The time has come to leave on the biggest journey of my life, so many mixed emotions that I cant even begin to tell you!

Leaving our daughter behind has been the hardest thing I have needed to do! She was at the airport with us and I think it only really sank in for her when it was time to board! I had so many tears in my eyes but I could not let her see my tears. Our first stop would be Melbourne to get onto our connecting flight out of the country with Qatar airways as they were not flying out of Adelaide for another week directly. The whole process is starting to feel real now, and some nerves are starting to set in.

Have I made the right decision? will this help me?, will it hurt ( I hate pain so the thought of needles and pain really gives me the heebie jeebies) but I need to think of the long term gain of never having the Lipoedema progress from stage 1.

We board ourlove life lipoedema flight at 10 pm and I settle into my seat ready for the 14 hour flight to Doha. The flight is long, unable to sleep maybe 4 hours in total so i am feeling wrecked and a little crazy. Our next connecting flight is from Doha to Frankfurt, which was a 30 minute turn around. I was so glad that i got us to the gate when we did as we hadn’t even sat down and they were calling for everyone to board. Our plane this time was the all talked about Dream liner, it was smaller and far more uncomfortable, I have no idea how anyone large would be able to fit in the seats at all, its really unfair. the six hours went quick enough and we arrived  in Frankfurt without a drama.  

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Collecting our car was a little bit of an issue but we got there in the end. Warning for all those considering driving in Germany especially if your not from Europe – they drive at 200 km per hour on the wrong side of the road and the wrong side of the car lol! It is freaky! My poor husband had to get the hang of driving with these crazy Germans, they have the reputation for their driving and it is certainly true.

Arriving in at Frankfurt airport we traveled for 2.5 hours which was 330 km from the airport to Dr Stutz office. The accommodation that we have booked is the apartment 200 m up the road from the Dr s rooms. There will be a full list of all the services that I used on separate download for anyone that is interested, including the cost break down.

Today is Sunday in Germany and coming from Australia we are completely unaware that there is literally nothing open to get food or retail stores open! Heading out into the country side of Schwarzenbach am Wald everyone is rugged up in their own little homes so you need to be aware of their retail opening hours. We ended up driving back out of Schwarzenbach about 30 min to a McDonald’s that we saw on the way in!

Not something that I have eaten in years but it filled the void LOL!

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Woke up to snow today which was absolutely fantastic, a beautiful dusting of what looked like icing sugar on ginger bread houses.

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Today is the day we got settled in, the apartment that we have chosen is lovely it has everything we need other than a washing machine, not too sure if there is a laundry mat or other laundry facilities in the town, I highly doubt it as the town is really little ( which makes it really cute).

On the drive into Schwarzenbach you will see a gorgeous café with a smiling croissant, we decided to go their for breakfast as we had no food in the apartment yet. The lady behind the counter was super sweet and spoke a little English, enough to get a coffee and pastry each for breakfast, it was soooo good!

We decided to go for a drive and find the supermarkets that we saw while were driving to get McDonalds 30 mins away from last night when we realised that there is nothing open on a Sunday, lucky for us the two supermarkets REWE and Netto are literally 5 min drive from the LLLHappyCrossaintapartment.

They don’t really speak English here, so please make sure you learn a little German, only if it is to say hello, goodbye, I don’t speak German, how much is the bill that will pretty much get you through shopping and eating out. Make the effort at least to speak a little German considering we have come into their country! Shopping is pretty standard it all looks the same and if you are unsure of what something is then the pictures are pretty accurate. We decided it would be cheaper to make our own food but everyone is different, the problem is the lack of restaurants in a close proximity. I have my first appointment today to meet the Dr, I am super nervous and apparently I am also booked in for a procedure called Endemologie which i have no idea will entail! Its all pretty surreal to be here and to have this day finally come.

Meeting Dr Stutz for the first time was a little scary, I have no idea why as he is so lovely. His grasp on the English language is impeccable! After meeting with him I was ushered up stairs to meet Jutta his wife who is responsible for the Endemologie. Its basically a machine that helps from my understanding to break down the fat as much as possible before the operation, this helps Dr Stutz during surgery to get as much out as possible. I am all for that!!! 

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 D day, operation day, I woke up thinking everything was going to be OK, but really it was the calm before the storm. Speaking of storm, overnight the sky had delivered me beautiful soft white fluffy snow, I have never seen snow like this before so I was completely mesmerized by the sheer beauty of it!

We walked down to the practice, again a bonus being so close, I was ushered into the first floor operating room. It hit me like a ton of bricks, fear, so much fear that I was screaming on the inside. I went into a trance like state and just did as I was told, I undressed and put on the very fashionable stick on underwear, from their the girls were busy prepping everything when Dr Stutz walked in grabbed a coloured texta and started drawing all over my legs. He was marking out the contours that he would be operating on, next he took some photographs from all angles so that we can see the before and after results. Then the operation began, my husband was there watching in his scrubs, he looked very handsome! The operation took 2.5 hours, it was weird and at time painful. The pain LLLWalkingtosurgerywas also unusual not what you are used to feeling, the whole time the doctor was very nice asking if everything was OK. Don’t get me wrong it wasn’t great and I cried a lot but I think that may have  just been me, so many others that have been, report feeling nothing. When it was over I was so happy, I was led into another room where I was cleaned and bandaged then snugly placed into my compression garment.

My highlight of the day was walking out and seeing another patient Pat, her warm smile and open arms were exactly what I needed. She had been through her first leg operation and arm operation. The comfort that we find in each other in this community astounds me, I really don’t think anyone could truly understand what you are going through unless you have been through it. Headed home after talking with Pat’s husband Alex, I was feeling very sorry for myself and extremely emotional. Praying I had done the right thing and doubting my decisions.

There is something to be said about having someone with you, there is no way for me that i could have attempted this without my husband. Having someone to just be there and hold your hand when you are sad helps more than i ever thought. I cut laps around the apartment for the afternoon as the day was snowed in. Dr also advised to stay in doors as the wounds were leaking from the operation. Oh the leaking let me tell you all about the leaking; during the operation the process involves high pressure aesthetic liquid being pumped into you, so once the doctor is finished it is necessary for the liquid to go somewhere and that somewhere is out of you! You are wrapped in puppy pads and in an adult diaper, that you will not get a picture of lol there are some things that you just don’t need to photograph!

Night time could not come fast enough for me as I just wanted the pain to stop, I took all the medication that was given by the doctor and proceeded into the shower. I wanted to be clean and warm, it made me really ill to see the blood and leakage washing out of my bandages. You cant take your compression off for two weeks so you need to get used to bathing in them. Then came the hairdryer, to help dry the compression garment. It takes a while so get ready to be standing/sitting for at least 30 min to get everything reasonably dry. Once I was dry I climbed into bed which is harder than it may seem, everything seemed to hurt and there was no comfortable position. I finally fell asleep which was so amazingly welcomed!

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