Finally starting to feel better! New pic from 6 mos po in Hawaii- Loving the new me!

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Well, after months of reading about everyone...

Well, after months of reading about everyone else''s experience I am now on my own countdown... 2 weeks from today. Holy cr*p. For years I have wanted a tummy tuck- came close to getting it... twice! but panicked and pulled out both times. Now, after reading about all the other ladies' experiences I have the guts to follow through on my own dreams. I have 2 kids who took a toll on my body. I love them dearly but can do without the stretchmarks and separated stomach muscles.

I have always maintained a low weight- I am 5'8" and weigh 123, though I did gain 50 lbs in each of my pregnancies, I worked hard to take it off after and have been able to maintain my weight within 5 or 6 lbs. I workout whenever I can, which is never as much as I'd like but I try to get to the gym once or twice a week and generally it frustrates me. The more fit I get, the worse my stomach looks- the tighter my abs, the more wrinkly my stretchmarks appear. I'm done with this belly once and for all. I do dread the scar, but have tried to come to terms with it and think my PS will do a good job of keeping it low.

A couple of weeks after my initial consult for the TT I began contemplating a BA- something I'd not thought about before. I wouldn't have considered it except that since I'm going under the knife anyway and will (hopefully) come out with a great tummy I think I will wish that I had great boobs to match. The thing is that since this is a recent decision I have not had the same few years to adjust to the idea and the boob job is now giving me major anxiety. I've got my preop tomorrow for both which means sizing the implants and paying in full. The point of no return. I am truly freaking out. My husband supports whatever I decide but thinks my anxiety over the BA is silly. I am mortified about people finding out- old friends, and new. I don't want a major upsize - really just from a small B cup to a full B, but figure eventually people will find out and I am having a hard time accepting that. I know I shouldn't care what people think, but it still affects me. Oh My God. Must decided by tomorrow. Freaking Out!!!!!!!!!!

Oh- and both procedures will be performed under tumescent anesthesia- NOT general. Is that crazy? I mean, I like the idea of not being under general but then again there are still all the risks of going under local with all the narcotics and cocktail of meds they use to ensure you don't wake up or feel anything. My PS says this is how they do 95% of their procedures and that it is perfectly safe and effective- and far cheaper than going under general- it still all scares me. HELP! I don't know if I can get through this!

The days are getting closer and I can't seem...

The days are getting closer and I can't seem to get a grip on my nerves. I don't think I will ever just be calm about it until it is over with and I can just move forward with recovering. I am 38 years old and consider myself to be healthy- especially now that I've quit smoking. But I still worry about the risks of going under the knife. Gees, I worry about a lot- will it all look good? Will it be worth it? Will I look like Frankenfreak until the scars heal? I keep trying to keep my eye on the prize- the end result- but it is hard not to think about all that it will take to get there.

Am still second-guessing my decision to do the BA- should I pay more attention to my indecision and consider it a sign that I'm not ready or is it just nerves and totally natural and expected and I should just take the plunge b/c I'll most likely be happy later that I did...? Hmmm.... the days are passing and August 2nd is so close now. Am excited... but panicking.

Well, less than a week now- crazy nervous still...

Well, less than a week now- crazy nervous still but thought I'd post b/c am also starting to get really excited. Thought I'd be losing my mind with fear and anxiety but kind of surprised myself in that I'm really just getting super excited to have this done and start my recovery. Am even feeling excited about the BA at this point but want to make sure my PS keeps my chest in the full B cup realm I'm looking for (I'd also settle for a small C but truly don't want anything more.)

I am still concerned about the dangers of surgery and have to remind myself not to look at the book of potential risks my dr's office gave me b/c it just freaks me out and I know it's just worst case scenario stuff they have to put down for liability sake.

Want to get in some quality time with my boys this weekend before they head off for a week with grandma. They are 6 and 8 and don't know what mommy's about to do but I'll address that with them later. Hopefully by the time they come back I won't be in too terrible shape. My hubby's gonna do his best to take care of me- he's blocked out his work schedule, I just hope he can handle the icky medical stuff (he's got a weak stomach when it comes to wounds and such. Oh my.)

Again, just want to say how thankful I am for this site as it has given me the proverbial balls to take this leap and do something for myself I otherwise wouldn't have had the guts to go through with.

BTW- been taking multi-vitamin, B-complex and Zinc on my dr's recommendation for better healing and they truly make me want to barf. They need the nausea patch for people taking these. Ugh.

That's all for now. Am going to bed now to bask in the feeling of being excited- I've spent so much time being scared and nervous and may feel that way again tomorrow so for now am just going to enjoy the excitement! Hope all my other mommy makeover girls for august are feeling the same!

The days are getting closer and am happy to say my...

The days are getting closer and am happy to say my excitement has not subsided! I am even psyched about the BA! Can't wait to be on the flip side recovering! Started taking stool softeners last night and will beging showering with antibacterial soap today as instructed by my PS. Been doing lots of laundry and spending some quality time with my boys since I will not be seeing them for a week. Went shopping for all my "supplies" as well ie: nightgowns, jammies, chick flicks, prescriptions, scar treatments, squirt bottle, etc. Am so appreciative of the ladies on this site who have "paid it forward" by making supply lists for those of us about to embark in this process. Your info and help is invaluable! Thank you!!!!! BTW- does anyone have good recommendations for what types of bras to have on hand post BA? I wasn't sure what to buy other than something with a front clasp for easy on / off. Please let me know if any of you lovely ladies can suggest one brand that's better than another. I wasn't even sure what size I'd need- small? medium? I'm a 32B, 34A or small 34B right now so wasn't sure what my post-op sports bra size would be...? Hmmmm... Also- anyone have any tips on the best silicone strips? I've seen a few different kinds and didn't know if any had a better rep than the others?

Just posted more "before" pics to show you (and remind myself) how much I need this. Whenever I get scared I look and these pics and it gives me strength to go through with this. Funny- I walk around in my body everyday, all day, but kind of live in denial. It's when I look at pics of myself that I want to cringe. Can't wait for this. Hope my PS does a good job....!

3 days and counting...!!!!!!

Holy hell. Tomorrow is the day. I've gone in...

Holy hell. Tomorrow is the day. I've gone in and out of feeling excited, terrified, unsure and ready to cancel all day. RIght now I'm somewhere between excited and unsure- a bit terrified too- but I think I'll be able to go through with it. My boys went out of town today with their grandma (my mom in law)- I wound up telling her about the mommy makeover b/c she had a BA about 5 years ago and I really just needed someone to talk to about it who could relate. She was super supportive and really encouraged me to go through with it - she loves her results and assured me I'd be happy with mine too. ...I SO hope she's right!

Got a ton of groceries today- lots of fruits, veggies and proteins, got all caught up on laundry and house cleaning, talked to my mom and told her I loved her :) Picked out a bunch of chick flicks- no comedies tho (I heard laughing is painful) and also got a toilet seat riser so I can get on and off the pot when I need to! (why is that such an embarrassing purchase?!) Picked up lots of pillows, a mattress cover, soft sheets, all the meds,... I feel prepared- at least as much as I can be...

Tonight I'm supposed to put the anti-nausea patch behind my ear- so glad my PS gave me that as I don't stomach all the meds that well and dread the idea of barfing with my tummy freshly stitched! UGh!!!! My PS says he only uses 1 drain that goes along the incision line to minimize additional scarring- which is nice, and he also says I can shower the day after surgery even with the drain in- which is REALLY nice! I got a plastic chair to sit on in the shower and will have my hubby give me a hand- hope he can handle it without also needing a chair (again- he's got a weak stomach when it comes to wounds and such!)

My surgery's at 1pm so I think I'll get up really early and stuff myself with a good breakfast.... OMG I can't believe it's happening tomorrow!!! FREAKING OUT!! Sorry- I am really trying to hold it together... so glad I can vent a little here and hopefully you ladies can relate- I've been unloading my panic on my husband and bless his heart he's been such a trooper with his support and encouragement but he'll never really understand the emotional journey that this is for me, and I think many of you ladies here can. I thank you for all your kind words of encouragement and positive energy and hopefully next post I make will be after I've come out safely on the other side of this and ready to make the trek through recovery!

Good night!

(OMG OMG OMG!!!!!)

For the sake of before and after comparisons here...

For the sake of before and after comparisons here are my stats pre-surgery:

age: 38

height: 5'8"

weight: as of this afternoon 125

bra size: 32B or 34A or 34B depending on the bra

hips: 34" without sucking it in

natural waist: 32"

bust: 32.75"

Hoping to see a change in these.

Wondering if I'll sleep tonight....

Hi Ladies! I'm 5 days post-op- sorry I...

Hi Ladies! I'm 5 days post-op- sorry I couldn't post anything sooner but the painkillers seem to affect my vision so I couldn't see or read what I was typing- and couldn't stay awake for more than a few minutes at a time. The first 3 days of recovery were really rough- mostly because I planned to spend my recovery time on the sofa without understanding how difficult and painful it would be to get up and lay down on a sofa. On my 3rd day post-op my husband could take no more as the strain on his back was almost as bad as my bodily pains. So we bought and electric lift recliner- not cheap but it's worth every penny! With the touch of a button it reclines completely, push the other button and it raises me up all the way into a standing position. It has been a lifesaver!

I've been able to shower from day 1 which has been great- hubby hoses me down and it feels so great- kind of helps to get the blood circulating and always makes me feel better afterwards.

I haven't taken any postop pics b/c I can't stand upright yet, but hopefully soon! My doc told me he not only tightened my abs but also tightened my obliques- which should give me a really flat tummy- but he said the recovery may be a bit tougher with all the muscle sutures.

I do have this one area above and to the right of my pubic bone that every now and then gives me a shooting, burning pain- without any provocation- what I mean is it doesn't act up if I move funny- I most often feel it when I am dead asleep and it wakes my with a pain so strong I almost can't breathe! When I try to breathe the burning gets worse! But the whole thing passes in like a minute and a half- feels kind of like the contractions during childbirth! My ps says it might be a muscle spasm that hurts b/c it is pulling on a stitch. Dunno- just want it to stop!!

Btw- for those of u getting ready to go through all this- one of my best investments besides the recliner is a toilet-seat riser! It is a lifesaver!!!! Oh- and speaking of all things toilet-related- I couldn't BM!!! Took stool softeners for a week prior and every day after, and nothing! Took MOM every day after surgery- didn't help. Finally yesterday my doc told me to do an enema--- not what I wanted to hear. Had only done one once before and that was in hospital before giving birth to my son. Well, I did it yesterday- and let me tell you it was NOT easy- just getting into position to do it was achingly painful!! But yes, it did the trick. Hoping my body will take over from now on and I won't have to resort to that again!

Well, getting sleepy. Must go nap. Will post pics when I get a chance to take some!

Well, am 8 days post-op today and feel like...

Well, am 8 days post-op today and feel like I've rejoined the land of the living FINALLY! That first week post-op was just a haze of unbearable pain and discomfort- both from the procedures and from the back and leg pain endured from walking bent over for a week. Then there's the foggy pain pill haze that causes you to not be able to keep track of the days, the boredom of being stuck a chair without much of any outside stimulation, as well as the frustration of not being able to interact with my kids the way I normally do. But today I turned a corner- am able to stand up straighter so my back and legs are spared the pain, took a shower, brushed my hair and put makeup on for the first time in a week, put some normal clothes on ( not easy- as I'm so swollen nothings seems to fit and needed a baggy shirt to disguise the drain) and then went to my ps for my 1 week follow-up. And then he took my drain out!!!! Yay!!! What a feeling to not have that darn thing tethered to my insides! Was hoping the doc would change my wound dressing so I could see the TT incision but he said he'd do that next week. He did say my tummy is super distended due to the gas and poop that is way backed up inside me. Ugh!!! I already did one enema and then had a couple of massive BMs. (sorry-tmi) so I thought I was doing well but apparently there's way more where that came from and that preventing my tummy from resembling anything remotely flat! Lame!! I've had MOM every day- that stuff is sooooo nasty! Tastes like a chalky fish diaper! Truth is the only way to get all the crap out is to be done w/ the pain pills- but unfortunately I'm not quite over the pain. May try switching over to Tylenol tomorrow and see if that does the trick.

Went out to dinner tonight with the fam- wow- what a difference that made on my disposition. It was so nice to be amongst people and things that are not the standard fixtures in my living room!

Am still concerned that my boobs are quite a bit bigger than I wanted- still hoping there's some swelling and they'll shrink a bit more.... They also need to drop still as they're looking freakishly high at the moment but I know that takes time.

Hope all you ladies out there that are also on the road to recovery are doing well!

Btw- so many people mentioned eating lots of pineapple post-op as it aids in reducing swelling- well, I ate a bunch in the first 3 days and have to say my tongue feels like I've been licking sandpaper! What's up with that??? It's lasted 3 days so far!

Well, I'm officially 11 days post-op now and...

Well, I'm officially 11 days post-op now and getting better every day. I've been on my feet more and getting a bit more active around the house but have not yet ventured out much. On a positive note I am off of all my meds- finished the antibiotics a couple days ago, and stopped taking the pain pills as well. I still get uncomfortable if I strain myself too much but the pills were making me so bloated and constipated and loopy that it was just time to put them away. At night I sometimes take extra strength tylenol or a muscle relaxer if I feel tight or sore but for the most part am pill-free. This means I can drive again! And also allows me to feel more coherent than I have since the surgery!

My incisions feel like they're healing but since they've been covered in surgical tape since the surgery I have yet to actually see them. Occasionally my abdominal binder rubs at the bottom against the TT incision, or at the top against the boob incisions on the crease but it's bearable.

Every day I still spend some part of the day in and out of wondering if I made the right choice to do this? Sometimes I feel confident it was the right choice for me, other times I feel down and insecure and feel guilty for altering the body I was born with. Don't get me wrong- I'm not religious AT ALL but it's just since things aren't nearly healed yet I wonder if I ever will completely heal or if I will forever be haunted by swelling, tummy tightness, pulling feelings in the muscles, implant issues like rupture or capsular contraction and such. I suppose if i were all better now and feeling normal I wouldn't think such worrisome things but I'd be lying if I said my mind doesn't go there sometimes.

I find myself really looking forward to my shower every day- the chance to check myself out in the mirror, and also those few moments of being free of these cumbersome binders. (I wear a 3 inch wind band on the top part of my breasts to help the implants to drop down.) As soon as the binders come off I scratch! My skin barely gets to breathe there and when it does it itches like all hell! My implants are still riding high and therefore still freaking me out a bit. I've seen pics of women whose implants never quite "dropped" as they should have and just won't feel comfortable with mine until they hit their final resting position. It's also tough to gage their true size until their in the right spot. Anyone have any input as to how long it takes for the girls to fully get settled?

Will try to snap some pics today when I'm hitting the shower. There is such an improvement in my belly! Can't wait to rock my body in bikini next summer! For now- will settle for taking it easy and giving my bod some healing downtime.

For all the ladies out there getting ready for this rollercoaster- do not let me dissuade you- I think in the longrun I'll be so happy I did this. It's just tough not to question yourself when you're stuck in limbo and missing your usual energetic, playful, active self. The mental challenge is just as rough as the physical one. I'm still keeping my eye on the prize- just wish it were here already! :)

Hello MMer ladies! I am officially 16 days post-op...

Hello MMer ladies! I am officially 16 days post-op and can't believe how quick my recovery has gone! I mean the first week post-op was sheer hell for me. Painful, uncomfortable, doubt-inducing and all that comes with it- but the difference in how I felt from week 1 to week 2 is insane! I am now completely walking upright, though gingerly. I take care of my kids in all their needs and activities, clean house, grocery shopping, everything. I do get sore if I do too much but not tired or fatigued as many of you mention. Just my body's way of telling me to take a seat on my trusty recliner for a bit. To be clear- I say I'm doing everything- but I do it in a modified way- for example, when I do laundry I use my grabber-stick tool thingy to pick up, load, and unload all clothes so am not bending over. I do all our dishes, but wash and dry them by hand so am not repeatedly bending over to reach the dishwasher. I still cannot sleep in bed with my dear hubby- tried it a couple of times but laying on my side hurts and when I tried to push through the pain and do it anyway found my body sore for a couple days after so am still sleeping on my recliner. I think these choices have made a HUGE difference in my recovery time- I mean, I could take the pain pills and sleep in bed unaware of the soreness, but listening to my body and knowing it's not ready for that is so much better! I can tell what is pushing the limit and by not going there my incision has healed so quickly!

Had my 2 week post-op appt yesterday and it was fabulous! My doc says to throw the binder away!! Yay!! That thing was driving me nuts! I couldn't put it on by myself so could never shower unless I knew my hubby would be home to wrap me back up in it after. Also the ribbing of the binder material was kind of "buckling" in a few places so the fabric would dig into my skin and ribcage in certain places if I put it on tight, and if I went looser with it felt like it was not tight enough to be effective but was at least comfortable. My PS didn't even mention a stage 2 binder. He said the muscles have now had enough time to adhere to the abdominal wall so the compression was no longer needed. When I asked about Spanx he said that would be fine if it made me feel more comfortable, but was by no means "necessary". I'm happy about this b/c so many of you have written reviews and mentioned becoming somewhat dependent on wearing a binder or compression garment and having a tough time ditching it after several months! I totally get it- I mean when the PS took mine off I felt ...kind of fragile, but continued running errands with my kids all day and by dinner felt almost normal again in my belly. The harder part for me is my doc took off my surgical tape for the first time- YAY!!- and told me to leave it off and massage the incision with lotion a few times a day to keep the skin moisturized to improve the healing. And having the incision exposed to rub against my undies, pants waistband, shirt and such has me moving around more cautiously and gingerly. He said after a few days with the lotion I can put paper tape on it and leave that on again for 4-5 days, then do a couple days of lotion again, then repeat. My PS actually does not encourage the silicone strips at this point in my healing, though I did buy them for later. He says it's the compression that actually accelerates healing right now and paper tape is good because it compresses the wound but can be left on in the shower but also dries out completely afterward which is important that it does not retain water that would infect the incision. The silicone strips hold water if worn in the shower, and irritate the wound if they must be taken off every day to get in the shower. I still think later in my healing when I things are fully healed and am ready to focus on fading the scar those silicone strips will be very handy. But for now, lotion, massage, and paper tape are my instructions. I did pick up a couple of Spanx shirts to wear under clothes and will try them out, but so happy that damn binder is gone! I do still have to wear the binder strap on my boobs- they are still riding high and need to drop into place- but he said as long as I wear that strap just half of the day that that is fine. Thank goodness b/c I don't have a lot of shirts that disguise that damn binder strap from sticking out in like a v-neck shirt.

On a side-note- I really like my boobs! Yes, they are still little- got 225cc silicone Mentor but they perk up my girls really nicely without looking like I've had anything "done" to them. Yesterday I bought my first strapless shirt- EVER!!! So cute! Could never rock that look before as I was flat as a wall and after kids it seemed even a strapless bra would flatten them more. Now I can't wait to show off just a little curve! Date night w/ my hubby this Saturday night- first time since surgery date- can't wait to feel good in something I never could have before!

I must also give my PS props on my incision placement. I had had consultations with 2 other PS's prior to choosing mine, both were older (mine seems close to my age- around 38) but when I looked at the other PS's portfolios of tummy tuck pics they all had really high incisions, or incisions that were low in the front but rode really high on the hips. This was NOT an option for me- I enjoy low-rider undies, jeans and bikini bottoms and did not want to be sporting an obvious TT scar poking out of my pants! When I found my PS he said he could make the incision anywhere I wanted and had me bring in my fave panties and bikini bottoms to mark where to cut. The other PSs insisted they could use that as a guide but would also just have to follow the body's natural hip contours which may cause a high riding scar on the side. MY doc was fine with making the incision below the hip. I personally think that because he is a much younger doc and got his surgical credentials in the past decade instead of 20-30 years ago like the other 2 that he uses much more current practices and preferences in his TT procedures. The other 2 docs got their surgical credentials in the 80's- when women were rocking the Jane Fonda aerobic workout-style bikini bottoms and therefore wanted high scars that could be hidden behind their ridiculously high-hipped bikini bottoms. But today fashion has changed and women's needs have changed and am so glad I found a doc that seems to be in better touch with what women today want. I love the placement of my scar- Super-low, under hip bones, will never peek out of a bathing suit unless '80's style swimwear is resurrected. Am posting a couple of pics so you can see it. I do have a small vertical scar from my old belly button but that too is low enough to hide under any low-rider waistband. :)

Btw- couple of days ago I started taking arnica and bromelain- what a HUGE difference in swelling! My PS still thinks I'm backed up from the constipation early on so am trying to get things moving but the arnica and bromelain are fantastic.- BTW- I had no idea what bromelain was before reading about several other ladies who recommended it. Turns out it's a vitamin supplement derived from pineapples! Makes sense! So many of you recommend eating pineapples in your recovery to minimize swelling- and it does- but it also chafed my tongue completely! For almost 10 days it felt like I had burned my tongue and it hasn't felt normal again until today. I won't be eating any pineapples for a while! But the Bromelain is just as good as works wonders.

Well, that is all for now. Just happy that I have no doubts whatsoever now that this was the right thing for me. I already love my new bod and can't believe the huge strides in improvement of my body every day. Yay!!! The change in my confidence is crazy. So happy I did this finally!

19 Days post-op: Hello! Am healing well...

19 Days post-op:

Hello! Am healing well and feeling pretty great. Not much soreness unless I really overdo it- did some vacuuming the other day and that made me sore- but otherwise am back to doing most everything except exercise. I still get stiff if I've been sitting down for a bit- takes me a couple minutes to straighten up completely- but for those who don't know what I've been through and see me out and about they'd think nothing different of how I walk or play with my kids.

Finally yesterday I transformed my living room back into a living room instead of the temporary hospital room that it had been resembling. Felt good about doing that. Then hubby and I went on date night last night. My regular sitter had no idea about anything and couldn't tell at all. Date night was so great- but started out a little rough... tried on some pants for the first time (I've been wearing cotton jersey skirts with elastic waistbands) and couldn't get them up around my swollen belly :( Felt like a fatass. :( Then I tried a cute drawstring pair of pants but they rubbed the incision uncomfortably so it was back to the jersey skirt. I DID rock a strapless top for the first time in my life so that felt fun and sassy. My girls are still really high but in the shirt that just looked like it was due to the bra. But unknownst to anyone I was not wearing a bra! Also a first! Loved that! Was able to navigate my way through dinner, dessert and a movie in heels with no binder or spanx on any of my parts- which felt rather liberating since I've had all my surgical parts bound in straps, binders and compression garments since surgery day! But I will say that by the time we were half way through our sushi dinner I felt as swollen as a watermelon! By the end of the night my belly swelling was out of control!

I know that the swelling issues are totally subjective and different for everyone but was wondering for those of you lucky enough to keep the belly swelling at bay- what is your secret? I am taking arnica and Bromelain every day and that seems to help a little- and I wear 2 layered spanx tank tops to compress things but wondering if anyone has any other suggestions? I've asked my PS about ice packs but he discouraged them immediately after surgery saying that with the belly being numb that putting an ice pack on can be dangerous as you may not be able to feel if the ice is kind of burning you with cold...? or something like that... So if anyone has any tips or helpful hints they would be much appreciated!

My PS keeps saying he thinks I'm still backed up from the constipation immediately following surgery- and I don't want to tell him his job or anything- but I've been completely regular for more than 2 weeks now, done enemas, stool softeners, fiber pills, and trust me (sorry for the tmi) but everything has been coming out just fine. So I truly don't think it's a "backed-up" issue but am convinced it's swelling... Hmmmm.... Help! Need advice!

One other question for those of you who have gone before me... again, I realize this is subjective but still curious- how long did you wait to re-commence "intimate activities"? I am feeling like my healing is going well enough, but am still moving gingerly so I know I must still wait a bit- but I don't feel like I'll need to wait a full 6 weeks into my recovery. How long did it take for the rest of you?

Just over 3 weeks post-op (22 days)- am SO happy...

Just over 3 weeks post-op (22 days)- am SO happy with my results! Incision is healing nicely, scabs are almost all gone. Not really loving my belly button but for me that is just a small detail- I am so pleased with how great my belly looks that I rarely focus my attention on the bb that much. I have heard some ladies mention putting a bead or marble in there once the scabs have all healed to encourage it to hollow out a bit- anyone have any input on that? Still sleeping in my recliner- tried the bed again last night but was just uncomfortable and couldn't sleep. Will try it again in a couple of days. My boobs are still riding high but am really happy with the size I chose and think they will look great when they finally drop into place. As for the belly swelling I've been putting this giant icy compress on my tummy for 20 mins at a time about 3x a day whenever I have the time and it has really helped with the swelling. I will try to keep that up to stay on top of the swell. Have a PS appt this afternoon- looking forward to it! This has been such a smooth process for me- am so thankful I took the plunge! Posting more updated pics! Would appreciate any bb/marble input if anyone has any! Happy healing ladies!

Just a quick note- took my measurements this...

Just a quick note- took my measurements this morning and I've lost 4 inches around my natural waist!!!! (That's where my pooch used to rest.) My hips are measuring the same but WOW- 4 inches less in the waist- I'm a happy girl :)

30 days postop!- Just a quick update as I...

30 days postop!- Just a quick update as I don't have too much to add right now. Am feeling really good these days. I've begun exercising again- LIGHTLY- just a mile a day on the elliptical- but every day I increase the resistance so am feeling a little stronger every day. I hate how my muscles have atrophied in this recovery and look forward to feeling strong again. I am fully active and back to all my regular activities (minus sports.) Went to the coast for 4 days and did lots of hiking and playing with my kids- felt great, just swelled a lot by nighttime but not much pain or discomfort. The swelling thing still bugs me- prevents me from fitting into my old clothes which sucks since my weight hasn't changed. I've got 3 cotton skirts that fit and wear each of them on rotation. I miss my regular wardrobe and look forward to fitting into it again someday!

Am very happy with my breasts but am still waiting for them to drop down into place. They look like they've dropped a little in the past couple weeks but are still riding high. Wtf? Even my doc said he expected them to be closer to their final resting position by now... makes me nervous when he says that as I've seen pics of some BA's where the implants never fully dropped... and they DON"T look good... My aren't freaky looking but they aren't what they should be... yet. Doc said to be patient as sometimes it can take a few months. He has me pushing on the upper edge of the implant and holding it down for 10 seconds- and doing this 30x a day. Can't WAIT to stop this as I probably look like I'm feeling myself up all the time! lol! Has anyone else gone through this extended wait for their BA to settle down completely?

That's about all for now. Am still SOOOOOO excited for my results and over the moon with how smooth my recovery has been. My heart goes out to the ladies that have had difficulties in their recoveries and am keeping you ladies in my thoughts! Hang in there!

No more pics for now as no major changes since last pics. I plan to start the silicone strips tomorrow so perhaps more pics after a few days of that if I see any changes! :)

Another quick update- am 38 days post-op today and...

Another quick update- am 38 days post-op today and very happy with all things. Am healing really well, feeling great and so excited about how I look! The only thing I'm still having trouble with is that I am generally a side sleeper and cannot comfortable do that yet. But have adapted amazingly well to sleeping on my back with my head and knees propped up just slightly. I rarely get sore in my day to day activities and have been doing the elliptical for about a week and a half now. I still wear my compression binder regularly- it's not the one the doc gave me but rather one I found at Macy's that I LOVE! Very comfortable and much easier to take on and off than I ever found spanx to be. I really just wear it to keep the swelling at bay. My boobs still need to drop some more but am happy with how they are looking so far. I still wear a binder strap over the top part of the implants and can't wait to be done with that, but will deal with it as I need to for now.

I've been doing a combination of scar massage with either Scar FX or Bio Oil, as well as wearing the silicone strips for about 12 hrs a day. Does anyone have any recommendations on the best silicone strips? Mine work fine I think but was wondering if there are any that are better than the rest as I will soon need to replace mine.

For those of you contemplating a mommy makeover, I know everyone's journey and recovery is different. But as far as my own experience- I am so completely and extraordinarily happy that I finally did this. LOVE my results and so happy with my doc. Do your research well b/c the right doc can make all the difference in your scar, healing and overall experience.

Much love to the ladies on the rollercoaster. It's been a helluva ride! :)

PS- Forgot to mention that my waist is now...

PS- Forgot to mention that my waist is now officially 5 INCHES smaller than pre-op! Can't believe it! It's funny- I used to think I had a waist but no hips. Now that it's all cinched together I realize I always had hips, just never had a waist. You can really tell in my recent pics. What a difference!

Hi there ladies! Had my 6 week post-op appt this...

Hi there ladies! Had my 6 week post-op appt this morning and it was great! Doc said I can throw away my breast band! I was really hating that thing- would wear it whenever I was home and to sleep at night and the thing was so uncomfortable! Granted I was wearing it waaaay tighter than necessary since I was worried about it taking so long for my implants to drop so I thought I'd help them out by cinching the band as tight as I could get it. I would wake up in the morning and my sides under my armpits would hurt from wearing the damn thing so tight! Well, my implants seemed to get the idea b/c one of them has finally dropped into place and the other is making its way down too. Finally.

The doc also said I don't need to wear any kind of compression on my abdomen anymore unless I choose to. I will see how that goes. I think when there are times when I have plans at night I'll wear it in the day so that I can still zip my pants by evening. Other than that, I'll try going without and see if I blow up like a balloon or not. I will say that for about 2 weeks now I've been able to fit into all my old clothes, jeans and even skinny jeans without any problem, though I am usually yanking them off the second I get home as I don't like how they rub against my tender scar/incision area. In any case, it's SOOOOO nice to be able to dress and feel normal again!

The doc also gave me the green light on pretty much everything else- said it's ok to lift heavy things again- I won't do any damage (I was always worried about that.) He also said I can do any and all exercise including ab crunches and situps- but just start out slowly and listen to my body. Think I'll listen to it tomorrow- tonight I'm going out w/ my girlfriends! Sans binder! :)

The doc did pull at a few stitches that were starting to push their way out but other than that he just encouraged sticking with the silicone strips and massaging the incision to help the scar to heal.

I am such a happy camper!!! I would do this again a million times over! Been doing a bunch of shopping this week and can't believe how different things fit! I used to only wear flowing, billowy shirts to disguise the bulge underneath. Now I find myself searching for shirts everyday that actually SHOW my figure instead of hide it. My waist is now officially 5 1/2 inches smaller than pre-op!! I am a happy, happy girl :)

Mwah to all my MM ladies out there! Thanks so much for all your love and support throughout this! You rock! :) :) :)

7 1/2 weeks post-op: Well, all is going...

7 1/2 weeks post-op:

Well, all is going great here. About a week ago I ditched my abdominal binder and compression garment completely and haven't noticed much of a difference in swelling so am soooo happy to be done with that thing! I feel like my body can finally breathe again! For the sake of comparison I put my binder back on last night to sleep in just to see if I woke up with my belly any flatter but it was no different than sleeping without it- which means I can ditch the spanx and binder with a clear conscience knowing it is no longer aiding me in my recovery. Yay!!! I have been doing any and all activities- though haven't tried out my golf swing just yet- afraid I will hurt myself and need to get a bit stronger first. I do notice a bit of swelling here and there but it's never enough to prevent me from fitting into my clothes and seems like it's the same bloating I would have had pre-surgery as it usually follows things like a sushi dinner or a couple of cups of morning coffee. I don't notice any swelling after physical activity so that is great! The doc cleared me for all exercise and abdominal strengthening so about a week ago I tried out situps with the added support of a situp bar. I was quite surprised at how easy and painless they were! But I think that was rather misleading. With the numbness in my abdomen I was not totally in tune with what my body was exerting and likely did too many situps because a day and a half later I had some pretty severe pains along one spot on my incision that used to bug me in the immediate weeks after surgery. At the time my doc said it was likely a muscle spasm that was causing the muscle to rub against an internal suture causing me pain. Well, my guess is that relatively unused muscle got over-exerted in my overambitious situps and started acting up again. It sucked- was the first time in 6 weeks that I needed to take a pain pill and muscle relaxer. Was much better the next day but think I'll ease into the situps a bit more gradually from here on in. It's tough to be patient as i feel I will notice the full extent of the TT results once I get some tone in these abs so I am anxious... but will try to be patient.

The boobs are doing the same- still waiting for the left implant to drop a bit- it's not real asymmetric but you can kind of see the top ridge of the implant unlike the right one which has a more natural slope now. The doc said to be patient and keep pushing on the top edge of the left implant to encourage it to drop.

As far as the boobs go I am really happy with them! I was so concerned pre-op about doing the boobs as I really didn't want people to be able to tell- which is why I chose the smaller 225cc size- but am SOOO happy I did them! The size is great- in clothes my boobs looks the same as they did with my old padded-pushup bras so I don't look like I've "had work done"- but if I'm going out for a night on the town and want to look a bit va-va-voomier I can put a push-up bra on now and really show off the curves! I love that I have that option! Plus I feel sexier than ever when I'm naked or rocking some lingerie or a bikini- I absolutely love it! Occasionally I wish I went a little bit bigger but most likely if went with more cc's I would be insecure about people noticing the difference so I just remind myself to be content- my husband definitely is!!! ;) Overall I've gone from a small 34B to a small 34C- never in my life have I filled a C cup so I do a little victory dance every time I go to Victoria's Secret as shopping for intimates has gotten so much more fun!!!

Been treating my scars still with a combination of silicone strips, paper tape, Bio Oil, Scar Esthetique and a lot of massaging. It seems like it's darkening a bit but I've heard to expect that- it gets a little worse before it gets better. I'm not worried about it- but look forward to having it be a faded white line. Can't wait till next summer!

That's it for now! Happy weekend everyone! And good luck to all you ladies getting ready for the MM and happy healing to all of you recovering from it! :)

8 1/2 weeks post-op: Well, not much has...

8 1/2 weeks post-op:

Well, not much has changed here- I am feeling completely healed- it's rare that I feel any soreness or pinches of pain. Am still aggressively treating my scar with a combination of silicone strips, and massage using Bio Oil or Scar Esthetique. I have resumed rather rigorous exercises too which has been both good and frustrating. Good because it feels great to be able to do situps again and start toning my tummy. Bad because doing the ab workouts is causing me some serious swelling- which makes me feel fat- which makes me want to work out harder- which makes me more swollen. And the vicious cycle continues like that. :( SWELLING BE GONE! YOU ARE NOT WANTED HERE!!! I haven't put the binder on in weeks and have no intention of ever wearing it again. The swelling may come and go but the binder is not going to have any effect on my results anymore at this point so I'd rather just be done with the discomfort of it and just deal with feeling swollen when I have to. I know that in a few month's time when the swelling goes away it will all be great and I don't think it makes a difference if I wear the binder anymore or not.

Am attaching some photos taken from when I first woke up today. Not much change from my 5 1/2 week pics but the scar is beginning to fade a little. I don't want to post night-time pics as I don't even like looking at myself in the mirror at night. The swelling makes me feel like I've got my old bulge again and I can't bear to look at it. But I looooove the morning pics!

Breasts are doing good- left boob is settling a little but still needs to drop a bit. They are looking good though and I'm very happy with them!

That's about all for now! Happy Sunday ladies! :)

I haven't updated in a while as life has...

I haven't updated in a while as life has resumed its wonderful pace again. I have been feeling great, SO happy with how I look, the swell is gone except for when I overdo the carbs or coffee or sodium, but that would've made me swell before the surgery too so I don't really count that. My scar is fading nicely. My breasts have both finally settled (left one has probably another couple of weeks left of settling but am finally seeing a difference) and my hubby and I are both very much enjoying the new me. My natural waist is now 6 inches smaller than it was pre-op!!! My hips are only 1/2 inch smaller but that is fine as most of my bulge was around my naval. I LOVE how clothes look on me now and LOVE how I look naked even more! Hubby and I are taking a trip to Hawaii in Jan so I can't wait to rock this new body in a bathing suit!

Here's the unfortunate side to the story... Coincidentally just as my tummy has been healing nicely and looking good I found a questionable mole that I opted to have the doc remove. I've had a cancerous mole in the past and now the docs are all quite vigilant about removing any that might seem questionable. This "new" mole was on my new tummy- and since the skin that's there now used to be in a different place I can't seem to figure out where this mole came from or if it always looked as it does now. To err on the side of caution my PS opted to remove and biopsy it and wouldn't you know it- there were some abnormal cells in it- not cancerous, but the doc said more skin margins would need to be cut out around it. LAME. So I had that done on Wednesday and sadly will now have a very highly visible scar a couple inches to the right of my bellybutton. WTF!? I went through hell to get myself the tummy I wanted with hide-able scars and now it's all effed up with a new scar right in the middle of my belly. Ugh.

And if that weren't enough- a couple of weeks ago I found a lump in my breast- actually closer to the armpit- and of course the hypochondriac in me went right to the dark and scary thoughts. Very fortunately, after a mammogram and ultrasound the doc confirmed it was just a common cyst (I was prepared to cut both my lovely new breasts off to avoid anything having to do with cancer so was relieved that that wasn't the issue.) Now my PS is planning to remove the cysts as they are quite close to the skin's surface and should be a simple procedure. What's got me a bit frustrated, AGAIN, is that the surgeon did a great job of keeping my breast aug scars under the breast fold and easily hidden and now- I'm going to wind up with a scar under my armpit next to my breast that- even though it's for a cyst removal it's going to look like a boob job scar! Dammit! I mean, I couldn't be happier that it's not cancer and would take anything as an alternative to that. Just wish it didn't involve more scars. Oh well. I know my health is more important than anything. Just voicing frustration.

Other than that all is happy and well in the mommy makeover recovery. Will post more updated pics soon. Hope all you ladies are healing well :)

Well, can't believe I'm nearly 5 months...

Well, can't believe I'm nearly 5 months post-op now. LOVE my BOD! Love my boobs! Love my tummy! Can't wait for my tt scar to fade but truly I have no regrets or complaints. Am nursing a couple of new smaller scars now with the stomach mole removal as well as the removal of my breast cysts but am happy that the doc was able to keep the scars minimal. This journey has been an extensive one but I would do again in a heartbeat. My self confidence is leaps and bounds above where it was in terms of my body image and I love working out now as I can totally see the difference in my abs which used to be hidden by my nasty stretched out skin. I am so glad I did this! Will post pics soon as the scar looks different than the last batch of pics. For now the scar looks rather dark- as I expected it would- but I look forward to having it fade. I also look forward to my husband's and my trip to Hawaii in 1 month!!! Can't wait to rock a bikini- something I've never been excited to do! Hang in there ladies for those of you starting the recovery- it all works out in the end! :)

Am now 5 months and 5 days post-op. I still...

Am now 5 months and 5 days post-op. I still can't believe this new body is actually me! I bought a new bikini this week and had to take pics of myself in it b/c I couldn't believe my eyes! It's almost like I'm looking at someone else! I've never been comfortable in a bathing suit- even before having kids. A lack of boobage always made me feel self-concious. Now- I can't wait to get to Hawaii! My trip is in 2 1/2 weeks and I am so excited! My scar is still very prominent but I can tell it's doing its thing in the fading process- though still dark it seems to be turning less red and purple and more brownish and lighter in some places. I know it will take a while and am content for now with just being selective in the bikini bottoms that I choose. Am posting a couple of bikini pics which are truly amazing when you compare them to my "before" bikini pics. I LOOOOVE looking at the before and after. Makes me so happy!

The only thing that is rather taxing and frustrating for me right now is that on Dec. 19th I had my breast cyst removed. It was not cancerous but my PS thought it would be a simple procedure and offered to do it. Unfortunately it has been a bit of a fiasco :( I wound up with a severe hematoma on the side of my breast close to my armpit. And under the hematoma is a gigantic blood clot! It is literally the size of a toddler's fist! Looks like a tumor when I look in the mirror naked! Can't really tell when I'm clothed but I am in a constant state of pain with it. And unfortunately the doc says it could take several months to a year for the blood clot to be reabsorbed and the swelling to go down! Dammit! Haven't I suffered enough with the healing required in the MM? Must I go through a whole other period of healing now for the damn cyst??? LAME! I can only wear bandeau-style bikinis or else the lump shows and dealing with the constant pain has brought me to a place of ongoing emotional and physical frustration. I know I just have to accept it because nothing is going to change it, but the constant discomfort makes acceptance difficult. The whole situation is just not cool. F*ck.

Oh well. I will continue to try and distract myself with the elation and excitement I feel when I check out my own bikini pics and hopefully time will pass and so will this damn blood clot.

Happy holidays ladies! Hope you all had a good one!

Almost 9 months PO. WOW! Am posting a recent...

Almost 9 months PO. WOW! Am posting a recent bikini pic- loving my tummy these days- been working out lots and getting ready for triathlon season. Recently started the brazilian butt lift workout as well as the usual fitness training and truly am thrilled with my tummy definition. I HAVE ABS!!!! holy crap! LOVE THAT! My scar is fading though still very pronounced. Will post more pics of that another time when I feel like you can see a major difference. For now am patiently waiting that out. But things have not healed without some frustrating complications :(. As I mentioned in previous posts I had a breast cyst removed in December at the offering of my PS. He thought it would be a pretty simple procedure but proved trickier than anticipated. I wound up post op with a large hematoma in my left breast that caused me a great deal of pain but was told that over time (up to a year or more) the hematoma would subside and all would be fine. Hhmmmm....

So for the first 6 weeks post-op of the cyst removal I dealt with a great deal of pain in my left breast. It sucked. Different pain sensations every day, lots of swelling and an overall emotional rollercoaster...again! I did my best to try to remain positive though as I knew it would be a long journey. Things seemed to improve over the next couple of months- the hematoma was getting smaller and the pain- though it continued on a daily basis- seemed to be less intense.... right up until March 23rd (3 months after the cyst surgery.) Makes no sense to me but for whatever reason I woke up on that morning with severe breast pain. It continued all day with intense "zingers" of pain about every 5 - 10 seconds. Though I could handle the individual zingers, the frequency of them was what really got to me. I couldn't relax or breath deep the whole day as I constantly knew I was just seconds away from the next wave of pain. UGH. Sucked. What sucked even more was that it was the first day of spring break and I was fully aware that my PS was leaving town for 10 days and perhaps had already left. Didn't want to deal with some substitute doc who was unaware of my situation so I decided to ride things out on my own in hopes that it would feel better the next day.

Woke up the next day feeling better but nowhere near as well as I had felt in the 2 - 3 months prior. I felt pretty helpless w/ the situation as there was nothing I could do but more emotionally frustrated as the returning pain made no sense to me and I am a person who operates on logic. I tried to remain positive but each day of subsequent discomfort made that more and more difficult. At the end of spring break I called my PS's office in hopes of seeing the doc about it but the receptionist - who was sweet and kind, but truly should stick to answering phones and not attempting her own diagnoses- said it all sounded normal and that as the doc was just returning to work his schedule was fully booked and I would have to wait out the next 3 weeks until my scheduled appt. This is where I began to spiral downward a bit. The pain became exhaustive to deal with and my attempt at remaining positive started to unravel as I began to feel like I was in this all alone. Eventually I went to my OB who scheduled an ultrasound (which revealed nothing) and emailed my doc about the situation. I really should have emailed him sooner b/c by the time I decided to communicate w/ him I was really frustrated and not handling it well.

Sorry- making this long story even longer- anyhoo, finally saw my PS who isn't quite sure why I'm still in pain :(. Am now on round the clock Advil and some lidocaine patches to wear at night. My breast still hurts- sometimes stinging, sometimes overall soreness, sometimes it feels like there are needles inside my nipple. The whole situation has affected my libido - immediately after the MM I felt so sexy my hubby and I couldn't stop "celebrating"- but now I find it hard to relax in an intimate situation b/c just touching anywhere near that area causes me pain and makes me tense up. UGH. I'd rip these implants out in a hot minute if I thought that would make the pain go away but I think it's not so much an issue w/ implants as it is just from the general trauma my breast has been through with both the breast aug and the cyst removal. The whole situation just blows right now. I can't believe it's been almost 9 months since my MM surgery and over 4 months since the breast removal and I am still dealing w/ daily pain. I am just feeling emotionally drained at this point. Staying positive is becoming really difficult. WTF!?? About 8 years ago I broke my back in a couple of places in an awful car accident- and even that healed in less time than all of this. Sometimes I feel like I am starting to lose it. I would trade the pain for my old little saggy boobs any day. I mean- it'd be a bummer, but for me I'd rather feel good than look perky.

Please help me ladies. I need some positivity. Has anyone else out there had such a lengthy recovery in terms of extended breast pain? Any suggestions? Am posting an 8 month post-op pic for your viewing entertainment. Hope the rest of you ladies are doing well. I will try to hang in there.

Hi ladies! Well, here I am 9 months postop- and...

Hi ladies! Well, here I am 9 months postop- and finally I seem to be getting some relief from the extended breast pain related to my breast cyst excision. When the pain is not there I find myself really enjoying the new me- love checking myself out in the mirror and still reminding myself that this is ME in the reflection. For those of you waiting out the swelling- be patient- you will get there and it will all be worth it! Am posting a pic taken in January when I was in Hawaii- I was almost 6 mos post-op in the photo. Whenever I have a day when the pain comes back I check out this bikini pic and it makes me feel better- reminds me why I put my body through all this in the first place :)
Dr. K

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
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5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
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