Good Bones star Mina Starsiak Hawk is speaking out after undergoing a "mommy makeover" following the births of her two children – 2-year-old son Jack and 4-month-old daughter Charlotte "Charlie" Drew. A little more than a month after undergoing the 5-hour procedure consisting of a tummy tuck, liposuction, and breast implants, the HGTV star says she finally feels "like myself again."
Starsiak Hawk got candid about her decision to go under the knife when speaking with PEOPLE this month, admitting that while many moms embrace their post-baby bodies, she no longer felt comfortable in her own skin after welcoming both of her children via C-section. The births of her children left her with a scar that served as "a very visual and physical reminder of not looking like myself and not feeling like myself anymore," Starsiak Hawk said. The mom-of-two said these feelings were only deepened by the fact that she had developed diastasis recti during her pregnancies and was left with a 4-and-a-half inch separation in her abs. She said she "just didn't feel like I was going to be able to work out and get this back to where I felt strong, like myself, like I did before kids."
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Although the renovation star said she had been planning what is dubbed a "mommy makeover" since her son's 2018 birth, she did not get the process rolling until after Charlie's arrival, Starsiak Hawk having shared her decision with Instagram followers in November. After connecting with Toledo, Ohio plastic surgeon Dr. Peter Koltz, she went under the knife for the five-hour surgery on Dec. 5 and began the road to recovery, which she admitted wasn’t easy. Following the procedure, a nurse had to help Starsiak Hawk shower and put on a tight compression garment to reduce swelling. She also had to learn how to take care of the drainage bags to manage the excess fluids from the incisions. The ordeal initially left her "uncomfortable," with Starsiak Hawk admitting, "I felt like an alien because I had drains to collect this bloody goo. It's like you're peeing and having your period all at the same time."
The Good Bones star's recovery continued once she returned home to Indianapolis three days later. Due to the tummy tuck, she said she was left "kind of hunched over" and unable to fully stand up for about 10 days. Although she was supposed to rest for a few weeks, she attempted to get back to work within a week, Starsiak Hawk explaining that her decision to go off the pain medications and start ripping down shelving in her home left her feeling "like I'd been hit by a train and then trampled by an elephant." The ordeal was worth it for the mom-of-two, though, who said she now feels better than ever.
"Believe me, surgery is hard, recovery is hard, time away from work is hard," she said. "I also recognize that I'm in a very good, lucky position that I was able to do what I felt like I wanted and needed to do, to get to a good place. I feel strong, I feel attractive — and I feel like myself again."
Starsiak Hawk told PEOPLE she is still recovering from the procedure. She said she still wears "some compression stuff because it helps the healing and helps the skin reattach." She said it will take about three months for the swelling to subside completely.