In 2008, at age 38, I made the decision to get implants. My c cup breasts were saggy after breastfeeding two boys, and I wanted to feel better about myself and look better in clothes. I researched many doctors in the area and chose a surgeon who specializes in breast reconstructive surgery for cancer survivors. She is truly a talented surgeon and has helped so many women with her beautiful work. Her portfolio speaks for itself, and in addition to her impressive credentials, I knew she was a perfect fit for me.
My surgeon urged me to do a lift instead of implants. I wasn't comfortable with the idea of scars from the lift procedure, and instead opted with implants to fill out the saggy skin. My surgeon expressed concern that they would be too heavy for my frame, and at one point said she would rather not perform my operation. I begged her to move forward with me. I think she finally agreed knowing I was going to do it anyway and would just find another surgeon, and at least she would do a good job for me.
I had 350cc silicone Mentor implants and a mini lift around my nipples. She did a beautiful job, and I was 100% happy with the results. I felt great in my clothes and had so much more confidence.
Within a year, however, I knew my doctor was correct when she said they would be too heavy for me. I started experiencing daily neck and back discomfort. Working out became more difficult because of my heavy breasts. Bras were very uncomfortable, and I started going without a bra as often as I could at home in the evenings and on weekends. This was a huge mistake because my doctor warned me to always wear a bra or they would drop and stretch due to the weight, and sure enough they did.
Within a few years I found myself with sagging breasts again, only now I also had the discomfort of very heavy implants.
I have always been very thin but started to gain weight when I turned 40, not a lot, but enough to give me a fuller figure, and of course my new additional cushioning went straight to my breasts. My D cups turned into DD.
I wouldn't have thought anything could be worse than my natural sagging breasts, but I was wrong. I found myself with chronic pain in my neck and back. Even laying in bed reading was uncomfortable because my breasts were so heavy. I started to get constant rashes from the weight of my boobs laying against my stomach skin, and had to make sure I washed my breasts a few times a day and put baby powder in my bra to absorb sweat.
Finding a comfortable bra became impossible. 4 hrs in a bra and I was done. Just done. Bra shopping was my personal hell. I have a drawer that I call the bra graveyard...full of bras upon bras upon bras that ended up not working out.
Two years ago, age 43, I was diagnosed with 3 bulging discs in my neck. I've been in and out of physical therapy since. One time my neck spasmed so badly that I was in physical therapy for two months straight and in excruciating pain constantly. I have been miserable to the point of OBSESSION. Every day when I would start hurting, I would just look down at my breasts and wonder WTF was I thinking? I was living in constant pain, every minute of every day.
And let's not even talk about the emotional discomfort I have gone through. I am somewhat a conservative girl, and never really wore a lot of clothes that showed much cleavage. I really got implants so I would fill out my tops, not to scream boobs! After my weight gain, even the loosest fitting tops made me look HUGE and unnatural, and it was quite obvious I had fake boobs. I was so embarrassed and shopping was a nightmare. I got to the point where I wasn't happy with anything because all I could see were my giant boobs. And swim suits are the worst. No support for my giant implants, halter tops were downright painful cutting into my skin.
Because of the nature of my job, taking time off had to be planned at least a year in advance. I knew last year that I couldn't wait any longer or I was going to end up crippled.
I went back to my original surgeon, and by the way, she was gracious enough not to say "I told you so." This past Tuesday she performed explant surgery with capsule removal and a full lift.
When I woke up from my surgery I was in pain, but it wasn't as bad as the pain level following my implant surgery 8 yrs ago. I thought the drains would bother me, but honestly I was so thankful to have them. I kept wondering where the fluid would have ended up if it was leaking in my body. It was a relief to know that my implants were intact upon removal. It's nice to know that I didn't have any silicone leakage in my body.
I went for a follow up the next morning on Wednesday and got to see them for the first time. I was pleasantly surprised! Because of my new weight I had more breast tissue than I did prior to my original augmentation, so she had a lot to work with. I was expecting small, flat breasts, and they actually have a round shape. They are of course swollen and will likely drop and flatten down a bit, but I'm okay with that.
I genuinely am at a point in my life where I care more about my health than how I look. As long as they fit in a bra that doesn't hurt I'll be a happy camper!
I went again today to have the drains removed, and asked my doctor if I could quickly take pictures a few of my old photos from my file. I'll share these images of my original breasts, post implants, and then my before photo last week. And then I'll start taking photos now of my healing process to share.
My husband has been amazing! He knows how much I have been suffering, and is very happy that I'm already feeling relief following my procedures. My breasts look scary right now, and I'm so thankful that he is being so wonderful and making me feel great about myself. He says he can't wait to "get his hands on them!"
I am already feeling such a huge difference! I feel like I weigh 10 lbs less, like I was carrying all that weight on my chest and now it's gone. I am so excited to take a walk and not be in constant pain and discomfort. I'm looking forward to wearing a bikini top again! And tank tops! And maybe even a strapless dress! But most importantly, I'm looking forward to feeling healthy again, both physically and mentally.
I'm ready to be comfortable in my body again.