After the mastectomy, I'll be having reconstruction surgery...eventually. My surgeon refuses to do reconstruction at the same time. He says the chance for infection is just so much higher that it's not worth it. I'm okay with that. In a way, I think I'd like time to mourn the original boobs.
I had an important question about this and who better to ask than a middle-age male surgeon:
"What do women do in the meantime about boobies between mastectomy and reconstruction?"
If I have to have chemo, that'll be for 2-3 months after surgery and then at least another month before they'll do reconstruction because they want the chemo out of your system. If there is no chemo, they still won't do reconstruction for 3 months after the mastectomy because they want your body to completely heal. I just don't know how I'll feel about being "boob-less" for several months. I'm not sure if it'll bother me or not...
Back to my question, his response was:
"Well, you do what you probably did in Junior High..."
I was a bit confused by this because I didn't do anything in Junior High. I never wished boobs on myself! I was perfectly happy without them. But, I quickly put 2 and 2 together and asked:
"So, are you saying we should buy kleenex in bulk at Costco?"
He laughed, "Well, yes, that or you could put some foam in there..."
He said to not spend a lot of money on them because they are just temporary.
I came home and consulted my favorite expert "Google." Wow! I had no idea! You can get all different colors and shapes and sizes and price ranges and materials! Seriously! There's quite a market out there for fake boobies. If I had known, I'd have bought stock. The official name for them are "breast forms" or "breast prosthesis." I like calling them fake boobs better, but to each his own.
I think the most shocking revelation is that they are all advertised as being ideal for "Mastectomy Patients AND CROSS DRESSERS!" I mean, I never really gave this much thought I suppose. I guess, um, MEN that want to look like WOMEN would need something. I'm intrigued. A little scared, but intrigued.
Cross dressing is not a cheap "hobby" from what I can tell. Breast forms (AKA fake boobs) can run from the cheap $40 all the way up to a pair I found for $1,000!! There are all different uses as well - sleeping boobs, traveling boobs, swim boobs, etc. Plus, you can buy different tapes and adhesives and then you need some sort of bra. Some of the bras come with built in pockets for the fake boobs - that seems like a good idea because you don't want to be walking along and have a fake boob pop out and go bouncing down the sidewalk. I found another set of boobs that is its own bra! Seriously - it's bra shaped with a couple of boobs. You can also order them to match your skin tone, have freckles, moles - all kinds of personalized boob selections. Those were the $1,000 ones.
Suddenly, my couch cushions don't look so bad...
Boob Count (includes "boobie") = 71 (15 just today! Woot!)