A couple of weeks ago, I put the kids down for their afternoon naps, hopped in the shower and went about my regular bathing routine. Unsuspectingly, I got out, dried myself off, towel wrapped my hair and turned around to face the mirror. That’s when I noticed them. The saggy, limp and what I can only describe as noodles hanging off of my chest.
I ran buck naked across the house, charging into Jared's office. He swiveled around in his chair and a smile slowly crept across on his face...it’s not often his wife comes streaking into his office mid-day on a Tuesday.
“Wipe that smile off of your face and look at me!” I yelled.
“Um, I am” he said, confused as to what the hell was going on.
“No! Look at me. Or more specifically, look at my boobs!”
I saw his eyes slide down my body that was so familiar to him when the shock hit him.
“What happened?!?!?” Jared exclaimed. “They look so weird. They’re, like, deflated.” He then realized what had come out of his mouth and tried making up for it by saying, “No, it’ll be great - something new and different!”
All I could do was look at him and say, “YOU did this to me! You and that penis of yours!”
As you probably well know, since 2009 I've gone from pregnant to breastfeeding to pregnant to breastfeeding. I had just weaned Cito two weeks before and this “change” happened overnight. I had always been told that motherhood would ruin your chest but in a mere 24 hours, I went from bouncing grapefruits to deflated water balloons. Not only that, but they are concave – like a big hollow canyon with a mound of fat at the bottom!
I have always had a love hate relationship with the twins. The days of sixth and seventh grade dances come flashing back when I was flat as a wash board. No one wants to slow dance to Guns and Roses “September Rain” with the flat chested girl. Then in eighth grade, I took little notice to the fact that those mounds were growing at rapid speed until Ross Nobles began calling me “Tissue” and telling everyone that I stuffed my bra. From that point on, those suckers never stopped growing. Finally, I hit my junior year of high school, was 5’7” weighing 125 pounds with size E knockers….oh, and I ran cross-country. That sucked.
So I made the decision to chop ‘em off. I remember going to the plastic surgeon for my breast reduction consultation and he efficiently explained how they would do everything possible to save my milk ducts so that I could possibly breastfeed one day. My 17 year old self promptly responded by saying that I had no plans of breastfeeding any child. That was disgusting and he could forget that idea. Thankfully, he realized he was speaking with a 17 year old who had no clue what she was talking about.
Post-surgery, I was always told there was a 50/50 chance I could breastfeed and I wouldn’t know until I got there. Little did I know that Harper would be born with a birth defect that would make my first experience in motherhood so different than what I had dreamed it would be. A 2 1/2 month NICU stay, not holding my baby until she was a week old - it was not the fairytale-like motherhood I had signed up for and I yearned and longed for normality.
And guess where that normality came from? Yup, you guessed it. Those mounds on my chest that, by that point, swelled to gargantuan proportions. They did the job the good Lord intended them to do and I began producing milk like I grazed in a pasture. While my lactating began with the help of a pump (whomp, whomp, whomp,whomp), I can remember the thrill of seeing those tiny drops of liquid emerge. And a few days after holding her for the first time, I was given the green light to attempt breastfeeding. I remember crying my eyes out when she latched on and began sucking with all her might.
So I nursed Harper throughout her infancy. The same month that I weaned her I became pregnant with Harris and have been nursing him since March.
But after all of that use, those two lovely blobs have become….not so lovely. Have you ever put a tennis ball in a pair of pantyhose and swung it around your head? Well, now you know what I look like naked.
After the initial shock of seeing my now deflated boobs wore off, I took some time and examined myself in the mirror. Saggy boobs, paunchy stomach, C-section scar, hips a little wider than they use to be - the marks of motherhood. But I must admit, I can look at my body and think it’s glorious when I see the little smiles that look up at me and know that this body made them.