As a pre teen many young girls with visions of the perfect cleavage will take matters into their own hands and add to the bounty that nature provides or in some cases fails to provide. My own young girls talk often of the day they will have boobs. Let’s be honest, in the view of society, they are the “visual” things that makes a woman. MIllions spent each year on the perfect bra, marketing telling every woman that is what makes you “sexy”.
For well over a year after the mastectomy and DIEP surgery, once I could finally wear a bra, I was limited to one that was padded. Even after a year of healing, scars can still cause a good amount of discomfort. As I would look in the mirror I felt like some teenager who was trying to increase what nature had provided. The difference here as we all know is that what nature provided to me had plans to attack. What I have instead is created by amazing plastic surgeons.
A few weeks ago I decided it was time. The perfect bra, no lining, no padding. For the first time in almost a year and a half I can look in the mirror and see only me. I am comfortable in my own skin. I am happy with the reflection in the mirror, other than the few pounds I could stand to lose 🙂 but hey who doesn’t right?
Everyday since July 2, 2012 there has been a “new” something. Since that date I have achieved many milestones. I remember first being able to finally sit up without assistance, and the first time walking around the block with the girls. There was lots of pain, many tears and worlds of relief knowing I made the right decision. This milestone may not seem like much to many but to me, it is about comfort and confidence and therefore huge. And shopping in VIctoria’s Secret again in pretty cool also 🙂
I recently got into a conversation with someone in which I once again talked about my surgical history with the bilateral prophylactic mastectomy. I share my story often and openly in the hopes that it may help someone else. I am typically met with some amount of shock followed by questions which are usually the same. Interestingly one of the first tends to be “was it painful”. Other typical questions surround BRCA testing, family history and what lead me to make the radical decision I did to have the mastectomy.
So, back to the most recent conversation. For the first time I was asked the question, “what if you made a mistake and the surgery was not needed.” I found that to be an interesting question especially since lobular carcinoma in situ(LCIS) was found. Even after discussing the pathology this person stuck to the yeah but “what if” question. A quick reply was what if I did not and 5 years down the road I was diagnosed with Breast cancer?
I do not live in “what if”. This is why I had the surgery. I never wanted to look back with regret. SO to help land my point I tossed out a few other what if questions.
What if the Declaration of Independence was never signed?
What if Martin Luther King had never been born?
What if women never gained the right to vote?
What if we had never pushed the norms of technology?
All of these questions sound just ridiculous. Life is all about decisions. They are not always easy or comfortable and there will always be someone standing off to the side just waiting to second guess or challenge. I am not sure if I swayed the person’s opinion nor do I really care to be honest. You make decisions everyday, at the end of it all you can only hope you made more good than bad.
Not too long ago I wrote a post, Sensory Overload, in which I implied my distrust for all of the pink that we all must swim in for the entire month of October. I made the following statement, Don’t misunderstand, I think it is wonderful that everyone is raising money to hopefully one day put an end to Breast Cancer. But let’s be honest here, would the NFL be repainting lines in bright pink if it was not profitable?
So, I was not surprised to find the following article actually breaking down some of those numbers from the NFL. (Click to see the article). What did surprise me was just how much did or should I say did not benefit breast cancer. According to the article only $8 of every $100 spent is actually donated to breast cancer charities.
I love capitalism and I love the freedom that allows those who work hard to make lots of money. I do not love vagueness, ambiguity or implication. Sure money is needed to research for the cure. If you would like to donate please research to ensure the money is actually going to where you would like it to go. Even better call the women you love and ensure they are having mammograms and talking to their doctors. There is nothing wrong with pretty pink hoodies supporting your favorite sports teams but like everything else in life make sure you are buying the for the right reasons.