Smashed into a 36FF, down to a D. - San Jose, CA
- updated 9 months ago
I'm one month from turning 39 and am currently...
- 7 Oct 2012
- 8 days pre
I'm one month from turning 39 and am currently cramming myself into 36FF bras. I've been as high as 36I and I've come to hate them. I try to look at them as sexy...as what "other women" pay thousands of dollars to try to get, or so I've been told by men who think "I'm out of my mind for REDUCING them." But, enough is enough. Other women are NOT paying thousands of dollars to have to buy bras online, to not fit into blouses, to have button up shirts pop open at the bra line and gape open all day without me realizing. They aren't trying to get back problems or see a chiropractor week after week. And so on. About the only thing we have in common is that, they are probably trying to find contentment with themselves or their bodies.
I've thought about breast reduction for 15+ years. In the mid 90s, I investigated it. Insurance had even preapproved it. But, I was in my early 20s. I hadn't had any kids and was worried about the impact on breastfeeding. And the scars. The scars scared me to death. Diagrams of scars, not even photos, would scare me to death. I chickened out and that was that.
More recently, I became interested in lipo. I've seen a lot of info about new method like laser and freezing that are a lot less invasive than "traditional" lipo. So, having struggled with other areas of my body for years too, I went for a consult. While I was there, I also shared my interest in a breast reduction. They pulled in the PS who specializes in that and...the ball was in motion. I suddenly felt excited and totally on board. I've had one child and, for reasons I won't go into here, I wasn't able to breastfeed her. Talk about irony. So, if we do decide to have another, bf won't be an issue. And, the scarring...well, techniques have some a long way in 20 years and it just doesn't look as Frankensteinish anymore.
I'm now looking forward to words like "perky" and seeing how clothes are "supposed to fit," not to mention how I will feel not feeling like a spectacle when I wear something form fitting or looking like I'm wearing a muumuu when I wear something looser. I'm looking forward to better posture and less strain on my mid/lower back and shoulders. I'm looking forward to being able to exercise (first time in life I've said that) without having to strap up in a $200 sports bra that looks and feels like a giant uniboob, and not having my shelf jumping up and down, tugging on my body. I'm also looking forward to NOT having pimples and sweat in my cleavage from sleeping on my side or wearing bras that smoosh them together, creating cleavage that goes all the way up to my neck.
Right now, I'm I'm feeling intimidated by the surgery and recovery. It's just over a week away and I'm so excited and nervous and scared and happy. I just want to get it over with already! I have my preop tomorrow, and I'm sure that will help soothe some fears while creating anxiety of what I need to do to prepare. I'm really afraid of not being available for my beloved 3 year old daughter, the light of my life (most days). Not holding her, tossing her around, rocking with her in my lap and reading to her. I'll feel terrible if a "month off" changes our relationship. I cherish these moments with her still. But, in the grand scheme of things, one month shouldn't be that big of a deal, right? I mean, her dad is here and committed to helping out more while I'm recovering. And, hoping that I'm feeling great by the holidays, I'll have a chance to rekindle a bond with my girl. My other significant fear is waking up and seeing myself for the first time, smaller and with them placed where they should be and being in shock. Will it be too weird? The first time I'm able to feel them without bandages, will it be shock all over again? LIke...this isn't me. Whose are these? Or, will I be in love with them? Of course, I lean heavily on the testimony of those of you who've been through it already and only regret not doing it sooner.
Things I've already learned are sort of scattered. I've gotten tips from this forum, for sure. And, I've quickly learned that community is a huge positive force for me. I'm so glad to have found this forum. THANKS Kimmers! I've added many things to my list of questions to ask my doctor like, how to prepare for sleeping. Ice...is that ok? My preop bloodwork showed some blips in my liver values--does that change the game plan for pain meds? Will I be able to back at work after 6 days, like I'm hoping...or am I kidding myself? (I'm the sole income for a family of 3, so losing face at work is a problem for me.)
So, with that, my count down begins. It's Sunday evening and I am to check in for my surgery at 6:30am on week from Tuesday. I have one week to clean and do laundry (one weekend, actually) and...to put myself through something major that I'm hoping will change my life. No pain, no gain. Right?
I've never been one for pep talks. I'm more of a reality girl. But, I think in this case, I'm loving all of the positive support I'm seeing between women who have in common only BR and the woes they've experienced before and after.
I'll get before photos up before the procedure, and will try to share the after photos right away, and months down the road. Thanks to this community for your interest in my story, and the support of everyone else on here. It's making this a lot more real an less fearful for me.
One week to go. I had my pre-op today. For the...
- 8 Oct 2012
- 8 days pre
My post a moment ago was totally cut off. I didn't...
- 8 Oct 2012
- 8 days pre
2 1/2 more days... Laundry and pumpkin carving...
- 13 Oct 2012
- 3 days pre
On my way out if the clinic at 1:30pm this...
- 16 Oct 2012
- Day of treatment
I definitely look smaller and higher, but its wrapped up tight so it looks like a shelf-bra uniboob, especially with all of the padding. Oh, and two words!...no drains! :)
While I'm definitely sore, im feeling ok. Taking it easy. Groggy, sleepy. Tummy uneasy. Glad grandma is here to tend to my little girl....who was very happy to see me after spending the night at grandma and grandpa's house, then being at school all day.
Time to shut my eyes for a bit...
Third day since BR and I itch all over my torso,...
- 18 Oct 2012
- 2 days post
OMG! Hadn't BR on Tuesday and now I'm itchy. My dr...
- 19 Oct 2012
- 3 days post
Day 4... I took off the wrap and dressings! What a...
- 19 Oct 2012
- 3 days post
All looks healthy. The crazy itching was coming from areas I can now see are a little bruised, and from irritation from the wrap itself. I'm in a sports bra now. It seemed like the right bra to pick (I have a few in my drawer), but after getting it on, I'm not so sure. It's not the most comfortable. I'll see how it is after wearing it a bit longer. It's been in the drawer for more than a year, so maybe it needs to stretch out a bit. It seems like the best option if it can be made comfortable. I bought it to use for running with my old 36FFs in a half marathon. It has great construction, the material is soft and won't chafe, and it wicks. Hopefully, it's the last astronomically priced, industrial strength sports bra I'll ever need.
One word I've never been able to use in context of a bra---separation! I keep looking down. Separation is awesome. I have it even in this sports bra. :)
I wasn't as afraid of looking at my boobs as I thought I would be. They don't look Frankensteinish. But they do indeed look very strange. They hang funny. One seems larger than the other. Both are kind of hard and lumpy all over, and one has a hard, sore area above the boob that actually sort of looks and feels like an implant. Size-wise, I expected to think that they're too small and be afraid that I made the wrong choice. But, they look bigger than I expected! Maybe he didn't take enough? I really hope they look smaller. My significant other says they do, and I guess there's extra room in this 36I sports bra I'm wearing.
Knowing that things continue to settle, shrink and drop over time, I'm charting all of this up to swelling and the result of being strapped down by bandages. I wish I could fast-forward to 4 months from now to see how they look.
I'm not ready for photos just yet. Will post next week or so.
I forgot to add... I still have nipple sensation.
- 19 Oct 2012
- 3 days post
Went out this evening for a short while to say bye...
- 20 Oct 2012
- 4 days post
Debating going back to work tomorrow. I'm leaning...
- 21 Oct 2012
- 5 days post
Had my first post-op today (one week). Dr. says...
- 22 Oct 2012
- 6 days post
I go back to work tomorrow, so I'll have it on hand just in case. Who knows how being back to a full day will affect my body? He said he took about 600g (~1.5Lbs) from each side. When I look right now, I wish he'd taken more. But, it's hard to know what it'll look like in another few weeks.
I think I'm going to try to sleep in bed tonight instead of the big sofa chair. Hope that goes well. The chair is starting to affect my back.
First day back at work was ok, but I got home...
- 23 Oct 2012
- 7 days post
Dr said bacitracin for the nipple chafing. (aka...
- 24 Oct 2012
- 8 days post
Third day back at work and feeling better each day...
- 25 Oct 2012
- 9 days post
So, on Monday, I'm having my two-week post op. Tape comes off and then I'll ask questions about massage, scar creams, bras, sleeping, etc. Then on Tuesday, I'm having a pre-op for lipo. I have a tire around my middle that no amount of exercise can eliminate, and I have genetically tree-stump like thighs I have wanted to reshape. While I'm at it, I'm also going to have my upper arms done. It's not under general anesthesia, which is great. But, lipo can be quite painful, so I'm nervous about that. Recovery is quicker, though. Back to work in a day or two after. If any of you are also doing lipo, feel free to chat with me. I won't muck up this BR blog with my lipo stories. But, I haven't decided if I'll post a lipo review yet.
I'm so excited that by the holidays, I'll have a more normal bra size and more flattering curves.
Updated my post-op photos. I didn't like the last...
- 25 Oct 2012
- 9 days post
I just bought 8 bras off the rack in under 30...
- 26 Oct 2012
- 10 days post
Uuuuuuugh. Cramps. Started my period today. That...
- 27 Oct 2012
- 11 days post
Got surgical tape and stitches off today. That...
- 29 Oct 2012
- 13 days post
The girls look stranger without the tape than with, because of the nipples looking like a puzzle piece plugged into a hole. Will be better with more healing time.
He said NO scar guard or creams until I see him next. He doesn't want anything getting into the incisions.
That's it for the next two weeks...
15 days post op. The incision below my right...
- 30 Oct 2012
- 14 days post
21 days post op today. A lot of the soreness is...
- 5 Nov 2012
- 20 days post
One month PO today with the PS. I can't believe...
- 12 Nov 2012
- 27 days post
Today I turn 39...and I am so happy to have given...
- 30 Nov 2012
- 1 month post
I had my 2 month PO yesterday and everything looks...
- 11 Dec 2012
- 2 months post
Before the BR, I was spilling out of a 36FF and after trying a few different sizes, it looks like I'm about a 38D now. I'll get professionally sized again in a few more months.
My PS also advised that I start massaging the vertical scar to soften it up and allow the breasts to drop more, and also recommended Kelo-cote scar cream, which I still need to pick up.
Later this week, I have two formal functions for which I'll need to wear nice dresses, and I'm so happy that I'll be able to be in a real bra! Sports bras and comfort bras just don't flatter the girls under formal wear. :)
I'll post updated photos this week. Next PO is not for another two months!
I'm not 5 1/2 months post-op. I can't believe how...
- 26 Mar 2013
- 5 months post
My PS recommended Kelo-Cote silicone-based scar cream. I've used it a few times, but I'm finding that I don't like how sticky it feels. I really should be using it 1x/day, though.
Size wise, I think the left is a little larger than the right, but it's a bit tough to tell because there was more removed on that side, and the doctor says also more scar tissue. The vertical incision is still tight with scar tissue, holding the breast up a bit, giving it a bit of a boxy shape, still. When those vertical incisions soften even more, the breasts on both sides will drop a little bit more, which will also mean that the "pockets" of flappy skin sort of under the armpits, as shown in the pix, will not be there anymore either. So, I'm just trying to be patient.
I still feel zingers from time to time, mostly on the left side of the left breast. It's very uncomfortable when it happens, but is happening less and less. The nipples are still hyper-sensitive. In the earlier weeks, they were so sensitive, I couldn't touch them at all without discomfort. Now, they're able to be touched (and the sensitivity is definitely there for the more intimate moments), but I also still need to cover them in the shower with my hand because a zap from a stream of water is a bit too much. What's awesome is that I'm able to sleep in pretty much any position now. And, I haven't needed to see my chiropractor nearly as often for back strain.
I feel so much more comfortable in clothes, especially now that I don't have to wonder if buttons will close, or stay closed. And, I feel like I can stand up straight without feeling self-conscious about sticking them out there. I love my cleavage and how it doesn't leave a crease that goes all the way up to my neck! And, I'm able to walk around in tank tops at home without a bra and not have my boobs in my lap when I'm sitting.
My significant other hasn't chosen to look at them up close and personal yet. It took months before we both were comfortable in a sexual situation, and when we finally did, he turned the lights completely off. It was pitch dark. I'm not sure if that was for my benefit or his. I didn't ask. I'll just let things continue progressing naturally.
Six months ago I was spilling out of a 36FF and now, I'm between a 36DD and a 38DD. I'm not sure why that matters to me so much, but I hope I'll be in a D cup when all is said and done--it's been my target all along. The 36DD band is too tight, but the 38DD band is a bit too loose and the cup is too big (and a D cup is too small). These are bras from brands I'm not used to, though, and also cheap, from Target. My doctor advise that I don't spend any real money on bras yet while things are still settling.
All in all, I'm very happy with the shape, and can't wait for them to settle into their final position and for the scars to heal!
I was referred to Dr. Fazilat by the founder of my dermatological clinic. This practice offers services from cosmetic surgery to routine dermatology to cancer treatment and reconstruction. The doctors are reputable and the doctors I've chosen are liked by their patients. Initially, I sought out a different doctor to discuss liposuction options. Through out discussion, I asked about breast reduction and the staff enthusiastically referred me to Dr. Fazilat. In fact, rather than suggesting I book another consult to speak with him, he graciously joined my appointment as he was in between surgical procedures at that time. When Dr. Fazilat entered the room, I felt an instant sense of ease. He was professional, but not too clinical. When I told him I was interested in a BR, he looked at me and at first glance, as if to relate to the burden and discomfort my breasts had caused and said, "Ohhh, you'd feel A LOT better." From there, I asked him several questions about the procedure, what technique he'd recommend, whether or not he thought I'd be a good candidate, etc. When I got home later that night, I started researching Dr. Fazilat and found nothing but positive reviews from patients (and not one review by anyone angry or dissatisfied) along with pretty realistic-yet-good looking before and after photos. His medical training was of very high standards and in the current phase of his career, he's considered a breast procedure expert. Dr. Fazilat is easy to talk to and easy to understand. He is confident, not arrogant, and gave me a sense of comfort that I was in good hands. He's friendly, has a good sense of humor, is respectful, and showed respect for my modesty during exams and during the BR preparation on the morning of surgery. His bedside manner has been superb in the exam room and throughout my recovery so far. And, his support staff is also responsive, ultra helpful, and easy to work with. On the fourth day of my BR recovery, I was feeling very itchy. I was not having an emergency nor was I in distress. I had emailed his staff asking if there was something I could do to help alleviate the itching. Instead of receiving an email response, I received a phone call from the doctor! I missed the call because I was putting my daughter to bed. So, I expected to reach a phone service when I called the number back, but I didn't. Dr. Fazilat answered the phone directly! I was so appreciative (and surprised!) that he made himself available, especially for such a "silly" question. I would recommend Dr. Fazilat to anyone looking to have a breast procedure done. I've felt very comfortable with him and with my decision throughout the whole process. I'm now on day 10 of recovery and am eager to see him at my next post-op in a few days so he can guide me onto the next stage of recovery.