For 3 days after my surgery, my new “breasts” (it still feels weird to call them that because they aren’t real breasts, so from here on out I’ll refer to them as “The Girls”) were wrapped up like mummies. Friday was the big “unveiling.”
For the past year, our daughter, a/k/a Sweetly Six has been asking to meet my doctors. My plastic surgeon is a super guy and the timing was finally right to take her to an appointment. No, she didn’t watch the reveal. More on that shortly.
She was THRILLED to be included. Absolutely thrilled. As I’ve been saying since the time of my diagnosis, including children in as much of the process as possible is a gift not only to the children but to the whole family!
Prior to the appointment, I suggested that Sweetly Six write down her list of questions. As I’ve mentioned, it’s always good to go into a doctor’s appointment with your list of questions because it’s so easy to forget things even at the forefront of your mind. Yes, even for a six year-old!
Sweetly Six’s questions included:
- How did you become a doctor?
- What tools do you normally use?
- When did you become a doctor?
- How often do you get breaks?
- Do you stay at the doctor’s office for dinner?
- And the creme de la creme is below:
We had a great conversation with my doctor. After which, the HOTY and Sweetly Six went to the waiting room so that we could get down to the unraveling.
I was kind of hoping that the experience would be a little like the scene in Shakespeare in Love when Will Shakespeare (Joseph Fiennes) unraveled the tightly bound clothes of male-disguised Viola De Lesseps as Master Tom Kent (Gwyneth Paltrow).
Too aspirational? Uh, YEAH, just a tad.
Instead my doctor said, “I need for you to recline in the chair.” Why, I asked? “Well, because people have a tendency to hit the floor when I take off the bandages and move the new breast in the cavity.” Really? REALLY?
I didn’t faint, but I did see stars. HOLY MOLY, did it ever HURT. Why you ask? Well, because capsular contracture (scar tissue that forms around foreign materials inserted in the body) had already begun forming. So, my doctor demonstrated (an understatement!) the way to displace the implants to prevent firmness, and to create softer more natural looking breasts. (Side note: That last sentence reads so much more nicely than it actually played out!)
He assured me that I would be able to do this displacement everyday. Not only would I be able to do it, but that I needed to do it because stretching the scar tissue not only keeps The Girls soft, but also breaks up small binding constrictions and creates space to give the implants movement.
After the stars stopped dancing before my eyes, I was shocked by how HUGE The Girls are. At first it looked as if the wrong size implants were inserted, but what I realized was that the (big!) size is swelling related. Apparently it can take up to several months for the swelling to do gown. Between the size and the itching (another predictable post-op side effect), I have really been wondering WTF I’ve done to myself!
Apparently I am in the process of creating a new normal – again. I sure would love for normal to be just that – normal for a consistent period of time. A girl (or Girls!) can hope, right? I’m just so happy to have this procedure DONE (Silver Lining) so that the real stretch of healing, physically and emotionally, can begin!