My story is like many of the wonderful ladies...
My story is like many of the wonderful ladies found here. I've had a large chest my entire adult life and I'm finally doing something about it.
I'm 47 years old, married with 2 children -7 and 10. I had my children later so I've had to wait longer to get a BR. Still, I wish I had looked into it a few years earlier.
I had a routine checkup with my doctor in April 2013. At the end of the appointment, it hit me to ask her for a referral to a PS. In my province, BRs are covered if deemed necessary. She took one look at me, asked a few questions about pain, discomfort, etc. and said, "no problem, you should be covered." I think I left grinning from ear to ear.
My consult finally came in July (a long 3 months). The doctor also concluded that the procedure should be covered. He ended the consult stating that I would be hearing from them later in the year for a Spring 2014 surgery - woo hoo!
It's now December 2013. I'm getting so excited - I must be getting a call soon for a date. Oh yeah, I got a call, "I'm sorry, Dr. … has decided to stop performing BRs. Since you are not in the calendar yet, you'll have to get a referral to a new doctor." WWHAAT!!!!!!
I called my doctor right away. She was so pissed. She saw me the same day to do a new referral. A week later I had my referral to Dr. Beveridge with an April 2014 date. The consult went great and I was scheduled right away for November 12, 2014. YES!!
Now it feels real. At some point, I discovered realself and ladies, am I glad I did. I've found great information on things I never would have thought of. I have to give a shoutout to beaniesmom who also saw Dr. Beveridge. She mentioned missing a call from his office about a potential date change. After reading that, I put his info in my cell phone contacts so I would know to answer. Sure enough, I was out when they called in May. I took one look at the caller ID and crossed my fingers. Woo hoo, there's been a opening for August 27 are you interested? Ah, not just yes but hell yes :)
And here we are.
Two weeks to go till my BR and I'm so excited. I've been planning for everything I need to get done before then.
I called my PS's office 2 weeks ago to ask their recommendation for a bra for after surgery. I was told to buy an inexpensive front-zip sports bra from Walmart in a C cup since that's what I will be - fingers crossed :) I bought a couple of those. I may also pick up some Genie bras like some of you ladies have done. I went through my closet and found a couple of button-up shirts that will work and I have quite a few shirts with elastic necklines that I will be able to pull up from the bottom. I need to pick up those necessities you all speak of - bio oil, bromalain, prune juice, 3M tape, panty liners. I want to be ready and hopefully not have to run out after. Since the kids are back to school the following week, I want to have their supplies and clothes purchased next week. I don't want to leave that till surgery week. I'm also planning on some slow-cooker meals for next week that will leave plenty of leftovers to freeze. So far I've planned on a large roast with gravy, chicken and dumplings, and a ham. Luckily my husband does great in the kitchen so I'm not worried about them starving lol. I think I have everything covered.
So I told my daughter.
So I told my daughter the other day. I thought about it and decided that at 10 years old she was old enough to understand. While I didn't explain the procedure in detail, I did explain everything to her. I said she and her 7 year old brother would have to help out dad for a little while because I was getting surgery and would need to rest a lot to heal. I explained that my large breasts made my back, neck and shoulders hurt. Also that they made so many things in life uncomfortable. Even simple things like going down the stairs quickly or clipping my toenails were hard or even painful. She was very okay with it all. She wasn't embarrassed or uncomfortable talking at all which was great. Her biggest reaction was when she asked if they would just cut out the extra and I said yes she made a face lol. Next week I will tell my little guy that my back hurts sometimes so I'm going to get it fixed. I think he'll be okay with that.
I love my friends :)
The kids and I went to our community beach with a good friend and her son today. It was a beautiful hot day. Her husband was there as well but had to leave early. As soon as he was gone, she asked me if I was getting excited yet. I told about all the things I had to get done and how I couldn't wait. Seeing as how we were at the beach I pointed out that next year I could actually wear a bathing suit and that would be so great. I explained how hard it was to find a suit with proper support. She said that many ladies had that problem but I pointed out that they don't make them with enough support to actually hold them much above the waist when they're that heavy. I also discussed my worry that if my recovery doesn't go as quickly as I hope that it might be a problem for my husband. His job takes him out of town quite often. He knows that I will definitely need him around for the first full week especially since the kids are back to school Sept. 2. He works from home but will have to go away at some point. A big concern is driving the kids to school and picking them up. When I mentioned this to my friend, without a pause, she said - "all of us ladies are here for you. We can set up a schedule for driving. You don't need to worry about anything." That was a load off my mind for sure.
I also called the PS's office again today. I was going over the paperwork I got from them and the hospital. The hospital said to bring my insurance and that patients are released the same day while the doctor's info said the next day. The office confirmed that they need my provincial government insurance card and nothing else since it will be covered. I wasn't definite about that so I was very happy. She also told me that the hospitals always push to get patients out the same day but it's at the doctor's discretion and Dr. Beveridge insists that his patients stay overnight to make sure there are no complications. I'm happy about that as well since it'll give me a little time to recover before coming home.
Am I crazy?
Sorry for all the updates. Finally had time to sit at the computer and think about what I want to say.
Every fall, after school starts up, my group of friends have a girls' weekend out of town at one of their homes. I would have a bedroom to myself. Shopping, eating, dancing, and the spa are on the schedule. This year, we plan to go Sept. 5-7 and the spa appointments have already been made. I scheduled a pedicure since a massage will be out of the question. I already know that drinking and dancing are off the table but I'm beginning to wonder if I'll even be able to go at all. With surgery on Aug. 27, that weekend will only be about 10 days later.
Am I crazy??
One week and counting.
Yesterday was one week till BR. I celebrated by squishing my 34H boobs into my new post BR bras lol. As recommended by doc, I bought a couple of front-zip sports bras - Hanes from Walmart. After reading reviews, I also picked up a Genie bra. So looking forward to not having to squish into anything anymore. Ok, the pants are another story :)
Two more sleeps.
Not much to update. Two more sleeps and I'm really starting to get excited. Doing some meal prep today - Five Dollar Dinners, Costco 20 Slow Cooker Meals. It's a meal plan with grocery list, assembly instructions, and recipes. Everything is packaged raw then frozen. Thaw and throw into slow cooker. Just have to make side - rice, noodles, etc. I thought this would be perfect. I won't have to do much and hubby (or even daughter) can do it if I'm laid out. Next you hear from me will hopefully be some after pics. See you on the other side :)
I spoke too soon.
Got a call from the PS's office. A water main broke in the hospital's operating room. Surgery is cancelled and the office will call when they have a date. I'm a bit disappointed but there is nothing I can do about it. I'll call tomorrow to ask how they handle these situations. Hopefully I don't have to wait months. On the bright side, I'm ready and and all the school prep is done.
I called the PS's office today. They gave me a new date - Dec. 10. I was hoping it would be sooner. Im at the top of the cancellation call list so fingers crossed.
I feel like a bouncing ball :)
I received a call from the PS's office today. There was a cancellation so my new date is now Nov. 19. Less than a month earlier but I'm still excited. I'm very happy that recovery will be further along by Christmas holidays.
2 more sleeps - again.
Hopefully I'm not jinxing myself by posting. Last time I posted this my surgery was cancelled the next day. I'm scheduled for Wednesday. I have to call Tuesday afternoon to find out the surgery time. I'm not nervous about the surgery (yet). I'm more nervous that I'll forget to pack something or forget to get something done before I go.
It looks like it's a go!
I have to be at the hospital for 9 am tomorrow with surgery at noon. So glad I don't have to show up really early. Bags ready, bed at home (fortress of pillows lol) is ready, I am so ready :)
Tried on stuff just to make sure they'll be okay. Looked at myself in my post-surgery sports bra and said to myself "no way in heck this'll ever fit me." Fingers crossed :)
I've arrived at the other side!
I had my surgery at 12:30 yesterday with an overnight stay. The surgery took 2 hours. They removed 770g from the right and 750g from the left (3.35 lbs total). They look smaller than I expected but proportional. I've had no pain just a little uncomfortable. I couldn't eat yesterday and was a little sick but was able to eat a couple of digestive cookies through the night and had breakfast this morning. I'm home now resting, trying not to be too active.
The family is out of the house today so I thought it was a perfect time for a shower. Haven't slept well the last couple of nights (can't wait to side sleep again) so it felt nice. Thought I'd snap a couple of pics while I was at it. Still getting used to the size - they look so small. I like the shape of the left one but the right is looking boxy, kinda droopy at the side. I'm hoping this goes away. The incisions look good. I have dissolvable stitches that I assume are internal since I can't see anything. I just have steri strips and have put paper tape in some spots. I'm using one mini pad on either side for cushioning with little discharge. There is a little bruising that is fading around the areolas. I have an appt. with my ps on Tuesday afternoon. I've had a few zingers - wow, those are interesting. Other than that, I'm feeling good.
Got out of the house.
Today is 5 days po and I'm feeling really good. I went out yesterday to watch my daughter's soccer game then we went out for a belated birthday supper. Was a little tired and a little swollen after but didn't over-do it. I went for a 15 minute walk this morning and cleaned around the house a bit. It feels good being a little bit active. I've found that, for myself, reaching is no problem and I don't feel it. I am however avoiding bending and pulling as it's not comfortable. I'm looking forward to my po appt. tomorrow to see how I'm doing.
Follow-up ps appt. today.
Today I had my follow-up appt. Everything is looking good. He noted that I looked like I was moving around pretty good. I can go without a bra at night if I want but I think I'll leave it on for a bit longer. I can also get a regular bra as long as it doesn't rub. I can remove the steri strips whenever I like. He also said I can drive and do whatever activities I'm comfortable doing without over-doing it.
I was out for the afternoon and had a 20 minute walk home from school with the kids. Just relaxing with my feet up for the evening.
I'm so done with the sports bra. It's been so uncomfortable the last 2 days. I slept without it last night. It was the first po sleep I've had where I haven't woken after 3 hours with back pain. Went to Walmart to do some bra shopping. I wanted something comfy but cheap since I'll buy some nice ones once the swelling is gone. I picked up 2 George Classic bras for $8 each - 36C!! So happy :)
My husband came with me but I drove there. It was a little uncomfortable having both arms in front on the wheel but not bad. I think I'll be fine for short trips right now. After driving there and putting on and taking off bras and my shirt I had him drive home though.
Ooh, I overdid it :(
Both of my kids had activities yesterday so hubby and I had to split up. By the end of the day I felt so swollen I thought my bra was going to snap off. I had my pjs and housecoat on at 6pm. I really could have used a day laying down but hubby had to go out of town for work till Wednesday so I was out and about again. I was wishing my 36C bra was a 38D. Tonight will be an early night. At least I have the whole day to slug after taking them to school tomorrow.
I've started sleeping on my side which has been a relief. It's more of a 45° angle leaning back on a pillow so my breast doesn't get squished.
I've been removing the steri strips as they come loose. So far no problems till this morning. There was a strip across the top of my right nipple that was bothering me. There was a lot of dried blood under the tape and I wanted to see how it looked. I peeled off the tape and the dried blood was a scab that came off leaving a 1/4 inch diameter of raw skin. I panicked and put on a piece of paper tape. This may have been a bad idea as the tape sticks pretty good. I should have put some gauze on maybe. Since I don't have sensation there yet It doesn't hurt. That worries me though since I don't know if I hurt it or not. I'll have to keep a close eye on it.
Steri strips be gone
After feeling so swollen and uncomfortable since Saturday, I had great sleep last night and relaxed all day. Yesterday was especially bad. I was in bed at 9:30 which is very early for me. I had a long, hot shower today and decided it was time for the strips to go. I'm healed pretty good, even the spot on my nipple. I did put paper tape on the incisions though and plan to start massaging them. The sorest spots are the ends of the incisions at my sides. I still have a bit of bruising and some redness from a reaction to the paper tape they gave me. I switched to a Life brand paper tape I bought at Shoppers Drug Mart (Canada) and have no issues.
Slowly getting better :)
My bruising has almost disappeared so the girls don't look quite so bad. I still have a lot of itching so I've been taking Benadryl before bed. I also get red along the crease when it's itchy. I've been swollen the last week. My 36c bras are too tight so I bought some 36d's. If I'm at home and not going out I usually go braless - much more comfortable. I'm still quite sensitive all over and the nipple sensation is slowly returning. My morning and evening routine lately has been vitamin E oil on scars, arnica cream then Aveeno lotion all over. I've still been in the spare room with my pillow fortress but plan on moving back into my room tonight since I sleep on my side now. The crease incisions are still a little red, raised, and hard. However, the vertical and nipple incisions are very faint so I'm hoping it will all be barely visible in the long run. I'm looking forward to more improvement over the coming weeks.