I hope my story may help you make an informed decision about your breast augmentation. I used ImplantInfo’s Website for many months to research my own surgery and I found it be a great help to me. I am a 39 year old (ok 40 in just a few months) mother of five kids. I breast fed each and every one for two years each, with no regrets, even though my breasts were destroyed.
Before pregnancy I weighed 98 pounds was five feet tall and was a small but not bad looking B cup. I am the only female on both sides of my family to be smaller than a DD. I spent my entire life bitching about my lack of bustline. After the birth of my first child at age 19, I became a full C baby D cup and weighed 105. I felt like I had won the lottery.
After a year, all of a sudden, my breasts started to shrink and I was so upset, you see no one told me I would lose them. After my fourth child I was upset at the state of my breasts, but things didn't get really bad until a year and a half ago.
Not long after the birth of my 5th child, I started having stomach problems and gaining weight. After a nasty bout and hospitalization with ulcerative colitis I was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome and lactose intolerance. Over the next 7 years I battled with weight gain and this disease until I hit my all time high of 138 pounds. The only good thing about it was the extra weight was keeping my breasts from looking completely awful. Nearly two years ago, a dear friend bought me a book on IBS that recommended control through diet and no meds. I went on the diet and 8 months later I was down to 109 and felt great except for one thing, my breasts.
I lost the weight without exercise, but things didn't look like they used to. So, I bought some Denise Austin tapes and went to work exercising (hated every moment of it and still do) 5 days a week for 6 months. Next thing I know, teenage boys were checking me out at Wal-Mart. That was a huge ego boost, but I was still not happy. I literally had no breasts left and invested a whole lot of money in padded bras trying to fix the situation - at least on the outside. I finally had enough and started searching the net and found Nicole's website. I used to be a physical therapist specializing in wound care and burns, so I was not squeamish about the thought of surgery, and I had the money outright to pay for it.
After 8 months of research, I found a plastic surgeon listed in my area on ImplantInfo. She was not only a female but has had augmentation herself. After checking her out and making sure she was good, I faced my biggest hurdle, breaking the news to my husband. He is a wonderful man and 14 years older than me and very old fashioned. I had several conversations with my two best girlfriends and my momma and practiced my speech on them first. It took me two weeks to get it together. Finally I sat him down told him I had something to ask him but he had to promise not to say “no” and think about everything I had to say for a least a week. He was terrified but agreed to it. He hates it when I do this; but so far it has worked great.
Because of the weight loss and breast feeding I had lost all of my breast tissue. I was horrified about how I looked and felt deformed. Both breasts were completely flat and they hung down to the bottom of my rib cage. When I laid flat on my back they slid into my armpits and the nipples sunk and vanished. My right nipple hung an inch and a half lower than the left. I had severe ptosis on the left and my right breast had become tubular. I couldn't bear for my husband to see me undressed and couldn't stand what I saw in the mirror. I had a difference in my crease and with the lower nipple on the right I look so lopsided. Finding a bra to hide this was impossible. If I bent over, they looked like two empty toilet paper rolls. It was disgusting in my opinion.
I don't care what anyone one says. A women's sexuality IS directly tied to her breasts. If one's breasts are not normal, one's sex life is not normal, no matter how much self-esteem you may have. For me this was especially true. I didn't want my husband looking at my breasts, much less touching them. All the reassurances of “I love you” and statements like, “I think you’re perfect just the way you are” just didn't fly with me. I do have eyes, thank you very much, and once my mind was made up to do this, there was no changing it. I convinced my hubby and scheduled my consult, full steam ahead.
When I met with my plastic surgeon, I did most of the talking. After a few initial questions, I took charge which is what I do best. I informed her of how long I had researched and that I had checked her out. This set her back a little. I wanted moderate profile “unders” size 300 overfilled to 325 to 350 to achieve a full C cup, with a crease incision, I wanted to look as natural as possible and I didn't want them to look like coconuts or torpedoes. She was impressed and laughing, and told me she wished all her patients were so well educated (thanks Nicole :) ).
My plastic surgeon agreed with everything I wanted, said I was a great candidate with realistic expectations. Then she dropped the bomb: you need a lift or they are going to look like rocks in socks. So I began to ask questions. She suggested a doughnut lift along with implants and I asked “how much?” My biggest concern was nipple sensation loss, since the nipples are moved. She said only 1% of patients experienced problems and that sounded like good odds to me. I told her if I am going to have these babies I dang sure plan on enjoying them and that had half her staff, all ladies cracking up. I scheduled surgery that day; I had 3 and half weeks to wait.
I had blood work done, and the dreaded mammogram. When they put my breasts on that cold little shelf, my breasts spread out like mud puddles, before they even put down the little tray. I had no discomfort what-so-ever cause they were like pancakes anyway, but let me tell you what those little bb's on the sticky tape they stick on your nipples don't feel real great when you have to pull them off, I said what did you use super glue.
Two weeks before surgery had my final consult and I arrived with hubby in tow and a list of questions. My doc said I was her favorite patient ever, and she said she couldn't get over the fact that I had no nerves what-so-ever. By this time I had researched my mastopexy and had trouble finding info on what to expect after.
August 3rd was the big day and I was ticked at hubby at five am because he was drinking coffee in front of me and I wanted my normal three cups bad. Got to the hospital, checked in, got my IV, met the anesthesiologist and had leg massagers to avoid clots and then my doc arrived. She drew on me and told me in front of hubby “now remember no cooking or cleaning for at least 6 months”. When she left, hubby started flipping out about the no cooking thing. I told him to relax and that she was just kidding and he calmed down.
A few minutes later my doctor came and wheeled me to the operating room herself. We were laughing and joking. I saw them put something in my IV and the next thing I knew, I woke up in recovery feeling like crap. There were two little kids crying in the same recovery room and I remember feeling sorry for them. I was very drowsy and sore but a nurse quickly gave me a dose of morphine which didn't help at all. It just made feel sick so I was given anti nausea meds and then sent to a private recovery room where hubby was waiting. I remember looking down at my girls - which is what I call them - and thinking “God! They are huge - woohoo!". My nurse arrived with Vicodin which is the only pain killer my system will tolerate and asked if I wanted one or two. I took two and still was feeling sick so more anti-nausea meds were shot into the IV. About a half an hour later my meds kicked in and I really wanted coffee which I was given along with toast, then asked to pee. The second I got up I discovered my center of gravity had dramatically changed. Half an hour later I was on my way home.
Once home, I was installed in my boudoir with my two daughters (15 and 18) waiting on me hand and foot. They were great. Then, I called my momma, who lives on the other side of the country. After that, I kicked everybody out and took a peek. This was pretty easy because I was in a front closure surgical bra. With my handy dandy magnifying mirror I examined my crease incisions which were close to my armpits. I couldn't really see much because of the Steristrips so I ever so gently removed the gauze covering my nipples. I had a Steristrip ring around each nipple and, surprisingly, no pain in them at all. I touched each nipple and had full sensation and no pain, I was satisfied so I wrapped the girls back up and slept the rest of the day and that night.
The next day I woke up and felt pretty good and had hardly any pain. They were more sore than painful, I broke my Vicodin in half and took a call from my doc who checked on me and told no using my arms at all and scheduled my 1 week check to remove the Steristrips. I still had no pain at all in my nipples. My breasts were swollen, hard as rocks and they bulged into my armpits to the point I couldn't put my arms down normally but I knew this was normal, and they looked huge. The best description I can offer is anyone who has ever breast fed can understand, my breasts felt exactly like they did when they were engorged with milk, hard and sore, but still no pain in the nipples (yeah!).
Three days after surgery I felt great except for one thing, the Steristrips over my crease incision started itching like crazy. Three days after that I was back at the doc for my check-up. Unfortunately I had a slight reaction to the glue on the Steristrips but only in the crease, the nipples were fine. They removed the Steristrips in the crease and I had a little redness from the glue but it was no big deal, then they removed the strips around the nipples. That didn't feel too great because they ripped off scabs with the strips, a few spots of blood from a few scabs. I had no visible stitches in my nipples - she used internal dissolvable stitches so I only had a few knots here and there. Doc checked me out and was surprised I was already dropping and softening so soon. Went home and got my first shower in a week. Thank God. That bird bath crap was a pain!
By week two, interesting things were happening with the girls. Sometimes, when I would move just so, I could feel a strange ripple but no pain. Also, because I had “unders” my muscles started clenching up. What a weird feeling? It didn't hurt at all but they felt like aliens there for a few days. Finally at the end of the second week, I got my stitches out. I expected some pain but she was done before I knew it and it didn't hurt at all. “Bathtub, here I come!” At two and a half weeks I called my mom and said guess what, I just got out of the tub and my nipples just got hard for the first time since the surgery oh and they bounced for the first time while I was walking across the room. My mom laughed and said, “well, hell, honey, those poor little things were traumatized. What did you expect?"
Week three: swelling is gone and no more boobs in my armpits. I now must lift my breasts to see my incisions because they have dropped allot. My left is a little quicker than the right but I expected that, they look fantastic. They have softened a bunch and look natural, no coconuts. My nipples while not painful have become a little tender for the time being.
Week four: I feel like a million dollars, I am proportionate, natural looking and went bra shopping. I am a full C and they are perfect as far as I am concerned. My nipples still look a little bit like targets right now but I have been using a product called scar guard that I paint on and they look better every day. My doc says after six weeks, if it’s a problem for me she will use the laser to get rid of any remaining redness.
My nipple sensation is back to normal and no tenderness. I love my surgeon and feel she read my mind and gave me exactly what I wanted; I would do it all over again. A few words of advice to anyone getting ready for surgery: check out your surgeon, do your research, and most of all, be patient. I found my breasts literally changed daily and my momma and I had many humorous conversations about these changes.
Also a few things I noticed that no one mentioned, the first time I got out of the tub and was drying off I kneed myself in my left breast, it wasn't hard or painful but surprising, I just wasn't used to anything being there. The first time I made the bed I turned quickly and nailed one on the bed post, and one night, around two in the morning, while staggering back to bed from going to the bathroom, I turned the corner too tight and got nailed again by the door frame.
My momma told me I needed to get my hubby to build me a lattice cage to protect them. A couple of days ago my hubby and me were goofing around and tickling each other and he put a little weight on my chest, I yelled at him, “be careful, don't you dare pop one of my girls now!” You should have seen his face. It was great.
With the love and support of my family and friends and Nicole’s site, I have gotten through my surgery and recovery. I have tried to use humor in dealing with my recovery and all the changes and it really helped. I couldn't have gotten through this without my momma even though she has not even seen the girls yet. I am going home for Christmas and can't wait to show them off.
I wish you all well and hope this helps another woman who is considering augmentation.