First follow-up appointment, not to mention my first shower post-surgery (so good!).
As expected, my boobs don’t look quite right yet — too high, too far apart, not the right shape yet because of that. But over the coming weeks, the muscles will slowly relax and the implants will drop into their proper position.
Wearing the binder (full-time for the next week, and 12-hours a day for several weeks more) will help move the implants to where they belong. In the meantime, it’s still uncomfortable AF. <sigh> Massage exercises will help too — although it’s a bit of a misnomer. In reality it’s pushing the breasts, hard, down and then inward, to encourage them to move into the proper spot. Not fun….
Turns out the prohibition on underwire bras is less about having a compression bra, and more that the pressure from the underwire can close up the bottom of the “pocket” the surgeon creates for the implant. So all the current bras need to be moved into storage for the next six months, and in a month or so I can look for nicer no-wire bras.
But even with the girls not looking quite right yet, from day one it’s felt right finally having them.
The pain from the breast augmentation surgery itself is gone, but now things are just tight, sore and uncomfortable.
Most of that is due to wearing a sports bra plus binder, so things are squished down. Did I mention squished? (They’re reducing swelling and keeping the implants in place until the (good) scar tissue forms around them.) Doesn’t help that I did also did some underarm liposuction, which left some bad bruising on one side — right where the bra strap and binder are, so they’re pinching that area. Ouch.
At least in another week-and-a-half I can take them off part of the day. Not sure how long I’ll need to wear the binder, although it sounds like it’ll be at least several more weeks, and I’ll be wearing sports bras (or at least no underwire bras) for six months.
But despite everything, I can’t stop smiling.
Definite progress overnight. I’m nowhere near as sore as a I was yesterday — albeit I’m still on the prescription painkillers.
Feel good enough to walk about 10 minutes to the local shopping center to get lunch. It’ll be nice to get out of the house for a bit, and a bit of light movement will be good for me.
Also figured out a betterway to hold the ice packs where they’re most needed, so hopefully that’ll help reduce some of the swelling.
Sorry, unlike my facial feminization surgery there won’t be photos this time around. Not that I can see my boobs anyway, between being held down tight with a sports bra and compression bandage.
I did mine under the muscle, and it’s a large implant (700cc), which for me is proportionate (D cup, about what I was pre-surgery). I’m told it hurts a lot the first few days because they cut through the pec itself, but more importantly the pec has sudden been stretched faaar further than it’s used to.
With the pain killers, it doesn’t hurt as much as it’s really sore. Probably a bit worse that typical because I also did some underarm liposuction, so there’s extra swelling (and the bandage they’d normally do for the lipo doesn’t work if you’ve also done breast implants).
More range of motion than I expected — although just because I can move, doesn’t mean I want to move. But means I can get in and out of (baggy) clothes more easily than I thought. Important for me because I live alone.
So tomorrow at 6 a.m. I go to surgery to claim the breasts that testosterone denied me.
No, anatomy isn’t destiny, and being able to do breast augmentation doesn’t make me more “real” than other trans women who can’t afford to, or chose not to do so.
But it is addressing something that’s been a major source of my gender-related body dysphoria.
It’s hard to love your curves when you don’t have any. (Well, except for the beer belly that makes me look male.) Much of the language body of language falls flat for me because I’m not the “right” kind of big-bodied. I don’t have hips, period, let alone ones that would balance with my wide child-bearing shoulders. Hormones added a bit of junk in trunk, but I still don’t all that much back there. I can’t change them; I can only learn to love them. (Right now we’re still in the detente phase.)
But breasts… breasts are something I can change. They’re something that unequivocally signals “woman,” even in the absence of other signals from the rest of my body.
It’s not that I hate my body, rather it’s that — as Sam Dylan Finch put it in his excellent essay, “I’m Transgender and I Need Body Positivity Too” — I hate “the way it tricks others into seeing me as something that I’m not. And no amount of self-love and validation can change the fact that, when I step out into the world, my body precedes me and erases a very important aspect of my identity.”
So I’m changing it. Because “sometimes modifying our bodies can be our greatest act of self-love.”
See you on the other side.