Just had my consultation with the surgeon. Very...
Just had my consultation with the surgeon. Very excited and I'm looking forward to sharing the journey to the flat side with all of you! I have wanted to do this ever since having my daughter over 20 years ago. Even then, after having her and being only 120 pounds, my "apron" was there. Now, I have the opportunity (financially) to finally do this. My boyfriend went with me to the consultation, and is on board with my decision. So the journey begins!
Here are some pictures I took this morning. The first ones are with my panties under my apron, the others are with the apron in the "sling" all tucked in! Pretty awful but looking at all of the pictures that everyone has posted, both before and after, it's helped me to envision what I'll be seeing in just a few short months. I'd love to hear from the women who looked like me before and are post surgical now.
I've also been writing down questions for my Dr. The pre-op is scheduled for January 27th so if there is anything you wished you would have asked I'd love to know that too. So many brave and amazing women out here!! Thanks in advance!
Pre Op on Tuesday - what questions should I make sure to ask?
I have my list of questions, but it seems to be lacking... like I know I'm missing something, but what? Can this awesome RS community help out? Like for the flat side girls, what did you wish you would have asked your PS before you did this? For any PS out there reading, what would you want your patients to ask you?
Pre-Op surprise -they had a different date for me
I went yesterday afternoon for the pre-op consult, filled in the TON of forms, etc.. then went back to discuss the forms, the procedures, and so they could answer my questions. One thing they did say I had to change was to stop taking all of my vitamin supplements, no red wine and no garlic.. ugh how will I live without garlic? LOL .. so as we were getting to the end of the QA session, I asked what day would I come back for my follow up, and the nurse says, on the 25th. Now I had March 6 on my paperwork and I did all of my scheduling time off, etc for that date. She says, no, we have you for February 20th ! SO....I had to re-arrange my time off and my after care givers plans, but on the flip side it will be done and I'll be in my bikini sooner this summer. So I'm now a part of the Feb TT gang! They then took my blood pressure and did the EKG, and then the dreaded paper panty pics. They did not ask me to have blood work done, and I thought that was a bit odd as I was under the impression that was a pre-op necessity. Any thoughts? I just had it done with my regular doc, and everything was good so I'm not too worried. That's it for now..
The countdown begins!
Well I have less than a week to go.. boy did the time fly! I think I'm pretty well set up. The BF will take me there and home, then stay the weekend until he has to go back to work. He just moved offices, so he's moving further away. And of course that all happens this week, right? My daughter is coming home from college on Sunday and will stay with me until Wednesday so I have " coverage" for almost a week. I have the zero gravity chair ready in the bedroom with one of those recliner vibrating pads that I found while super cleaning. Really glad it still works, I think it will help for the first few days, between the extra padding and the vibration ( with heat too) I'm hoping it will ease the dreaded back pain I keep reading about. I've got small meals planned for me, and I'll have them all cooked mid week next week, and I'll pre make some dinners for the kids and the BF so they don't have to cook. Got the list of the chores that have to be done every day, so no excuses from anyone why things didn't get done ;) Filled my meds yesterday and the rest of the week I'll wrap up everything at work so no worries there either. I'm bouncing back and forth between nervous and excited, mostly nervous about being put under. I've never had general anesthesia so that's kinda freaking me out. I know I'll be ok with the rest of it as long as I wake up! The plan is to rest on Friday, and then do mini walks every hour or so on Saturday, trying for a little longer each time. My post op is on Wednesday so my daughter will take me to that before she heads back. I'll be on my own somewhat on Thursday, but the boys will be here just in case. I'm trying not to count on them too much, I mean what son wants to help their mom pee, right? The BF will be back on Thursday night for the weekend, so it will be interesting to get opinion on how I've progressed. Well that's it for now... if anyone has any other tips, feel free to share. Happy healing to those of you already on the flat side, and for the 2/20 gals, good luck!
On my way
20 Feb 2015
Day of treatment
heading out now.... appointment at 7:30. see you on the flat side. good luck today for all.
made it to the flat side!
20 Feb 2015
Day of treatment
in at8:30' home by 1:30. feeling a little dizzy but no nausea. feels like I did a thousand crunches but no real intense pain. going to rest now, I'll post more later.thanks for all of the well wishes!
6 hours post op
20 Feb 2015
Day of treatment
doing pretty good. feeling more pain but it's manageable. no nausea either for which I am grateful. BF said doc took 14 linear inches.. yowza! My cat is sleeping with me, funny how they know. here are a few first pics. happy healing all! ttyl
So far, so good. There is a bit of discomfort while moving around. It's been a challenge learning how to do things without using my core. I took two pills last night instead of one and that helped me sleep pretty well. I have the zero gravity chair in my bedroom, with a vibrating pad under an old comforter on top, and some old pillows on each side to support me. That works really well as I can get up on my own already. I only have one drain, and the PS told my BF that he did not need to have separate lipo holes. Here is my first side view pick... the BF was so cute... he said, baby you are going to look hot.....ter. lol
Doing much better today. No where near as much core/spasm/pain as yesterday. On less meds too. I've been up and walking a bit and I can reach further and even twist a little. Only new sensations today are little " tickeling" sensations all over my tummy. Not unpleasant, just strange. Waiting for my daughter to arrive then going to attempt the shower. Finally peaked beneath the binder. Scar looks like it's going to be low and straight. I'll take more after the shower. Thanks all for the healing thoughts.. right back at you :-)
After first shower pics
OMG... that felt so good. We put a plastic porch chair in the shower and I just sat and washed my hair, did a quick bod wash, and all my daughter had to do was help me in, direct the shower head, help me out and dry off. The scar will be exactly what I wanted. I have not taken the gauze off my belly button as it's stuck, so I'll get it wet tomorrow and tackle that then. It's totally bedtime for me now. night all, safe surgeries and happy healing!
Day 5 - feeling more like my old self today
Hi Selfies! Day 4-5 was definitely a turning point for me, just as many have said. I did not need any pain meds yesterday, took one before bed to help me sleep, and sleep I did, through the entire night! I am able to get up and move around so much easier. I can turn and twist ( a little bit) and reaching is not as uncomfortable.
With all of the good said, it has not been a bed of roses. I took the outlook that I knew the first two days were going to be a drug induced, painful, helpless few days. I knew that it was going to be a good long while before I was back to feeling even close to normal. What has helped me though, is to pay attention to every tiny improvement. The first day, it took me at least a few minutes, with substantial assistance, to get out of my chair and to a (somewhat) upright position. I was only able to take 10 steps on Friday evening before I needed to sit back down. On Saturday, I probably rested and slept the most that day, still needing help to get up and down, pull my panties up after peeing, reaching for things, etc... Sunday I was able to walk about three times as far, with the walker, and I did a few rounds of that. And speaking of walking.... walking SLOWLY, so slowly. Actually everything at a snails pace. I found that hurry=hurts. Yesterday I was much more mobile and a little quicker. Today I put the walker away. So if you are pre-surgery and you expect to be up and good right away, you need to re-evaluate. Have help for at least the first 4 days. The other thing I'm glad I did was make food beforehand. Oh, and make what YOU want to eat!
The one weird thing I have been experiencing is what I've heard called the "Ken doll syndrome". My lady parts are very swollen. Not painfull, just a really strange sensation. I'm hoping that resolves itself soon ;)
I'm looking forward to another shower today, I know it will be easier than the last one and I might even do my hair and makeup. The BF comes home tomorrow so I definately want to look better than the last time he saw me! That's it for now!
Safe surgeries to all and happy healing!
first post op appointment
Everything went really well. Said I looked great for 5 days post. My incision is healing nicely and drainage is continuing to decrease. I have to keep the drain in for at least another 5 days. I go back in on Monday and they will re-evaluate it again. I would love to have it out but the few bits of swell hell I've had, help me to know I would rather have that stuff drain out then have to re-absorb it myself. They were impressed my hair and makeup were done ;) I was cleared to drive which was very freeing, and I drove home from the appointment.
My daughter and I stopped at Target for a few things, one of which was silicone scar therapy sheets. I asked about the embrace sheets, which my PS carries... 30$ a sheet! my scar would need 5 sheets (for one week). You need to do the therapy for at least 12 weeks. That's some serious dough! PS office said regular silicone sheets work well and suggested a few brands (14$/week). Had fun riding around in the scooter thing, but the isles are narrow and I definitely moved some fixtures around...LOL
BF came home and was really impressed in the amount of improvement he saw in me. That really helped boost my spirits! He took me out to the new Bonefish Grill and we had Ahi and wine! It felt so good to be "normal" again. Only bad thing about the date was he said something really funny, and I started to laugh (OUCH) and then he started to laugh, so I laughed harder, and he laughed at me laughing harder... vicious cycle that.....it's not easy to stop! So even though it hurt it was great to enjoy each other.
One thing that I have realized is that I'm pretty creative about picking things up with my toes! The meds gave me the dropsies, and you can't bend to pick stuff up. I wished I would have gotten one of those extender grabby things. I would advise getting one!
That's it for today, going to chill and watch some soaps, then maybe hit the grocery for dinner stuff. Good luck and happy healing to all!
One week post-op - Progress!
Hi all. Getting better and better each day. I am able to move around a lot more, twisting and bending too. The only thing that has been bugging me, and not sure if this is normal or not, is I feel like I am pulled so tight I could just pop. I am not in pain, It just feels really really really tight. Does this go away or do you just have to get used to this new normal?
The bruises are in full bloom now but that's good, it's my body healing. I can't wait to be less sore so I can start the massage. The numbness seems to be getting a little better too, moving from the outside to the middle. I think my belly button will be the last to join the party. Here are some new pics, and a pic of my "bed" this past week. Safe surgeries and happy healing!
Three weeks post op
Sorry it's taken so long for an update. I've been back to work since day ten post op. I got my drain out at 14 days, and the last week I've been experiencing the swell week everybody talks about. I'm still very numb in the middle of my tummy and I am still really tight feeling in my whole abdomen. It seems to be getting better day by day, and I am getting more and more able to bend and twist. I've been sleeping in bed for the past week and am even able to sleep on my sides for a little bit at a time. No tummy sleeping yet, it feels like I'm going to just pull apart lying that way still. Attaching pics from last Friday and today, but not much change that I can see, actually I think I'm more swollen today :( Happy healing all...
4 week post op appointment
Saw my PS last night for my four week check-up. He said I'm doing fantastic and he cleared me for light exercise! Yea, I can get back to the gym! Every day seems to be better, but the progress is slow going and it's harder to judge the day to day improvements. It's more like, oh, last week doing that hurt, or I can bend further than last week. I can lay on my tummy now, but it still feels like I'm stretching it way out. He also told me I don't have to wear my binder all the time, but be prepared for the swelling at the end of the day. That is a fact....the BF and I finally took a day of leisure and went out on the boat. I kept the binder on until we got out to the sand bar, but I was not wearing that with my cute new white bikini! (med bottoms, XL top) lol had to brag on that one ;) We really did not walk around that much and just chilled in the beach chairs. We were out for about four hours, but that night I was super swollen. So, I'm going to keep wearing it unless fashion dictates otherwise! I also did sign up for a few lymphatic massage sessions as the middle of my tummy is still very hard, and the PS said the massage will make that go away. Still numb in the middle too, but that seems to be getting better as well. I did notice that just before the feeling starts to come back, my skin in that area becomes HIGHLY sensitive, like light touch almost hurts. Seems to last a few days, but then it subsides and I'm like... oh I feel here now. Here are a few new pics. Hard to see progress in them, but I am posting one with clothes on now, and one of where my drain was, all healed up. Happy healing to those on the flat side, and safe surgeries to those upcoming!
5 weeks post op- Bikini pics as promised and scar therapy sheets
Here it is.... the bikini bod...lol Really happy with the results. Healing continues and the bf and I had a wonderful weekend, if you know what I mean. ;)
Attaching a pic of the scar therapy sheets from Target, and also how I cut them in half to wear. Safe surgeries and happy healing!
7 weeks post - side by sides
Here are the side by sides of before and after. My favorite is the front view. ;-) Things are getting back to a more "pre-surgery normal" feeling. I'm still numb in the centermost part of my tummy, and I'm still very hard feeling there. Funny story... my one son always teases me and pokes me in the belly as we are goofing about, as he knows it tickles and makes me nuts. He's been good about not doing it for a while with the surgery and all. Well the other day he did it, and hit my stomach, and of course his finger just stopped... bamm... brick wall ! He was like, whoa Mom... dang... I cracked up!
I did go for my first lymphatic massage, and I'm going again tonight. It really made a difference in the hardness and I feel like I can bend better too. It really improved the look at the scar line, I always seem puffy above, but after it was more smooth. But boy did she push on me! She also was surprised that I waited as long to have one. She said many women come in at the two week mark to start. Well I don't know about them, but at two weeks there is no way I could have taken that pressure on my stomach, and forget about getting on and off the massage table!!
Going to start back at the gym this weekend too. Everything but core. It will be interesting to see just how far back I've fallen after almost 8 weeks of no cardio.
That's all for now, safe surgeries and happy healing to all !