Another slice 'n dice session with the surgeon this past Friday. This time it involved both "ladies." And the only thing pithy that comes to mind is OUCH! But this time, I brought it on myself.
They tell you in the user-friendly post-op literature that "come the second day after surgery the 'discomfort' [euphemism for PAIN] will be such that you may be rethinking your decision to have opted for reconstructive surgery. Do not worry, this feeling will pass." Well, they were almost on the money.
I was actually rethinking this whole decision two weeks prior to offering myself up to the surgical slab. And I was DEFINITELY having second thoughts as I was dry-heaving for a solid 36 hours after surgery (a parting gift from my kindly anesthesiologist).
In the days and weeks leading up to cutting day, the image of the one-breasted Amazon was looking more and more attractive. And it wasn't just about nerves. To be truthful, I was not looking forward to ye ole surgical experience again. There is no upside to surgery, aside from compelled convalescence (a Type A+++ lawyer's definition of vacation). More so, it was the realization that my body will never truly be the same again. I do not mean "the same" as in my body "is not the same as before having 3 kids"; or my body "is not the same because the irony of age has grabbed ahold." I am talking about, not being the same because of a permanent premeditated alteration. I don't know how the "It People" so easily venture down the cosmetic surgery route time and time again (Cher? Demi? Joan?)-- I find the whole concept disturbing on too many levels.
When preparing for the total mastectomy, people tried to discuss with me the "mourning" I would feel for the loss of my breast. I never felt that loss. Frankly, I thought the whole "mourning the cancerous boobie thing" ridiculous. My breast had to go because it had been perverted with a malignancy caused by the environment in which we live. That amputation was just another decision on life's path. The perversion had to be excised if I wanted to be at my 17 year old daughter's high school graduation. No-brainer.
This time, the surgical decision was a decision made out of vanity. My vanity. And that is disturbing to me. I could have easily embraced my Amazonian persona. I could have gotten a really cool tattoo -- a la Phoenix rising from the ashes sort of thing. Though, I have been threatening to get a lotus tat instead of an areola tat all along.
Instead, I sit here second-guessing the foundation of my confidence. I should be doing "life" things, like planning a ski trip or training for the P.F.Chang Rock n Roll Marathon. Or figuring out to have a Cosmopolitan with an old new-found friend. Instead, I bought into the Cosmo version of beauty. Somebody should have slapped me - hard.
I sit here tonight feeling like maybe that a greater crime than having my body betray me with cancer, is me betraying my body with a conventional delusion of "beauty."
How morbidly hypocritical.