Saturday, October 21, 2017

Day 9 Post-op update

The last few days have been full of ups and downs as I continue to recover from my tummy tuck. After my follow-up with my doctor, I seemed to take a turn for the worse when it came to my pain. My incision is quite long being hip-to-hip and there is a small 2-inch section that is actually indented and stitched quite tightly. That small area became the source of much pain on Day 7. I took a shower by myself early afternoon which gave me a feeling of accomplishment (baby steps!), but I couldn't move around without a lot of discomfort and by late afternoon, I was over it all! I had a little come apart at bedtime, crying and wondering what the heck I had gotten myself into. My sleep that night wasn't great and I woke up discouraged. However, Day 8 (yesterday) was actually a good day! I was still uncomfortable and that small area still a point of great tightness, but it wasn't painful like the day before. I still took it easy and my son's girlfriend was kind enough to cook dinner for us all since my husband was going to be at work late. The evening wasn't too bad and I felt like I had turned the corner a bit.

Sleeping isn't my favorite thing right now. I have to sleep in a reclining position with a pillow under my knees. I am a side sleeper, but not allowed to sleep in that position quite yet. After only 5 hours sleep, I just couldn't get comfortable so I went ahead and got up for the day. Walking wasn't that bad and there wasn't any real pain, just a feeling of tightness. I was so looking forward to my shower and all went well. I still can't stand up straight due to the skin tightness in my belly. Most of the bruising from the lipo is gone, my belly button is healing well, a lot of the swelling has gone down and I'm back to a good weight showing that I probably have about 3 lbs. of water still to flush out.

I've been lounging in pajamas and stretchy yoga pants due to the belly swelling, but I put on a pair of stretch jeans today to help hold the abdominal binder in place and I feel almost normal! The extra help that the jeans are offering is also helping with the discomfort and pain and that is a great thing! My husband is doing the grocery shopping because there is still no way I can walk that much, but I do believe we will head out for a lunch today as I'm feeling a bit stir crazy anyway. I may look a bit funny walking hunched over, but it will feel good to get out!

Once my bruising is all gone and I can stand up a bit straighter, I will take some pictures to show you my progress. My husband says I look thinner already even though I am still a bit swollen!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Day 6 Post Op Follow Up Appointment

It has been almost a week since my lipoabdominoplasty and the last few days have been interesting and a bit uncomfortable.  Areas of my tummy are still numb and others feel funny when I touch them, while some areas are still quite sore and swollen. My incision is pretty well-healed with almost no drainage so I do not have to put bandages over that area any more. The doctor examined his work today and said that I am healing well and everything looks as it should at this point. One of his techs removed the stitches around my belly button. I must point out that my belly button looks exactly the same as it did before surgery - Dr. Reath preserved the shape of it and I am very happy with that!

Yesterday, Day 5, was not a good day. My belly was so swollen and I didn't feel like I could breath correctly. Turns out that I was holding a lot of fluid, 6 lbs to be exact. Dr. Reath told me that he removed 4 lbs of skin and fat during the surgery. I can't eat as much as I used to because he has pulled in the stomach muscles and stitched them where they should be. It will be interesting to see what I weigh once a lot of my swelling is gone.

I can now use Ibuprofen for pain relief and it will probably work better than the Percocet because it also helps with inflammation. My binders are my new best friends and I will continue to wear them daily until I return to the doctor's office in 2 more weeks. I cannot stand up straight yet and probably won't be able to for a few more weeks.

All in all, I feel like I turned a corner today and I cannot wait to see what improvements there will be over the coming weeks!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Day 3 post-op tummy tuck

It has been 3 days since I had my tummy tuck with lipo. The doctor told my husband that he expects me to have a great result. Of course, looking at my tummy now, I have no clue what to expect. It is all bruised and the skin is tight to the touch. My scar runs hip to hip and I cannot stand up straight at this time. All of this is what I expected.

I'm on a lot of different medications (for pain and inflammation) and vitamins to help with healing so I am making up a daily time table to keep up with taking them all. I halved my pain meds this morning so I'm not so sleepy all the time now. The pain isn't the worse part, but the swelling is so I wear a compression binder for up to 6 weeks. Constipation is a problem at the moment, so I need to up my intake of stool softener to remedy that.

I go for my 1 week follow up appointment in a few days and am anxious to see what Dr. Reath has to say about my recovery so far. I don't know how he can look at my tummy now and predict anything, but he's been doing this for 30 years, so I have a lot of trust in him!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Vermont, liberal rednecks and plastic surgery

Jim and I headed to Vermont the last week of September for our vacation this year. He had a plane ticket banked that had to be used by October 3rd so off we went to visit a childhood friend of mine that I had not seen in 38 years! She and her husband just recently moved to Vermont and were gracious enough to offer up their basement apartment to us.

We stayed in her home with her hubby and 3 cats and had the best time catching up in the evenings. Our days were filled with trips all over Vermont, New Hampshire and even a brief trip into Canada to get our passports stamped! I posted all of my pictures on Facebook and most of them on Instagram, so friend/follow me if you want to view them. We missed seeing the changing foliage by about 10 days because it was still so warm there, but did manage to catch some pretty colors in New Hampshire.


We made the most of our time - I ziplined for the first time, we drove to the summit of Mt Washington and just enjoyed being together!




The leaves are just starting to change here in east Tennessee and I am happy about that! Last night, we headed to a local theater to see the wellRED comedy group led by the "liberal redneck," Trae Crowder. The guys were hilarious and kept us laughing for 2 hours straight! The other comedians were Drew Morgan and Corey Ryan Forrester and all three signed their book for us. We had unknowingly purchased VIP tickets and so got to meet and greet the guys after the show - what a fun evening! Jim and I have decided that we need to do things like this more often!



This Thursday, I am having surgery. I have 2 areas of my body that I have never been happy with. Two months ago, I had my chip CoolSculpted and I am really happy with my results. While my chin isn't perfect (and I didn't expect it to be since I am almost 49!), I do have a lot less fat and would highly recommend this procedure. Here are some photos of my results:



So, the 2nd body part I do not like is my belly. It is obvious that I have had 2 children and I've never liked the saggy belly I was left with. I am finally at a weight that I'm ok with, although I do hope to tone up and lose a bit more fat in some spots using weight lifting and a keto diet in 2018 (after the holidays!). We had set aside money for a kitchen remodel and my husband suggested I use that money for my chin and tummy. Soooo, in a few days I will have a lipoabdominoplasty, the big word for a tummy tuck with liposuction. I am nervous and excited all at the same time; nervous about the recovery because this is a major surgery and excited to finally be happy with myself. I am going to take pictures of my recovery and will share them here as I heal. It will be a full 12 months before I will have my final result as this surgery causes swelling in the belly for a minimum of 6 months. I chose to do it now because I can hide my swollen belly underneath hoodies during the winter months!

Crochet is still a big part of my daily life. I have lots of projects that need finishing and I hope to tackle them while I am healing from surgery. I won't be comfortable for several weeks, so the family is going to have to help with cleaning and shopping. This means I have extra time on my hands and my goal is to fill it with crochet and reading. I've made a commitment to use my library more. It's silly to buy books even if I am getting them at a discount online or through our nearby used book store. I love the ease of requesting books online and letting the library hold books for me til I pick them up. The winter months are perfect for coffee and a book in the morning!

Well, I guess that is all of the catching up for now. I will write again once I feel ok enough after surgery to post an update!