I MADE A COMMITMENT TO MYSELF TO BE THE BEST I CAN BE AND THIS MOMMY MAKEOVER WAS PART OF THE PLAN.
Let’s be real: turning your life around after you have been sitting in a rut for a long time is not easy, but it is definitely worth it. I lost over one hundred pounds in a three-year time frame. I ate six small meals a day consisting of only whole foods and eliminated all processed foods. I still enjoyed delicacies that I love, like chocolate and sweets, but I made sure that it wasn’t chemically infused and only the best ingredients. The key to any diet and exercise is always to do what’s best for you and celebrate small wins along the way. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it has to work for you.
After having three daughters, my body just wasn’t the same. I had a lot of loose skin around my stomach area, and my arms were massive as well. The more weight I lost, the more I loose skin I had, and I knew that this was just part of it all. I let myself put on a lot of weight, and losing it all means having all the loose skin that comes with a major weight loss.
DO I GO OUT OF THE COUNTRY TO DO THIS WAS THE QUESTION I KEPT ASKING MYSELF?
My daughter’s father lives in Santo Domingo, and Dominican Republic is a country I have visited quite often over the course of my relationship. Not only is surgery a lot cheaper than what it would be in the states, but I figured my daughters could stay with their dad while I get this done and who doesn’t want to save a couple of thousand dollars, right?
I found a website after doing some online research. RealSelf is a healthcare marketplace where consumers research aesthetic treatments and connect with physicians. The website primarily targets plastic surgery, dermatology, and minimally-invasive treatments. There are 30,000 registered doctors and practices, and I went to work. I sent over fifteen consultation requests to different doctors in Santo Domingo. It seems they all have a standard response of a long-drawn-out email with tons of grammatical errors and communicate through chat on Whatsapp. There was no authenticity in their response, just a lot of cut, copy, and paste responses, which was not what I was looking for. I was starting to get turned off, and then I received a message from one of the doctors I reached out to, and he asked if I had time to speak in detail on the procedures I wanted to get. We schedule a consult for that day, and I was able to walk him through what I wanted to be done and what I was expecting. He was kind, polite and spoke great English. He was concerned and only committed to doing two procedures for this surgery because he advised me that was the safest way to go, and out of all the other doctors I consulted with, he was one of the few that was actually working during the time I wanted to do this surgery was December 29, 2020.
We confirmed the date, I paid a deposit, and my surgery was set. I followed up a few times in between. I wanted to know what method he used when doing the arm lift and if he had any graphs or documents to read and sign, but he assured me that would be all done when we met in person.
My surgery’s total cost was $4,500, and that did not include the round care nurse that was needed, the apartment I rented, flights, or any food, and additional transportation. So after your tally up all the expenses, my total cost was around $10,000.
I was nervous but determined to do this, and not only did I overpack, but I purchased way too many things that I didn’t need. Check out my article on what supplies you need for a Tummy-Tuck and Brachioplasty?
I arrived in Santo Domingo on December 27, 2020, and was picked up by my doctor driver. My friend Rosie traveled with me and my two daughters, who were set to leave with their father the following day for a few weeks. This was the longest time I have ever been away from them, but I was determined and mentally prepared for this, so I thought!
I was seen by a COVID specialist, cardiologist, and lung doctor. I did all my blood work in the states, and I was cleared for my surgery. The morning of the surgery, my doctor came in, marked me up, and prepped me for the procedure. As I was being pushed to the operating room, I went through one set of doors, and before I went into the second door, I was given my anesthesia and immediately went under. I woke up in the OR and was still in surgery which was pretty scary. I can feel someone still working on my left arm, and I said out loud, hi guys, I am awake, and a cover was thrown on my face, and I dozed back off.
After coming too in my room, I was crabby, my back hurt, and I was told crying from what I was saying was the pain. My arms were covered in ace bandages, and my stomach a compression faja. I was set to spend the first twenty-four hours at the clinic. I had a catheter in and was not allowed to get out of bed. For me, the pain and sleeping medication that I was given did not work, and it was so difficult for me to fall asleep. I just wanted to get up and move, and I couldn’t. I felt helpless, and there was nothing I can do about it. To be continued….
Self–love is not selfish; you cannot truly love another until you know how to love yourself. Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do. Be proud of who you are, and not ashamed of how someone else sees you. Be yourself.