Abdominoplasty: One Week Post-Op
As I mentioned the last time I did a Weekly Run Down, I won’t be writing a WRD for a while; at least until I actually have something to “run down”.
While I am re-habbing, I want to document how it’s going and also talk about my timeline and how I see my near fitness future. Even if just for myself. And maybe someday someone finds my blog and can benefit from what I’m sharing. One thing I do know, it’s very rare to find athletes of all levels who have had abdominoplasty. In my opinion it still seems a bit of a taboo or seen as selfish or what “lazy” people do in order to get a body in which they are not willing to do the work. Maybe there’s some truth in these things, but who am I to judge? I can only judge myself.
The Days Before Surgery
The days leading up to surgery were a bit stressful if only just because I was nervous about what was going to happen. I spent way too much time watching videos of the procedure and of how general anesthesia works. I do and don’t recommend this at the same time – if you are like me you are curious and want to know and it’s IMPORTANT to know. However, by the time I’d seen about my 10th video about anesthesia I admit I was more nervous about that than the operation itself.
I got my hair coloured again and braided for surgery so I wouldn’t have to mess with my hair at the very least. Showering was going to be tricky as would washing my hair in the coming days.
Day of Surgery
On Friday morning (June 4th) I did get up early because I wanted to eat and I could not eat past 7am. I wanted food and I wanted coffee! My expected arrival at the clinic was 1pm.
I spent a few hours that morning just trying to figure out what I needed to pack as I was required to stay overnight. Of course after the fact I knew that I brought way too much with me, but luckily had the important things – loose clothes to go home in, long phone charger cable, and a few toiletries. But yeah I didn’t know what I was going to go home in so I brought a few options.
I had a wee little breakdown cry before Ron brought me to the clinic and basically told him I loved him and if anything at all happened to me he should just dispose of all my belongings (I am a “saver” of stuff, he is not). Which he basically scoffed at and told me to “shut up”.
Nothing to Worry About
Talk about efficiency. I arrived at 1pm, I was already undressed and in my operating gown, hairnet and socks within a few minutes. My stats were all checked shortly thereafter and then the surgeon came by to reiterate what we had discussed and he made a lovely drawing on me to show where the incisions were going to be made.
I was visibly nervous so at some point one of the nurses came in and gave me a mild sedative intravenously, which kicked in within milliseconds and kind of surprised me. Within another 5 minutes I was being wheeled into the operating room.
The Anesthesia and The Operation
I truly had it in my head that I would have a chatty anethesiologist trying to distract me from what was happening and that I would be expected to count backwards from 10. Well, that didn’t really happen.
I was told exactly what they were doing and the reason for it. The oxygen mask was a little claustrophobic, and I mentioned that to them. So they lifted the mask just a tiny bit, told me to take a very deep breath and…
That was it! I woke up in recovery with a lovely tight compression garment (think girdle) on.
The surgeon then stopped by shortly after I was awake and told me it went very well, very smooth and that they removed 1.106KG of skin, fat and tissue from my abdomen and I had a nice new belly button (hole) to boot.
The First Night
To be honest, I had very little pain, but I found out that they do use a pretty powerful long-lasting pain killer/numbing agent to help ease you into the situation rather than have you waking up in agony. The very worst the new situation was having a catheter. I did not expect that. And I had to have it in the whole night until the next morning before being discharged.
I ate something, I slept, I surfed, I walked around the room with the nurse a bit. No real issues.
Going Home and the First Week
Ron picked me up Saturday morning and got me all set up on the couch. Unfortunately later on in the day he had to go to a funeral (the kids’ grandma / their mom’s mom) but to be honest there was no real issue at all. Sure I was moving around slowly but that was fine, I had two drains I had to cart along with me while I moved.
I ate, I drank, I slept, it was all fine.
I had the drains in until Monday afternoon; the clinic phoned me to find out how much liquid I had in my drains and it was little enough that they could already be removed. When I went in they also checked the belly button and the incisions and said everything looked good. They also tightened up my garment and told me that had to stay on for the next 4 weeks 24/7 and 2 additional weeks minimally during the day (can sleep without it, if I want).
Sleeping is a bit challenging, but I’m doing the best I can. I have to stay in a bit of a beach chair position for 2 weeks. I also have had to stay hunched over a bit but since Saturday am allowed to try to straighten up a bit.
I’ve had no real pain at all. which is kind of bizarre to me. And I am walking a bit outside now, but not too much because it’s not good to do more just because you think you can.
No Photos To Share Right Now
I’m just going to spare y’all right now the photos because what I have is just too graphic for the blog. But I hope in the near future I can share with you some “before” photos and some “during” photos where I have actual clothes on. You’re welcome *wink*
Conclusion: Week 1 is a success
Next week I get my stitches out! I’m quite anxious (nervous? intrigued?) to see what the incision looks like. And for sure I’m curious about my belly button. I am equally glad about the new belly button as I am to have the skin, fat and tissue removed. My old belly button was a real dud – I completely ruined it by getting it pierced when I was 30 (it was always infected).
Next week (from day 10 or so) I can also try to bike a bit, however, they warn that this may not feel very good. So I may try, I just don’t know yet. Happy to just be able to walk a bit, you know?
I’m so glad it went so well. I honestly didn’t realize you’d had the procedure already! I saw a few “normal” social media posts from you and got it in my head that it was this coming week. OMG on watching surgery videos. NOPE. There’s a reason why they put you to sleep. ;-)
I hope your recovery continues to go smoothly!
Thanks Coco! Yes, well I posted the morning of my surgery on IG but I didn’t actually mention the surgery. Everything else was just regular Facebook. I do realise it’s a bit nutty to watch videos that could in fact freak you out about your own procedure.
I had no idea you were done already either – well done! I remember being VERY disappointed at my surgery in 2017 that they didn’t ask me to count backwards!! Have a good recovery, little by little is the thing. As you know. I got so pissed off by everyone going Don’t Overdo it after my op (in which they unstuck all my insides from each other as well as removing a cyst) as a) when do I ever, b) well no.
Yes I basically only announced it 1 week before I was getting it done so it feels quick I’m sure. And we were cheated by not getting to count! Ha! I admittedly do need to reel it in a bit with walking as I don’t want to split any stitches or wreck my glorious new navel :D
So glad it went well and that you’re feeling pretty good! As others have said I didn’t realize you already had the surgery. I don’t think I would want to watch videos about what would happen because I would be worried they would make me nervous! Sometimes I think its better not to know. Hope you continue to recover well!
Thanks Lisa! yes I am just too curious about how things work but that doesn’t always work in my favor haha!
Sounds like you are doing great! I don’t know if i told you, but my sister had this procedure incidentally. The surgeon used the fat from her abdomen for her breast reconstruction instead of an implant. We went walking a few days after she got home from the hospital–she still had the drains in–and she did great. You will too!
This seems to be the way to go with breast reconstruction! A friend of mine had the same thing last year. She was obviously really happy to have her breast “back” but was thrilled with the bonus treatment. Hopefully she has her drains out now too! Thanks, Wendy!
Sounds like you surgery was a success. Great to hear that you are doing so well with your recovery. Feel good friend!
Thanks Deborah! Obviously I have a ways to go but this is a good start!
I am so glad to hear that the surgery went well! It sounds like your recovery is going smoothly as well and I’m happy that you’re able to move around a bit.
Thanks Kim. I am really shocked at how well it’s going. That’s good news for sure.
Sounds like the surgery went very well and you’re recovering nicely. Yay! I’ll bet it’s great to have this behind you. That’s amazing it wasn’t painful. Wishing you continued smooth sailing!
Thank you so much Marcia!
I’m so happy your procedure is behind you and that it went well! Here’s to continued healing and fabulous results that make it all worth it!
Thank you Deb!