I was 23 when I had my first baby. The three Bs (also known as boobs, butt and belly) went back to normal. I was 26 when my second son was born, and after breastfeeding him for seven months, nothing went back to normal… and I mean nothing! My boobs were hanging down to my navel, my belly was sitting on top of my lap, and my butt was less than appealing.
The belly got fixed. The vertical muscles had split and no amount of exercising would make them knit back together so I had to have an ‘upmarket’ tummy tuck. Not the most comfortable of operations to have, but it did the trick. I could see my nether regions again!
I went on a weight loss and maintenance program and, gradually, my butt returned to its previous attractive size and shape. But nothing was happening with my boobies. My sister said I looked like one of those bare-chested women who’d had many children and I became quite self conscious about them. I had an appointment with my GP for my annual oil change and grease.
When my doctor asked, “Why have you got your arms folded across your chest?”, I could only reply, “Oh, Michael, just look at them!”
I would never have contemplated having breast implants without my doctor’s encouragement. I thought that was something that vain women had done, but he said it would get them fixed up (bear in mind, I had only just turned 30.) My surgeon was a dour Scotsman, but brilliant at what he did. I had the operation on a Friday and on Monday morning I went to his rooms to have the strapping removed before I went to work. I asked if I should put the bra on that I had stuffed in my bag. “Why?” was his reply. “These breasts will stand the test of time.”
That day I was wearing a black suit with a grey silk blouse underneath, and as I walked down from Wickham Terrace I kept seeing my reflection in shop windows and I couldn’t help but marvel at how beautiful my boobs looked. When I got home from work that night, I opened my shirt and said to my husband, “Check these puppies out!” Suffice it to say, he was impressed. They have served me well.
However, 32 years later, I’ve had breast cancer twice in two successive years. At a recent follow-up ultrasound it was discovered that one of my implants had ruptured. Hardly surprising, given the number of mammograms I’ve had over the years. Boobs are not designed to have the living daylights squeezed out of them!
My GP referred me back to the hospital and sure enough, my implants now have to come out. I’m not happy about this at all!
I’ve had three major surgeries, plus a broken ankle, in the last five years and I’m over it! Added complications include my chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); my sleep apnoea; smoking; and drinking, so I am not an anaesthetist’s favourite patient. I’m yet to find out (in this era of lawsuits) whether he/she would be prepared to put me under. I await, not so patiently, for an appointment with the pre-admission nurse and a consult with the anaesthetist.
I have never, for one moment, regretted having my implants done. In fact, they have probably saved my life. I had a mammogram six months prior to my ultrasound, but I found the lump myself purely by accident – as my surgeon had told me 32 years earlier, that I would if breast cancer occurred.
In the interim, I will just deal with each day as it comes, but I can’t deny I’m going to miss my bumps!