Ana Richardson, a mom of two, had two Brazilian butt lifts after the birth of her youngest daughter.
She said that even though recovery from the surgery was hard, she had no regrets.
This is her story, as told to Kelly Burch.
After my first daughter was born in 2014, I had horrific postpartum depression. I was down on my body, with its flat rear and rounded tummy. But I realized that I didn't have to live with a body that I didn't love. That's when I began researching Brazilian butt lifts.
Brazilian butt lifts, or BBLs, transfer fat from one area of your body and deposit it in your butt. The procedure appealed to me because it seemed more natural than getting a butt implant. I soon started thinking about it as rearranging furniture: My body had this fat, but I could decide what arrangement looked best.
Why I took the Brazilian-butt-lift plunge
When I brought up the idea of surgery to my husband, he was supportive. We both agreed that I should wait until we had a second child and our family was complete. While I did research during my second pregnancy, the popularity of BBLs skyrocketed.
When my second child was just 6 months old, I was ready to take the plunge. Since I was already going under the knife, I decided to do multiple procedures at once. My pregnancies had left me with severe diastasis recti. I had that repaired, got a tummy tuck and liposuction, and had a BBL.
The morning of the surgery I was terrified. I'd had a bad experience with an anesthesiologist during my labor, but this doctor set me at ease by joking about my mismatched socks. I started counting backward from 10 and was out. Six hours later I woke up in my car, with my husband driving home.
It was a painful recovery
Every bump in the road that my husband hit while driving caused me extreme pain. It was the worst pain I had ever experienced.
During that first week, I couldn't move much at all, and for about three weeks I couldn't carry my baby. Luckily, my husband had taken a week off work to take care of our kids.
I wish I could say it was all worth it when I saw my booty, but that wasn't the case. I had chicken legs and a shelf bottom. That was a little disappointing. But my surgeon had prepared me for this.
When you have a BBL, you have to "feed the fat" with a high-protein diet, letting it take hold in your rear. You also have to exercise to get the shape you want. This is definitely a lifestyle commitment, not a quick fix.
Once I saw the potential of a BBL, I was hooked. Eight months after having my first procedure, I went back for more. I got "butt greed" after going for a more natural look with my first procedure and went back for a bigger butt. It was considered more of a revision, and now I'm happy with the results.
Before my BBLs I would change in the bathroom because I didn't want my husband to see me naked. Now my confidence is through the roof. I love shopping in the curvy section and wearing clothes that accentuate my new shape. My husband suddenly likes shopping too - I regularly get surprise packages in the mail with a note that says, "Try this on for me later."
I support other people getting surgery if it makes them happy
I've been an open book about my BBL experience, which I've shared on my Instagram. Society always has an opinion on women's bodies, especially moms'. It's important for me to help other women get reliable information on a procedure that they might want.
People sometimes ask how I'll talk to my daughters about my surgery. I'll just be up front. If they are unhappy with their bodies, I support them in getting surgery or other body modifications. Truthfully, I don't see it as too different from getting braces to get a more picture-perfect smile.
Overall, my surgeries cost about $10,000. I spent hours of my life researching. There was a lot of pain. Still, I wouldn't trade a thing. I love my body, which helps me love myself, and that is priceless.
Ana Richardson is a Virginia-based mom of two and author of "Love, Tenfold: A collection of poems written throughout a short lifetime of trauma, manipulation, and love."
Read the original article on Insider