We must. We must! We must increase our busts!

pink ink

“We must! We must! We must increase our bust!”  Aaah the perennial words of Judy Blume!  I am not afraid to admit I read those words and tried many days, to see if that exercise and mantra would actually work!  You see, I am a long time member (some would say founding member!) of the “Itty bitty titty committee” Like hair, breast size is unfortunately something that we are aware of at a young age.  I was no different from any of my friends!  I wanted some breasts!  My mom has always been a slender woman.  But by some twist of fate, she has a healthy bosom.  She says she “kept” her breasts from breast-feeding.

My journey has been quite different.  Like every teenager, I wanted bigger ones.  Not afraid to say I stuffed the occasional bra in high school.  Tip to the youngsters…and my daughter…NEVER works!!   By college I accepted that I had itty-bitty titties.  So, I stopped wearing bras regularly.  The freedom!  The lack of constriction!  I was free until a “big sister” so thoroughly embarrassed me while pledging (her job, I guess!) by making me put on a bra AND band-aids on my nipples.  But once I became a Soror, it was back to as many bra less days as I could manage. By then I was proud of my perky small breasts! Who needed the extra attention of big boobs!  As I got older, on odd occasion, I would look at my “sister’s” DDs on her size 4 body, and wonder how she got so lucky! But the thought of a boob job was just too painful.

My husband tells me I didn’t start wearing a bra regularly (excluding work) until I had my daughter!  Pregnancy and breast feeding was the ANSWER! Wonderful, full breasts! I was reminded this week that I strutted around all nine months of pregnancy in a bikini! Why yes I did! What better way to show off my new breasts…and, oh yeah, belly!  Maybe they would stick around like my mom’s did! Alas, they didn’t last.  In fact, they are smaller now then before.  What justice is that?  I tell myself they are still perky.  But in reality they just “are”. At least they don’t sag.

With life in the cancer lane, I thought the “up” side would be new boobs! Crazy, right?  But I figured, if I had to go through chemo, radiation etc the least I could ask for was bigger boobs! The 1st time we met with my oncologist, my husband and I joked, “bring on the new boobs”, and laughed! We were met by the icy silence of the 3 doctors in the room. Certainly we weren’t the 1st people to joke about getting new boobs? Who knew the docs wouldn’t share our sense of humor! Fast-forward 6 weeks when we met with the surgical team to discuss options.  Once again, we said, “bring on the new boobies”!  Again, we got NOTHING! You would think that Docs would want a little levity after hours upon hours of relaying to patients that what they associate with their femininity & sexuality is about to be altered forever!

Turns out, my doctors’ goal is to reduce my tumor enough so that I will need just a lumpectomy.  Definitely not a double mastectomy, and if the treatment works, probably not a mastectomy.  The result being…no bigger boobs!!  Are you kidding me!!??  After 3 months of chemo, radiation, and a year of my life altered forever, I don’t even get new tits?  I recognize that that may sound vain and trite to many.  But it’s one small way my mind had made lemonade out of very sour lemons. Bigger boobs.  To make matters more crazy, if I have a lumpectomy, they will have to create a boob from various parts of my…back!  Evidently what I call a “muffin top” is nowhere near enough to create a boob!  Who knew! I don’t have back fat either, so I am really worried about how THAT is going to work.

So as I sit through the next 6 weeks of chemo, and my tumor continues to shrink in size, I will no longer think of my potentially fabulous new breasts.  Instead, I will continue to be thankful I found my lump in time.  Maybe I will go back and read Judy Blume.

Side note, I haven’t talked this much about breasts since I was 14! In the breast cancer advocacy work I do, we simply say “breasts”.  But life in the cancer lane changed that! It feels weird to constantly use words to describe “the girls”! Tits! Titties! Boobs! Breasts!  Bosom!  Boobies!  Girlfriends! Busts!  Folks struggle when they ask me how I found my lump.  “Were you doing a..boob..um..exam”?  I have become real comfortable, real quick, and use them all.  If you know my husband, you know he delights in being able to say “titty” freely!

But I think Judy got it right…

We must! We must! We must increase our…

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. JC Ellis
    Nov 21, 2011 @ 16:11:57

    If you are the president of the IBTC, I am your first vice president! The spawn of a woman who is still a 32AA after 4 kids, it’s no surprise that I’m a 34A, closer to a double A than a B, and I too did the Judy Blume chant including spreading lemon juice across my chest to make them grow! Great blog!


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