7 months PO circumferential, fleur de lis, and MR *NEW PICS* - South Dakota

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So here I am, turning 31 in 2 days. I've endured...

So here I am, turning 31 in 2 days. I've endured almost 5 years of infertility. Finally, I got pregnant but miscarried twins. I was able to get pregnant again and had my beautiful little boy who is almost 3 years old. He needed a sibling and we tried to have one more. Instead, we got two! I am 4 ft, 11 in, started at about 110 lbs. I carried the twins until 36 weeks with a 35 lb weight gain. I was as round as I was tall! They are now 11 months old. My belly now looks like I'm still pregnant, except for all the hanging skin everywhere. I use to be very thin and slim but not anymore! I wish to get a little part of my body back and not be so pear-shaped anymore. My surgery is only 2 weeks away. I've already done my consultation and pre-op appointment. I will be having an extended abdominoplasty with muscle repair and umbilical hernia repair. The doctor also wants to do an inverted T incision, which I'm a little scared of. But, he said it would provide me with the best results. I've read that this is usually done for those who've had significant weight loss, but I have not. I guess here goes nothing!!! I will put photos on tonight.

Pictures are on. I also forgot to mention that I...

Pictures are on. I also forgot to mention that I cannot work out because my diastasis recti is so severe and my back hurts constantly. I wish I could lose 5-10 lbs before surgery. Hoping that eating right will help. I can't wait to get a personal trainer after my surgery is over!

So I didn't get any photos put on, yet. Hoping to...

So I didn't get any photos put on, yet. Hoping to do that tonight. I tried to do them myself but failed miserably so I have to get my husband to help.

I am getting pretty anxious about the whole thing. Every night after I crawl into bed, I can't stop thinking about it. I hope this is normal. We are now T - 10 days. Yikes! I went to Walgreens and apparently they haven't had any prescriptions called in. I guess I will contact the doctor's office tomorrow. I didn't mention it before but I had c-sections with all of my kids.

Can anyone provide me feedback about the vertical T incision???

Only 1 week from today! I'm excited but mostly...

Only 1 week from today! I'm excited but mostly nervous. I woke up today with what felt like a UTI coming on. CRAP! So I quick called the PS office and they said go get a urine analysis and if I can get it treated before the surgery, I will be ok. So, I'm hoping it was just a false alarm. I'm just waiting for the PS to call me back. If I have one, I'll be put on antibiotics and will have to do another UA the day before surgery.

I found out that the office sent all my prescriptions to a different pharmacy. With 3 very little ones at home, just running to do errands is no easy task. I'm hoping to be able to pick them up tonight (along with the antibiotics if need be).

I keep looking at my mama belly (aka baby pooch, muffin top, jelly belly, etc). I cannot wait to be rid of it. With my severe diastasis, I'm assuming I'll be in a world of hurt for several days. Can't we just skip the whole pain thing? At least I will have the pain pump. My philosophy is "the more pain killers, the better!!!"

The thing I'm looking least forward to is not being able to hold me babies for several weeks. *Sniff*

Less than a week to go! I am currently at work, my...

Less than a week to go! I am currently at work, my last shift will be on Monday. Then the preparation for surgery really begins! I still have to get some clothes that are "tummy tuck friendly." I hope to do that tomorrow after my husband and I go out to our last dinner without kids for awhile. Then, there will be a few meal preps, wash all the laundry I possibly can, power clean the house, and do a major shopping trip.

I'm debating whether to tell the world about my tummy tuck (other than those who read here). Everyone knows that I'm a lot bigger in the gut area after my twins. Those who know me know that I have severe problems with my back because I have no core muscles from my severe diastasis. I shouldn't really be shy of the whole issue, but I kind of am. Some of my family know, but not all. Yes, I am doing for cosmetic reasons but my main reason is because my muscles are so bad. It's amazing that 10 years ago - before my infertility adventures - I was a size 0 to 1. I am now probably about a size 7. I know that many of you are probably thinking size 7 isn't so bad. But you've gotta remember that I started out at 4 ft 11 in and 100 lbs prior to my first pregnancy. All of it went to just my belly, or so it seems. Really, I don't even know what size I am because I refuse to go shopping. It was my birthday last weekend and everyone gave me Kohls gift certificates so I could go shopping after my surgery. I hope I will be smaller. I think I'm rambling now.

Thank you all for writing about your personal experiences and giving some pointer or what to do, what not to do, how to prepare, etc. It all really does help.

I will try to put a few more pictures up before my surgery, even though I'm pretty embarrassed about it.

Better get back to working and charting. Blah!

In 3 days, I will be in the operating room, how...

In 3 days, I will be in the operating room, how scary! Has anyone else been this nervous? Until then, I keep myself busy with work and the kids...and preparing for the TT. Yesterday, I made a super batch of chicken noodle soup. I am going to make a large roast in the crockpot on Wednesday night so we can just turn it on before I leave to the surgery center the next morning. I will be boiling eggs tomorrow for salads or whatever. Pizza will definitely be a meal at some point this weekend. I feel like I'm nesting in preparation for a baby, lol! Kids are taken care of. I also bought some sweatpants and zip ups.

I've got a few more questions to ask the PS before I go under the knife. Soon, I will be over to the flat side!!!

Trying to get last minute things done.....

Trying to get last minute things done...

Extra food made, check!
Laundry, check!
Cleaning, check!
Kids taken care of, check!

I have to be at the plastic surgery center at 7 AM and surgery will start at 8 AM. They are expecting 5 hours for my TT with MR. Is that normal? I am about 30% excited, 70% nervous! I have a list of a few last minute questions, nothing that will change my mind of having the surgery though!

Here goes trying to sleep! Next time I post, I'll be on the flat side!!! Night y'all!

I made it through alive! I won't lie, I was in a...

I made it through alive! I won't lie, I was in a ton of pain. My 2 c-sections were a breeze compared to my TT. I just hope it is worth all of this pain in the end. They took off 2.5 lbs of skin and fat, not quite the way I would prefer to lose weight, lol. The PS ended up doing close to a circumferential TT with the inverted T incision. I am glad he did since I did have a bit of saggy skin on my flanks. I now have 4 JP drains and we just took out the pain pump. I can only lay on my back or stand up because of this type of TT. I had a very severe diastasis that the PS fixed as well as my umbilical hernia. I think because of my muscle repair, I had terrible muscle spasms in my abdomen. After getting a musle relaxant, the pain was much better!

Since my surgery, I've been pretty sleepy but managed to walk around for several hours yesterday. I need help in and out of bed but that's about it. Peeing has been a big problem though. My bladder has to be really full. Anyone else have that problem? Instead of taking laxatives, I recommend you take magnesium. It works great during pregnancy, too.

I will add some pics the next time I get up.

Tried 3 times to add new photos, but it won't work...

Tried 3 times to add new photos, but it won't work...will try again later!

Finally able to add photos!

Finally able to add photos!

PO Day 5! I couldn't take the gauze anymore so I...

PO Day 5! I couldn't take the gauze anymore so I called and asked them if we could redress it. They all know I'm a nurse so maybe that's why they said sure. I couldn't sleep with it and it was falling down and heavy. We filled a whole plastic bag full of gauze and dressings. So I got to peek at my incision and it looks really good. I hope a lot of it is swelling and that my look will improve more. I can officially say, "Yes, I am happy with my results!"

I am only taking 1 pain pill in the morning and 2 at night. I'm still a little sore and tight. TMI- it still hurts to poop even though I am having soft stools. I do miss carrying and hugging all of my kiddos. I have an appointment tomorrow with the PS and I'm hoping to get at least 2 of the drains out. They are only putting out 10-40 cc/day.

Yay, I'm on the flat side and no more twin skin!!!

Not feeling the greatest right now so will update...

Not feeling the greatest right now so will update tomorrow. I did add a few new pics though.

It's been crazy since my last update. I got my...

It's been crazy since my last update. I got my drains out last week, not too bad. It felt like I was getting worms or something taken out of me, lol. I was happy to get rid of them. I started not feeling well with a severe headache for 2 days straight. Then the sore throat started, now the head congestion is kicking in. Plus, my kids are all sick and one has an ear infection. Luckily, my mother in-law is here to help for at least this week. Hubby went back to work today.

I've been having more pain in my upper abdomen the last 2 days. This is the area where my diastasis was the worst and from what I understand, had the most sutures put in because of how severe the diastasis was. Well, I developed a hematoma under it immediately after surgery. Ok, I can deal with it. Last night, the pain was worse and then I got a very small area of oozing blood in my upper abdomen along the incision line. Went to the PS today to get it checked out and the hematoma is breaking down (liquifying as he said it) and just escaping slightly since part of it is just under the surface of the incision. I just need to clean the area with hydrogen peroxide. No infection, no fevers, so I am good there. The PS thinks my pain may be increasing because I had a pain pump for the first 4 days and last of it is wearing off.

Ok, so 11 days post op and I am starting to feel like a bloated marshmellow! I am more swollen than I was a week ago. Plus, I have so much bruising and I don't feel any better than I did 5 days ago. Now I have this leaky hematoma. Feeling very discouraged right now, like it is never going to end! I have been so good at following all the directions. I only lay down or stand (can't sit for another 3-4 days), I don't pick up my kids, don't clean. I cannot wait for life to get back to normal. I know that it will be worth it in the end but it sure does suck being in the here and now.

Because of my head cold, I am doing nasal saline rinses because blowing my nose is not easy on the belly. Hoping my head cold does not get any worse...

After sleeping all day yesterday while running a...

After sleeping all day yesterday while running a fever, having a headache and earache, and praying that I would not start coughing, I feel ten times better today. Whew I think I'm on the downhill of this head cold! Trying to splint my belly while trying to cough and cover my mouth is almost like trying some crazy acrobatic move!

My PS doesn't really use abdominal binders but I am going to ask him if I can use one to help with the swelling at my next appointment, which is on Friday. They are also taking the sutures out of my gross belly button that still has crusted blood in it. I guess I could try and clean it with peroxide but I don't want to harm anything since it was very difficult to keep my BB. I guess I'll continue the awesome frankenstein look until Friday.

I see why people call it swell hell! It really does suck. I think yesterday was the worst or my skin is accomodating for the swelling. I don't feel quite like I'm going to burst out of my own skin!

I will have to post pictures on here soon, which means I should probably take some!

Here are a few things I've learned so far...

1). There isn't such thing as too much help. We've used and abused my mother in-law. She even has postponed moving into her new house a week so she can help us! I am looking for a babysitter next week to help out so she can get her a break. And we are getting her a very nice housewarming gift!

2). Ibuprofen seems to help with my pain just as good as the prescription pain medication.

3). Magnesium is my friend. It is a natural muscle relaxant and it helps prevent constipation.

4). Prepare as much as you can before hand.

5). Don't get mad at your significant other if you said something the day of or the day after surgery. Apparently what I said and what I meant to say were totally different, lol!

6). Expect more pain and swelling AFTER the drains come out. At least this is what I experienced. Once the drains came out, the bruising really started to show up along with some serious swelling. Don't poke the balloon belly or it might pop! I also experienced a lot more pain after they came out. Maybe it's because I had to have some serious work done on my muscles and I had a circumferential TT, and/or I developed a hematoma due to all of the serious repair of my muscles. I also had a pain pump the first 4 days the last of the medication may have been wearing off, too!

7). Remember to thank those who do stuff for you. I try and thank my husband, my friends to check on my, and my mother in-law on a daily basis or more!

Are there any other good tips out there for others or even me?

So my head cold is much better but I am coughing...

So my head cold is much better but I am coughing and sneezing occasionally. Last night, I woke myself up with a cough and boy did it hurt! I seriously was in the middle of my cough when I woke up and though my insides were falling out, OUCH!

Ok, so the bruising is better. My BB looks terrible right now and I'm wondering if some of it is dying :o( I guess my follow up appointment and suture removal is tomorrow so I'll have to wait until then. Also, I feel like I'm becoming just a huge burden. My husband is stressed out. I think my mother in-law is stressed out. I think it is stressing the kids out. I really wonder if I should have just waited to do this or not done it at all. I don't do much for myself since I can't even remember the last time I went shopping. But I am feeling really guilty about it. We all knew it was going to be hard. I'm 2 weeks PO and thought I would of felt better than this but I still am soooo sore and my abdomen hurts all the time. It's all very frustrating. I almost feel as if my happiness isn't as important as I thought to others, maybe even myself; It's easier to not be happy with myself and just give to others.

It's been awhile since I've updated. Things have...

It's been awhile since I've updated. Things have been crazy.

I haven't been working since I have a very physical job and I have to lift a lot of weight. So I've been home. And since I can't lift more than 10 lbs, I've also had to have my mother in-law or hired help here to lift my kids. Plus, I've had all 3 of my kids' birthdays over the weekend since their birthdays are 1 days apart. It's crazy!

The healing is going well. I still have a belly button that is needing extra time to heal and there are still stitches in there. The swelling is insane and I feel like the michelin man every evening even though I'm wearing cgs. But, my clothes from are fitting from prior to having my twins. I still feel kind of fat compared to what I was before any of my kids. I hope the swelling still gets better, especially in my lower abdomen. I'm wondering if I'll need a revision or liposuction down the road. Time will tell.

I am hoping to take 4 week pics.

I have moved around photos so you can see the...

I have moved around photos so you can see the difference from then to now. I can't help but still feel fat, even though it looks like I'm skinny. I am soooo conscientious about my abdominal area now, I hope I can feel a little more comfortable in my skin soon. I am still having a lot of pain in my upper abdomen where the muscle repair was extensive. I wear compression garments during the day and a compression binder at night. I am enjoying the nicer butt that was a side effect of the circumferential TT. Oh, and because I feel like I have an internal corset, I am not able to eat a ton. Because I eat less and I'm eating better, I've lost 8-10 lbs since prior to surgery, down to 110 lbs (was about 120 prior to surgery). My goal was 105, but since I haven't even started working out, I'm shooting for 102 lbs.

Cool and gloomy day here. Suppose to get...

Cool and gloomy day here. Suppose to get rain/snow tomorrow and a low of 13 (F). Brrr, cold. Just not ready for winter, but I do love Christmas.

So I checked out a few fitness places and personal trainers yesterday. I'm a little nervous because I haven't been to a gym for almost 2 years! I use to run 3 miles several times a week, do free weights, and aerobics.

I haven't asked my PS yet but how long until I can start doing strenuous exercises? My favorites are situps but those haven't been touched since I got pregnant with my twins! Yikes!!! I have another appointment on the 20th to get the remaining sutures out of my BB.

I went shopping last evening and it was pretty...

I went shopping last evening and it was pretty unsuccessful, except for a sweater and a few baby clothes that were on clearance. I tried on a few pairs of jeans just to see what size I actually was. I fit in size 2-4 fine but I am bothered by the fact that I am bigger just above my hips (where I still have love handles) than my actual hips. So I still have that pear-like shape, which I absolutely despise! I really don't mean to be so superficial when I say I am in those sizes, but I am very short at 4 ft 11 in and petite framed. I will ask my PS about liposuction down the road if it doesn't get better. Laser lipo gets rave reviews around here.

I am 5 weeks out now. I definitely have all of the ridges wherever I have incisions. They are hard and bumpy. I remember having them with both of my c-sections and they eventually went away. It still is bothersome for the meantime. I still have pain where my muscle repair was done but it is getting better. I also have sutures that keep popping out of my skin, which hurts like heck. And I can feel where there are a few more under my skin, which weren't there a few weeks ago. I am kind of wondering if my body is rejecting some of the sutures. Swelling is also STILL an issue! If I don't wear some sort of cg, it is ugly, especially in my lower abdomen! I am very frustrated with the swelling and I commonly feel like I am in swell hell!

It is exciting to think that I can get back into the gym after a couple of years! I am hoping the gym and eating right will help shed a few more pounds and make me more slim/toned. Maybe that will get rid of my love handles!

I added new pics. I tried to put my 5 week pics...

I added new pics. I tried to put my 5 week pics in order like my previous pics but it wouldn't let me, not sure why.

Whew! Sick kids, Thanksgiving over the weekend,...

Whew! Sick kids, Thanksgiving over the weekend, and my help is officially gone! I can finally lift more than 10 lbs! I went to the PS yesterday and he FINALLY took the sutures out of my belly button, almost 6 weeks after surgery. It is still incredibly swollen but he said it will improve over time and to remain optimistic over the next 3-6 months! And he said I will be a lot skinnier in the lower abdomen, that I will be surprised. He looked very pleased with himself, which is always a good sign! I am an impatient person. But, I did so some shopping and actually had fun! I fit into a very cute little dress that was on clearance for $6 at Kohls, originally $65. I always love a bargain.

I am still not sure when I can do any physical activity since I forgot to ask when the PS was in the room so the nurse has to get back to me. Because of the extent of the muscle repair, it may be another 3-6 months to do hard physical training. Oh dear!!! At least I can walk without getting a back ache now.

I don't have any real complaints right now except for the swelling (at least what I hope is swelling). I am starting scar therapy with silicone gel. I will see the PS in about a year! I And I'm actually looking forward for family pictures tomorrow!

It has been awhile since I have posted. Life has...

It has been awhile since I have posted. Life has pretty much resumed where I left off. I am working part-time and my kids are sick. But, I sure am happy to hold them and hug them especially tight with all that is happening in our nation.

I am 9 weeks 4 days post op a circumferential with a muscle repair and the fleur de lis. I am doing pretty good! I still have pain with my muscle repair, mostly in the evening. And I still swell like crazy. I feel sooo skinny in the morning when I wake up and then I feel like I have clothes that are 2 sizes too small by the end of the day. So I am still wearing my compression garments. I still have hypertrophic scars but they tend to fade after a couple of years for me. Some day when I have time, I will take pictures.

Hope you all are doing well and Happy Holidays!

P.S. Why can't we delete pictures anymore???

7 months PO fleur de lis, MR, and circumferential. Long time no see! New pics!

Here I am 7 months out. It seemed like forever before I would have minimal pain in my abdomen. I had a severe diastasis. Even 7 months later, I still feel like I have to be careful with any abdominal workout because I have that much tightness and pain. I didn't do much of any working out until about 5 months. My PS told me to take it easy for 3-6 months since this was one of the worst he had seen.

About 2 months ago, I made a change in lifestyle to watch what I eat, eat less, and try to exercise more. Still not easy with twin 18 month olds and a 3 year old. But we make it a family occasion. Now that the weather is getting nicer, we go for lots of walks and bike rides almost daily. I do a really good cardio workout at least once a week. It is paying off. I have lost 6 lbs and 10 inches! I still cheat and have those oh so delicious meals with lots of carbs 1-2 times a week, but whatever I am doing seems to be working.

Yup, back at work part-time, too. Things are definitely back to normal. And I feel so much better about myself, minus the deflating boobs, lol! But I will take the saggy deflating boobs over the twin skin any day. And the boobies can be fixed, right?!

For those of you contemplating this surgery, I would say do it! Just do your research on your PS and the facility. It is not risk free so understand the risks versus the benefits. Don't always go with the cheapest. And make sure you have plenty of support!

7 months PO Pics!

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