Sunday, September 26, 2010

8 Month Update

Hello Everyone!
This is just a check-in post to let you see my progress 8 months out of surgery. As you can see, not a lot of change since the last update! My tummy, especially the lower portion, is in a constant state of swelling during the day. Some days it's severe & others it just gets a little bloated looking. This photo was taken first thing in the morning before the "swell hell" could go in to full effect.

I've been hitting the gym hard as usual, but the only part of my body that I'm having any luck with toning seem to be my back. I'll be starting with some new gym classes in a couple of weeks & hope that will make a bigger difference because I have to be swimsuit ready by the end of December! Unfortunately there is only so much that I can do as I do have so much extra loose skin that is around my torso, arms, and lower legs. I've accepted that I can only do the best that I can do, and that involves lots of gym training, staying active and appreciating my curvy body just how it is!

Thanks to all who have been checking in! I will update when the big 1 year mark comes around! I cannot believe that I'm already 8 months out!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

5 Month Update

Hey Everyone!

I've gotten lots of e-mails for an update. I must say that I've had very, very little time to update in the past couple months as I've been in the process of moving a distance to another city & the preparation, apartment hunt, job search and all the loose ends have been taking up all my time! Not to mention time at the gym, work and daily life.

Anyways, back to the task at hand....So really, there's nothing to report! I'm at the 5 month "swell hell" that I had been reading about. I'm working out as much as I can but not seeing a lot of results. Looking back at my pictures, I feel like my last update photos were looking better than how I look now. I feel parts of me are getting a bit more toned, but overall, not a lot of change.

It feels a bit discouraging in the past few weeks. My stomach is still saggy & i'm wondering if I should have gone forward with getting a vertical scar. Though my doctor said that was something he could do for me, he said the scar would be substantial & that it depends if I can live with a bit of sag or a wide, vertical scar. Now that I'm moving cities, I've kind of lost my opportunity now to undergo the vertical surgery with my doctor.

I've come to the conclusion that my body transformation will require an additional surgery or two to get to the point where I'm comfortable with my body. Years of weight gain & not taking care of myself has been very hard on my body & made recovery and getting to a comfortable space a long, hard journey. For now, I can only do my best & keep up with the gym & eating right as much as possible. I'm hoping new surroundings for my boyfriend and I will help in progressing though this & raise my spirits.

Thanks to everyone for your concern & well wishes!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Update with no update

I know it's been a couple of weeks since my last post, but really, I got nothing to share! Everything is remaining the same, I'm pretty stable, and the overall appearance of my tummy has pretty much remained the same. Nothing new!

I was suppose to have a doctors appointment today, but it got pushed back to June 1, which will be the almost 6 month point! I can't believe that i'm almost at 3 months....what a difference that time has made.

5 days left until vacation! I'm very excited to get some new pictures with my new tummy & to be able to show off my form in vacation photos rather than putting a big bag in front of me or hiding myself. Yah!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Scar

I've been without internet services for over a week & it's left me behind on responding & posting! Well...I have received a few requests on updates on how my scar is looking/healing. I'm quite happy with how thin the scar is & that it is placed in a good location. I do have three holes in around my pubic area from the drains as well. The original drainage site where two tubes were shoved in to one, teeny, tiny, itty, bitty hole is quite massive. I may update pictures of those for the next entry. Overall though, I'm quite pleased & the scar doesn't bother me, though it does itch sometimes.

I've hit the gym for the past 4 days in a row & have been riding my bike and running in my apartment at night. I feel constantly hungry, but I've been tracking my calories and staying within my "budget" almost all days, minus the weekends where I haven't been tracking, but i'm consciously counting during that time & work out to compensate. My stomach swells after a hard workout & takes a while to go down. I mentioned this before, but he swelling feels hard, almost as if my stomach was a waterbed that was filled too much.

The belly button is improving, not too butt-like lately, but still not perfect. I'm convinced that I could have some sort of tiny stomach lift, or little scars place under my breasts to make the little bit of belly button flab go away haha. It sounds crazy, but I'm still going to ask the doctor when I see him on April 6th. I'm very excited to hear what he has to say on my progress.

Okay, over 2 months now...crazy...Now that i'm back with the digital world, i'll continue updating regularly. Yah!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

7.5 weeks

Not a lot of updates this week. My wii fit, aka my scale, is out of batteries...i'm out of batteries...I couldn't weigh myself this week...I don't mind as I think that my swelling is so erratic that it's discouraging to weigh myself & i'd rather focus on the results that i'm seeing in my photos. The lower part of my stomach has been very swollen for the past couple days, like a hard swelling that isn't budging much throughout the day.

I only got to the gym a couple times this past week, but this week is open & I'm looking forward to it! I feel like i'm working out strong & making the most of my hour each visit.

This week also kicks off clean eating week for me. I have just a few short weeks left until vacation, so I want to be as good to my body as I can! I'm going to be keeping track of each thing that enters my mouth & how much I'm burning off.

Until next time...

Sunday, March 7, 2010

6.5 Weeks

So here's some updated photos of me at 6.5 weeks. A couple weeks ago I gave the update that I was down to 150lbs, i'm up to 153lbs. The good news is that I'm full force at the gym & doing a lot of weight lifting & toning. My diet hasn't been outstanding, but not horrible. I think seeing the scale go up has really put me in my place haha. Being back to the gym makes me feel like eating nothing but healthy food & being the best to my body that I can. I can't wait to up my routine this week. Only 5.5 weeks left until vacation, so I've got to get moving!!

The doesn't seem to get better. When I bend over there's skin that still hangs. Before the surgery my belly button would be lost in a horizontal flap, and now it's a vertical flap of skin that's obstructing my belly button. I've gone the whole week without wearing my binder, so i've decided to put it back on today & maybe wear it every couple days. In my heart I know that I'll probably have to have the second procedure for the vertical incision to remove this extra skin. I'll do my best to be patient and wait it out.

Well...I had another weekend of shopping haha. Two new shirts and a pair of pants! I'll update in a week with new photos of week 7!

Sunday, February 28, 2010


I know I promised that I'd update with my weight progress and new pictures, but there's certain times of the month when you just shouldn't look at the scale & the swelling is emphasized haha. So, I'll probably take pictures more towards the end of the week & weight until next Saturday for my weigh-in.

Now, on a different note....Shopping has been pretty great. So far, I've bought three great dresses that are very fitted & two tops. We went shopping today & I tried on a few different tops. It feels great to pick up a size medium! I bought a very fitted top today that looked great. Anything drappy or oversized in style just looked silly. I can't wait until the swelling goes down & I tone up more to look even better!

Today was the first full day that I went without my compression garment. My stomach still is very numb & it felt very strange at first, but it felt great not having it push up my chubby back & side bits! I'll wear it to bed tonight though & I think there will be days when I might wear it. I don't mind it really, it feels like a part of me most of the time.

Well, tomorrow is my first day back to the gym. I'm dying to get back on track & start to enhance my results. I'm amazed with how much better my stomach is looking and how thin my side profile is. I wish I could fast forward a few months from now to see how the results are then!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

5 Weeks

I had another doctors appointment yesterday to check on my progress and got some great news! No more weekly appointments! Yah! Now I don't have to see him again for another 6 weeks. He also gave me clearance to go to the gym and remove my compression garment after the weekend! It will be so nice to start wearing normal clothes & not have to worry about the compression garment pushing out all my chubby parts!

I've been counting my calories to the best of my ability & looking forward to getting back to the gym. My ultimate goal is to get to 145 lbs, so about another 5 lbs to lose. I'm going on vacation 7 weeks from today, so hopefully I can get close!! All my clothes seem to hide my results, which is okay right now since I have to hide the compression garment. I'm looking forward to wearing a tight shirt. My skinny jeans are already getting quite baggy on me.

I'm very happy with my scar. It's very thin & seems to be healing really nicely. It does agitate me when the binder is on it too tight, but I find having a layer underneath it, such as my underwear, really helps to prevent it from rubbing against the scar & providing some cushion.

Well, that's all! I'll update on the weekend after my weigh in with new pictures!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

1 month

I'm officially down to my to my goal weight of 150lbs! I think that makes it between 8-10lbs down since surgery. I feel like i've been eating so bad in the past couple weeks, but hopefully i'll be able to start going to the gym again next week & reverse my eating habits. People seem to be really noticing too. But I feel so great this past week! I feel normal again. I'm going out to spend the weekend doing some shopping & walking around. Yah!

I'm pushing that binder in as tight as I can to help with the swelling. I've noticed the swelling go way down & the size of my crease is greatly improving. I slept last night without the binder just to see what would happen & because I knew I'd be taking pictures first thing in the morning. Not a lot changed, but I did puff up a bit. The binder seems to push all the swelling right to the middle of my stomach, which doesn't help with the crease, but it makes me feel better knowing that it will improve more once I can toss that binder.

Well, I'm off for a shopping excursion, movie watching, and a lunch date! I will update again after my appointment on Tuesday!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Four Weeks

Hello All!

Well, the doctors appointment went well yesterday. My drains have been pulled & I feel so much better!! I really hope that this is me on the road to healing right now. It feels so nice to have all that pressure relieved & now I'm starting to feel smaller. I'm still a bit puffy and swollen, but I'm still feeling a bit better about my results. I even felt well enough to go to a concert last night! There is a bit of a crease still where the belly button is. I will try and get photos in the next couple days, but I didn't want to take any tonight because at the end of the day I'm just extra puffy and swollen.

1,000 views & 22 followers! I appreciate everyone who has helped me get through the past four weeks!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Day 24

Well....I'm back to being a couch potato while I recover from surgery #2. Thank goodness for the Olympics, I don't feel nearly as guilty parking myself in front of the television. I feel good other than the discomfort of the drains. It's strange because before I felt so much pressure with the binder because of the massive swelling from the hematoma & now I feel like I can't get it any tighter and don't feel as much pressure. The pictures from before don't really show how bad & big the swelling got & how deep the belly button was. The crease now still looks as though it goes deep, but I still just have some red scarring from having the skin pushed together from so much pressure and my belly button is way closer to the surface than before. I think that in a couple more weeks I'll be feeling so much better. My side profile already looks much improved. Overall, I'm happy to have this second surgery done and over with. The doctor also removed the steri strips that were covering my sides where the incision was. I must say, the scar is so thin & perfect. I know it's going to heal great!

The three nurses and the doctor said they had never seen anything quite like my hematoma. It feels like some sort of strange accomplishment. I came out of that surgery automatically walking straighter & with a huge feeling of relief. Tuesday will be my check-up & probably the day my drains will be removed. I've been draining normal, like how most people do after surgery, rather than dark blood, I have pinkish/yellow fluid. Once these are out I'm going to be enjoying my results way more.

I appreciate everyone checking in on me. I haven't been too responsive with all the craziness of the past week and a half. I'm going to try and post pictures once weekly & I will post again after my check-up appointment. I can't believe it's already going to be 4 weeks soon! Granted, I'm not on track with most tummy tuckers at the 4 week stage, but I'm slowly getting there.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Update after surgery #2

Yesterday's surgery went very smooth and i'm home recovering with little pain. I am having a bit of dizziness from the pain killers and have almost fainted a couple times. must admit that getting rid of that hematoma feels soooooooooooooooooo much better & i'm much flatter, fewf! I'll post pictures when I can support myself a bit better. I'll share more detailed info as well.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Day 20-Surgery #2

Doctors appointment today brought some relief and frustration. When he took a look at me he said that he wanted to try and stick a needle in me to drain some of my hematoma. He proceeded to stick a needle in me and drain out a large amount of blood. After taking out some blood, he said he just needed to get in there and do what he should have done a while So now I'm scheduled for two days from now to have surgery to open up my incision again, get rid of the hematoma, and place some sort of sutures that will take care of the problem for good! He said that he's never experienced a hematoma like this before and that he's never had to have a post-op surgery ever before. He said that it's common for hematoma for people who have lost a lot of weight, something about larger arteries and extra space or something along those lines. The great news is that I'll finally have some relief & he said it's going to make my results look soooooo much better...Fewf! The downside is that I will have drains again after the surgery...sigh.

Well, that's my day 20 update! I walked 17 blocks home! I'm just starting to feel a bit normal again, but I know this will make me feel physically and mentally better once this procedure is over.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Day 18/19

I feel as though I haven't had much as far as updates go. My goal is to now post every few days with progress pictures or once a major milestone occurs. For the time being, I'm alive, healing, but still hunched over. I feel as though my energy is back & I can get around quite good. The only thing that keeps me from getting out and about too much is the back pain I get from my binder. However, I did manage to get through most the weekend during a work event without the thought of any pain crossing my mind. I was running around like crazy and keeping up with everything that needed to be done. My wound from my tubes is healing! No longer do I have to run to change the gauze every couple of hours and it's starting to feel like I'm getting back to normal.

Yesterday I had a post-birthday outing with my boyfriend to go shopping. I knew I didn't want to spend too much as I'm still very swollen. I did manage to walk away with three dresses! I'm going to wait to continue on any additional shopping until the swelling starts to subside.

As far as the swelling goes...I'm feeling very heavy & sore on my stomach where the swelling is. It's not puffy swelling, but rather a really hard underbelly. I also have what I had read about many of times before my surgery....I have the dreaded "ken doll"....aside from the package and stomach, I'm feeling pretty good. The doctor requested that I come in for an appointment tomorrow, a week earlier than previously scheduled. I'm curious to hear what he's going to say about my progress. I just have a feeling that this swelling is not normal and that what I'm experiencing has to do with my hematoma. Last night I started bruising on my stomach as well, so we'll see!

I'll be sure to post if anything major happens tomorrow!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Two Weeks

Overall, being back to work isn't as bad as I thought it would be, but the past two days have really hit me hard. Wednesday I pushed myself way to hard & payed for it. That left me in a state of constant yawning today & feeling overall exhausted. I'm a bit nervous to think about tomorrow and Saturday because I have a huge event at work. I'm fortunate enough to have very thoughtful co-workers who have so generously demanded that I sit in a comfortable office chair throughout the whole event.

In other gaping whole where my drains were is starting to close already! I know that we wanted to have it drain more, but it feels so nice not having to run to change the gauze every hour or two. I've started putting polysporin on it in hopes that it will help reduce infection & heal faster. But having that whole close is making me feel even more human again. Now if I can just stand up straight!!! I'm getting faster each day, but yeah, I'm still walking like i'm walking slow and hunched over.

I'm going to keep this one short and sweet tonight. I'll update on the weekend if I survive work for the next couple days. I do see the swelling slowly going down, so hopefully a couple days from now I'll have more pictures to post. I'm also going to try and brave the scale just out of curiosity, but I know that swelling will be affecting that outcome.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Day 12/13-Changes

Day 12 & 13 have been challenging & filled with lots of highs and lows! So many changes!!!!!

Let's start with Monday....I had the doctors appointment in the morning & was desperate to get out the drains!!! The irritation was driving me to tears. At the appointment they took one look and said that the drains would stay until Thursday. I started draining more on the weekend, my assumption is that this was due to me being more active. The nurse said that I have a knowledge is very little on what this is...but basically this explains as to why I drain blood, whereas most people drain a yellowish fluid. At the end of the appointment I was feeling pretty good about knowing that Thursday was going to be the day & I was confident that I could make it through!!

Flash forward to Monday afternoon....the drain incision started to bleed. It was incredibly disgusting & irritating. I tried not to pay too much attention, but as the night went on, it kept getting worse and worse. On top of that, the right drain seemed to moved far enough out of the incision that the drain holes were exposed & leaking air to the bulb & making it no longer effective. After a shower I had finally had enough & packed myself with gauze & laid flat for the remaining of the night. It was an incredibly long, sleepless night wanting to know what would happen & feeling so desperate to get to the doctors.

This morning I got to go to the doctors office again. I'm starting to feel a bit like an inconvenience and a bit like a hypochondriac. The doctor came in and took a look and automatically started pulling out the tubes. It wasn't painful, but it was a strange sensation! It feels so great to have them removed!! The doctor said that I will continue to drain blood from the incision, and probably lots. So far he's been right haha. I've been placing gauze over the incision and a pad as well. The blood has been quite a lot, but it's so much better than having the drains. He expected that it will continue to drain for the next week.

Monday was also my first day at work, which went fine. I've been treated with a lot of care at work & I've been taking it easy. I have a huge event on Friday and Saturday that will have me on my feet and running around all day. I'm a bit nervous, but at least my co-workers are very understanding and will let me rest when I need it.

Well, tomorrow is already two weeks out! It feels like it was so long ago....Today i'm incredibly swollen from my side view, but I'm noticing some changes in my frontal view. I wish the next couple of months would go by, that I could start to feel more human, and I can get a better sense of my results and if I'll need revisions. I'm desperate to get back to the gym & tone up and try and improve my results & other parts of my body that I wouldn't notice because all the focus was on my flabby tummy. I'm still very hunched over, but each day is getting better!!


Sunday, January 31, 2010

Day 10/11

I'm slacking!!! The weekend flew by! In a nutshell....

1-Had my first outing yesterday...I walked three blocks to the drug store & then was exhausting!!
2-My drains are hurting :( They've obviously started moving out on their own because there's a little black dot on the tube that was not there before & it's sticking about an inch out!
3-I'm draining more....I'm afraid that this will mean that I may not get my drains out tomorrow....I literally cannot take the drains any longer. I'll have to wait until tomorrow morning & call to see what they think. It's my theory that as I became more active, the more the drains started pumping out the fluid. I go back to work tomorrow & can't bare the thought of going in with these plastic testicles filled with my blood hanging off of me.
4-My back is killing me from being so hunched over!
5-My appetite is back in full force...good thing/bad thing...
6-Overall, I've had great energy, but bad sleeps. I've been doing little things around the apartment & able to go through the day without a nap.

I'll report back tomorrow night on my first day back at work & what the doctor had to say as far as my drains & promise pictures.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Day 9-Highs & Lows

I just got back from my doctors appointment to check-up on the status of my drains. Though they are not draining much, around 10-15ml each a day, he still wants to leave them in as long as possible. I'm going back to work on Monday, so we agreed that first thing Monday morning we could finally remove them. I'm a bit nervous at the thought of having them taken out, but one of the nurses assured me it will be a quick process that won't hurt me too, it will be such a relief to feel human again & not have to get clever in hiding them under baggy clothes.

Overall, he thought I was progressing nicely & that my swelling was improving. My stomach doesn't feel as rock-hard where the swelling is, it's starting to feel softer & tingly/numb. I had asked him again about the swelling & the "crater" that's engulfed. He said that he made a decision when he was completing my surgery that he was confident that the possibility of the crater being there was quite low. He then went on to mention that if it still remains in 6 months that he would do a second surgery that would require a vertical scar from my chest down to my current tummy tuck incision. This is all because of the amount of my excess skin. I've been doing my best to remain positive that this was all just swelling & that it would go away. It broke me to pieces to hear that there was a possibility that it could remain this way & require an incision that I was really wanting to avoid. He did say that he was still confident that it would go away on it's own. I was thinking that at this point I would be itching to get out and buy new clothes & start feeling better, maybe I just need more time to let my disappointment pass.

To finish on a positive note, I'm feeling really good, well, better than in the first week that is! I'm looking forward to the next few weeks passing by & to getting back to normal. I'm starting to get some color back in my skin too! I was looking like death & the nurses at the doctors office always were quite surprised with how pail I was. I think I'll plan something to get positive & maybe go for a little clothes shopping next weekend for my birthday. Even if I'm not at my flattest, a new top or two would feel nice about now.

I'll take some pictures tonight as the swelling is actually going down some. I'm so grateful to every person who has posted & made these days healing at home so much better! I'm shocked that almost 600 viewers have stopped by! I hope that the blog helps provide the insight that I was looking for when I was preparing for my surgery.

Happy weekend!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Day 8

Day 7 was a pretty good day. I'm now on strictly IBuprofen, four a day, plus my antibiotics and the occasional pill for nausea. I think a lot of me feeling better has to do with clearing up the constipation haha. Yesterday was the first day that I had hunger, eating full portions & having cravings. My only bad experience yesterday was taking a shower late last night & getting a little to comfortable in the warm water & feeling a little faint when I got out. Straight to bed & I felt much better.

I woke up this morning, Day 8, feeling really good & with good energy. I'm hoping that today will allow me to pick-up better after myself & have more energy. I won't overdo it, but I just want to start easing in to having a normal day with fewer naps. I start work again on Monday, Day 12, and a bit scared. My goal for tomorrow is to do my hair and make-up for my doctors appointment and get out of the house at night to treat my boyfriend to dinner. Luckily there are some places close by to walk to, so we'll start there for baby steps.

I'm focusing more on getting back to normal and healing rather than my results. I just need to get these drains out soon!!! I'm hoping that at my appointment tomorrow he will say we can remove them. The drains are still filling with dark blood & emptying about 10-15ml a day each. He said the more we can get the drains to remove on their own, the less likely they'll have to do any minor surgery. I'm just really hoping & crossing my fingers that tomorrows the day!! I know I'll feel sooooo much better once they are gone.

Thanks for everyone posting their experiences, well wishes and appreciation. Your comments have really kept me going!!!


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Day 6 in Review-Beginning of Day 7

I was determined to make daily entries until day 6 came around...The doctor told me yesterday that a really good day is sometimes followed by a really bad day when it comes to recovery, and that is exactly what happened to me. I felt so great on Monday & thought things were looking up. Well, I had a hard sleep that night & it just led to an emotional/physical breakdown for day Tuesday, Day 6. I just felt like my incision was tearing apart, i felt tight & uncomfortable, and I just felt like my swelling was taking over & that this butt shape will never leave my stomach....I finally gave in and called the doctor to get in for an earlier appointment to see if I was actually alright. My drains & their exit spot are just giving me pain & making me feel uncomfortable. When I saw him, he says that I'm healing perfect and that we have to keep the drains in as long as they are draining so he won't have to go in and do any type of minor surgery. He just basically told me to deal with it. He then took the sutures out of my belly button and gave me an appointment for Friday. Somehow I felt better knowing that I just need to suck it up.

My boyfriend brought me my Vietnamese soup & a bubble tea to share last night. I haven't been eating much lately & finally had the craving for something hearty. The first four bites were so great but then I just couldn't continue. At least I have soup for the next few days :)

Last night was painful again, but I took a sleeping pill to help knock me out & get some proper rest. I only have a couple pain pills left & saving them for a point where I really need them. I'm taking Tylenol & now Ibuprofen. Waking up this morning I finally had the sensation that I might be able to finally have a bowel movement! I'll spare the TMI had been a week & let's just say that it was an awful experience but that I'm sooooo happy it's over with now. My doctor never prescribed or recommended stool softeners & I had to go by my mothers word that this is what I needed. I took one yesterday & I'll be taking one daily from now on. The pain medication is so hard on the body and I never want to go through that experience again!

At this point I'm wishing I could really fast forward a couple weeks. I got some good advice from my boyfriend last night that the pain is bad now but that my end result is going to be beyond incredible. I just keep thinking of shopping and new clothes to keep me going & try not to focus on my stomach cleavage.

I'll try to post again tonight with some photos :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Day 5-Draining

I had read that Day 5 is the day where you start to feel human again. I can safely say that Day 5 was a day of more energy, mobility, and just feeling overall better. I managed to shower all by myself, I ate a bit more, and I was getting up and down with more ease. I did take 2 hour naps at a time, but when I forced myself up, I felt awake & like I could go for a walk. I'm excited for the days ahead!

Below are images of the draining process. You've been warned that they are not pleasant to look at & I do not recommend that you look at them before eating. I'm still draining dark blood, but it should be getting lighter & become more inside liquidy swelling drainage stuff soon. I'm draining less and less each day. In the beginning I would drain 3-4 times a day with 30-45 ml of drainage in each tube every time I emptied them. I only emptied them bulbs today with about 20 ml of fluid in each. I'm hoping this means that the bulbs & tubes will come out soon & that the swelling will keep going down.

Here is my set-up. I begin by straining out the excess liquid from the tubes in to the bulbs. I think lift the plug on the bulb & empty the contents in to the cup to get an exact measurement.
I've had a bit of clotting in my bulbs, which makes it hard to get everything out of the bulbs. It's been getting better each day. Once I finish emptying the liquid, I squeeze the bulb to help create suction & close the tab again. Repeat with the second drain and empty the liquid to the toilet.
I then record the date, time and amount of liquid I drained from each bulb. I have to specify if it came from the right side of left side & if there was anything irregular. The first few days the left side was draining way more than the right, then the right was more than the left, and now they are about even. So that's Day 5! Tomorrow I have another follow-up appointment with my doctor. I hope he'll give me a better idea of when I can see better results. I'm also in desperate need of a new binder, or a spare, because mine is looking a little gross these days.

I look forward to tomorrow & hope to have some new improvements to post!


Day5-Day 4 continued

I've been sleeping at the drop of a hat lately! I finally moved back to the bed for sleeping, rather than the couch, and I'm finding myself extra, extra comfortable. So, the doctors appointment yesterday was a small success. He did say there was a possibility that I would have the minor surgery to drain out some trapped blood in my stomach and that there was also a chance that everything would be fine. In the end, it ended up being a very short appointment & he said he was very impressed with how I was getting around & how I could get myself up and down from the table & lay up and down as well. He thinks that i'm healing great. I had asked how long he thought it would be before my belly button would become more visible & even with the rest of the stomach, he thought within in the next week. So, in the end he only gave me another prescription of antibiotics to keep taking since I need my drains in longer & that was that! He said that I do have more swelling than the normal post-op tummy tuck person, but that I also had more skin taken off. I can't remember if I had mentioned that I had 3lbs taken off before or not...but I did. I thought it was going to be at least 10, but he said the skin weighs a lot less than you think & that he removed a massive amount.

So I spent most of yesterday sleeping & watching Top Chef in bed. My appetite is so weak, but I'm trying to force myself to eat when I'm not sleeping. I've been eating lots of fibre bars because the pain medication causes bad constipation, pure apple juice, gatorade, yogurt, string cheese, some fruit, rice cakes. pomegranate sorbet for when I need something sweet, and yesterday I tried a low sodium instant dinner. I only got through about two bites of the dinner, so I'll try and finish the rest today. Everything just feels tight inside me, my bladder, my stomach, everything so I feel so full fast. My boyfriend made me a big pitcher of water yesterday with a fresh lemon squeezed inside because I've read it's suppose to help with swelling, so we're trying out that experiment.

I'm starting to feel pain a bit more in the past couple days. My back & neck are very sore from being hunched over, my incision is starting to heal & become very sore, and the sight where my drains come out is starting to bother me a lot as well. It's not unbearable pain, so I'm trying to just stick with 3-4 painkillers a day & a couple tylenol when I need it.

Showering is a great experience. I was always afraid that it was going to be incredibly painful & super exhausting. I had my first shower Sunday night & it felt fantastic!! My boyfriend helped me through most of it, leaving me feeling a bit like Shamu or some other Sear World creature. I think I managed pretty well when it came to washing my hair & my incisions on my own. I had a shoelace hanging from my neck where I pinned my drains to....worked very well!! I'm going to attempt the shower again today on my own. Yesterday the exhaustion was just too much for me to bathe....gross. is my first day alone since my boyfriend is at work. He'll stop by to check up on me during the lunch hour & then I'll have him back for tonight. I'll be contemplating what to document next for tonight's photos....i'm thinking it might be the drain tubes! They're gross, but I think it would be interesting for some!!


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Day 4

I'm exhausted today....I just wanted to post some day 4 still tons o' swelling pictures. I was looking forward to writing a blog tonight, but it will have to wait until morning. Just for those checking in, I didn't have to have a minor surgery today because he thought i was healing great. I'll go in to more detail in the morning!! ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz......

Saturday, January 23, 2010

What's holding me together...

So here's an image of me in my compression binder & my old lady stockings that are suppose to help prevent blood clots. My drains come from just above my pubic area & I have gauze around the incision & then I velcro them to my binder to keep them out of my way. Everything is very tight & creates a lot of swelling on my hips. I have no idea how lil' old ladies get those stockings on!

Today I had more energy than the previous days. I got in some good naps & sleep, ate a proper meal, and managed to take a real shower! I feel so much better. I'm still very hunched over, but I'm walking a bit faster & can get myself little snacks, medication, and can empty my drains on my own. I'm still looking quite pail & have raccoon eyes. I'm hoping I get some color back soon.

I can't even emphasize enough what a great help my boyfriend has been. He's taken all the photos for me, helped me getting to the washroom, taking sponge baths/showers, feeding me, setting alarms & making sure I get my medication on time, making sure I'm comfortable, and I even got a manicure + pedicure last night! I'm so greatful for his help. I know it's hard to see me in such a pathetic state, haha, but he's done a great job of going above and beyond.

Tomorrow morning I have to go back to the hospital to see if I need to have some minor surgery for draining out some of the fluid/blood out. I'm hoping that he'll be able to get out some of the captured blood & reduce some of this swelling. He said it won't affect my final results & that he will more than likely open a bit on my incision & only need to go under some local anesthesia.

I'll report tomorrow & post pictures of my 4-day post-op. Thanks everyone who has been posting such supportive comments!!


Friday, January 22, 2010

Day 2-Beware of pictures below!

So today is my day two at home. Because I was fainting in the hospital & had to stay the night, my doctor wanted to see me today to check up on me. My stomach looks like a butt right now, no other way to put it. It is very swollen and sunken in. It feels really tight. Below are pictures of my journey last night trying to take a sponge bath.

I'm very hunched over & trying to get up and down as much as I can, but I find myself drifting to sleep mostly. So I made my way to the doctors office today in the company of my wonderfully supportive boyfriend & horrible taxi drivers. I wasn't suppose to go in to see the doctor until Tuesday, another 5 days away. I was very thankful that I got to see him today. He examined my swollen stomach & thinks there may be blood captured & causing the bad swelling. So, now I have to make my way to the hospital again on Sunday morning for a minor surgery so he can drain anything that might be in my "butt-gutt"...

My appetitite is non-existant. I've read that this is quite common, but am really shocked how I have to force myself to eat anything. I've been drinking lots of Gatorade, water, and eating crackers & rice cakes. Nothing sounds appetizing & I'm sure it's affecting my energy level, which is only on sleep mode right now.

The doctor said that he removed a lot of skin, 3lbs worth. It looked like the amount of skin would weight at least 10lbs, but he said that it was just skin and no fat really. I have to wear a binder anytime i'm not in the shower. The binder is compressing my stomach & hopefully giving me shape. I'm also in these old lady style stockings that go up past my knee to help prevent any blood clots. And finally, as you saw in my pictures, I have two nasty drains exiting my public area. My boyfriend has been emptying these for me every few hours & we note the amount of blood & other nasty stuff for the doctor each time.

Well, I'll post again tomorrow with any new experiences. I'm hoping my hygiene improves more by then. I'm getting better with the mouth wash, cleaning my face, and trying to make myself smell a bit better and not like a hospital haha. I think the next big tackle is washing my hair once I don't feel so drugged....wish me luck!


Thursday, January 21, 2010


This is just a quick note to say i'm finally home! I ended up having to stay overnight in the hospital because I kept fainting & turning white. It was quite an experience! Overall the pain is very minimal, more uncomfortable than anything because of the muscle repair. Going to the washroom is a bit of a challenge, but i'm getting better each time. I'll post again soon. Dr appointment tomorrow for a check-up.

Thanks for all your support!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


I finally got my time for the surgery tomorrow...12:10 & show up at 9:10am. It's going to be a long day. I'm not to eat anything after midnight tonight, so a big dinner is in order. Today has been very surreal. There are small moments when it feels like I fully understand that fact that tomorrow I'm going to have all this skin taken off & gain a new belly & belly button. For the most part it feels like tomorrow is just another day.

I'm soooooo curious to find how much skin he is going to take off! I'm weighing in at about 157 right now & would ideally love to be 145....I have a feeling there is around 10lbs of skin on this tummy, fingers crossed! And the doctor will also preform muscle repair on my abs. Quite often after gaining a lot of weight or pregnancy the muscles separate. I've read some stories where women had as much as 5"-7" in separation!

I have my special surgery soap to wash with tonight & in the morning. We'll have a very relaxed evening tonight & do some last minute cleaning & preparing. In the morning, i'll wake, wash, dress in my yoga pants & zip-up hoodie, call a cab, grab my wallet, compression stockings and leave with my boyfriend. My understanding is that I'll meet the anesthesiologist & the surgeon & they will go over how the day will go & i'll finally get drawn on to see exactly where the scar is going to go & what's being taken off. I was told the surgery will last about 3 hours & i'll have a bit of recover time before I go home.

My only last minute worries have to do with getting back home...getting out of the cab, getting comfortable in bed, what will happen when I have to pee, showering...all that lovely stuff. I know I'm in good, caring hands at home, so that's what's important. I'm so excited to catch up on tv & movies!!

Well, I will post again when I can...probably in a couple days or when I feel not so drugged!!

Wish me luck!

Monday, January 18, 2010


Tonight my lovely boyfriend made a photo suite out of our bathroom to help me take some before photos. I knew it would be highly important to me to have clear before photos & track my progress for the days, weeks, and months following the surgery. It probably wasn't a great idea to take these at the end of the day as my body tends to swell lots throughout the day, but still...the photos are very accurate of my folds, squishies, lumps, and rolls. Below is my before body:

Only about 36 hours left of this saggy tummy.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

1 Week Prep

So this time next week I'll be doing my last minute prep work, getting all my post-op care stuff organized and counting down the minutes! The doctor's office called last week with a not-so-informative last minute pre-op talk. They didn't give me a lot of suggestions on what to expect or how to prepare. My nurse explained that I will go home with drains & return to the doctor probably five days after surgery to have them removed and inspected. I've been ordered to wear some sort of track suit or comfortable clothing that zips/buttons in the front. The worst order is that I can't have any herbal tea for two weeks :(....tea is my saviour at work and throughout the day. I think I'm going to start thinking of all junk food as being banned from the doctor because it has been an effective way of keeping me away from temptation!

So, for the sake of having everything that I think I will need for after surgery, I'm relying on message boards, blogs, and other plastic surgery websites to give me the lowdown on how to prepare. One of my favorite sites for everything tummy tuck is They have great guides for recovery, preparing, grocery/must have lists, and even information on the post-operation blues & the highs and lows. It's been a huge help!

So, from all my research, here's my list:

Groceries: Yogurt, Protein Shakes, Crackers (low sodium to prevent too much swelling), Gatorade, Pudding/Jello, Fruit juice, lemon (to cut down on swelling), string cheese, and lots of soup.

I keep hearing about "swell hell" and want to avoid any foods that may contribute. I also hear about the joys of constipation post-op....there will be a big ol' box of Fibre One bars to help with that.

My other prep list/buy list consists of the following:
Granny Panties two sizes too big to fit the drains in, heating pad, comfy robe, baby wipes for the days I can't shower and want to feel somewhat clean, hand sanitizer for handling drains, taraseptic wash for showering night before and morning of surgery. I've also been looking for a small breakfast in bed type tray for my laptop so I can lay in bed & not place my laptop on my luck so far.

I've paid for the anesthesia, I'll call on the day before my surgery to get my time to go in, and yeah....I think i'm good to go. I don't feel mentally prepared yet. The date is coming up very fast & not that i'm having second thoughts, but I'm starting to get last minute jitters. I've been reading through message boards every morning and night to hear peoples experiences pre/post-op. It has been very useful but also has made me realize that the next few weeks will not be easy. I'm thankful that I have a busy week ahead of me to keep my mind off the countdown & to keep me active.

I shall post in one more week for my last entry before going under the knife.


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

2 Weeks pre-op

I'm always on the countdown, but today marks exactly two weeks until i'm cut and pulled. I was suppose to receive a two week final prep phone call from the doctors office today, but no dice. I did receive a phone call from the pharmacist though! She gave me a run down of the drugs that will be waiting for me at the hospital. I will have antibiotics, Oxycotin, some sort of Gravel to help with the nausea, a back up suppository in case I can't keep down the anti nausea medicine, and some sleeping pills....all something to look forward to! In the end, only $70 for all the medication & I'm sure ten times the street value!

The time is coming up fast & I feel stressed. I'm not feeling stressed about the surgery, but rather the preparation and thinking about the results. I feel like I have lots of tasks to get done like last minute shopping for supplies, groceries, and anything that I might need in my weeks at home, getting things done at work, making sure I have everything in order as far as payments go, and frantically reading through tummy tuck forums every night to see what peoples experiences are & how they recover. I've been building a good mental list of things that I will want to stock up on and getting an idea of what recovery will be like.

I've been hitting the gym & riding my bike at home for the past few days. I guess the second part of my stress is having some last minute anxiety and feelings like my body still needs some toning up and needs to shed some pounds before I go in. I'm so sore & realizing that I'm in need of a day or two off. I know I'll have time after the surgery to continue getting to my peak form, but I'm dreading the thought of getting out of surgery and seeing bad results. I know this is all a highly exaggerated feeling & that I will look back & tell myself that I should have felt so stressed about it. The second part of this is possibly regretting the fact that I didn't go the full distance and have a few nip/tucks or "enhancements" to complete my look. The tummy is number one and I'm hoping it will make enough of a difference that I will be distracted from the other "bits".

Pictures will be coming soon! I want to be documenting the process in as much detail as possible. I'll also be sure to post once I get my pre-op orders!