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You Have to Laugh......or you'll cry!

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Okay ladies....please tell me I'm not the only nutty person out there....this is about my attempt to "balance" while wearing clothes. My mastectomy was 12/00 and I was so dumb...I thought the week I came home from the hospital I'd put on a bra and stuffed it with socks....which I did do but it was too painful and I realized that I didn't need to do that. Due to lupus I have been "draining" for weeks since surgery....every three days I ask my surgeon..."Now can I get fitted for my prosthesis?"...and he always says "not yet..you have to heal first." So I did go to the cancer society and got a "free boob" which was a cloth oval pocket filled with batting. The ladies there were great and I appreciated their help. However, I have always had "low" breasts and this new one kept going "higher and higher" til I expected to get hit in the eye with it and I looked worse than without one....so I discussed my problem with a girlfriend via a long distance phone call and told her I was trying to create a temporary boob and was having trouble figuring out how to weigh the boob down without heaviness....she told me she had seen some kids' toys in a local store that might work...they were gel filled "jigglers" and had the consistence of a water balloon. I received her emergency box of jigglers in the mail....two large and two small...bright colored, some filled with sparkles and some with snowflakes that float around in the gel...quite colorful! I messed with them and am happy to report that we have solved the problem....my temporary boob is great....realistic. I wrapped the jiggler in cotton batting and pinned it into the cloth pocket in my bra....I must confess that one morning while rushing to work I did "spring a leak" but I had replacements so that was okay. Anyway, until I can be fitted for the good one that my insurance company will spring for...I am walking around "jiggling"....I realize this could present interesting questions were I to be in an accident....but that's okay. My husband will attest to the fact that it is also fun to play with....after you remove it of course! I have scoured the web looking at the different breast prosthesis....I'd be interested in hearing what you ladies have found that are realistic looking yet comfortable. Reconstruction is not an option due to my lupus.....I don't want to look sexy...just "balanced" and not draw attention to myself. I was surprised by how concave the chest looks without a breast. I did go through a "grieving period" when I knew I was going to lose my breast. My husband found me in tears one day and I asked him what would happen to my breast after they removed it....it upset me that they'd dump it in the garbage, etc...crazy idea...I realize they biopsy them...but I had three weeks waiting til surgery and it was a long four weeks....so many thoughts go through your mind...as you all know. Yikes...here I am rambling again...apologies! Take care and God bless!
Dee

tiger
Posts: 292
Joined: Oct 2000

you know, that was actually quite funny, I was sitting here imagining the garbage men picking up cans behind the hospital, opening the lids to dump them and finding them full of boobs!! Only I would find that funny, but that kind of humour has sustained me through the past year. I tried one of those falsies from the cancer society, talk about funny!! I am a 42d, and when I stuck one of those in my little pocket, i laughed my arse off!!! Talk about being unbalanced!! I finally got a "real" boob about three months after the surgery, I wore it for the first few months, but then it got to be a pain, and one day it fell out!! I was bending over to pick something up and the damn thing fell right out on the sidewalk, I laughed ,picked it up and stuffed it back in my bra. It has been a year since my surgery, but it does not bother me anymore to be unbalanced, i kind of wear it like a badge of courage, and hope to other women. I am going to hopefully have the reconstruction soon though, I am only 32 and have the option of a diep flap, so I get a new boob and a tummy tuck, who can pass that up?!! I am going to have the other breast removed at the same time, I have mets to the liver too, but I dont want to have to worry about the other boob too.
Well, i hope you found something useful in all this rambling!!
Fight The Good Fight!!
Hugs from Tiger

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Wow....a garbage can full of boobs....I'm very visual and that's a sight I'll see when I look at garbage cans now...isn't humor wonderful....it works in good times and bad. I can imagine your surprise when yours fell out onto the sidewalk...what a riot! Reminded me of a story about one of my older sisters. She was walking up the stairs into church holding a child by the hand on each side of her....and her half slip fell to the ground....she just stepped out of it, picked it up and kept right on going. Won't you be styling with your new boob and a tummy tuck! I agree....it is a badge of courage! My problem with not wearing one is that I am large busted and the remaining breast needs support...and bras just don't fit unless there is something to put in both sides. They start out okay but end up twisted all over the place. You are so young....my heart goes out to you. I have a 30 year old daughter and worry that she too will get breast cancer. She has three little girls of her own and is already worried for them. I feel that almost everybody has a family member or friend with breast cancer and the push for researchers to find better meds and methods of curing it will be relentless. You take good care Tiger....I love your name! Very appropriate for a young fighter like you! God bless, Dee

newton1
Posts: 11
Joined: Jan 2001

Tiger, you are such an inspiration. You are so brave !! GOD bless you !!!! I feel the same way you do about the boob. It is a thing... I just go around lop sided so far. I only had my mastsectomy on Feb 2, so I am due to be fitted soon. I am in no rush though. We may be moving back to FL, and I imagine wearing one in the hot humid weather will be uncomfortable. I have decided against any reconstruction for the time being.

Mary Anne in CA

cruf
Posts: 931
Joined: Oct 2000

Hi Dee. I have to admit your story made me laugh(with you, not at you)!I could picture the colorful jel oozing and trying to explain what it is. You are right. You must keep a sense of humor. As long as that is there, you'll continue to do well! Cathy

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Hi Cathy, Glad I made you laugh! Picture the gel a brilliant hot pink with gold glitter. I still have a vibrant neon yellow/green with snowflakes and a gorgeous turquoise with silver glitter....quite styling! Have a great week. Take care, Dee

cruf
Posts: 931
Joined: Oct 2000

Hey Dee! Did you ever think of marketing this great idea of neon,glittered gel boobs? Maybe something good could come out of all this nightmare!! Cathy

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Hi Cathy, I've been unable to get into my computer for a few days....yikes! Yes, it did cross my mind to market these great neon glittered gel boobs. I was fortunate enough to get fitted finally for my "real" prosthetic yesterday and it is awesome! I have to say the lady fitting me had seen a lot of things stuffed into bras but mine was the first "glittered gel boob" she encountered. We had a great laugh over it. I was afraid I'd end up with an ugly orthopaedic boob but I was pleasantly surprised......the bras they gave me are fabulous and the prosthesis is a new lightweight one that fits so nice....in fact I never was properly fitted for a bra before and I actually think I look better now than I did before my mastectomy! After my fitting I put on my blouse and felt so whole again.....brought tears to my eyes....and then I couldn't stop grinning.....smiled all the way home....got a lot of strange looks on the freeway....I was so happy! Thank God for insurance....I can't believe what they charge for those things....which is sad since they are so necessary. Anyway, thanks for your idea....but my glittery jigglers are now just toys for my grandkids. God bless you. Dee

cruf
Posts: 931
Joined: Oct 2000

Hi Dee. So glad your so happy with your new addition. Congratulations!! I'm sure you look terrific! Cathy

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Hi Cathy,
Thank you! It turned out to be a very positive experience for me and I was pleasantly surprised. Take care.
Dee

judyd
Posts: 130
Joined: Nov 2000

Hi Dee, well now that i have regained my composure I will respond. Your & Tiger's stories were funny, when you really think about it. I had surgery mid Dec. I went & got a camisole that has velcro up the front. It has the pockets inside & all kinds of cotton & foam stuffing. That is what I wore for quit a while because I could not stand a bra either. I don't work outside my home so I didn't have to worry to much about how I looked but it bothered me. If I felt I needed more support on the other side I would wear like the pullover sports bra. I had found some on the clearance rack for three bucks so that served that purpose. I couldn't believe how sore I was either for so long. I have since been fitted for a prosthesis. It is okay most of the time. So far I haven't had any incidents with it, thank goodness. HA! Your friend was really thinking for you. Sounds like it is serving the purpose for now. If you just keep thinking you can some up with a solution to just about anything. Keep smiling. Judy

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Hi Judy, So glad we made you laugh! I looked into camisoles etc. but having been on prednisone for many years for lupus...I am a "full figured" woman and had trouble finding any my size. I was never large busted prior to all my years of drugs...not being able to walk about hasn't helped my weight either...I use a cane, crutches, or wheelchair depending on how my body is working on a particular day. Anyway, it was so infuriating that my bust line only developed when I was pregnant with my kids or after all the meds and my weight went up...I have been eating healthy and trying to exercise whatever I can...I'm determined this tomoxefin will not add to my problem. I've been married for thirty three years and my husband still weighs the same as he did the day we married. He jogs and is always working in the yard or house so he keeps busy. I am blessed that in all these years he has never raised an issue with my weight. He knows I work on it and says I always look good to him. He was my rock through my biopsies and surgeries. He can't stand to watch the trauma room shows my daughter and I love yet he changed my dressings after my surgery and lovingly handled all the drains etc...what a guy! Anyway, that's a whole new topic. I did find some sports bras that hold the "jiggler boob" very well. Thanks for all the info. Take care, Dee

pamtriggs's picture
pamtriggs
Posts: 408
Joined: Sep 2000

Dear Dee

I had my mastectomy 20 years ago. Never had reconstruction. My funny story with prosthesis was several years ago. Was swimming at a surf beach & having a lot of fun. Suddenly my daughter pointed out this flesh coloured lump floating about a yard away from me. Yep it was my right boob bobbing along beside me. We laughed so much I nearly drowned when a wave caught me open mouthed.

As for type I use one by Silima model # 66/350. It is made in USA & is beautifully balanced & realistic looking when in a bra. I have tried many over the past 20 years & this is the best for me. Good luck & thanks for the laugh. Love Pam

deecaf1
Posts: 58
Joined: Dec 2000

Hi Pam,
Thanks for the email.....I loved your story. Good thing a fish didn't eat it. I was fitted yesterday for my "real" prosthesis and it is awesome! I am so happy with it I put my "gel boobs" away for my grandkids to play with. The lady that fitted me for the prosthesis told me a great story. She said one of her clients was a 74 year old lady who called her on the phone to relate that her prosthesis had dropped and broken. The fitting lady was amazed as they are silicone and not breakable....but the little lady said yes it was broken and she didn't have the money for a new one and was crying. The fitting woman told the lady that it was under warranty and she'd call and check on getting her another one. Well she called and sure enough the warranty was good so she ordered the little lady another one. When she called and told the lady she would be getting a new one in the mail....the dear lady cried and said, "I'm so sorry I wasn't truthful with you.....it didn't break. I dropped it and my dog grabbed it and ran off and ate it". She got her new one and nobody was the wiser! I just thought that was a funny story...and I'm making sure I keep mine away from our two boxer dogs. That's expensive dog food! Take care, Dee

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