I'm 46, 5'5" and 160 lbs - healthy and fit and...
I'm 46, 5'5" and 160 lbs - healthy and fit and am told I don't look my age (I don't feel it either) - but I do have extra skin on my low ab and my breasts sag now. I figured it's time to pull it all together and do a complete mommy make over.
I am 100% decided on a fully tummy tuck with muscle tightening. PS will do some lipo to nip my waist and contour my hips. I am only about 60% decided on a breast lift - no implants. If I don't do the breast lift, I would like the PS to do some extra lipo on the back/bra rolls.
My surgery is scheduled for 2/16 and I will take two weeks off work for recovery. I'll go back to work part time for a couple weeks before amping up to full time.
I'm nervous and excited and would love to hear everyone else's story, see pics etc. I'll take and post some before pics soon.
Thoughts Questions and Concerns
I have LOTS of questions for anyone who wants to answer! In no particular order:
1. Did your doctor recommend weight loss before surgery? If so, why?
I've been working out like a beast lately. Not to lose weight though but more to gain as much muscle as possible because I'm afraid of muscle wasting with 6-8 weeks of not being able to do a heavy lifting workout.
2. What sorts of purchases did you make pre surgery? What items did you find were most helpful to your healing, especially in the early days?
3. Is the pain after surgery really bad?
4. Walking upright - ? I've heard so many say that it took them a week or two or more. But my surgeon said this was a sign of too "tight" a tuck. Is this so and if so what are the problems/complications due to it?
5. For those who had a breast lift (no augmentation/implants) with tummy tuck: what was the hardest part of healing? I worry that it's too much to do all at once. Is this worry unfounded?
6. Does anyone feel like there is more surgery to be done after a mommy make over? As in - now my breasts and midsection are rockin' - but my back has rolls so Iipo will be necessary. Or my arms and chin look fat and flabby - ie: parts don't match.
Talk to me please.
I've been looking at abdominal binders with an eye towards purchasing for post surgery.
Any suggestions or reviews?
It's exactly 31 days... one month until my surgery date. I'm actually impatient and am wondering if it can be moved up now. LOL Silly me. It's probably best not - I have cleaning and organizing to do, my support system is set up for the scheduled dates.
So, how do you pass the time until your surgery date? I'm thinking of going whole hog at the gym and really seeing how much muscle I can put on before I can't work out at all! I'm making a list of movies and a couple books. I am also going to pick up a few magazines too.
What other suggestions do Real Selfers have?
My First "Before" Picture
I've been trying to take some before photos but I think I am just not so good with a phone camera! Any photo tips/techniques would be appreciated. Anyway, I'll keep trying so we can see what the PS has to work with here.
Wishin' and Dreamin'
Just having a quiet afternoon inside due to the cold. Been to the gym. Cleaned and cooked. So now I am looking at photos and doing some dreaming. I have two swimsuits that I would love to wear this summer. And three "wish waist" pictures.
Today I did some shopping because that's what blizzards are for, right? I know some of my purchases might be a little gratuitous but I think they will make me feel better during recovery. And yes, though I sometimes consider backing out of my MMO, I know that I won't!
Here is my list of purchases today:
1. Two BACK REST PILLOWS for sitting up and sleeping up right - one for upstairs in my bed and the other for downstairs on the sofa - as I expect these two places to be my comfort zones for a couple weeks -- and I don't have a recliner.
2. a set of flannel sheets and comforter for the sofa - that I will send to my son in college after. Kids can always use more, right? :)
3. THREE zip front thermal knit shirts - for post BL wear
4. ONE pair of button front PJs in a fun print b.c I expect I'll be living in them for a while
5. TWO loose tunic tops for going back to work later
6. TWO zip front stretch elastic sport bras
And I have a second order lined up - but want to clear things with my PS first - so this second order will wait until after my next appt 2/1:
1. A "Freshette" device for standing to pee!
2. Cavilon barrier film (spray on) for scar healing (will get PS approval before purchase or use)
3. Medihoney paste for scar healing (will get PS approval before purchase or use)
4. 3M Silicone Tape
5. foam ear plugs for belly button shaping (again - will only buy and use with PS approval)
OK. What are you doing today?
22 Days Until Mommy Make Over
Is it possible to be sick of reading about the surgeries, looking at pictures, prepping, planning? Well yeah, I am. And I have 22 days left to wait. I've been working, gymming, organizing the house and soon I will start putting up a handful of meals. I've even organized things at work - so boss knows when I am leaving, when I plan to return and how I will need to limit my time back in accordance to how my healing is going. I feel like everything is really getting set up well.
So, can it just be surgery day now?? Any ideas for how to pass the time?? What did you do??
Good news today and a thought/question
I had an annual GYN appt today. Chit chatting w doctor as she was doing pap and mentioned my upcoming MMO surgery. Apparently she knows and loves the PS I've chosen. She did a surgical rotation with him when she was considering what sort of medicine to specialize in!! She praised his suturing and he caution - this pleases me tremendously!!
I've also been thinking that since I'll be home recovering for at least two weeks, potentially more -
I might get the Kybella shots for dissolving under chin fat. It doesn't add to much to my grand total
and I think combined with the MMO, it will just feel better. I wasn't sure if there were any contraindications for doing the shots before or after the surgery so I asked the docs here on RS. I hope they will answer soon!
Quick Pre-Surgery Poll
In advance of your TT surgery did you:
1. Wax? (if so, part or all)
2. Shave? (if so, part or all)
3. Nothing and let the surgical staff deal with it.
Pre op and labs all done!!
Had my pre op w surgeon yesterday (and paid up!) and a morning at the hospital today for labs and other paperwork. I think this is the scary part - signing the risk consent!
Anyway I went into the doctor's appointment feeling nervous and even thinking I would back out but he made me feel 100% confident and now I can't wait to see the results. I read on here and worry about the recovery but then I remember I've been through two surgical recoveries before and don't fine - I hope and pray this one follows suit.
The surgical coordinator gave me some recovery bras - OMG they are soooo small! - I'm glad I bought my own - but maybe theirs will fit later in the recovery? I asked if there are purchases I need to make and beyond colace - no. No walkers, chairs or recliners needed he said. He uses a foam anesthetic pain control on the muscle repair - this will provide several days of pain control and should allow me to walk upright and get around fine, albeit slowly, from the start. Otherwise he wants me back to getting up and down on my own, using abs (they're not being cut only pulled together) asap - easily but doing it.
I will stay overnight in the hospital but nurses will have me up and walking asap and several times while I am there. I'm glad to have that night. I received no prescriptions but he said that anything I need I will be able to get at the hospital and will take home with me. Now, if he can do what he says he is going to do - I am going to be THRILLED!!! I can't waaait!!!
SO now the prep - cleaning, organizing, washing sheets and laundry. I am going to do a weeks worth of meal prep (dinners) too. I think having crackers, apple sauce, oatmeal - will help me.
What kind of things made it easier for you, in your recovery?
Breast Lift Question
For ladies who have had a lift - was your bra sizing bigger or smaller after your lift?
Breast Lift only - not lifts with reductions, augmentations etc.
Just a couple days away!!
Friday I got my surgery check in time and my pre op directions. Today I went for some last
minute testing: extended EKG and arterial ultrasounds -- very normal, very healthy -- and a bone density test (good). So now I feel ready and confident about doing this surgery.
Although I am still scared with regard to the anesthesia and nervous about the healing process,
I have such confidence and trust in my surgeon. I know 4 people (2 former patients and 2 doctors) who know him and hold him in very high regard.
Were any of you nervous right up to the moment you went under?
Tomorrow... oh boy!
So today I am cleaning and making soup and generally keeping busy. If I stop and think about it I get anxiety in my chest. What did you do the day before your surgery to keep yourself occupied?
Twas the night before MMO ...
And my house is clean and my rooms are set up and things appear to be well organized...
I just took an anti anxiety pill and had a little more dinner. Am drinking a ton of water too since
I can have nothing after midnight tonight.
My surgeon called me too! I thought that was a sweet touch. Asked how I am doing, am I excited and did I have any questions or concerns. I'm just biding time now. I'm ready to sleep and get up and go tomorrow. WOW!!
Thank you everyone here who has shared their experience, showed their photos and helped to keep information flowing - I feel so much better in that I know what to expect, how I might feel and that I'm not alone in this either. xoxo
Made it thru!!
Successful surgery, overnight in the hospital and most of today. Just home now and so tired.
Not too much pain but definitely uncomfortable tightness everywhere. Learning how to get up and down from bed to chair to toilet to sofa etc has been interesting to say the least.
I promise I will update more soon for now I'm good and I'm tired. Dr. loves his results and I think I do too!
Sorry I don't have better pictures right now maybe tomorrow or the next day .
By the way
Silly question here: anyone else farting bunches just after surgery?? Every time I pee, I fart and fart. Not stinky, just loud. LOL
I guess it's a sign that things are "moving in the right direction?"
My Surgical Experience
Arrived at the hospital at 10:30 for surgery at noon. The nurses came in and prepped me, asked
10,000 questions. My surgeon came in and did some measurements, drew on me - made me really laugh by saying, “We will do a little lip here and here. What the hell! Let’s lip everywhere!” Finally the anesthesiologist came and joked around, and gave me something to relax me. They wheeled the gurney into the OR and I remember just looking up at the big pan lights…
Next thing I know I’m waking up in the maternity ward in a lovely private room. I had a morphine pump - felt no pain! Catheter was GREAT - so I took that and ran w it. I drank so much water that every time the nurse came in she had to empty a full bag! I’ve peed tons, farted more; still waiting on a BM.
By Wed a.m. I was walking around my room and happy about it. Surgeon came in and took a peek. He was happy happy happy - so if he’s happy, I am too. I was released Wed afternoon and have been just medicating, walking and resting. I have been emptying my drains as needed and recording the volume. I’m tired but trying to stay awake during the day so I sleep better at night.
I’m sleeping on the couch in my living room right now and I think I will until the drains come out.
The stairs arent’ hard to do - it’s just easier to keep everything in one place. Sitting up and walking around it easier than laying down. I don’t have PAIN per say - but lots of tightness and discomfort. Pain on coughing and laughing though.
Some “juicy details” — surgeon lifted my breast high and tight. Like they look and feel like I had implants but nope. He said they will soften and drop in a couple weeks. He took about 1000cc of fat from upper abdominal and waist areas. Just a little off hips for contouring. He took several pounds of skin from lower abs: 10 inches across hip to hip and from pubic bone to a couple inches about the belly button. I think my scar is way low - but I haven’t seen it yet. I haven’t undressed or unbound myself yet. I hope to clean up this afternoon and see then - will take photos then.
And, thought I was warned not to - I did weigh myself. I was 165 the morning of surgery. I am “only 168 now - with swelling and drinking tons of water! So that makes me happy. More though, I can’t wait to see my new shape!
So far so good. I hope that each good day continues.
Thank you all for the kind words, the prayers, the advice, the support - it's all be so key to everything.
I tried to undress to wash up and shower - surgeon said I could today. I have to say that it
was an UTTER failure! I couldn't do it. I did take my sport bra off and changed the dressings, but it back on immediately. I took the binder off -OMG!!! LOVE my result- but was only out of it for all of a minute. Didn't take the surgical dressings off b/c I didn't want to pull them. I know he said I could soak them off but I decided to just bind back up and try again tomorrow.
Why am I so scared?! I did put clean clothes on and that feels nice so I guess one step at a time.
Tell me about your first time undoing your bindings, bras and dressings, please?
I did it!!
I am very proud of myself: I was able to take that shower and get myself redressed. And of course now I wonder what I was so nervous about. I have some pictures and after this is posted I will go take a nap!!
Can we talk about SWELL HELL?
Yesterday, I believe I experienced that phenomenon everyone calls "Swell Hell" Around 2 in the afternoon I suddenly felt tight to the point of bursting. I loosened my CG. I drank tons more water. I layed down. It wasn't painful but it was so uncomfortable!!
Is it something I'm doing that brings on this swelling or is it just part of the healing process? How do you deal with it? When does it lessen up? (I know it won't go away completely for a long time.)
Thank you :)
4 DPO and feeling great
Just a quick morning update, pictures later if I can manage them.
I'm feeling wonderful. I'm resting a lot but also being as active at home as I can manage.
If my body is feeling like walking or cooking a little something - I do. If I'm feeling nappish,
I nap. Pretty good so far.
Not a lot of pain just tightness. Nearly standing straight but not there yet - not pushing it either but definitely minimally using muscles so I can get used to using them too. I have to say coughing is THE MOST painful thing. Second to that is laughing - but I think the more I do either one (and I'd much rather laugh than cough) the more comfortable I get with my body's new sensations.
SWELL HELL: had it BAD the afternoon of the 18th. I think the swelling definitely "just happens" but by what we're eating and doing, we can have an effect on that. On my swell hell day I had "low sodium" canned soup (still too much salt) and of course had been taking stool softeners. Yesterday I was extremely cautious to not have anything processed, nor did I take stool softeners and I drank an extra 32oz water in the evening. - Yesterday I had very minimal swelling in the afternoon and only for a very short time. I am going to continue this way for a few more days to see if I can continue w minimal swelling because THAT was the worst thing I've ever experienced!
BOWEL MOVEMENTS: Hurray! This morning was my first since surgery and I'm happy. Wasn't the best but I know it will happen again tomorrow etc. So I feel like another hurdle has been passed.
I guess so far, so good. My first follow up is Monday and I'm just carry on resting and healing until then. I'm so happy I did this and happier still to have this site and all the wonderful information, entertainment and support that everyone here brings. Thanks all!! xoxo
Was going to shower...
Wants undressed I just didn't feel like it so I took a few pictures instead. And I am really loving all my results – just four days into this.
Let's talk about belly buttons
I haven't done a full exploration or cleaning. When I took my first shower on Friday I just let the water run down my body. I didn't try to wash or scrub anything. I also was afraid to touch belly button - but I did finally touch it yesterday. It's full of dried blood and needs washing.
5 DPO -Shower #2 Down!
Longer shower, better washing and enjoyment - I think being relaxed about it helped.
I cleaned a little bit in my new belly button but it seems to be "full" of something - surgical glue maybe? - and a couple stitches. So beyond that effort I left it alone.
10 DPO - Healing well so far
Nothing new to report. I'm bored as hell at home w recovery so today I went to work for a couple hours. OMG it was glorious! I wore a big loose tunic top to hide my drains and I only told me office mate that I was coming in, so I didn't have to deal with anyone else.
I have to say the recovery is a lot easier than I expected and I am eternally grateful for that. I've slept in my bed every night, been walking daily and since I discovered that I can mostly control swell hell by diet (fresh foods only) I haven't been terribly uncomfortable and have had no pain - but the abdominal tightness means I'm not yet standing 100% straight. Soon. And best of all I am about 10lbs down from pre surgery weight!!
I bought a pretty, tight, form fitting dress that I'll try on when the drains are out. I can't wait!!
Pics to come after drains are removed.
Happy healing all!
Hoping to get the drains out tomorrow. Hoping to get back to the gym Saturday.
Yesterday was 9, today is 10 DPO
Went in to have drains removed (totally painless and very quick for any who aren't there yet) and within minutes was standing upright, completely.
I'm cleared to wear high waist, extra firm compression panties as opposed to the binder. So I
went to Walmart for one pair and ordered others (prettier ones) from Amazon.
I'm hoping to be back to the gym for some lite cardio this weekend. Still eating only fresh foods because salt just makes me feel like a grape about to burst. LOL And making sure I get plenty of rest.
Feeling great and happy with things so far. I've added a few photos from this morning, before the
drains were removed. :) My abdoman is still a bit swollen, mons too. And breasts, I am told, will settled quite a bit still. But so far I am really happy with my results - and am 10lbs less in weight than pre surgery. Woot!
12 DPO Took a walk today
And it was the most wonderful walk! Probably 30 min but slow. I found myself speeding up and feeling pulling and tightness, so that automatically put the brakes on and I'd slow down. I'm going to
try for a 30 min walk daily, this whole week, just to get back into some kind of physical activity schedule. And while I don't feel swollen from the walk, I do feel tired. Like, ready for bed though it's just barely dinner time. Tired! LOL
Also planning to ease back into work this week with three, 5-hr days. Woot!
13 DPO and I went back to work today!
I started my day w 30 min on the recumbent exercise bike at the gym before going to work around 10:30. It was so wonderful to have something to do, to get back to a routine. I've missed being there - both gym and work. Granted I only worked 5 hours and hit the proverbial wall at 2pm - where I felt swollen, tired and grumbly - I think it was a good day.
Happily, I'll do this on MWF for the next two weeks as I ease back into my regular schedule.
I just don't know how to take good photos of this process!! Does everyone have someone helping??
I love my side view pics - though in real life I feel like I look smaller that the photo showe.
Front view - you can see the hip lump on the left hip side of the photo, it's actually my right side. I don't know if this is swelling or if he will have to do a little lipo to fix.
And the breast pic - I think they're looking great!! - the surgical glue is beginning to peel and I am happy to let it come off in it's own time. I love the size and the shape is finally beginning to round out some.
I have an appointment w surgeon tomorrow morning. I look fwd to talking to him then!
21 DPO Update
Still healing! I know that for sure by the swelling and tiredness and itchiness.
Mornings when I get up I feel my best - pain free, light, flat and happy.
By mid day I am achy and slightly swollen. By early evening I am DONE with everything and
just want to lay down, watch tv, read or be otherwise quiet and then go to sleep. I sleep a lot
still - 10, 12 hrs per night - but I think this is healing.
I'm active but not back to the gym yet. I just don't feel like I have the stamina though my doctor has cleared me for all activities with caution to listening to my body and not overdoing it.
My incision scars are pink and slightly raised, sometimes achy, often itchy. I am standing 100% upright with all the tight pulling sensations - but then towards end of day I am less so. Swelling: again I find for me it's mostly diet related when it gets "swell hell" bad so I'm eating very carefully and drinking a ton of water.
Compression: I still use my binder. I have bought and returned many pairs of spanx like panty girdle
garments because I hate them. So I am going to simply buy 2 more binder wraps and call it a day. My surgeon wants me to use compression during the day but don't have to at night or if I am going out.
I'm happy. Healing. Tired! LOL
Not my day today
I felt so good today. I think I ended up overdoing it and now I feel like absolute crap. I'm tired and I'm nauseous and I'm swollen and I really just want to go to sleep. Bedtime soon. I will be glad when this passes and I feel more normal in the evenings.
Hope everyone is doing well.
It's been a million years because my computer died and the phone is impossible to navigate for something like this. Still haven't replaced the laptop but working on it.
I am healing really well. Still swelling w food, exercise and at end of day but it's not terribly. I still get really tired. Back to work and gym per regular with no restrictions other than when my body says it's quitting time - so that's great!!
I have had stitches start to spit - we clip them flush to skin w cuticle nippers. Otherwise, all is well.
I have dog ears on hips that surgeon will fix in a few months and one hip side will need a lipo touch up. But I am really happy to have done this and can't wait for summer and beach weather!!
I'll post pictures soon!!
SO many Questions!!
So I have comments and I have questions and I hope you all have replies and insight for me.
Where to begin - I'm a month out from TTwMR and BL. Feels like it's been more than a month.
My breasts are great! Feel well healed and the incisions are all closed and good. TT too - but the swelling. The swelling. Sometimes - though I am careful w diet and drink plenty of water - sometimes it can just be too much.
My incision is good and I am happy with how I look. Swelling and dog ears and other correctables aside... But I am curious about the COLOR of my skin about 1/4" above and below my incision. The scar itself is a deep pink purple. I know this will lighten. But the skin immediately above and below is darker than usual. Almost like bruised but I don't believe it is.
I HATE the compression panties. I like the binder wrap from post surgery and think I need to get a new one as the one I have is falling apart!! But there is no doubt that it helps with swelling.
Ovulation and periods and menopause. I haven't had a period in two years. My GYN has said I am post menopausal. I'm all kinds of cool with that. But this last weekend - I believe I ovulated. 48 hours of one side ovary pain, very pointed. Nausea. Tiredness. Extreme emotionality. And - light spotting!
48 hours and then it all stopped and I was fine. Ugh.
Tiredness and pain. I am no longer on anything at all for pain management and generally I don't have PAIN per say. But, I find that I am almost always aware of my abdomen and how it feels - wether it's tight or swollen or achy or the muscles are feeling "twitchy" or what. And I still get really really tired by mid to end of day - 3, 3:30 and I want nothing more than to go home. On work days (I work 3 days per week) I don't want to cook, just eat dinner clean up and go to bed. On non work days I go to the gym, I do house chores, groceries and errands etc. I have more stamina but I also have more chance to rest through the day.
1. Does anyone else hate the CGs and what do you do instead?
2. When will the swelling start to let up? When really?
2.5 What helped alleviate the swelling? OMG HELP! LOL
3. What was your first time ovulating, your first period like, after surgery.
4. If you're a woman who's been in menopause, did that change for any amount of time after surgery?
5. Is the skin immediately above/below your incision a different color than your regular skin tone?
6. For those farther along in the healing process - is this discoloration temporary?
Ok. I think these are all my questions now. Thanks ladies.
I hope everyone continues to have wonderful results and great healing!