Photos will be uploaded as soon as I take them...
Photos will be uploaded as soon as I take them however I'll be going in for a surgery so so close to Christmas (22nd of Dec!) it's actually the last day of surgery my surgeon offers!
I am fully booked up, and paid for this procedure by myself and have started to prepare for my surgery day and recovery, I've been to my consultation before my pre-op and I'm dropping in from day to day to pay up what I owe my surgeon! :)
I will be going from a 32J, small frame and slightly overweight to hopefully a D/DD
My surgeon won't be using drains unless there is a lot of fluid build-up during the surgery and he also explained to me that regular sports-bras will also be just as good as a surgical-bra.
Another thing I'm actually over the moon about is that my surgeon will be using water-proof bandages so that I can shower pretty promptly post-surgery!!
I am so ready for this surgery, I've been researching it for about 4 years now and tried my best to seek help from the NHS in terms of funding, after about a year and a half of waiting, I went to a psychologist meeting where they (one psychologist questioning me, another taking notes) were patronising, condescending (every time I tried to explain a problem I encounter with my breasts and the size/weight, she proceeded to go 'aaawwwwwww' with a petted lip, as if looking at a wounded animal) then asked me questions such as if I self harmed, if I was depressed, if I was suicidal and if I had social anxiety. Now I have social anxiety to a degree, but not to the degree they would have wanted. I was rejected surgery.
In all honesty, I'm actually glad now I am paying for this surgery, to get it done on my schedule with a surgeon that I was (that is not available on the NHS) and everything on my own accord - without feeling uneasy about an NHS surgeon that may or may not care about aesthetics while he fixes my medical problem. I saw my surgeons befores and afters, and I must say they are absolutely beautiful! He was able to show me ones that were similar to my shape and size, and compare and contrast me with them to further explain how I may look and may recover.
Excitement is not even the word!
Hi girls! Read a lot of reviews so far, and pleased to see that so many are happy with what they got! My surgeon likes to brag that breast reduction has one of the highest satisfaction rates of them all! I hope I can be within that statistic in under 2 months time :)
So now I'm extremely worried about my blood levels. Before I was diagnosed with a folic acid deficiency and was given supplements then was taken back off them a month later - all of my symptoms have since returned (hair loss, cranky, tired etc) and I've statue to really panic. I've picked up some supplements over the counter and plan to take them from now until surgery to make sure my levels go back to normal and stay normal and hope for the best when it comes to my pre-op blood work
I've picked up some more bandeaus for recovery and laying about the house too and it still feels weird, I'm not used to being able to buy anything remotely pretty like that and for such a good price (pack of 3 for around £10) and wow its really hard to wrap my head around
I was going to upload some photos, and I admire everyone on here that plucks up the courage to do so but I've been receiving messages from some guy on here giving flattery and asking about my reduction, challenging what size I'm going to an mentioning how he'd get a better perspective once I upload pictures and I'm sorry but I really don't want to upload any photos at this point because of that, I really don't feel comfortable doing that at this point since now I'm wary they wont be used by other women like me for purposes of research and education on the subject. I'm sorry again, perhaps in the future but not for now at least.
So my bandeaus arrived
And I find them absolutely hilarious to wear right now! In all fairness, they do cover quite a bit and offer bare minimal support opposed to the 0 support I expected. They do cover most of my boobs and look like they cover all when I leave them hanging ie. breast rests on my ribcase causing a fold
The cups inside them were even more hilarious to me, it's weird for me to think there actually is people in this world with boobs that small and that this bandeau would fit perfect!
Anyway, excuse my bloat, I've just eaten! Also please excuse the LQ grainy photos, my camera isn't too great - I will promise to pinch a good camera in the near future though and update these pics :)
Got my pack from the hospital today!
So I got my pack from the hospital confirming my surgery date and time (admission is at 6:30am, not sure when the actual surgery will take place) and a pre-op date as well as info on the hospital itself, what to bring with me, and a booklet to complete for my pre-op! There was loads to read through and to be honest I loved that fact, I loved being able to know more stuff about my surgery specifically as well as knowing the time etc.
One thing though, there must've been a mis-communication between my surgeons and the hospital at some point - since my hospital had 1961 as my birth year, making me older than my parents!! The receptionist pretty much freaked when I phoned up to update it haha! It gave me a good laugh though, pretending I'm a well aged 53 year old for a while..
I also bought some more supplies for the surgery, and I'm assuming this is pretty much what it's going to be right up until theres literally no more I can buy - I bought a zip up top and bottoms to go with for leaving hospital that day and some more pyjamas; from reading reviews on here and my usual trolling through youtube videos I figured it would be a good idea to get some loose nightgowns since I might struggle to pull up any bottoms in my first few days.
I'm getting more and more antsy and stressed out, I planned to have the surgery between my break in uni for recovery time etc. but I feel like it's both a blessing and a curse - I'm stressing out about coursework and exams and having to reach the grade point average as well as trying to prep myself for this surgery. Uni work is keeping my mind off of over-thinking this surgery though which is good but now I'm not sure if I made the right choice to schedule it now at a critical period in my uni career. Maybe I'm over-analysing that and putting myself under unnecessary stress, who knows! I guess I'll find out sooner or later!
Just under 1 month to go!
So yesterday marked my 1 month pre-op mark, and tomorrow will mark the 4 week pre-op too. The nerves are really getting on top of me now, and one of the things I'm dreading the most is being away from my other half all through the first stage of recovery - I'll be staying at my dads house as I trust him more to be more vigilant with waking me for meds and to know how to take care of me when I'm in dyer need, plus everyone wants their parents when they're in that state, right? I'll be coming back home as soon as I'm able to sleep on my side again and when I'm not in a lot of pain. I have no idea how long that will be and thats whats worrying me. I'm hoping my age is on my side with this one and I'll recover a little faster because of that.
I started the 14 day teatox yesterday just to try to clear everything out before the dreaded constipation hits! The thing is though, I'm already on codeine for the back pain I experience, and I'm already bunged up with that so it's making things a really painful experience so I'm not sure whether or not to just come off of the teatox and try to do it a little more naturally?
I also picked up more things for surgery, so now I only need to get really minor things, I think soothers, icepacks and a few more pillows is all I really need to pick up now thank god! I didn't realise how much more costly this would be over and above paying for the surgery itself, and to think I'll have to replace my whole warddrobe after this too ugh!!
I'm planning on posting pictures of me in regular outfits for comparison in a while, wait until these essays are out the way and I'll recruit my other half to take a lot of photos! I'm still not sure about uploading a nude one, mainly because the amount of men that have been sending me messages, I'm not too comfortable with sharing photos in that way if people who aren't looking at them for educational purposes for themselves are still looking and commenting.
How long was it for you girls to be able to sleep on your side again? This particular part can make or break my Christmas break :/ !
All paid for!
Well today I finally got the last bit of money I needed and paid for my surgery in 1 large payment today and I'm honestly so relieved that I don't have to worry about that any more, I was so paranoid and worried something would come in the way of this!
I walked into my surgeons today and the 2 receptionists I've met before recognised me instantly and commented on how my hair changes every time they see me and pulled up my file without me even giving my name - which to me is an amazing sign and an eye for detail that they knew who I was instantly without me having to say, even though I expect they have new patients in constantly! This really confirmed everything for me, that I'm in the right place with the right people to look after me, ones that actually do care for their patients.
I also picked up the last of the things I need for surgery now, and I'll be taking the probiotics I had cleared from my PS from Monday as that will be my official 2 weeks pre-op date!
Ooh god, I am stressing now though, I had a mini break-down last night with the thought of my exams looming then going literally the day after my exams into my pre-op, then a mere weekend hiatus until the surgery itself.
I have a few bath goodies here to help relax me, does any of you other lovely ladies have any tips on how to keep calm in the next few weeks? I'm such a worrier and this is definitely weighing on my mind!
1 week pre-op today
I am absolutely terrified. I'm so so scared and still stressed and just the thought that this will be the last monday I will ever be alive with boobs like this and... it's not quite sank in yet. I still feel glad and regret at making my surgery right after my exams - they have taken my mind off of my op and I'm so grateful at this but I'm not sure if I've gave myself enough time to mentally prep for this. I still want to do this 100% but its strange for me, I'm a worrier, I'm used to allowing these kinds of things consume me for a while before it happens and because other things have stopped that from happening, it's strange. I'm not really sure what to think at this point, it's still not real for me. I still feel like I'm in a dream-like state when I think "I'll be having surgery next week".
1 day to go.
I'm really going through the motions now, I can't sleep longer than a few hours and I'm seriously exhausted and I keep crying for no particular reason. I just really want this over and done with now, I'm struggling to keep it all together at this point! I have a few bath products that I'll use to try to relax tonight but other than that I'll probably be a big ball of nerves.
My pre-op went well, I haven't heard any news from it so I'm assuming no news is good news at this point! I asked my nurses if I could have anything for the night before to help me get any kind of a sleep, and they said no :/ but they did say it wouldn't pose a problem if I showed up there without sleep - since I will have to get up at 4am in order to get up, showered and ready and then drive in in order to get there for 6.
My fiance has a phobia of hospitals and told me he won't be coming in to the hospital with me for the 2 hour period between admission and the surgery. This has made me extremely more apprehensive and emotional since I'll literally have no-one there for me in a time I feel I'll need someone the most. Disappointed isn't even the word for that right now.
I'll probably update a little later on with what I've bought/what I'm packing to go in for an overnight stay while I'm sorting all my things out today :)
So I forgot to take a picture earlier when I was packing my bag but for those awaiting surgery I know this will help as much as it helped me! :
- button up pyjamas: has to be a button up since holding your hands above your head will be painful
- night dress: since pulling up bottoms may be painful for the first few days
(I'm taking both for my over-night stay at hospital, just to see what I'll prefer when I'm there, probably over-prepping with this though)
- toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, baby wipes for inbetween washes, mouthwash, hairbands
- soothers: throat sweets for after surgery, the chances are I'll have a tube down my throat during so a sore throat is normal protocol
- laptop/tablet/mobile phone/magazine: keep me entertained and to keep in touch with family & friends, as well as you lovely ladies!
- surgical bra/sports bra/bandeau: again I'm over preparing, my surgeon stated just to take a bra that is a back size bigger than I am now and a cup size bigger than what I asked him to make me (so I'm a 32 back, and I want to be a D-DD, so I have a 34E bra that clasps at the front)
- comfortable clothes for going home the next day: a lot of women on here opt for button up shirts, but thats really not my thing so I'll be taking a zip up hoodie instead!
- 100% cotton panties: I've heard that anything that isn't 100% cotton will be disallowed for the surgery itself and they'll give you a pair of their horrible panties, so I'm just taking my own
I've probably forgot to add a thing or two, I'll add a comment if I remember anything but I think that's all it!
Up and about!
I'm sorry I didn't update yesterday, that was mainly because of the lack of signal more than anything, everything went great and my surgeon is really pleased with how it went. The only thing I'm slightly disappointed with is that he had to do a nipple graft in the end because of how dramatic the change was - pretty sad at permanent loss of nipple sensation :( but hey! Small price to pay! I've been surprisingly feeling a lot better than I expected, I've been up and walking about and even had a shower today without any help. I had a bout of sickness yesterday when I came round but thats the only problem I had, if you even want to call that one. The nurses in here are lovely, although I do absolutely despise getting my blood pressure taken every little while - I know its necessary but it's the worst feeling :(
My boobs are so itty bitty that I got a huge shock whenever I saw them and felt them - until I realised I was in the 34E bra that I bought for recovery! That was a shock in itself, how I feel like I look so small yet they're big in normal people terms (with the swelling), my ps reckons they'll go down to a DD which I'm really happy with. Time to get used to them!
Recovery so far has been great - no real pain apart from a slight stinging/burning sensation at times and a few zingers. I've been able to sleep on my side actually without any pain at all. The most challenging thing so far I've had was Christmas Day, I thought I was feeling totally fine but I felt really irritable with the children and loud noises, I couldn't manage all of my Xmas dinner either. I slept as soon as I got home and slept right through the night nearly.
Looking at other peoples reviews, I feel really lucky and blessed to see already an extreme difference - I'm pretty much guaranteed to have the size I asked for after swelling goes down, whereas a lot of other women are struggling with the fact they're wearing the same bras as pre-op. My heart goes out to you all!
I haven't been able to take any pictures yet because I've been sleeping more often than not, but I'll try to tomorrow :) I still don't feel comfortable sharing nude photos and I doubt I ever will be in all honesty, sorry girls
Back from my post op
Everything went well - my dressings were taken off finally and I was able to see myself fully for the first time and they're absolutely beautiful! I'm still an emotional wreck that will cry over anything, and I found out that because I had a nipple graft that foam padding was sewn to my nipples for whatever reason and the stitches had to be removed - I burst out crying! I have no idea why I worked myself into such a state though cause I didn't feel a thing.
I have another appointment for Wednesday (2 days from now) just to keep an eye on me because of the graft.
My surgeon eventually phoned me back with the volume he took out of my boobs too - a whopping 6 pounds overall was taken!! I nearly died when I heard so much was! It just shows how much unnecessary weight I was carrying around with me!
Post op pics
Sorry none nude - I'm just not comfortable with that. My incisions are looking good and the shape of them are already really natural and pretty!
Excuse the little bit of belly (I have naturally large hips), I comfort ate a lot in the run up with the stress of this and uni :( I'm planning on working out as soon as I've been given the green light and I'm already really motivated to do it since now I can actually get the body I want!
I'm sorry that I haven't updated this much, especially given the amount of things happening!
On Monday, when having my daily morning shower, I felt an indentation at the bottom of my nipple where I can't see, but I recognised it as separation straight away. Now I know that's unfortunate but I'm well aware it happens, I was worried about infection due to the leakage and gunk that was coming out of my graft. I went to my gp that ended up making me more panicked than anything - she didn't know enough about FNGs to know what was happening so told me to see my surgeon that night ASAP so I was sat freaking out crying thinking my nipples were gonna fall off!! I phoned me surgery clinic and they actually kept the place open later for me to go in and saw to me, felicity - the nurse - relaxed me and made me laugh throughout and reassured me that I'm not infected and I do have separation but as I said that's just what happens. I can't thank them enough for that. I also have a dryness problem which made my nipples look a little worse for wear but I went back today for a check up and dressing change (they put on a more gentle and less drying dressing on) and the gunk and dead/dry skin wiped straight off, whereas the gauze stopped that happening.
But in the end, everything is looking great and although I had a scare and a bit of separation, the graft is looking nice and pink and my horizontal scars are looking amazing now (I can't see vertical for the new dressing).
I just want to warn the ladies out there that separation is very common, and this seldom reflects on your surgeon or experience but more life and what happens. A milky green colour of gunk is also normal so I've found, which had worried me from the get go, it's only when it's smelly and hot that infection may be the reason why gunk of that colour is produced!
On the mend
I had another dressing change today, which seems to be every few days and I was able to have a look at my nipples again after the nurse put iodine on my previous visit - and at this point they were looking worse than when I originally found them separated - but now after that they look a lot better now and dare I say closed up! I'm shocked at how fast it was for me to heal up from that small hitch and I'm officially on the mend.
As it was my 3 week anniversary yesterday, I've been cleared to use bio oil on my horizontal scars (nipple and part of my vertical is covered with dressing to allow to heal better) so I'm happy that technically ive healed in those areas and now looking at scar treatment. Every day I notice they look better and better with some areas flattening, and I'm not actually too worried about scarring in.the first place. Before this surgery scarring was the last thing on my mind so I'd be happy with whatever was given to me, even though my surgeon did a great job and my body is healing well!
So today I went to uni in one of my bandeaus under my clothes instead of a sports bra, just to give my boobs a little break and some freedom since they're nearly at the end of the road in terms of physical healing (excluding scar care), I probably shouldn't have according to most surgeons standards but hey!
The thing is, I just realised that this is the first time since I was about 11 or 12 years old that I've went outside without a bra on, and I could honestly cry. I'm suddenly overwhelmed with a sense of liberation and freedom, I feel like the shackles have well and truly been shaken off and I feel fantastic!
Close to 2 years now
So, there a lot I have failed to update everyone on. My journey hasn't been easy, but still totally worth it.
My separation took in total 4 months to fully heal, with bouts of infection, especially at my right nipple. This resulted in my full right nipple being covered in scars with little to no actual areola or nipple left. My left didnt come out as bad, but was left misshapen.
On January 12th of this year, i went back under for revisions on my scars which still looked a little scabby a year later and on my right breast which was about a cup size bigger, and to remove my full right nipple. Everything went well and no complications thia time around which was great!
Only yesterday have i went independent from my surgeon and to Mrs Makeup in Glasgow for reconstructive tattoos on both nipples/areolas. In one session, they flattened my scars, and the next they began colour matching and tattooing. They're pretty dark right now but I've fallen in love with them already, even though I know itll take a week or 2 for the colour to fade more naturally. I actually feel like I'm towards the end of my journey now, with everything finally falling in place.
As preciously stated, I feel like I've been through the mill so to speak, with undergoing surgery twice and complications to losing my whole nipple & areola; but I still wouldn't regret it whatsoever. I would lie if I said I didn't feel down about my breasts sometimes, and my scars, but I'd much rather deal with the scars and everything else that comes with than with the boobs I had before!
I'm now nearing the end of my journey, and my third session of recon tattooing will take me towards the 2 year mark of my journey. It's been a long one, but I'm happy with where I am now