The morning of surgery I was actually very relaxed. I got up and took one last shower and used my antimicrobial dial soap like I had been instructed to do. Took me no time to get ready since I couldn't wear make-up, lotion or even deodorant. Thank goodness I could brush my teeth! I had an extra 30 minutes before we had to leave so I ended up throwing together a breakfast quiche for the kids to have when they woke up. Can you say nervous energy being put to good use especially since I was also up til midnight cleaning the house? I was very calm all the way to the hospital and then as soon as we got to the infusion clinic to get my Humate-P for my bleeding disorder is when the major tummy jitters started. I literally wanted to throw up. The first nurse couldn't get the iv in and it's never a good thing when I told her not to even bother flushing it because it was blown but she continued to tell me she thought it was good so of course I ended up with a beautiful bruise on my right hand when the iv was not in a vein. This is when she found out I was a nurse and called for someone else to start my iv!
|The last picture we had like this we were getting ready to meet our four quadlings.|
I had to wait around in recovery until 5pm because before I could head home I had to be wheeled back to the infusion center for another dose of Humate-P. I remember being taken over there but I was completely drugged. I think the nurse was seriously concerned because she kept asking Paul if I was okay. We finally did make it home and I somehow got lifted into bed. Have you ever tried to crawl into bed when you can't lift your own legs because your abdominal muscles have just been sewn together and you can not use your arms because your chest wall has just gotten a couple bra sizes bigger? There is just no possible way to do it and this is one of the only times I cried because I just didn't know how to move. I came home with one drain that I needed to empty as it filled with fluid from my belly and a very tight compression over both my stomach and my chest. At times I felt claustrophobic because of how tight everything was. I continued to have pain and I tried so hard not to complain because I had asked for this surgery and knew pain was part of the package.
|This iv lasted 9 days! I was pretty darn proud of myself that through 10 days of treatment I only needed 2 iv's. Yes, nurses get excited over some strange things!|
|How I was wrapped after surgery|
|My one drain that I had for a week.|
|This pretty much sums up everything I needed for about the first 5 days.|
|The big kids got holy water from VBS last week so I was |
Day 3 was by far the worst day of the entire recovery period. Throwing up after abdominal surgery is the last thing that is on my bucket list. I had a caffeine withdrawal headache. I needed to poop which thankfully I remembered I had pediatric glycerin suppositories from when the babies came home from the nicu. Day 3 just plain sucked. My back was also on fire from walking hunched over. My back has been use to being overworked since it had to do the job of both my tummy and back muscles for 6 years but walking hunched over made a whole bunch of new muscles work. I cried out to a friend who had a tummy tuck two years ago because I just could not believe how bad it hurt. Almost worse than the muscle repair pain, almost!
My first follow up was Monday and I was still pretty slow moving but feeling better than the day before. The compression dressings were removed and it was a very surreal experience to see my tummy somewhat flat. Very bruised and wrinkly from the dressing but it was flat. And I never heard one complaint from Paul about the new cup size! The drain stayed in and we were to return a couple days later. Slowly, each day got better. Kept up on my Norco's and Valium's and moved around at a snails pace. I realized it was much easier if I allowed myself to do things on my own rather than have others lift or move me. That only hurt worse. The kids were amazing. Better than I could have ever expected. They actually wanted to be such big helpers that I pretty much had everything I needed at all times. I have never seen kids run so fast to grab their mom a Popsicle (Popsicles and Jumba Juices is what I survived off of for pretty much the first week). The babies must have understood mommy wasn't feeling well too because they would come in my room and stand quietly looking at me and then leave. Never whined for me to pick them up or even attempted to get on our bed. And the husband turned out to be a pretty darn good helper too. My mom and mother-in-law where awesome and tried to do everything they could to help me get comfortable.
|Content to play with mommy by standing on the step stool|
|Finally allowed a child to climb up on the bed with me thinking she wanted some cuddles...nope just my water.|
|My personal nurse|
|I am the luckiest wife ever! He does this nightly on the days I work. I only vacuum the kitchen while he does the whole downstairs but I will not fill him in on that!|
|My view from my recovery bed.|
Saturday I decided I was ready to be a mom again and took myself off all pain pills and the valium. I made it until about 2 in the afternoon and I was really starting to feel it. Then I had a coughing episode during dinner which brought me into the house and I sat and cried on the couch. Paul came in and reminded me that the doctors told me it would take me two weeks before I could even lift a kid or really do anything resembling my day to day life. I really dislike when the doctors are right but I did start my pain meds back up but am only taking them when I need to and not around the clock. I am finding myself doing really good for about 4-5 hours of being with the kids and then I must rest. Hopefully after another week I will have a little more energy back but all in all I am very happy with how I have done.
|Day 8- Before the pain became too much!|
Would I do this all over again as I sit here a week out? Yes I would. The pain was worse than I imagined it would be. Some compared it to the pain that accompanied a c-section but for me this was not the case at all. The mommy makeover was ten times worse but I do believe it was because of the repair of my abdominal muscles (diastasis recti). My surgeon thought I had about a 2cm gap prior to surgery, when he went in to repair the muscle I had a 10cm gap. A huge separation and another reason I am so happy to have had this surgery. I am glad that I had as much support for the first week because otherwise there is no way I could have handled the pain and my children. As far as figuring out a right time to have the surgery, I don't think there ever will be the perfect time. Yes it will be a solid two weeks before I lift my kids but they will never remember that and hopefully now I can fell better about myself which will allow me to be a better mom. I am more than happy to answer any questions you have regarding my experience with my mommy makeover and I will happily give periodic updates for those who are interested. If you have questions feel free to add them to the comments, comment via fb or send me a personal message on fb. One week out and can't wait to see the changes over the next couple of weeks!
Addendum: I had this written last night but wanted to edit it one more time. Well let's just say my good look on life attitude took a complete 180 today. I had some pain but it was mainly pure exhaustion. I could not deal with my older kids so to make sure I did not snap at them and regret it later I pretty much stayed in my room except to prepare meals. I pray I wake up without the funk tomorrow otherwise the husband and the in-laws may be high tailing it far, far away from here. So just know if you go through a mommy makeover you may have some bad days mixed in with the good ones; guess that is how life is too so at least not too much new there!
******Stop reading if you do not want to see bruised post op pictures******
|Post op day 3. Dressings just removed.|
|Post op day 4|
|Post op day 6|
|Drain out!! Post op day 7|
|Post op day 8|
|So happy that my incision is low enough to be hidden. You can see how my belly swells below my belly button.|
|New belly button|
|Post op day 11|