Written July 20, 2014
I have that childhood chant in my head “I must, I must, I must increase my bust”. I have been living that chant since my March 21 bi-lateral reconstruction surgery.
I now have two breasts, or as I refer to them…I have two misshapen balloons under my skin. They are nipple free and have extensive scarring and are much wider than the final boobs will be, but in clothes you would never know. Most people are familiar with an expanding waistline but I am living the expanding bust-line.
I have had 5 injections done at my plastic surgeons office between April and June. Each injection added another 60 cc’s of saline to the tissue expanders that are slowly stretching my scars and skin to accommodate my future final breast inserts. The saline is injected by needle through the skin to the expanders via an invisible magnetic port in each expander. I felt like I was an active participant in a science experiment every time the procedure was done.
Chatting about travel, kids or my final implant surgery my doctor used a magnet to locate the ports, and then drew dots all around the port with a pen. Then using a thin needle attached to a large saline filled syringe (the size of a small pop can) the saline would then be injected into each tissue expander. I could feel the pressure of the additional fluid in the expander immediately. Over the next 24 hours I would feel discomfort, in my chest and back as my skin and muscle slowly stretched and responded to the tissue expander. The discomfort slowly subsided over the next two weeks, and then by the following appointment the skin would have visibly stretched and wouldn’t be as taut.
The ‘balloons’ feel buoyant, and at times I can feel the saline shifting in the expander, especially at night when I am lying down I am very aware of the expander itself, all the folds and the textures below the surface of the skin. I now have 400 cc of saline in the 500cc expanders. I am done, physically and emotionally with this process. I am stretched and I am marginally larger than what my final breasts will be. I am also a lot larger than my original A cups. I now wait with my two balloons until September 19th when I have my final reconstruction surgery. This time allows for my skin, muscle and body to set and be ready for the final surgery for best results. It has also allowed me time to get used to having bigger boobs. I have never felt boobs at the side of my arms! I have had to donate shirts that no longer fit over my expanding bust. I am again tweaking my wardrobe but this time I am enjoying the experience. During the final surgery the tissue expanders come out and the implants are put in. The shape, positioning and feel will be more natural and the science project “Balloons to Boobs” will be complete!