2 1/2 years later

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My experience is similar to many others--pregnancy...

My experience is similar to many others--pregnancy destroyed my stomach! I have 3 children ages 5, 3, and 1. They were all very large babies when they were born, the largest was 10 1/2 pounds. I was diagnosed with diastis recti after my second child and it just got worse after my last. I also have some stretch marks but those don't bother me as much as my bulging stomach that I try to hide by wearing my spanx every day and constantly sucking in my stomach. Just the other day I was asked if I was pregnant. That told me that I am for sure doing the right thing by getting a tummy tuck! I am thin and really don't have much fat on my body. I'm 5'8" and weigh 125 pounds, so I can't lose any more weight. I just need to get my stomach muscles fixed!

So I paid for everything yesterday. Nice to get that taken care of. I still need to pick up my prescriptions and get food made. My parents will be taking the kids for the week.

One thing I'm worried about is that I'm having the surgery done 3 hours from where I live so I hope I won't need to go back for any unexpected complications! I'm just really hoping for a smooth recovery. I know if things don't go so well right away my husband will be like, "I told you you shouldn't have done this." He doesn't think I need it, but he isn't the one living with my stomach! It's frustrating not having people support you and believe that you can make good choices for yourself!

Well 2 weeks from now it will all be done! Can't wait to get it over with!

10 days till surgery! I think I'm in denial...

10 days till surgery! I think I'm in denial more than anything that it's actually going to happen. I'm so hoping I have a fast and smooth recovery because I want to enjoy the rest of the summer with my kids!

I'm adding new pictures. I bought this shirt after I decided I was getting a tummy tuck--can't wait to wear it with my new tummy. It's definitely not something I could wear now and feel comfortable!

I had my pre-op appointment this morning and...

I had my pre-op appointment this morning and picked up my prescriptions! I can't believe this is really happening!!!

So my parents were planning on watching our kids...

So my parents were planning on watching our kids for a week after my surgery. But now they might not be able to. My sister had surgery last week and is having complications so she is still in the hospital and they don't know when she's getting out. My mom is with her down in Wichita (i'm in MN) so she isn't sure if she'll even be back by the time I have surgery. My main concern is that my sis gets better. But not having someone to help with my kids after my surgery is going to be really tough. I'm just trying to think positively that she will get better real soon!!!

6 more days and I'm feeling really nervous and...

6 more days and I'm feeling really nervous and anxious about the whole thing. My plan for my kids fell through so I had to ask my mother-in-law if she can watch them. I feel bad asking her because she lives very close to us so she watches them quite a bit already. But she said she can so that was nice. My parents will be able to take them a few days later.

Ok, things I'm nervous about: 1. not waking up or having something go really wrong with the surgery. I'm sure EVERYONE worries about this. I just can't wait till I wake up from surgery so I can think to myself, "I'm alive!!!"

2. having lots of complications afterwards. My doctor is 3 hours away so I dont want to have to be driving to see him more than the regularly scheduled check-ups! Also, I want to spend the summer having fun with my kids, not being sick.

3. not being able to lift my little boy (he's only 1). How soon do you guys think I'll be able to lift him in and out of the crib?

4. and my husband not helping me with things. He's not supportive of this at all. He will barely talk to me about any of it. I know I will probably be an emotional mess after this is over and I will not handle him being a jerk well at all!!! We'll see, maybe he'll surprise me. I think he's just nervous about it as well.

I decided not to take the Arnica Montana. We don't have a health food store around here so I couldn't find any. From what I've read there's no proof it really works anyway. For those of you who have used it, do you think it works or not? I have been forcing myself to drink more water (I'm not a water drinker at all!) and I've been eating lots of pineapple and lots of lean protein.

Our family has a big wedding this weekend so I'm sure time will fly, which is good!!!

Please send positive vibes this way! Thanks ladies, I love reading about all your experiences. They have helped me so much!

The wedding weekend is over and I'm sooo...

The wedding weekend is over and I'm sooo tired! I'm so happy I have tomorrow to get some cleaning done, grocery shop, and spend one last day with the kids before my husband and I take off tomorrow night. I'm starting to get the awful feeling of "what have I gotten myself into." My sister is having more complications with her surgery so my parents for sure won't be able to help out at all.

I'll probably update again tomorrow before we go and then on Wednesday after we get home with my new, flat tummy!!!

So for the past 2 days I've had a sore throat...

So for the past 2 days I've had a sore throat that is slowly getting worse. It is not something I would normally go into the doctor for, but is that a reason for my ps to reschedule my surgery? They didn't tell me what to do if I get sick. We'll see how I feel tomorrow and maybe I'll call. My husband is just getting over a really bad head cold that started with sore throat so I'm afraid I'm getting what he had.

Ok ladies, tomorrow at this time it will all be...

Ok ladies, tomorrow at this time it will all be over! My husband and I just dropped our kids off at his parents' house. I got the house cleaned today and bought some groceries. I still need to finish packing and then get some fruit cut up and washed for when i get home.

I called the doctor's office about my sore throat today and the receptionist said they call in a prescription for an antibiotic, but I turned it down cuz I really don't think it would do any good for a sore throat when I have no other symptoms.

Let's see...what else? I don't know what to wear tomorrow. I don't have anything besides a hoodie that zips and that will be way too hot and I don't want to wear like a dressy button down shirt. I guess I should have done a little shopping.

Please pray for me tomorrow!!! My surgery is at 11:30 central time. Thank you soooo much and I can't wait to let you know how everything goes!

I made it!!! One of the first thoughts I had was...

I made it!!! One of the first thoughts I had was "I'm still alive." I'm very grateful everything went smoothly. This morning we got checked in, he drew some lines on me, and then I went to sleep at 11:45 am. The surgery lasted one and half hours. I was in recovery for an hour and we left the hospital at 3:45. I was sooo sleepy and just a little nauseous. I didn't puke at the hospital but I thought I was going to when I started getting dressed. I just let out a few big burps and felt much better!! The drive to my cousin's was okay--about half an hour. Since then I've been resting, getting up and walking around, eating some, and watching a movie. So far to eat I've had 2 pieces of toast, some fruit, and some ice cream. Everything has tasted good! I cannot stand up straight--that is very annoying. I have to say the pain is a little better than what I expected. On a scale of 1-10 I'd probably give it a 3 or 4. not too bad. So far the whole experience has gone better than I thought. My husband has been taking wonderful care of me too! I think he was so nervous about the whole thing and now he's relieved it's over. So am I! Thanks everyone for thinking of me!

Day 1 post-op: I slept pretty well last night. The...

Day 1 post-op: I slept pretty well last night. The percoset knocked me out. I'm just taking ibuprofen now. I'm having a lot of gas pain and it's hard to get comfortable on the couch. But once I'm laying down and can relax the pain isn't too bad. I'm trying to walk as much as I can so I'm not so hunched over. I had my check-up this morning and she showed me how to clean my belly button and where my drain tube comes out. I saw my tummy and it looks really good!

2 day post-op: I took my first shower. I had my...

2 day post-op: I took my first shower. I had my husband in there with me holding my drain. I was nervous about taking the binder off and how the water would feel on my stomach. I also didn't want to wash my stomach because I didn't want to touch it. Ewww! It's so gross how numb it is. But anyway, everything went fine. I'm definitely moving around a lot better today than yesterday, still really tired. I had my hubby take some pics--he's not the best photographer but I'll put one up so you can at least get an idea!

Day 3 post-op: Feeling good today! I slept great...

Day 3 post-op: Feeling good today! I slept great last night on the couch. I only woke up once to take my pain medication. Then I slept in until 9:00. I am standing a bit straighter today and i'm not so sore when I move around. My biggest complaint is feeling dizzy from the pain pills so I'm going to be all done taking those now! I made some lunch for my husband and I. This afternoon I plan on updating my kids' baby books and getting them organized. One question for you all--when did you start driving after your tummy tucks?

Day 4 post-op: Pain is not bad today. I quit...

Day 4 post-op: Pain is not bad today. I quit taking my muscle relaxer and pain medication because it was making me dizzy. I'm just going to switch between ibuprofen and tylenol and see how that goes. I feel out of breath easily and it's hard to take deep breaths. I started rubbing lotion on my tummy and I hate it! It's so weird how numb it is. The worst part about today is that my whole family is going to the lake and I have to stay home alone :(

Day 5--I have been so happy with how my recovery...

Day 5--I have been so happy with how my recovery has been going, way better than I was expecting! I was gone all day long today--went to the lake--and it was great to be outside and around people again! Of course I took it easy, just sat in a lawn chair and laid down for a little bit in the camper, but still!!! I am now home and ready for bed and feeling pretty swollen. I'm hoping to sleep in tomorrow and hopefully tomorrow will be even better than today!

Day 6--I woke up feeling great but had a busy day...

Day 6--I woke up feeling great but had a busy day so now I'm feeling more swollen and tight. But still no pain so all's okay! I drove 3 hours today and also got some groceries at Walmart. I feel so happy about getting back to my normal life so soon! I've taken nothing for pain today and will finish my antibiotics tomorrow. At this point if you are someone thinking about getting a tt and are healthy, thin, and young and have a great doctor I would say go for it and don't worry! For me, it's been a lot easier than I thought and I spent so much time worrying for nothing. I will put up my one week photo tomorrow. I will be happy to answer any specific questions.

One week--just added photos

One week--just added photos

Day 10--Got my drain out yesterday. It felt really...

Day 10--Got my drain out yesterday. It felt really gross and hurt just a little but it only lasted like 2 seconds so it wasn't that big of a deal. I slept in a bed for the first time last night and slept pretty good. I still have a little swelling, but not too bad. I'm pretty much back to my normal life and very happy with things so far!

I am now 16 days post-op. I've felt the same for a...

I am now 16 days post-op. I've felt the same for a few days in a row. I compare it to being pregnant. I'm uncomfortable, have a hard time putting my socks on and shaving my legs, and my hips and knees hurt so bad when I'm laying in bed trying to sleep. I don't know why my hips and knees hurt so bad but my stomach doesn't??? I think I'll need to start taking some advil before bed and see if that helps. I also want to stretch SO BAD!!! Every morning when I wake up my body just wants to stretch but it hurts my stomach.

My biggest problem right now is that my husband is working a lot so I have to pick up my one year old and that makes me nervous. I don't want to ruin anything!

I am 3 weeks and 2 days post-op today. Things are...

I am 3 weeks and 2 days post-op today. Things are still going great with no complications so far. I slept all night long without waking up at all last night for the first time. Once in a while I'll go out without my binder on and it feels ok. The only complaint I have is that my skin is very sensitive to touch and even putting on lotion very lightly or my shirt rubbing on my stomach hurts.

It has been exactly one month! I still wear my...

It has been exactly one month! I still wear my binder most of the time but take it off when I'm going out in public. I tried sleeping without it a couple nights ago and felt really swollen when I woke up. For the most part I don't think I have much swelling, haven't had any complications really. I feel pretty much normal except when I have to bend over. It's been a great experience and am so happy I decided to go through with this.

Well, here I am--three months post-op already. I...

Well, here I am--three months post-op already. I am very happy with my results, but I'm not sure it's the $7,000 result I was hoping for! I'm holding out hope that it is just swelling so I'm going to give it a few more months. I know I look 100% better than before.

Things I'm happy about: I feel much more comfortable wearing clothes. I'm glad I don't have to suck in my stomach constantly. I had no complications. I haven't worn my binder since week seven and I feel completely back to normal.

Things I hope get better: I feel like my stomach still bulges out, especially later in the day. My scar is a little higher on one side. I still have lots of stretch marks below my belly button. Speaking of my belly button, it looks totally weird and unnatural. And I maybe should have had a little lipo on my love handles. But that's nothing a little exercise can't fix.

I'm trying to get back into an exercise routine so maybe that will help things get better!

The pictures I'm uploading were taken this morning and then tonight. I was hoping to be able to show the swelling I feel as the day goes on. Let me know what you think!

Overall, I'm very happy and would definitely do it all over again.

I am now about 5 months post-op and unfortunately...

I am now about 5 months post-op and unfortunately growing more and more unhappy. I do know I look better than before and am happy I had it done. It is just not the $7,000+ stomach that I was expecting. My stomach bulge keeps getting bigger--not smaller. It is not fat or skin, it is my muscles bulging out. I have not gained any weight and I am 5'8'' and weigh 125 pounds so I am not overweight at all. I feel like I need to suck in my stomach again and hide it with clothes. It sucks!!! Please look at my pics and tell me what you think. I'm not typically a complainer and I've tried to be patient and give it time in case it's "just swelling" like everyone says. Look at all my pics--aren't I getting to look more like I did before my tt, not better??

I made an appointment with my doctor for Dec. 3. I...

I made an appointment with my doctor for Dec. 3. I did email him some pictures and he called me back and said he did agree that my stomach doesn't look as flat as it should. He said he hopes that if I just start to work out on a regular basis and get those muscles strong that they will tighten up. I'll post again after my appointment. Thank you everyone for the kind words and support!

Thank you to those of you who have been thinking...

Thank you to those of you who have been thinking of me and wondering what's been going on! I did see my doctor a couple of weeks ago. He agreed that something is going on and that my stomach does not look as good as it should. He said it feels too soft and that my muscles have definitely relaxed. What he said, and I agree with him, is that since I am tall and thin, my muscles are going to be long and thin. This makes them stretch very easily. I know he did a good job with the original surgery, Everything looked great and felt tight. I also know he did do muscle repair and I can still feel that my muscles are together down the middle of my stomach. But since my muscles are thin and very weak because of large (10.5 pounds) babies, they will stretch, even after the surgery. He pulled my muscles together down the middle, which in turn pulls my obliques and makes them stretch. They have stretched because of being pulled so tight that now they are loose again! He wants me to try and tighten them up the good old fashioned way=exercise, for two months. If this does not help he said he will for sure fix me up. I'm just afraid that if he does have to do surgery again, I'll be good and tight for the first couple of months, but just because of how my body is, the muscles will just stretch and relax again. So I have been exercising my abs and running everyday. I think it might be getting a little better but it's still hard to tell at this point. I'll update again in 2 months with pictures. Thanks for all your concern!

2 1/2 years later

My surgery was 2 1/2 years ago. The time has gone by so quickly! I'm very happy I had the surgery and would recommend it to anyone. I didn't have any major complications and I thought the recovery was easier than I was expecting. After my tt my stomach did start bulging out again and I was thinking I was going to have to have another surgery to get it fixed. Fortunately I didn't have to do that. I think with exercise, especially running, my stomach tightened up and now I'm happy with how it looks. After I eat a lot, it still does bulge out some, but I'm not constantly thinking about it like I was before. My back has a very big arch in it so that alone kind of pushes out my stomach. I still have more stretch marks than I thought I would. I was hoping I'd be able to wear bikinis again, but I still can't. I do think my doctor stretched me as much as he could and got rid of as many of the stretch marks as he could, he just couldn't get rid of all of them. I also think my belly button looks funny, but again that doesn't matter since I don't wear bikinis! So no, it's not perfect and it hasn't come easily. I've had to work for it to be flat, but it is SO much better than it was before and clothes look so much better. I'm posting some pictures...sorry they are a little crooked and out of focus. They were taken by my 6 year old!

2.5 years later pictures

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon

Umm...not sure anymore. My stomach is starting to bulge out like it did before. I emailed him about it and have not had a response yet. (I live 3 hours away so I can't just go see him.)

4 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
3 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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