13 July 2014

Happy Birthday Noobs!

My new boobs are one!

Me and my girls. 

Not bad, considering that two years ago I almost collapsed in the examining room in front of my Breast Surgeon, Dr Escargot. He’d softly suggested softly that I might want to consider a double mastectomy. The very word was like a punch in the kneecaps.  Even with his soft Colombian accent the word ‘mastectomy’ sounded harsh and barbaric.   I remember wrapping my arms across my chest, and glaring at him as though he was trying to steal my Halloween candy.

Months later, in an effort to ‘gather information’ I met with my Plastic Surgeon. I cried in front of him too. Dutch accent this time, which made the word ‘mastectomy’ sound a little more playful, like something you might want to do while you’re on vacation. But I had a little meltdown anyway, and he gently assured me that I didn’t have to do anything I didn’t want to do.

‘Wanting’ to have a mastectomy wasn’t something that really entered the equation when it came to making the most difficult decision of my life. What I wanted was to live a long and healthy life. Achieving that goal meant doing everything in my power to reduce the risk of recurrence. Thus the decision was made for me, and it had nothing to do with the fact that my Plastic Surgeon was a hottie.

It wasn’t till two weeks after my surgery that I found the courage to look at my new breasts. The thought of boobs without nipples was just too weird for me. In my strong moments I thought of them as Barbie Boobs, but the fact is that Barbie doesn’t have scars the size of a peppermint patty where the nipple-age used to be.

For three months there was no bra. Just two big soft spongy marshmallows supported by a camisole. They did their own thing, and I did mine. It’s’ as though we co-existed in the same shirt, without really having any connection. They were just like having a new pet. I washed them, massaged them, and took them to the vet doctor. They were the fist thing I thought about in the morning, and the last thing I thought about before I went to sleep.

For six months I couldn’t wear bras with under wire. In fact I couldn’t wear any of my old bras at all. Although my noobs were created by using my original skin envelopes, the shape is only almost sort of the same. Lefty is close to perfect, but right is a little bit squishy – as though it spend some time in a George Foreman Grill. But a good bra makes everything better, and I’ve found some soft ones that work just fine.

Twelve months later and they feel like mine, even though they’re not completely finished. They jiggle in all the right places, and fit comfortably into my familiar 36 C’s. Apart from a few radiation tattoos and a shark bite across my tummy, as well as the scars on my boobs, you’d never even guess I’d had cancer. Clothed, anyway.

But here’s something I do that I never got to do with my old girls. Stare at them. Sometimes in disbelief and sometimes in amazement. How is this even possible? How do they rebuild a pair of breasts?  Then without realizing it, I’m running my hand over one of the small mounds, just making sure it is there.
In private – it’s totally different. Alone they get the full massage treatment, with oils and other yummy things. Soon they may have acupuncture, because a woman I know promises that in doing so, the heat will be released and the scars will heal even further.

Occasionally I miss my old body. Some woman say they don’t miss their old breasts, reasoning that ‘they tried to kill me’. But I feel that my old boobs were innocent victims, and I loved them till the end.
But the new are more than welcome, and sometimes the thought of how fresh they are makes me positively gleeful.  And they’ve just turned one.

Happy birthday to us!