Thought I would write a review because I've found the others to be so helpful. I'm a 36 year old mother of three beautiful children (8, 6, 4) and my tummy was wrecked because of it. Honestly even as I type that I feel a bit guilty because I was so lucky with my conceptions, pregnancies and deliveries that I feel I should have nothing to complain about. I'm 5'5" and weigh 131. I gained 38 lbs with each pregnancy, which I find a bit amusing, not 39, not 37, 38! I was able to lose that weight after each, but it always took about nine months to fully come off.
I thought I was going to escape my first pregnancy unscathed by stretch marks but at 36 weeks, I saw the start of one by my belly button. Well that one quickly multiplied and it didn't take long before I had all sorts of flaming red squigglies all around my middle. I remember telling a co-worker that I was sad cause I had gotten some stretch marks and she asked to see, so I lifted up my shirt, and honestly I will never forget her reaction. She gasped! "Oh my God!" she said like she was looking at some horrific site. To this day she feels awful about that reaction, perhaps because I remind her it made me sad, and we are still good friends!
After my daughter was born, my stomach of course was still plagued by stretch marks, but the loose skin was more apparent after the birth of my second child. Also I had pretty pronounced diastasis with that pregnancy. People would often comment that I looked like a torpedo. Thirteen months after my son was born I got pregnant with my third. My diastasis caused some issues with that pregnancy and I often wrapped my stomach with ace bandages to have some stability. My stomach was huge, and strangers would come up to me and say, "How many babies are you having?" Or "Does your doctor know how big your baby is because you are huge." Seriously. People I had never met before would say these things! Well after my 10 lb 23.5 inch baby was born, I was left with sagging, loose, wrinkled skin, and a large gap in between my stomach muscles. I can't see my belly button anymore and my kids often think it's fun to look for it when I'm changing. I also discovered I have a small hernia which will be repaired along with the muscles during my tummy tuck.
After my third was born I went to physical therapy to try to get my diastasis corrected, but it did not help. I workout regularly and started doing Pilates three years ago and I can tell that it does help with my core stability, but there is still such a gap. When I lay down I can see food/waste moving through my intestines. Gross! I've known I wanted to have my stomach fixed for four years now, and my husband originally was not as excited about the idea. He says I look beautiful, and he doesn't care about my stomach. Also, he owns his own business and I've been essentially staying at home for the past eight years, so I know one of his major concerns was that it would cost thousands of dollars. Two years ago I was obsessed with the idea and remember crying to him because we just did not have the extra money, and thought this was just an unattainable dream. I resolved to just be happy with my body. Well of course my stomach still bothered me, every day. I had a pooch, that luckily I could hide under different types of clothing, but I hated looking at it. I preferred to keep a tank top around my waist when we had sex so I wouldn't be bothered by flopping skin. Recently I've been working part-time a bit more, and am considering going back to work full-time next year. Our car will be paid off at the end of the summer, which means we could afford a monthly payment to pay for surgery.
One day last month, my husband turned to me and said "You should do it. You deserve a tummy tuck. You gave me three beautiful kids and I totally understand why you want it done." Oh my goodness did I hug that man! I was online researching that night and the next day had three consultations scheduled! Luckily one of my best friends had the same surgery two years ago so I've seen her stomach before and after and it looks great, plus she really loved her plastic surgeon so I was looking forward to meeting him. I met with him, and preferred him to the other surgeon I had met, so I scheduled and now it is just three days away. I can hardly believe it! Wow I shared more than I anticipated, but it's a bit cathartic to type it out since I'm a bit anxious it's happening so soon!