Mommy makeovers are a set of surgeries, usually a breast lift and/or augmentationtummy tuck and liposuction, that can be life-changing. But it definitely takes a lot of research, patience and self-care to ensure that these changes work for you.

Many women go through mommy makeovers and carefully detail their processes — before, during and after the procedures —  including before and after photos, reviews, and helpful tips and advice for other moms. The RealSelf community is especially passionate about helping one another out as they research mommy makeovers.

Here, a 44-year-old mom of three, who opted for a breast augmentation with lift, tummy tuck and liposuction, shares with us why she decided to get a mommy makeover, what the process was like, and what life is like now.

 

When did you decide to get a mommy makeover?

I’ve wanted a mommy makeover since I was in my mid-20s. I had two children and had gained a lot of weight. One day, I stepped onto the scale and was shocked when it read 198 pounds. So I got into a diet and exercise program and lost 70 pounds in less than a year, and that’s when I noticed all the extra flabby skin and deflated breasts.

At the time, I knew I wanted to fix it, but I had no idea where to start, no one to talk to and no money. So I did nothing. A few years later, I regained most of the weight and my stomach still looked awful.

 

Right before surgery (left) and 12 weeks after (right). Photos: RealSelf

 

Was there a specific moment you realized this was the right choice for you?

Yes, at 44, I finally was at a weight I felt happy with. I work out often, watch what I eat most of the time while maintaining a healthy weight, and felt good in my clothes but awful naked. I was happy, but every time I saw my flabby stomach and saggy boobs, I just felt awful.

One morning, I was having breakfast with my husband after our morning gym session, and I just blurted it out to him that it was time for me to get my body back once and for all. He knew I wasn’t happy. He knew I felt self-conscious and dreaded being naked, so he gave me his blessing.

I immediately started googling plastic surgeons in my area and read some reviews, called one plastic surgeon and made an appointment. I still didn’t know much about mommy makeovers and had not discovered RealSelf yet. I met with a surgeon that very same week, and after speaking with him, I felt very comfortable and decided right there on the spot to secure a surgery date and gave my deposit.

 

How did you prepare? Did you talk about your decision with family and friends?

My surgeon [Dr. Tad Grenga] referred me to RealSelf, and I started reading all these amazing reviews, seeing pictures, reading how other women prepped, and I took lots of notes. Besides my husband, I told my three sisters, two adult daughters and two very close friends, all of whom were very supportive.

 

What has it been like sharing your journey with other women?

It has been amazing, I don’t think I could have done this without RealSelf. The women, the stories are all amazing, supportive, and exactly what I was going through. Reading their stories helped me get through my own journey, and sharing my journey as honest and as raw as possible is just my way of paying it forward. I’ve had women message me and tell me how my journey has helped them and that means the world to me.

 

Five months after surgery. Photos: RealSelf

 

What is your advice to other mothers considering cosmetic surgery?

Research as much as you can so you can make an informed decision. This surgery is life-changing, but in a good way. The confidence I got back was worth everything. It is major surgery, the recovery is painful, can be frustrating at times, it’s a wave of emotions, but the end result is worth it.

 

Why was RealSelf a valuable resource during your mommy makeover journey?

The reviews, the stories, all the invaluable information. Nowhere else on the web will you find the wealth of content, real stories, pictures and journals of real women who are going through it and living it.