Successful Abdominoplasty with Muscle repair....34 Yrs Old, 3 Kids - Seattle, WA

I started scoping out procedures on this site a...

I started scoping out procedures on this site a couple years ago. After going to a couple lypo consultations i realized that lypo would help but probably not make my tummy look the way I wanted.
I had my first child at 22 via Csection, with the next two at 25 & 29 I had VBACs. Luckily stretch marks don't run in my family but after each child my tummy just got more and more lax. :( i am tall 5'9" and 165lbs. Because of my height the weight carries well on me everywhere except my mid section.
I had a consultation with Dr. Grenley on 6/17. The office is in a nice building near Seattle University. The staff is warm and friendly. I have done way too much research on tummy tucks and the types of techniques so when Dr. Grenley took out a pen and paper to sketch what to expect I was beyond comforted at his knowledge, and expertise. He was speaking my language.
I will need a full TT with muscle repair for my diastisis recti. Because i don't have ample skin there may be a small verticle scar to close the old bellybutton hole. But that insures the TT scar will be lower. I did express that I wanted to lose some weight prior to the surgery and he agreed it would allow more skin Laxicity.
This is the Dr I plan to use. Im still saving $$ because $$ is an issue. My husband doesn't want to see me in pain. But he supports me and loves me with or without the procedure. But this is for me. This tummy/skin gets in the way of the life I want for myself. It gets stuck in my zipper, i have to tuck it in to pants and skirts, when I work out its bouncing and flapping and taunting me the entire time.
Yesterday I received a call from Dr. Grenleys staff inquiring if I had questions. And then a Handwritten note from Dr grenley arrived in the mail thanking me for my time. It's the little things that are making me feel more and more comfortable with my choice. Plus the consultation was FREE through realself. Next step? Make my appt!

Big babies!

This is me pregnant with my eldest (and largest) child! He was almost 11lbs. I was only 21 and ate EVERYTHING with out a care. I spent most of my youth painfully skinny no matter what I ate I was super skinny! So when I got pregnant it felt good to eat and gain weight so i just kept eating. I ate my way into gestational diabetes and a huge (but healthy) baby. I had to have an un planned Csection because he was so big. My tummy paid the price for this. The next two kids were over 8lbs and my poor tummy got more lax with each kid. Love my kids. Want to love my tummy again.

Scheduled my Surgery! GIRL POWER!!

Over the past couple months I have talked myself into AND THEN back out of this procedure. You see... there are two arguments at play here:
1) No way! GirlPower you are beautiful! You are so much more than the way you look. Who cares what anyone else sees. Your tummy is a badge of honor that you grew 3 healthy babies in there. We should be able to see the beauty in our tummys. I don't want any woman to look at her tummy and be ashamed of it! I should be a champion for tummys that look like mine! I have a daughter and one day she might have a post baby tummy. I don't want her to feel bad about that!
2) Yes yes! GirlPower! I had three kids and I deserve to feel great again! I don't want to stuff my tummy down the front of my pants when I sit down. I don't want to wear spanks and undergarments to feel great on a night out with my husband. I want to put on a swim suit and slide down that water slide, and run around with my kids without my tummy taunting me. I want to repair this muscle damage that doesn't allow me to have a strong core and possibly has caused me back issues! I hate when I zip my tummy into my pants on accident OUCH! I want to lay on my side next to my husband in bed without my tummy reaching him before the rest of me. I want my tummy to just be a non-issue. I'm not doing this for anyone else but ME! I can show my daughter that we, as woman, are in charge of our own bodies and we are responsible to honor them anyway we see fit. I have tattoos and piercings. This is just another modification, that takes pain and sacrifice that I feel would benefit my health and well being.

Both of those points of view are 100% correct! But my "Yes" side wins and always does. My tummy gets in the way of the life that I want for myself! I get so excited when I think about what I will be doing 6 months from now. The freedom! Being able to use my core again! Wearing clothes without hiding it!

I have paid my $500 down payment and scheduled my pre-op AND surgery dates! Pre-op is Oct 28th AND Surgery Date is Nov 19th!

November 19th I see you!

Now to make some changes... A surgery is HUGE DEAL! I told myself before I go into surgery I will begin actively living a healthier lifestyle. I want be as healthy as I can so I can heal faster and get back to normal sooner! The setting of this surgery date has me working on a plan which will include a change in lifestyle choices, eating better, yoga, exercise, more water less alcohol. I am currently working on this plan. I don't want to put pressure on myself to lose any certain amount of weight. I just want to be healthier and stronger. I'll check in when I have it in stone :)

Laying down...

Yikes. I've never actially seen my tummy from these views before. I've always tried to suck it in when i am in bed with my hubby. So much work always worried about it and trying to hide it. I can't wait till it's an after thought.

Pre-Op completed

Went to my pre-op appt! Honestly the weeks have flown by and I've been so busy with work and family I haven't had time to think about this huge upcoming surgery!!! My husband joined me and was supportive and solid. I can't believe it's on in three weeks!! Ahhhhh! I informed my work (using a very basic "hernia surgery" excuse) and even informed my mother. I didn't call it plastic surgery or a tummy tuck. I called it elective post baby/c section muscle repair surgery. My mother is a bit of a "busy body" i made her promise not to tell people not even my sister. If there was a way to not tell anyone I would. But I will need her to watch my kids overnight before my surgery. So it was out of necessity. I explained it as if it was no big deal. Which it is. But I want this procedure to be as confidential as possible. I have my husband as my support system so the less she knows the better.
During the consultation we made final payments. I was able to save almost half of the amount due and paid in cash. The rest I used carecredit. I need to go shopping for post operative supplies, my perscriptions and get some blood tests done to make sure I'm ok for surgery. I have not done well working out or losing weight. But I have stopped drinking alcohol which I know will benefit my healing body. It's right around the corner. Eeek!

Blood test completed....supplies mostly purchases....One week to go!

One week! I went to paclab and got my blood tests done on Tuesday to ensure I'm healthy enough to for surgery. I have been online shopping for my supplies. Thankfully my husbands health savings account covers a bunch of great stuff and all my perscriptions. I will include a list of the supplies I purchased. But here is a picture for now.
I have gained weight. Lol. So much for losing. I stopped drinking alcohol but replaced that with nightly cookies and milk. Hahaha! If it's not one thing it's another. Im still a healthy-ish weight. I have heard an unexpected side effect of a TT is weight loss. The tighter abdomin causes one to feel full sooner. I'm down with that. I need to call the Dr tomorrow to double check they got my test results and a check I mailed last week.

I have a cold! What do I do!?!

I started feeling cold symptoms last week! First it was mostly sinus/nasal stuff now it's moved down to my throat and I'm coughing. I started taking Vitamins and EmergenC daily. I called Dr. G's office last week just to let them know and the nurse said that as long as I don't have a fever I should be fine. And to check in this week. I hope my symptoms get better. I DO NOT want to post-pone! I have heard is is NOT GOOD to be coughing and sneezing while recovering from abdominal surgery. Sigh. Hoping for the best!

TT Supply List

I will be calling into the Doctor today to do a 48 hr pre-check in...I still have a cough. I will be sure to mention it when I call. BUT for now, here is the supply list of things I bought or already had that I thought I would share.

Supplies purchased for my Tummy Tuck procedure:

Prescriptions:
-Sanitize Wash
-Stool Softener
-Antibiotics
-Pain Meds (oxy)
-Antibiotic Ointment
-Nausea medicine

Other Items:
-4x4 Gauze bandages
- Medical tape (paper)
- Body Compression Garment
*this is a stage 2 garment. I purchased one through the doctors office for post-op. This one is to be used 2 weeks post op.
-Arnica Montana (tablets)
*I Started taking these 1 wk pre-op. I heard it helps with bruising and swelling
-Large Ice pack
*To help with my swelling tummy
-Arnica Cream to be used once incision is closed and mostly healed
-Pill box to keep my MultiVitamins
-Smooth Moves Tea
*Helps with constipation
-Panty liners
*I guess you don’t really wear undies while wearing your compression garment so these are panty substitutes.
-Oleeva Silicone Scar Reduction Sheets (not pictured)
*One covers the TT incision and one to cover the navel.

**Most of the items I found at the drug store but my stage 2 compression garment & Silicon scar treatments I found here. http://www.makemeheal.com/mmh/home.do
I’ll update if they work well.

Pre-Op Check-in

I called the office today for my 48hr pre-operative check in. Basically talked to Lesley and she went over what to expect on surgery day and to make sure I was avoiding blood thinners and washing with my cleanser. I told her about my cough and she is sure everything should be fine. I feel better than yesterday just a tiny cough left I will be fine in 36 hours! I have been taking emergency twice a day, plus multi-vitamins so I'm confident I will be close to perfect.
Tomorrow is my last day at work before my leave. I feel like there is so much to do tomorrow! I would love to organize the garage, clean the bathtub and wash the sheets and covers on my bed. I haven't told my kids yet. I figured the longer I wait the more likely they won't spill the beans to everyone they know. I will tell them on the way to school tomorrow before I drop them off. They will be staying with their grandmother for 2 possibly 3 nights so I can rest and the hubby can be "nurse man" and also get some work done from home.
I have 3 books I plan on reading, I'm kind of excited for the chill downtime actually. I feel like I've been going going going for months and not had time for myself. So although I'm getting cut open, stretched and sewed up I am also seeing this procedure and time off as a drastic form of self-care.
I am surprisingly zen about it right now. Not worried or anxious, just ready to be on the other side of it, healing and recouping. I'm sure I'll feel different as the day draws near. But for now...wooosah.

Welp It's done!

Wednedsay night my hubby took me to dinner and then to Marshals to but some cozy button down flannels for post surgery. Just a quick date before the big day.
I got up Thursday morning around 6 am, took a shower with my hibaclens wash and put on my comfy clothes. Traffic was crappy so we made it by 8am. We reviewed paperwork and other logistics with Eilene (sp) my nurse. She was very comforting and kind. I then met my anesthesiologist who was an older fella but very energetic and had a lot of jokes. He commented on how great Dr. Grenley is and an amazing surgeon and he loves watching him work because he's so meticulous. We were in good hands. Then Dr Grenley came in and went over the basics. He took his time drawing his reference lines on my body. You can tell it is important to him to get it right!
After that I kissed my hubby goodbye...like 5 times lol! Eilene put my compression sox on me, and strapped on some leg braces that would hold my cathater. I felt like I was being prepared to go into space! Lol.
They took me to the operating room. The entire back wall was windows and it was filled with bright sunlight! We've been windy and stormy here in the 206 all week and It felt like a HOLY light shinning through the windows upon all of us (cue the choir) haha. The anesthesiologist continued his joking. He said something about "are you ready yo get Hiiiiiigh". Lol. They put the iv into my hand, talked to me about my kids, put the oxygen over my face, told me to breathe deep and that was all she wrote. I do remember Eilene my nurse was posted right by my side holding my hand. That was so conforting and the last thing I remember. :)
I woke up in the recovery room and My nurse was right there. I have a couple choppy memories from that time. I was highly drugged so i had no pain. She helped me get dressed. Dr Grenley stopped in to tell me everything went great and they took out a lot more skin than expected. It was a bit of and "I don't you so" moment for me because i've been squishing this tummy for 12 years. I know there was more than he thought initially. Lol. The anesthesiologist came in too. I don't remember what he said. Lol. I assume a joke was in there. Then Eilene helped me into a wheel chair. My hubby was there waiting for me. She pushed me down to our car. I asked for a hug and thanked her for being so kind to me. She helped me into the car and strapped me in and we were out! We made It home around 7pm. Took meds, peed, and was knocked out. One thing I recomment is to stay on top of the meds during the night. The pain will wake you up, so when you finally take the meds there is a fair ammount of pain and discomfort untill they kick back in. Day 1 is done! I may post more later as day 2 progresses! ???????? p.s my hot male nurse is impeccable. As soon as I make a face or noise of discomfort he is on it! Thank you lord for this blessed, loving, hunky man!!

What day is it?

As long as I stay on my med schedule I'm ok. I am pretty comfortable once in bed. Going to the bathroom is a long, slow journey. I can feel a burn and sharp pain when I sit on the potty. It's probably the scar. I just send my hubby out to get one of those padded toilet seat risers. I am too tall to be sitting so low to the ground. I feel like the extra height might make it more comfortable to sit for a while and hopefully I will be able to have a successful BM.
Staying in bed all day and then slowly scooting back and forth to the bathroom is all the activity I can muster right now.

Tired...

The meds are kicking in so I'm starting to feel suuuuuuper sleepy. Thought I would post a picture of the roses and the potty seat the hubs just brought home for me.

I feel great today :)

I spent the last 2 days in bed 95% of the time. I managed to learn how to get out of my bed on my own without hubby's help. It includes using my arms to push myself up as strait as possible. It might take a minute using my legs ad head against the head board to steady myself but once I'm up strait it's easy to slide my legs off the bed and go. I am moving quicker and more upright too!
My husband

B to the M

BM accomplished. Just glad I finally got that mess over with. I have my post op tomorrow. Excited to get this contraption off and see what's really going on under this garment. It would be nice to get these drains out tomorrow but I know Dr. G would rather leave them in longer to be safe than to take them out too soon and regret it. Hope I can shower! That's all I really want right now :) Everyday my hubby gets out of the shower looking all clean and smelling good I want to punch him in his handsome male nurse face! lol! Got a little work done today. Ready to lay down and chill out for the evening.

Post Op drains Out...Holiday approaches.

Yay! Today I had mt post op appt. Everything looked great and since my drainage fluid was low consistently for the last few days days Dr G decided I could get them out today! Yipee! Since the Thanksgiving Holiday is in 2 days I would have had to wait almost another week to get back in for a drain removal appt. It was a quick owie feeling. Wormy aliens escaping my body! Jk. It wasn't bad. I got a quick peek at my tummy and my belly button looked cute! Yeeee! He added a gauze cushion and wrapped me all up before I could take pictures or see too much. Lol. I always wondered how women on this site get all these pix in the operating room or 1 or 2 day post op pictures to post. My garment stays on me like glue! Im scared to take it off! But Now that Im home I managed to peel it off to post a quick pic! Haha.
Besides that news...my in-laws come in town tonight for the Holiday weekend. My husband arranged this without consulting with me first. Um hello I've had this surgery planned for 6 months! Male nurse major fail. I truly Love them they are lively, loud and fun. But this is going to be a lot for me. My mom maybe the busy body in my family but his parents are kind of judgers, rumor spreaders and $h!+ talkers. Greeeat. I don't plan on locking myself in my room for the next 4 days but it is a viable option. If I say something rude to them....the meds made me do it. That is all.
I should also say I have been taking arnica before and after surgery. Dr G said today it hasn't been proven to help and may cause bleeding. He doesn't advise it! But so far so good. I will cautiously continue.

Up and around...

Spent most of today up and around. I sat and visited with hubby's family for a good while. Took a trip to the store with the hubby. Got a good walk in. Started to feel my incision scar bug me a little after walking for awhile. Came home and did some computer work, sat and visited with fam more. My mom came over and we all have dinner. It was nice.
Then my mother leaves, and the drinkers begin their decent into conversational obnoxiousness. I found myself asking "is it too soon for another pain pill?" Of course it was. My husband tends to drink too much when his family in in town. I get it... he misses them...this is how they "bond."Let's just say my faithful nurse has checked out for duty for the night and left me with this DUDE I have to half babysit. HE GETS SO ANNOYING. I am total introvert and I need time alone to chill and unwind in order to function like a normal person. I gave it a great effort today to be social and still do the self-care thing. I feel bad because he is THE BEST guy 99% of the time but wen he drinks he annoys the FRICK out of me! So now he's drunk, blah blah blahing. And I just want to turn the lights low, read a book until I fall asleep. Instead I will be listening to his unceasing no-relevance-to-nothing comments, asking him to shhh will only create more talking out of him...until he finally falls into the hazy sleep...snoring like a bear and hopefully NOT roling over and smashing my broken healing body. Lord please help me not have to push this man onto the floor. Amen.

Shower time...ooohh em gee!

Thank ya lord, thank ya lord! It felt so good to feel water wash away the last week. My hubby helped me wash my hair in the sink a couple days ago which was nice and I've been a ninja with the baby wipes...but THAT shower was heaven sent! I got to clean all the cotton gauzy stuff stuck all over me and get a clear picture of what I look like! My tummy area is still pretty swollen but my scars are so thin and delicate. Go Dr Grenley! I can tell the most difference under my breasts (upper abdomen) it's so much smoother and flatter. Those two weird side-by side rolls are gone! My belly button is a strange shape. But I will wait till those stiches come out on Dec 11 to re-access the navel area. So far SO HAPPY!

Ouch! Those muscles don't play!!!!

Woke up and I'm super uncomfortable! The lower abb muscles are so sore just near my hips as if pulling inward. So there is a dull pain in the front lower abs and my lower back area. Near the cupcake tops. (I prefer cupcake tops to muffin tops thank you very much) Just took my morning meds hope they kick in very soon. Ugh.
Took it very easy yesterday It was mostly an all bed day. Even used a gel ice pack to help with swelling. Much needed. Had a few lightmeals served by my faithful nurse. And sorry for the tmi but we have been getting creative so I can "take care of him" too. It had been almost a week. We've been married for 10 yrs (together for 16) for a reason. Lol!!
My in laws flew out early yesterday morning. Love them, they cooked and cleaned and kept the kids busy. I have been so clueless about what day it is when they wanted to go downtown on Friday I was like "Sure, it'll be fun to get out of the house." Didn't realize it was even black friday WTF!?! Lol! We did a nice amount of walking. Went out to dinner but I had to stay in all Saturday to recover from that venture. Ha!
So i am sapposed to be off work till wednesday but i somehow promised to go in tomorrow to help a new employee get started. I don't plan on staying all day. I will be there the minimum amount of time then I'm out!
Oh yeah and on top of alla dat. My Dear Ol Aunt flow came to visit last week so that was another fun thing to deal with. She was expected but not welcome. I took more pix last night but nothing looks different enough to post. So I will leave little quote I found helpful as I started this journey..

Back to Work tomorrow....

Welp My time off work has been eventful and quite drug enduced! It's funny reading my earlier post updates. I must have been on that shhh. I have a couple extra perscription pain and muscle relaxers left but I figured I'd try to have an extra strength tylenol day instead just to help ween me off yhr hard stuff. Two weeks today! I will start adding advil tomorrow if I think I need it. I'm feeling a lot more. Not pain feels, just feeling stings of movement and a little discomfort. I will definately try to spend most of tomorrow sitting.
There is a bit of "ooze" that shows up on the dresssing I have been using over the drain holes. It seems to be coming from beneath the tape where the vertical and horizontal scars meet. Im not alarmed. It looks like it just yellow fluid with old dried blood. Doesn't hurt but I did lift the tape clean with the medical cleansing solution and put hella ointment on it before adding the new gauze. I'm not alarmed. But I think I should clean it daily no matter what, even between shower days just to be safe. I don't see too much difference in the swelling from the lasr pix. But here thry go anyway...

Yellow goo and blood oh my!

I have been showering cleansing my belly button, my drain holes, letting them air dry, slathering with antibiotic ointment and carefully yet securely taping gauze over the wounds. I started noticing that the gauze covering the drain holes was leaking through a bit. It was a yellow liquid with dried blood. But when I remove the gauze this drainage was not coming from the holes at all it was from my incision. Right at the intersection on the horizontal and vertical would the tape was peeling off and yellow.
Well when I showed my husband he started googleing and I started realself.com-ing. I decided to call the doctor. I knew it wasn't an infection but I just wanted some peace of mind. So I called Dr. Grenley's office. The late night answering nurse/lady took down my message, my concern and my phone number. Less than 30 secs later Dr G called my cell phone!!! He explained that this drainage is not rare especially at the intersection of teo incisions. Sometimes a stray stitch can cause extra leakage. He told me to cut away any loose tape that was covering the incision, cleanse and cover like normal. If I felt like I needed to come in I could call back. ???? Welp I followed his directions. I sanitized some tiny scissors. Cutting away the loose yellow tape was kind of gross and fun. Be sure to have good lighting, a mirror you can get real close to and maybe even a small compact mirror to see from another angle. Once I got the tape off there wasn't much of an issue I could see. Yeah! Today was a tylenol/advil day. Advil works better for me. I'm still a bit hunched over without the narcotics. But I can manage. I was starting to ferl like a crackhead for a week there. Lol.

Milestones...

1) When you're put under, they put a breathing tube down your throat. When I woke up from surgery i felt like I got punched in the lip. I must have been biting my lip and the tube for like 5 hours. Today my lip is back to normal. ????????????
2) I have this strange need to gag when I brush my teeth. I feel if i can't brush the very back of my tongue my mouth is not clean enough. My fear of the gag reflex causing me ab pain has kept from that ultra fresh feeling. Today I got my gag on. Ahhh. So fresh and so clean clean!
3) I'm headed with my family to a Holiday event. I took a shower, curled my hair, added some clip in extensions, fleeked out the brows, contoured my face up, did the youtube eyeshadow job and am wearing boots with a teeny heel. I will be on 3 advil and I don't plan on lasting more than a couple hours but hey. I have been SCRUBBY AF for weeks! The pants are elastic faux leather. Lol. I can't even attempt jeans yet. But hey. Feelin better erryday!!!

Had a bad night...but a good day

I couldn't get comfortable. And ai have a dry cough that kept me up! Got up at 1am to read a book. Tried to go back to sleep at 3am. Woke up at 5 and laid there till my alarm went off. My hips hurt. I want to sleep on my sides so bad! I called in sick to work. I was just too exhausted!! My husband stayed home with me I took some advil and finally slept till about 10am.
Wtf? Just when I thought I had it all together. Lol. While we were out getting lunch i was staring out the window and said "I can't believe I did this...I can't believe I just got surgery and you were cool with it and here we are." Lol. Deep moments. Deep thoughts.
Icing my tummy now we just did a Nyquil cheers and hopefully I can sleep better tonight! I have to get back to work tomorrow!

Im wearing Stretchy Pants....jeans actually!

Ok... so I'm finally in my stretchiest pair of jeans. I need to remember to get up and walk once in awhile. It is very easy for me to just sit here hour after hour. I plan on doing a lil Xmas shopping during my lunch break so that should help.

Update on the stage 2 garment I bought from Makemeheal.com. It was waaay too tight ( have wide hips) that poor little sucker didn't stand a chance over these hips! It looked like it would be way more comfortable so I was super bummed! It had no hooks or zippers, just firm elastic stretch. I can't tell if the sites measurements were wrong or maybe I gained weight between when I ordered it and when I had surgery....and just didn't notice lol! The exchange process is pretty crappy. I bought the garment from a place in Cali, it delivered quickly. But to return you have to send it back to ATLANTA, GA on your own dime. Then they have to receive it, inspect it for damage/wear and then decide to give you $ back. Who knows how long it will take!?!? I just tracked it on USPS and it looks like they have attempted to deliver it twice so far but the place was closed? Ugh! So I went ahead and bought another garment (they emailed me a coupon code to lure me back into their trap) in a larger size. I'm an XL I guess...damn! Hope this one fits because I do not want to do this return thing again! Aaaaargh!!!! I'm so ready to get out of this old thing strappy zippy thing I've been wearing and rinsing since my surgery date.

Arnica, I don't know if it works. I took it religiously before and a week or so after and now I keep forgetting to take it. Dr G didn't act AMAZED that i was healing well or anything in my post op. I can't tell if it's making me heal faster or anything. I brought the lil pills with me to work to start to take them again. Who knows...

FINALLY getting belly button stitches out on Friday. The day can't come soon enough! The swelling ebbs and flows with my day. I lay down and ice my tummy at night. I try to wash and change my dressing daily. The goo is no longer yellow but a pinky clear color. Which is cool. I can't wait to see whats under this old tape.

It seems like Dr G is takes his time with the healing process, 7-10 before removing drains, 4+ weeks to remove stitches and change original tape....I kinda want to rush this along! Trying to be patient.

I knew this would be a long road...

Got my belly button stiches out yesterday. Didn't really feel anything. Still swollen and numb. They changed my old tape and put new tape on. They also sold me silicon tape to start using daily once my incision is more healed. It was only $15. I bought those silicon strips online for 80 bucks. Crap. I should have just waited! Oh well.
They looked at the small hole that was leaking and recovered it. The nurse says It usually takes awhile for these to heal. Sometimes they turn black. Well when i removed the gauze to take a shower this afternoon it was like a plug came out and it was a black whole. Like 2mm deep. So gross. After my shower I filled my navel and the hole with ointment and recovered them. It's gross but I'll post a picture anyway.

I feel 4 months pregnant....

I wake up feeling good and then about half way through the work day I can feel my swelling start. It creeps up from above my belly button until it is under my bra.
Dr. G said that when the body is at rest all the swelling and liquid are transferred throughout the body. When you are upright all day it starts to form again in the healing area. So here I am at my desk feeling the small swelling sensation. I have unbuttoned my jeans to allow my tummy to be swollen. By the time I get home I feel pregnant!
Like seriously remember when no one could tell you were pregnant really...but your tummy was always feeling tight and full, and you couldn't really wear your regular jeans so you used a rubber band to close your jeans? Not pregnant enough for maternity pants.....that's how I feel. I usually lay on the couch when I get home and ice with a large gel pack. It helps a lot.

Stage 2 my ass...

So my larger size stage two garment came in the mail yesterday. I was so excited i took a shower and put it on. It felt much smoother than my post op garment. I hand washed my old garment and decided to wear my new one last night while I slept. Bad idea.
The stage two garment is apparently much tighter than my post-op one. I think it's sapposed to be to help the further healing process. But not too soon. I woke up in the middle of the night I woke up because I was uncomfortable. Well I was swollen just under my breasts and my upper thighs. It was like it was squeezing fluid above and below the new garment. So i woke up ripped it off and put my old one back on.
I felt fine today. But right now (end of day laying abd relaxibg) my skin below my breasts feels more swollen than usual, very soft and it's sore. Like there might be a build up of fluid under the skin. Nooooooooooo! Stupid stage 2. I'm in such a hurry to heal. I need to take it easy and be patient. I'm hoping that a seroma isn't forming from any bad blood flow I may have caused. I heard a seroma might have to be emptied regulary with a syringe. Please no. New garment pictured. Wait till your ready. Don't force it. Argh

Last night...

Took a few pix this morning before hopping in the shower. Still swollen and numb but it gets a lil bit better everyday! I have silicone tape but haven't used it yet. Waiting for that small hole to heal. Im hoping by new years my incision will be completely closed. Still wearing my post surgery garment 24/7.

Silicone Tape time!

I removed post op meducal tape yesterday and started using the silicone tape I purchased from the Dr office. My incisions look great! I am still wearing my garment 24/7. I can actually go a whole day and forget I had this procedure. I am still a bit swollen and numb but there is no pain at all.

Feeling great...

Went to my 8 wk post op appointment last week. Everything is healing well. Dr G adviced me to start massaging my tummy to help the scar tissue soften up. There is hardness under the incision area but he said that is normal.
I am still using my silicone tape pretty much 24/7. I remove the tape stick it to the wall and shower. After I rub Arnica cream over my tummy and incision area. The consistancy of the cream acts as a good massage cream. I usually let the area breath for several hours before re-applying the tape.
I am still swollen and I wear my compression garment at work and outside the house. The stage 2 garments I bought were too hard to get on and off so I returned them. When my garment is being washed I wear a maidenform spanx type tank top. I have not started working out yet. I miss running and yoga. 2016 lets dooo it.

Jiggle in all the right places

I jogged up the stairs at work today. My butt and boobs all jiggles and NOT my tummy! How satisfying!

Over six months later...

Hi! Sorry I haven't updated in a long time. I've been living life the best I can. I have actually gained weight and weigh about 6-8 lbs MORE than before my surgery. But the weight carries waaaaaay better on this body than it did before. My tummy is flatter and my waste is cinched in more. My muscle repair feels amazing. I love having fully working abs. Once I actually put time into working out I'm sure the results will only get better. I am still numb around my new belly button and below my belly button to the horizontal scar. Dr Grenley has offered to do a scar revision on the lateral scar and even do a little lypo on my lower tummy as the fat that existed above the navel stayed with my skin so it's a little puffy there. I may take him up on that offer because the price he quoted is great! I have worn a bikini a handful of times and am still getting used to my new body. I feel great and my clothes fit better even with my weight gain! Love my results! Now I just need to live a healthier lifestyle! I have looked into lypoing more areas than just my tummy. But if i go through with it that will be in another separate review! Cheers!

8 Months post-op update!

I'm back! It's taken me awhile to put together some quality before and after pix. I have all my before pix in a hidden picture app so no friends or kids accidentally run across under boob, tummy or half crotch shot on my phone. Sneaky ????...Ha!
Getting these pix out of this ghost folder, editing them, making sure I'm covering privates, adding them into a layout then deleting them again from my feed, as well as avoiding inclusion of identifiable landmarks is tough work!
So here are some before pix compared to some I took a few weeks ago.....One of the best parts about this procedure is when i sit down my tummy stays put. It doesn't sit on my lap! I sit and it stays. Good tummy!

Laying on my side is a totally new experience! My tummy doesn't form a puddle in front anymore. It's smooth! The only thing i have issues with is my vertical scar (which I mentioned that Dr G offered to fix for a very small fee). When i lay down on my side. It folds into a deep wrinkle. You can kind of see in my side laying photo. My horizontal scar (below pant line) seems to get lighter everyday. I used to have a c-section scar in the same area that was almost unnoticeable. So I predict this scar will do the same. Peace and love!

Scar revision time...

I am having my vertical TT scar revised today to make it less visible. It is costing $400 and the appt will take about an hour. My hubby just dropped me off. Im just in the waiting room ready to go. Hoping this will improve my scar by lightening it in color, shrinking it and maybe preventing the puckering fold that happens when I bend forward or lay on my side. Wish me luck!

Resting and sore after scar revision...

So this is before going in for the revision. I only planned to have this visible scar fixed. But once I was on the table Dr Grenley offered to do this one and my vertical scar below my panty line too! Wow. Thank you! The nurse was sweet and friendly and made sure I was comfortable the whole time. My scar revision took about an hr. I was awake the whole time and we talked and joked. I will say the sounds of the tools and the pulling/pricking was pretty creepy feeling. I was shaky afterwords from being tense throughout the procedure. But it was mostly pain free.
Well now Im home covered in gauze on some pain pills and feeling sore. Im so happy he was kind enough to offer to do the other scar for free. I continue to be impressed with him. Can't wait to see my results.

Scar revision advisory...

I think it's important for me to say why I decided to do a scar revision.
a) I scar pretty well. Before my procedure I had a pretty substantial C-section scar from my first child. It was below the pubic hair line. It was a keloid scar initially and after over a decade healed flat and almost completely disappeared so i know eventually my scars will heal pretty well over time. This original scar was removed when I had my TT and i now have a longer thinner scar in it's place.
b) This technique is better. I went into this surgery knowing I would have a small vertical and visible scar where my navel was. Many Dr's do a TT by pulling the skin down and removing the old navel hole completely which sometimes results in a higher horizontal scar that is visible above many panties or bikini bottoms. I prefer the long scar to be well below my panty line and only having a small vertical scar visible. I think that it is a better technique.
c) I wanted quicker results. My scar, while visible above the panty line was small and getting better. Although I could have waited it out. I believe having a small inexpensive revision would have a better result. Dr Grenley gave me a great deal. I trust his work and his opinion. He clearly explained that the best that could happen would be an improved scar and the worst that could happen would be no improvement what-so-ever. I signed on knowing that.

I currently have stitches under the skin that will dissolve and medical tape covering everything. I go in to get my tape changes this Friday. I will try to post pix then. This is what the tape looks like now. This is from day two so the blood is fresh in this pic but dried up now. But you get the idea. He fixed my vertical old navel scar and part if the horizontal scar.

Scar revision over a month later...

Had my scar revision just over a month ago and it heeled well and feels great! I am still wearing the silicone tape daily to keep the new scar in check. I will update later and give the side by sides between pre-revision, post, and months later.
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

I've done a lot of research on all the different tummy tuck techniques and Doctor's in the Seattle metro area on my own because this is a huge deal for me emotionally and physically and I want to get this right! I felt like the more I can learn and know about this precedure the better decisions I will be able to make. When I went to my consult with Dr. Grenley. He pulled out a pen and paper and drew out all of the different scenarios and techniques he would use. As an artist he was speaking my language. He even showed me techniques that other Dr's use and why he doesn't practice those techniques. I feel like I was sitting in an insightful TT 101 class. Prior to this consultation I had questions about, c-section scars, belly button holes, diastisis recti, skin laxity...he answered every question before I needed to ask. That afternoon I received a personal call from his patient coordinator Leslie the next day to see if I had questions. Then a handwritten note arrived in the mail from Dr.Grenley thanking me. I was sold on his talent, knowledge and the professionalism of his staff. On the day of surgery, everyone was comforting and kind. Dr. Grenley was calm, strait forward and all business. The anesthesiologist was energetic, positive, funny and capable, My nurse Eileen was amazingly kind, reassuring and comforting. She was very motherly to me, held my hand while I fell asleep, she helped me to my car with a stack of saltine crackers, a can of ginger ale w/a straw and a warm blanket she said I could return later. I had to hug her :) I could not have had a better experience. post op review to come...

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