By Megan - October 26, 2010
When I had my bilateral mastectomy, I was sent home from the hospital with a couple of beige nylon sacs stuffed with cotton fluff. These were my new breasts. They looked like potatoes.
When my incisions healed, I went to a fitter, who sold me some "durable medical equipment" -- silicone breast forms -- and billed my insurance company more than $500. I wore them once. They felt like durable medical equipment.
I bought inexpensive foam forms. They were too stiff.
My quest has begun to resemble Goldilocks' search for the perfect porridge. I've tried breast forms that were too big, too small, too hard, too soft, too round, too pointy, too hot, too clammy. Unlike Goldilocks, however, I haven't found any that are just right.
I haven't given up hope.
I'm experimenting with homemade breasts these days. They don't pretend to mimic flesh and blood, which is what I like about them. Scouring the Internet for ideas, I've
- Cut the shoulder pads from an old blazer and stuck them into a stretchy camisole;
- Knitted charming breasts from a pattern I found for "Tit bits";
- Deconstructed mesh bath scrubbies and rolled and twisted them into airy forms for use in swimsuits;
- And just last weekend, I took the cloth covers from those early silicone forms and filled them with squishy micro-beads from a sewing-supply store.
I think I'm getting closer to comfort.
But a funny thing has happened along the way. In my search for the perfect breasts, I've gotten used to my body without them.
I'm always looking for new ideas, though. Got any?
Megan is a volunteer on SHARE's Breast Cancer Helpline.