Tuesday, January 7, 2014

THE MAN IN THE MIRROR

Summer 2007 - Minden, Ontario
By the fall of 2007 I had been living breastless for several months.  I thought I finally had a handle on how I was feeling about it.  The cancer was gone and I should be happy.  I was never defined by my bra-size so I found it odd that at times I was bothered by my appearance.  Most days I was fine but on others I was not.  That surprised me somewhat because I didn’t expect to feel like that.

One night we were at a hockey party and I caught sight of myself in the rather large mirror on the wall.  I was surrounded by my son and his team mates.  With my short hair and flat chest I looked like one of them!  I looked like a boy.  Wow it really hit me right at that moment that maybe I really needed to give this whole reconstruction thing and/or prostheses options some more thought.  Could I really go through the rest of my life boobless and feeling unattractive and unsexy and basically like a 12 year old boy? I mean when did I change?  I was never defined by my breasts before and I never ever thought that I could possibly feel this way.  I guess you never know how you might react to a situation until you experience it first-hand.

I went home from that party feeling very confused, scared and unsure of so very many things.

The very next day I made a call to a shop that specializes in prostheses and made an appointment to check it out.  I was not sure what to expect but when I got there the staff were so great and made me feel a bit more comfortable.  Believe me I was not feeling so comfortable about this whole thing.  Anyway, this mastectomy shop had breast forms in every possible shape and size.  They also had the bras to insert the prosthesis into along with swimsuits and other inserts that are completely waterproof.  I bought a set of swimsuit forms and another set of the silicone breast prostheses and a bra.  The cost was a bit on the expensive side but it was covered partially by my health insurance.  I was pretty excited to try this out but part of me was not totally convinced that this was for me.

Summer 2011 - Vancouver, BC
As soon as I got home I tried on the bra and my new “breasts” with some of my regular clothes.  At first it was fine.  I wore them around the house but the more I looked at myself in the mirror the more I didn’t like them.  I guess I had lived with nothing on my chest for so long that these new accessories seemed completely out of place.  Plus I found that it just didn’t seem natural to me.  I felt like crying.  I had such high hopes and so many women use these and seem okay with it.  I was not okay with it.  Just like the wigs, I could not stand to wear something that was not part of me.  It was not making me feel comfortable or good at all.  So, I packaged everything up and decided that I would try it again in a few weeks.

Except for Halloween when I was dressed as Madonna, I never wore them.  After more than a year, I ended up returning them to the lady that owns the mastectomy boutique where I bought them and asked her to pass them on to someone else that might be able to use them but that might not be able to afford them.  Someone might as well use them.  I hope they found a good home.

The Man in the Mirror - Michael Jackson


4 comments:

  1. Great blog today! I am in the middle of reconstruction for the second time and I'm still questioning my decision. LOL I probably will until I'm 99.

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    1. Thanks Angie! Good luck with your reconstruction. I love how positive you are and no doubt 99 candles will one day be on your cake! Take care:)

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  2. I'm wishing now that I had had a reconstruction done rather than to be wearing this blob of silicone hanging in my bra. I tend to go bra-less at home as "One-Boob-Suze!" And ditto, Angie - good luck with your reconstruction. xx

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    1. Lol that is a great nickname! Have a pleasant day:)

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Thanks for reading and for your support!