Nip+Tuck= My Journey through Plastic Surgery

I have been sitting on doing this blog post for quite some time. Every week, I get so many questions about my plastic surgery experience on IG. While I know many women tend to shy away from admitting to having work done, I don't. Truthfully, I will never be a woman who is ashamed of plastic surgery because there is simply nothing to be ashamed of. Getting work done does not mean that you are "lazy" any more than going to the gym religiously guarantees that you will be "fit".

To me, obtaining a level of body confidence is very personal for every woman. Modern medicine exists for a reason and life is too short to deal with a body you aren't confident in. As women, we are constantly subject to other people commenting and judging our appearance and body type. The pressure to be on 10 physically is so high and creates such a level of unwanted anxiety and self doubt. If you don't like something on your body and you have the financial means to change it, you should. Your decision is nobody else's to judge but your own.

I decided to have work done in November 2016, 5 months after moving to New York city. To be clear, I never hated my body and I was not overweight. Actually, I was the thinnest I had ever been in my adult life at that time and I loved being able to squeeze into a size 6 anytime I found clothes I liked. My biggest complaint with my body at that time was I was pretty shapeless. Being 5'11, I have very long legs (thick legs at that) and I used to feel like I had a rectangle shape body- sort of like a thin SpongeBob SquarePants. I have NEVER liked my breasts (even at 16) and I really wanted a breast lift and implants as well. My husband was very supportive of my decision to get plastic surgery and encouraged me to do research to find a surgeon that I liked.

I decided to have surgery in the Dominican Republic with Dr. Yily De Los Santos. I had been to DR solo prior to having surgery and I was very familiar with the country and the standard of care there. I went to DR alone for surgery and I had zero problems with traveling solo. Obtaining a quote for surgery cost from Dr. Yily was relatively easy. Like most doctors in DR, Dr. Yily used a combination of WhatsApp and email to offer procedure quotes. I found her team to be very responsive to my questions and her team does speak adequate English which makes communication easier.

I decided to have my breasts done (implants + lift), a BBL (Lipo + fat transfer to ass) and a tummy tuck. Because I had stretch marks on my tummy, getting a tummy tuck was the best decision for giving me the super flat stomach I wanted. In total, my surgery was a little over 5k total which included the required medications, 1 night stay in the hospital and aftercare. I stayed in Essence Recovery House for 12 days and the care was amazing there. Following surgery, I got my massages and aftercare after Caroline's spa in Washington Heights and I also really loved them there.

One big mistake that I see people make with overseas surgery is underestimating the actual cost. While the surgery itself was a little over 5k, there are still REQUIRED aftercare services that are crucial to proper healing (massages, drainage, fajas etc.) The worst thing you can do after surgery is not protect your investment by failing to adhere to your after care instructions. In total, you need to be prepared to spend at least 7k on your surgery depending on what you are getting done.

Now that the basic details have been spilled, I have put together a little Q+A based off some of the questions from you all.

Q- Would I recommend Dr. Yily for plastic surgery?

A- Honestly, no. Yes, she did great work on me, but her aftercare was little to be desired and her consultation session is very rushed. During the surgery process at Cipla (the hospital where surgery is done), I felt incredibly rushed and confused by all of the required testing prior to surgery. While the doctors do their best to explain, the language barrier is still existent. Dr. Yily did not really take the time to have a proper consultation with me prior to surgery and just "marked me" without really listening to what I wanted done. Additionally, because she did not listen she "forgot" to do my breast lift during surgery like she was supposed to (and like I paid for). Because she "forgot" my breast list, my breasts are entirely way too big for my body and they STILL do not sit where I want them to. Because of my implants, I now wear a size 34 H size bra and I want a breast reduction ASAP.

Getting Dr. Yily to fix her mistake is impossible. Her staff did not do a good job attending to the problem and have only offered for me to repay for a new procedure in order for her to fix what she did wrong the first time. I was very disappointed in the fact that I did not see her ever again after surgery even after I had complications ( a cracked rib).

Q- What doctors would I recommend in DR?

A- I really love Dr. Duran's work and I will most likely return to her when I decide to get more surgery. Dr. Duran is more pricy than the other surgeons in DR but she is known to give AMAZING results. Dr. Cabral and Dr. Rodriguez also do great work as well in my opinion.

Q- Does surgery hurt? Was I scared?

A- Waking up in a foreign hospital without someone you love is one of the most scariest things I have EVER experienced. Due to the sedation drugs, most people wake up very confused and groggy and UNABLE to move due to the pain. I literally woke up screaming for my husband and had to be calmed down for like 40 minutes. The pain is VERY INTENSE. Seriously, nothing can prepare you for the pain of plastic surgery and the MENTAL process that is combined with your surgery. For several weeks after surgery, I woke up feeling like I had made a mistake and I was unhappy with my shape. Swelling and bruising takes weeks to fade after surgery and you will look like you were ran over by a car afterwards.

Q- Do people die during surgery in DR?

A- I suppose, but people die everywhere from surgery. The fact is that while there are surgery complications in the US, sharing them in the media is less controversial than sharing complications from surgeries overseas. There will always be a risk for complications when having the work done. The best thing you can do is make sure you are honest and open with your doctor and take the time to find a doctor that suites your needs and wants.

Q- Will I get more surgery?

A- I am a huge supporter for botox and filler. I have botox in my face and filler in my cheekbones and in my top lip (I need more). As for actual surgery, I would like my breasts redone with a lift and proper reduction since they are way too big for my taste now. I will probably get my boobs done in Miami at CG Clinic hopefully by the end of the year. As for lipo, I have debated about getting another round of surgery, but honestly I really want to attempt getting into a solid gym routine before I go under the knife again. Dr. Yily gave me a great shape and I know that IF I worked out consistently, my body would be EXACTLY what I wanted.

So many girls continue to get repeated rounds of surgery looking for "perfection" that does not exist. I think its important to use surgery to give you the foundation that you are looking for and use the gym and proper nutrition to take your results to the next level.

Q- Did my tummy tuck affect my pregnancy?

A- Not at all, I didn't even show in my pregnancy until about 7 months. I did not get any additional stretch marks and my stomach went back to normal. My hips are wider now (thanks Nova) and I STILL would like to loose about 40lbs to get me back to the size that I want. With a gym routine and proper diet, I know that I will get to the goal size that I want.

Q- Did having surgery change my body confidence?

A- Yes. I feel more womanly now and I love the shape of my body. While there are still things I would like to change (like working out and my giant boobs), I feel very confident in my body shape. My husband enjoys my curvy figure and I feel confident in the way I look in clothes now. Overall, surgery didn't make me confident, it simply increased the self-confidence I already had.

Hopefully I answered a good amount of surgery questions. Remember, plastic surgery is a PERSONAL choice. Do not let anyone force you to get surgery and do not let anyone make you feel bad for wanting surgery either. You only have 1 life to live, you deserve to be confident in whatever way that works for YOU. As for botox and filler, let me know if you guys want more detail about my experience.

Until next time


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