4 week update- told I can go without my binder - West Des Moines, IA

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I finally scheduled my surgery, only took me 4...

I finally scheduled my surgery, only took me 4 years. I am 28, range between 123-125 pounds, 5'2, and have had 3 children. I gained roughly 45 pounds with the first two pregnancies, and 20 with the 3rd. Apparently my skin has absolutely no elasticity. I have long stretch marks that look like a tiger scratched me and a permanent belly bulge that will not go away no matter what. Even at my lowest weight of 118 it was still there! Everyone I know says that I am skinny and there is no reason to waste my money. What they don't understand is that I hate it. In the mornings when I am getting ready I change my pants 7-8 times, and change my shirt multiple times. I finally get so frustrated I throw on a hoodie or a jacket and keep it on for the rest of the day. I could be sweating to death but it doesn't matter that sucker is staying on, I can't handle the pooch. It makes very very self-conscious. I finally decided that I am done having children and it is time!! I am extremely nervous, I have had a BA and Lipo of my flanks. My Dr. did an amazing job but for some reason I have this fear that I am going to have a horrible new belly button or my scar is going to get infected and be thick and red. My pre-op appt is tomorrow and I have a list of questions already for my PS.

Had surgery Tuesday 2/26. Went in around 9 and got...

Had surgery Tuesday 2/26. Went in around 9 and got to leave to go home about 1. On the way home my pain meds were wearing off and I was in serious pain. Once I got home and my meds kicked in there was barely any pain. The nurses said everything looked great.
The best way to describe how I feel is just tight. When I get up to walk around I am a little stiff but still able to move. I think my drainage output is relatively low. Almost everyone's reviews said the drains suck but my dr put them on the ends of my incisions and they haven't been a problem for me. My awesome boyfriend had to leave the room and lay down for a second when the nurse was showing him how to empty them!! It was a little funny.
I have been sleeping in my recliner with a pillow behind my back, a pillow on my stomach (makes me feel secure) and a pillow under my legs. So far so good! I didn't sleep well the first night but last night was much better. Except last night my big tabby cat jumped on my lap while I was out of it. I gasped and jumped forwarded. Ouch!!!!! I was in tears but now it feels much better. This morning I was quite nauseous and call the PS office in a state of panic because I was terrified to throw up. They called in a prescription right away. Thank The Lord!
I am not showering until tomorrow (Friday). I just want to keep this binder on as tight as the office had it. I will post pictures as soon as I take it off.
I am glad that the surgery is over, the anticipation was killing me. It really hasn't been as bad as I had prepared myself for, so that is a bonus.
Thanks for reading!

POD 4- I was doing fantastic, stopped all Vicodin...

POD 4- I was doing fantastic, stopped all Vicodin and am hardly having any pain. I finally decided to take a shower. As soon as my boyfriend took off my CG it felt like my whole stomach fell on the ground. I got into the shower and had to get out before I was done. I got very lightheaded and couldn't see. I went straight back to my recliner!! Wow, I wasn't ready for that experience. I thought I would have no trouble because I was feeling so great.
Everything is very tight. My incision looks very thin and I think my belly button will be very cute. I am kind of disappointed in how many stretch marks are left and how high up they are. I know that my PS said that the ones above my belly button he wouldn't be able to get rid of but I guess I didn't realize they were so large!! I know I need to give it some time but I am just in a funk right now. Probably because of my not so pleasant experience in the shower!

I am at pod 7 and I am feeling pretty good. I had...

I am at pod 7 and I am feeling pretty good. I had another attempt at a shower and it went MUCH better. I stopped my Vicodin on pod 2 and have stopped any other pain meds on pod 5. I think I mentally prepared myself for excruciating pain and I have been pleasantly surprised. My drain sites were starting to get sore on my hips and I have been sleeping in my bed for a few days.
I went to my post op appt today. The dr took out my drains and all of the tape. I have read almost every review on this site and the majority said it wouldn't hurt. It didn't! It didn't feel good but it wasn't terrible. My dr said to continue to wear my binder and to take it easy. Now that the drains are out I am going to have a false sense of security and think I can do more, but don't. My incision looks good, it is very thin. I feel so bare now though and worry about my binder rubbing. I am now having some minor irritation from it rubbing. My dr also said to pour a little hydrogen peroxide in my belly button before my showers to help dissolve the scab inside. Otherwise everything is looking good.
My main things that I believe that have helped me are I slept in my recliner with a pillow behind me, under my legs and on top of my tummy. I have been drinking emergen-c everyday, I also have been taking smooth move tea, and stool softeners. Also I have been eating very clean foods for the last week. The first few days when I was getting up to move my nurses said to breathe in and make a quick moment. It seems to have helped! Just incase that helps anyone else. The pictures I added are from before my drains were out. I will add more tomorrow.

Thanks for reading!

Is my incision supposed to look this red? I am a...

Is my incision supposed to look this red? I am a conplete and utter worry-wart but some how I dont think I am supposed to look this red. I am hoping it is irritated and my skin will calm down soon! My abs are hurting more yesterday and today then they have in the last week. Otherwise I am moving along. I have to remind myself to sit down and take it easy. I wipe down the stove and then take a break for a half hour! I drove for the first time today, I had a pillow under my self belt and drove well under the speed limit. I am still not walking straight up yet and it is frustrating. I dropped my kids off at school and the teachers were asking me if I was ok. My biggest struggle is feeling great but not being able to do everything I was able to do before. I am a single mom and my house being a mess is driving me nuts. Hence how I have to continuously repeat to myself to take it easy.
Thanks for reading!

Pod 12 and I feel pretty well. I am swollen, I...

Pod 12 and I feel pretty well. I am swollen, I measured around my belly button and it is about 2 inches bigger than before. I know it will pass eventually so I am not stressing about it. Also a ton of the swelling is on my right hip.
Luckily I am having hardly any pain, sometimes I am uncomfortable. I am standing up straighter but I notice that I baby it and hunch over still. I go back to work on Tuesday and I didn't tell very many people so hopefully I can walk a little less noticeably! My children are being way better about this whole process than I expected. They are helping me quite a bit with no complaints which is amazing!! My incision is apparently having an allergic reaction to the adhesive on the steri strips so that's why it is bright red all the way. I will change my rating once everything calms down. I am also trying to be optimistic about my scar dropping at least a half inch. It is visible in almost all of my underwear and swimming suit bottoms. Anyone remember the person who posted a side by side of her incision dropping? What's her screen name?

Thanks for reading!

Pod 16 today- I went back to work at my desk job...

Pod 16 today- I went back to work at my desk job at 14 days. I didn't expect to be so worn out! Apparently getting myself up and ready plus kids and a dog wears you out. I ended up going home 2 hours early to take a nap. My next day back at work was much better. I was able to stay all day but I was much more swollen and sore than normal. Yesterday was probably the worst day as far as discomfort goes, I know it will get better eventually. By last night I was so beyond the point of exhaustion I went to bed at 9 and slept all night without waking. I have been sleeping in my bed on my side with minimal discomfort but I do surround myself with pillows. One near my stomach, one behind my back and one in between my legs which seems to help.
I am extremely happy with my belly button, that was the one thing I was most concerned about. I am not at all excited about the position of my scar. I didn't prepare myself for how high it is. None of my underwear covers it and none of my swim bottoms cover it even the ones he marked me in. Which is so frustrating! Also I still having an allergic reaction to the steri strips or the glue they used. I am on oral steroids to try to get over it. The inch of bright redness all across my incision is not helping me like the scar any better. I think it is making it worse.
I think I have hit the depression part of this process (which is knew would come). I am depressed that I had visions of wearing super cute bathing suits and now I don't know which ones will cover it which ones won't. My sweats and my shorts ride low and my scar is visible. I did try on my lowest pair of jeans and it was covered. I am now trying to enter the acceptance phase. There is nothing I can do to change the placement so I will have to work around it.
Other than all of that I am recovering well. I am walking straighter everyday, and little things seem to be getting easier like bending over and picking things up. Everyday I can walk a little faster and I have a little more strength than the day before. I able to take care of myself and my kids all evening by myself without any trouble.
Thanks for listening to me vent :) have a great day!

4 weeks post op today. So far everything has been...

4 weeks post op today. So far everything has been great. My allergic reaction/ redness is starting to fade(thank The Lord). I am having virtually no pain but I do get a little uncomfortable after sitting at my desk for to long without getting up. I am back to vacuuming and cleaning my house that I have been neglecting lol!
I went to my 1 month appt with the PS yesterday, he took out 2 stitches that were popping through and said everything was healing great. He told me to rub mederma aggressively into my scar. I am having a little trouble with this just because it is all still numb and feels funny! He also said I can ditch my binder and I don't have to wear anything anymore, this makes me NERVOUS! I tried going to bed without it last night and lasted 20 minutes before I put it back on!!! I am going to try going longer periods without it instead of completely ditching it all at once.
As far as swelling goes, In the mornings I am flat but by the end of the work day I am super swollen. I read some reviews where they are swollen just near their incision but mine is all over. At the moment I am wearing hoodies and jeans everyday so I can't see the swelling. I still can't fit into my regular jeans so I am wearing jeans that were a little big before. I know I will be swollen for quite awhile and I am accepting it.
West Des Moines Plastic Surgeon

This is the same Dr. that did my BA in 2009 and my lipo in 2011. He did a great job before, and he has also done a few other women that I know. He has done a fantastic job on everything so far.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 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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