I hope my absence hasn't been too tragic for you (haha - joking, of course). I'm feeling better and back in action. I intended to blog more when I was off but I just didn't get the time, and honestly sitting at the computer didn't appeal to me. Also? It takes a lot longer for me to blog from my iPad! Between lots of amazing visitors, doctor visits, and other things I was pretty beat.
So here I am... I will try to do a couple separate updates on here, to keep posts shorter and better organized. I suppose I will start with surgery itself. That's probably what people are waiting to hear the most about. I'll write another post (maybe yet tonight) about the eating and exercise portion of my time away.
Surgery went pretty well... I was less nervous this time. I think that having had my procedures last year helped with to calm me. I had to be at the surgical center first thing in the morning, as I was scheduled for eight o'clock. I went through the standard prep...Changed into fantastic and highly fashionable surgical garb, had an IV started and meds pumped through it, super cool things were strapped around my legs to prevent clotting during surgery, and then (after I was all wrapped up in this gear) the doc came in and marked me.
I was given a few more medications this time due to my history of feeling nauseated after surgery. I can't even recall all of what I was given for sure... I know I had a scopolamine patch (used for motion sickness), some kind of Tylenol concoction with an anti-nausea component to it, Pepcid, then of course the anesthetic, and I believe some heavy duty pain meds.
I recall being give the anesthetic and getting drowsy quickly. I'm not sure I even recall making it into the operating room before I was asleep. Last year I remember being wheeled in there and them telling me they'd be moving me. This time? I think I was out a lot faster (probably given the med a little earlier).
I remember a little bit more about being in the immediate recovery area than I did last time. In fact, I don't recall much of anything from when I was in there last year. This year was a different story... I remember meeting two nurses, and I remember feeling really nauseated. They kept me in the immediate recovery area quite a while longer than planned. They kept the oxygen on me due to the nausea and gave me some more meds. The nurse also kept wiping my eyes because of the ointment that was in them. At first I thought the pain meds were hitting me too hard... I remember opening my eyes and seeing black spots. One of them seemed to run off to the side, so I thought that they were bugs. I'm pretty sure this is an occupational hazard due to knowing how pain meds can impact on someone. Luckily it was because of the ointment, so the nurse was very kind and stayed with me for a while to help wipe my eyes.
I also remember being told how rough I looked. I recall something about not letting me look in a mirror. Because I had some liposuction on the back of my legs and butt, I was on my face for quite a while. I guess being face down with the breathing tube in can cause some swelling. Apparently I was very swollen.
I was finally taken to the area where I could see my Mom, who was a bit nervous because she thought she'd see me after 45 minutes, and that time was pretty much doubled! I remember her trying to help with things and me getting cranky and telling her that's not what the doctor said. One time a nurse was in there and I think she thought I was snapping at her. I didn't do well in telling her that I wasn't talking to her (which also probably sounded pretty snippy). Naturally after I was mean, I started to cry and apologize to my Mom for being crabby. She realized it was because of the situation, but I still felt bad. At one point, I said to her, "I just want to go home."
After surgery I went to my parents' house to recover and since that time, I've been back and forth between my house and theirs (spending most of my time up there). I finally came home "for good" yesterday afternoon. I've been lucky to have such good people helping to care for me.
I went back to work today. I had thought about coming back toward the end of last week but that didn't happen. My legs were (and still are) pretty swollen from the liposuction. About a week ago I tried on my "fat" pants (a size larger than I was wearing before surgery) and even those weren't going to fit. I couldn't get one pair past my thigh! That hit me pretty hard, but thankfully I had some good support who just let me be whiney. Anyway, I decided to give it a few more days to let the swelling go down, in hopes that my pants would fit again. I can definitely see a difference between last week and now...But I also can see that there's more swelling to go down.
My legs ended up with some reddened areas post-op. They were itchy and burned at times (still do). I thought it was a tape allergy or an allergy to the material in the garment (had it in other spots - including my arms; same type of garment too), but the doc said that it was actually broken capillaries. He instructed me to stop wearing the compression garment, which means the swelling will take a bit longer to go down. I can see a small difference in the areas he did the additional liposuction. I'm sure I will notice it more as the swelling goes down and I continue to heal. I'm still having some leg pain; probably related to the swelling. It's nothing significant though and is more present when I walk for too long.
As for my arms... They're healing very well. My incisions are already scabbed over and in some areas the scabs are gone and they just look like scars. I definitely had pain in my arms, and am still having some. Again, it's not bad pain and now it mostly happens when I bump against something or when I stretch them. I am continuing to wear my compression sleeves, and will have to do so for another week or two. I don't have to wear them constantly and the doc said that it's not mandatory, however it will help the swelling go down. I've had them off "when it's not appropriate to wear them" (words of my doc), like when I've laid out in the sun. I do notice that my arms will hurt a little more if I don't have them on. Just like my legs, I'm sure that's from the swelling.
Overall, surgery went well. Recovery has gone well too. It will take some time for the rest of the swelling, and resulting pain, to decrease, but it's definitely tolerable.
So that is that. Please feel free to ask any questions that you may have and I didn't already answer.
Have a great week everyone!!