A Long Journey - New Jersey

I've always had large breasts since I was about 11...

I've always had large breasts since I was about 11 years old. At the age of 37 I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in my right breast. I found the lump myself. I had surgery, chemo and then radiation. It has been 11 years since I was diagnosed. Since then I have been wearing a prosthesis in the right side of my bra. It was ok until about a few years ago when I put on some additional weight. Because I had radiation on my right side I didn't gain any weight in my right breast , only my left. I am so lopsided it hurts. I have been so uncomfortable that I take my bra off as soon as I get home. I find myself not wanting to go places because I don't want to have to put on my bra. This really hasn't been working out for me and my family. I have 2 teenage kids. It is not fair to them or to me. I finally decided that it is time for me to do something about this. I always wanted to do it but I just always felt that I had enough of doctors. I know that it is now time.

My surgery is scheduled for September 26th. I am both excited and nervous at the same time. I mostly fear the anesthesia. I am pretty tough as far as pain goes. When I had the lumpectomy for cancer, I took 1 presciption pain pill and that was it. From then on it was only tylenol. I don't like the way narcotics make me feel. MY problem is with anxiety. I worry about everything. Not waking up after surgery, etc.

I have been reading this board for a few months now. I am inspired by everyone's story. I know all the discomfort, pain, etc. It is comforting to know that I am not the only one and that there is relief in my future.

I only need a reduction in my left breast. I am happy with the size of my right breast. I will be somewhere between a B and C Cup. I can't tell you how happy that makes me. I have never been able to wear dresses, tank tops and nice tops. I can't wait.

I do have one problem that I am worried about. I am not telling any of my coworkers about my surgery. I am just taking time off. I work part-time. I don't know how much they will notice when I get back. I'm hoping that they only gradually notice. I don't want to get into the whole cancer thing with them. I usually only wear baggy tops so I hope that will be an easy explanation.

I didn't have any trouble getting approval from my insurance company because I had breast cancer. They said I am entitled to get this surgery. My husband is very supportive of my decision. He has been with me thru all of my health issues. I am very blessed.

I would appreciate any tips you can give me. I am concerned about being in a bra constantly since that is the one thing I hate now. I hope at least it will feel better than it does now. I have my pre-op appointment with my surgeon on Thursday, September 13th. Is there anyting I should make sure I ask her?
Thank you all for listening and your support.

I had my pre-op appointment with my surgeon today....

I had my pre-op appointment with my surgeon today. It certainly feels real now. I have to be there at 9:00 on September 26th.

6 days until my surgery and I' m feeling kind of...

6 days until my surgery and I' m feeling kind of sad. I am having lots of 2nd thoughts about doing this. I feel like I am being selfish. What if something goes wrong? How will my kids feel? I asked my husband if I should back out and he said "No, you should have done this 10 years ago". So, I guess I'm going with that.

I am so close, now. I am feeling anxious but also...

I am so close, now. I am feeling anxious but also a little bit of relief thinking that 24 hours from now I will be on the road to recovery.
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H liz hopecyou are feeling ok im from cental jersey and you? My dr works out of ny and engelwood so i went up there fir thevsurgery
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Liz, so glad you are at the relief part...I pray that it will keep you calm until you wake up in recovery. I am here to say that my back and shoulder have not hurt once in the six days since... I am sore from sleeping in the recliner, but that is only a temporary inconvenience and not the steady pain from before.... my heart, hugs and prayers to you .... Tomorrow is going to be a great day! Brand new "smaller" you is right around the corner!!!. Hope you get some sleep.
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forgot to mention - dresses, tank tops, nice tops, freedom to live your life as you want to!!!!
Oh Yeah! - right around the corner.... you have waited long enough and have been through quite enough.... you go girl - we are all rooting for you!!! :-)
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Thank you, Margie. You don't know how much your support means to me. This has been so hard for me. I am trying to stay focused on the good things as you mentioned. I haven't worn a dress in years, always skirts. The best part will be wearing a normal bra. I can't even believe it. Thanks again. I'll post as soon as I can.
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Hi Liz,
I am on day four post and can't believe that I was in your shoes last week thinking all of those very thoughts. - this time has flown by. All those fears and insecurities are all part of the package. In reading through these posts like I did, you have read similar thoughts about so many factors. You will be so happy and so relieved and your family will be so happy for you! You have a wonderful future ahead and it begins when you fully wake up from surgery and realize WOW it is behind me and there are great days ahead of me. I will be praying for you and looking for your update to celebrate with you.... Hugs to you. m
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Thank you so much, Margie! It is encouraging to hear that I am not alone and that you felt the same way that I do now. Thank you for your prayers. Good luck in your recovery.
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The nerves are totally normal! And I think it is awesome that you have a husband who is so supportive of you.  It is not selfish at all to want to feel better. Your kids will benefit from your increased level of energy and comfort. Yes there are risks of complications, but these are really very few. And even the risk of the surgery itself is so minor...I mean they operate on 3 pound babies successfully, surely they can do it on a full-grown adult woman. Keep focused on all of the reasons you are doing this and what you want to accomplish. There are all kinds of what-if's you can play here...but what if you don't do it? What if you keep these large breasts for another ten years? How are you going to feel physically? How are you going to feel mentally?  You wouldn't have made it this far if you really didn't want to do it.  Hang in there kiddo...we're all here to support you through this!
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Thank you, Iowa71. I appreciate your encouragement & support. I know that this is the best thing for all of us. I've waited long enough.
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What a story, Liz! Thank you so much for sharing it. I think this is just the treat you deserve after the harrowing experience you have been through. Good for you for taking the initiative to do what is going to make you feel so good.

I was much more comfortable in a bra once I had the surgery. Now there will certainly be some discomfort after surgery, but so much of that is just the discomfort from healing. Some women really did not like their post-op bra, others said they thought theirs was so comfortable. Mine was no big deal. I also used an ACE wrap for awhile because then I could control the amount of compression as I could tolerate or wanted. And I think once your breasts are a more even size you will find a bra more comfortable.

I wish you the very best of luck! The 26th will be here before you know it! Keep us posted!
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My husband says the same thing. He says that I should have done it 10 years ago. It is amazing how time goes by so fast. It is good to hear that you are more comfortable in a bra now. I can't imagine feeling that way.
My doctor says that I will be in a surgical bra for a week and then I wear my own bra. I hope I'm not uncomfortable. I like your idea of using the ACE. Maybe I will try if I get too uncomfortable.
I will definitely post my experience as soon as I am able to.
Thank you for your support. It definitely helps.
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Welcome to the community. I am so happy you joined us:)

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