The Rising and Falling of My Boobs
By Laura Yeager
I first started stuffing my bra with cotton balls. This was in third grade. I was wearing a training bra--the kind with the elasticized cloth cup to accommodate breast growth. I didn't overdo it; just a couple of cotton balls to make me look like I had something.
After I grew breasts, I stopped stuffing my bra. In my teens, I had perfect breasts--white, smooth and firm. 34Cs.
I did go through a Victoria's Secret phase when I bought the bras that increase your breasts by two cup sizes. This was in my 20s and 30s.
In my mid-40s, I did away with Victoria Secret bras and moved into nylon sports bras. At this point, I wanted to diminish my cup size, not maximize it. I was a DD due a 40 pound, middle-age weight gain.
At 48, something dreadful happened. I got breast cancer. To rid myself of it, I had a double mastectomy. And guess what? I had my plastic surgeon put in size B implants.
How things change....I wanted smaller breasts, not bigger ones.
Things were fine and dandy for five years, and then, the cancer came back.
I lost my remaining right breast tissue, and the surgeon removed the implant.
This is where I am now--lopsided.
I've been stuffing my right bra cup with a sock--a gym sock. This cotton foot apparel became irritating--scratchy on my breast wound.
I have a prescription to get an official breast prosthesis, but I'm not ready for that yet.
To replace the annoying sock, I went to Wal-Mart and bought a polyester breast pad. But this too is irritating.
Believe it or not, there are actually fake boobs at the thrift store. Used fake boobs. Ten bucks a set. I thought of buying them for a second, but only for a second.
Now, I'm wearing a lightly padded bra and not putting anything in the right cup. The cup often "deflates," sinks in on itself. I know this looks strange, but I don't care.
I'm in the state of shock because of what I've been through. Butchered.
When will I get that official prosthesis?
Maybe I'll wear my new body with pride. Why do I have to pretend there's something there when there's not?
I've come a long way.
I guess my breasts don't define me anymore. They're just body parts, like feet. Actually, they're artifacts of suffering. Of survival. They are proof that I did not succumb to the Big C.
They're fine the way they are--completely mismatched.
And I'm alive.
And that's all that matters.