I was recently asked if I was happy with my breasts. So, here’s the thing, my left breast was removed completely, nipple and areola too, and I had an autologous reconstruction , which is using my own flesh, via a latissimus dorsi flap, so part of my lat muscle and back skin was removed and whilst still attached moulded into a breast mound. They had to use my own flesh for various reasons but mostly because I had previously had radiation and a prosthesis does not very successfully adhere to radiated flesh. Because my cancer was close to the skin they took that too, so I also have some back skin on my breast. That was stage one. Stage two was to add a prosthesis as my new boob once healed was hardly a boob compared to my other one. Stage three was to add a nipple. Apparently the best flesh to use for a nipple is your vulva. Same silky feel. How fucking hilarious. No bloody way. Bad enough I have to lose my breast and my nipple which was very important to me as a woman, nudge nudge, but no fucking way were they going to fiddle with that part too. I like that part of me just as it is. I mean really, could you imagine knowingly walking around with your fanny on your boob? So instead they used the skin around my caesar scar, dipped it in tattoo dye to approximate my nipple and areola colour and shaped it to form a nipple. Actually for those of you who haven’t seen it it is quite amazing. I just feel absolutely nothing. In fact sometimes I’ll walk too close to a wall and wonder whats blocking me, and realise its my own boob. Oh and I know some women, in fact most women have hair that grows on the areola. Well, every now and agin I spot a hair, but it looks a tad short and curly to me. Giggle. Oh and I have another party trick … if I flex my lat, my boob responds. Finally my right boob has been surgically altered to match the left. A prosthesis added and the nipple moved in alignment. So, they look sort of similar bar the scars and those other little details already mentioned, they’re bigger than I’m used to, and one is completely numb, but I just love them. So, yes, I am happy with my breasts. Very happy.
Our Brave Heart. Always. x
Heather McNeice, Lisa Fourie and 7 others like this.
Samantha Yates Schroeder Wow… what a miracle.. & the MOST important part is that you are HEALTHY!!!! & it helps that you are damn beautiful too… inside & out!!!!! xxx
Thursday at 12:20pm · like · 1
Theresa Milne Great explanation. X. Not sure if I would recommend the lat procedure to anyone else though. It seems it was gereths (the surgeon) favourite. The cosmetic benefit can’t be argued but the recovery from the procedure seems to take forever. If someone asked your advice re whether to have the lat or risk straight implant (they often require repeat surgery as they often fail), what would your advice be?
Thursday at 3:45pm via mobile · Like
Theresa Milne I still sometimes grapple with whether I would have preferred to just move on with one less breast and save myself the gruelling slog of going through all the surgery, long recovery and financial disaster that goes with it. Hard to say
Thursday at 3:51pm via mobile · Like
Caroline Gayle Forsyth Wow what an inspiring story and women you are!! Although I’ve only met you a few times……I have to agree with Sam……a beautiful person inside and out!! xx
Thursday at 3:56pm · like · 1
Lianne Cawood Hey Theresa … is a tough one. Something I have pondered …. to be honest, I would wait. I would definitely have reconstruction but I would wait. I did it at the same time as my mastectomy. At the time I simply could not face waking up from surgery with nothing. At the time it was the best path for me emotionally, for my daughters to have me stronger emotionally and for B. I know I would have not coped as well. Now, I wonder. The lat flap was my only option given my recently radiated flesh and yes the high risk of an implant being rejected. The drains took forever, but I would do it all over again. Some form of reconstruction that is. But, I think I would wait. Do delayed reconstruction. Maybe just stop and breathe. But can only say it now I know, I’m not sure how I would feel if I hadn’t been through it already. So true how one can only make the best decision for the time hey? xxx
Thursday at 4:22pm · Like · 1
Lianne Cawood Sam and Caroline … thank you both … as always hope someone out there gets some comfort from my sharing, I have quite a few followers who are going through it all … right now. xx
Thursday at 4:26pm · Like · 1
Theresa Milne Thank you for putting it into words. It is so reassuring to hear it from someone else xx
Thursday at 5:16pm via mobile · Like
Jason Bome on a funny side…some people wear their hearts on their sleeves, while others where their fanny on their boob. On a serious side, you have amazing courage!
Thursday at 6:17pm · like · 1
Jill Hazelton Lotriet You are truly the most amazing person xxx I read your Word Press every day. Lots of love 🙂
Thursday at 6:22pm · like · 2
Sandi Unite And they look pretty damn hot in a bikini!
Thursday at 6:45pm · like · 1
Lisa Fourie Wow ~ thank you for the details, I had no idea how much you’d been through xo
Thursday at 6:57pm · like · 1
Corrie Medhurst Only you could make such a courageous story so funny!! Have been seeing fanny’s as breast’s in my head all day!!!
Thursday at 7:13pm via mobile · like · 2
Lianne Cawood Corrie, you do make me laugh … and thank you and sorry for the image!!!You too Jason!!! Sandi , you are damn good for my ego, and Jill, I love that you get something from my ramblings and rants and stuff and Lisa, thanks for your comment, but it’s minor compared to some. But it does amaze me how much we are all capable of. I salute us all. Namaste.
Friday at 1:54pm · Like · 2
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