, taught a class, but threw it back on for a couple of hours while I clean my house up. 4 more weeks till I can get back to crossfit/core work...she did say I could start with some planking then and just slowly build up... That's all for now! Happy Healing Everyone!

Why I needed a TT

My hubby was going through old photos- thought I would share this one. Baby #1 of 3... Good grief my stomach was HUGE... And my ass but I took care of that on my own! Ha!

1st Chiropractic Visit Post TT today

So my hamstrings, glutes have been so tight along with my lower back just a little sore..I knew what I needed..AN ADJUSTMENT!! It has been 9 weeks since I have been in to see my chiro...I remember my PS saying no russian twists till 12 weeks...and the way he adjusts my lower back reminded me of it...Well, he tried a few other techniques and finally I said let's do it the old way (small about of twisting over involved)...and success...lower back adjusted and nothing hurt! Yay!!

12 week update

Hi all!! I have noticed the swelling getting better….however, if I exercise or say over do it dancing (hello NYE!) , it still comes up but smaller than a month ago. I am officially cleared to start back at Crossfit and core work, but honestly don't think I am quite ready..think I am going to wait a couple more weeks to let the Resolutioners get out of the gym and give myself some more time to keep healing. I have started doing some planks, which is what my PS said to start with. I am back to running several days a week at my old pace, teaching my spin class twice a week and plenty of arm work. I notice after workouts I can feel like my abs are sore especially above the bellybutton….still a little numb around bellybutton. Speaking of bellybutton….I sure wish it would move along a little faster…I am massaging my scar with bio oil and different scar creams. No more spanx and have only busted out the binder everyone once in awhile for a couple hours if I feel really swollen. I have a couple photos but notice no change really from 8 weeks. I am most DEFINITELY loving wearing tight shirts now! And dresses…yea!!! I was always a skirt and top girl because of my tummy…NO MORE!!! Very excited for summer time and enjoying the pool & lake with my new self!

12 week pics

First Reformer Pilates Class Post OP

Yesterday I took my first reformer pilates class post TT….it went very well!!! My instructor knew what I had done, and she had a cyst removed in similar area in the past so was familiar with surgery and the recovery on the stomach! She assured me since I have been running I would be fine in class…and it was fine. Felt so good to be back! I love this class, it is gentle, yet challenging and so helpful for stretching my 'runner' legs…I get horribly tight hamstrings…..Next up CROSSFIT. Trying to decide if I am going to take the plunge this week or next.

CROSSFIT again..YES!!!!

Took my first Crossfit class today…it was as awesome and hard as I remember! I was able to finish the WOD but didn't add any additional weight to my bar- wanted to ease back in. We even had a ton of V-ups (a type of sit up ) and no pain, nothing…..So excited to be full back running, spinning and now lifting again. Scar is starting to fade at the side….still small amount of swelling at incision line during the day, and belly button still coming along SLOWLY but I guess surely. Will post some photos tomorrow a.m. when I seem to be "at my best"...

Four Months!

It seems to fly by! I am back to my full exercise schedule of running, cycling and crossfit…not pain what so ever, but my abs are still very slightly tender doing core work, not that it slows me down one bit! Here are a few pics…swelling at line is much better..still slight but it only 4 months right?! Scar is healing along nicely…fading on sides…looking forward to the red to fade away…and lastly belly button doing ok- again, just waiting for time to keep going pass. tick tock tick tock…..Can't wait till this summer!

4 month photos

Here you go!

7 Months Post Op

Just a few pics to update. Still going and blowing..running, crossfit, cycling, etc etc.. Still some numbness, still some swelling at incision line….Not sure if I would wear a bikini yet because of the bellybutton scar…..I guess you would have to be close to see, but it bothers me. I think my scars are coming along nicely though and looking forward to the 1 year mark which is when my doc says everything will be truly healed. Still so glad I did this! Clothes fit better and I feel much more confident!

7 month pics

Here you go!
Nashville Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Gingrass was referred to me by several people (a couple in the medical community telling me she was 'the best'). I looked at a ton of websites for local surgeons and their before and after shots...hers were by far the best! And after going on a consult with another PS...then meeting with Dr. Gingrass, I knew exactly who to choose! I love that her office is all women and Dr. Gingrass is truly a talented, smart, beautiful doctor.

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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