I’ve been busty since I was a young teen; hitting puberty at ten will do that to you. It always made me uncomfortable. I never looked the same in the “in” clothes that everyone else wore, I was always cast as moms and old women despite looking facially young for my age, and in seventh grade, boys would sit next to me and hiss “tittiessssss.”

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Me at thirteen, waaaaay beyond a training bra

I only got more buxom as the years went on, and gaining weight in high school didn’t help. Until my senior year of college, I was squeezing into 36Ds, and even when I started buying DDDs, I still spilled out of them. I felt uncomfortable in my clothes and in my body, and I never felt attractive,

I thought things would get better when I decided to lose weight. My mom and I set out to make our lives and ourselves better, and we did it- we both lost a lot of weight and I know I was a lot happier with how I look. But I didn’t lose a single inch on my chest. When I tell people this, they tell me how lucky I am. But I’m still an actor, I still look young but lose roles because of my chest, and I still feel like a slut when I wear a cami.

More than that, my neck and shoulders hurt, I had constant headaches, sometimes I had migraines (which have been helped by Topamax), my shoulders are notched and scarred. I’ve kept the weight off, but I still felt kind of unattractive because of my chest. I don’t feel 24.

And that’s why I’m getting a breast reduction.

I went to see a few plastic surgeons before telling my parents. I didn’t know how they would react, and the only reason I really told them was because I was afraid some insurance papers would show up at their house and they’d call me going “WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?!” As it happens, my mom was really supportive, and I’ll be staying at their house the first week or so of my recovery, which hopefully means I won’t die from a blood clot and there will be someone to pour milk for me.

I did a lot of research before even seeing doctors, and even though some of the prices without insurance were staggering (anywhere from $3500-$33,000), I decided to see doctors in case my parents’ insurance would cover it. I knew I was a good candidate, and all the plastic surgeons said I was too, but just because all the sane people knew I fit the criteria didn’t mean the insurance company would agree. I figured it would be really hard; a lot of places won’t even give you a consultation until you’ve been approved. Thankfully, I found a plastic surgeon who did the work for me, taking shoulders-down pictures of my breasts, the dents and scars on my shoulders, etc., and writing down information such as my career being affected negatively and having a hard time exercising. Her office sent all this to my insurance company and told me to give it a month. About three weeks later, I got a voicemail saying that my insurance company was covering the procedure. I couldn’t believe it. It makes sense, but insurance companies have made my mental health coverage such a hassle, so I expected the same thing this time around.

Cold feet set in just a few hours after I excitedly told my friend and my mom about the approval. Maybe I really don’t NEED a reduction. Why can’t I just be happy with my body the way it was? Do I really need to go under the knife? Then, on the way home, I stopped at Wawa to grab a drink. Since it was 80 degrees outside, I left my work sweater in the car, wearing just my cami on top. As I walked into the store, like they had choreographed it earlier, every man’s head turned in unison to stare at my boobs. My decision was cemented in that moment.

My surgery is scheduled for July 17th, so long as all my blood tests go well (I don’t know why they wouldn’t.) I am terrified and excited. I might be tempted to cancel the surgery if I didn’t know that I will get it at some point in my life; might as well be now, while I’m young and healthy and really, really want to wear Peter Pan collars before I’m officially too old for them.

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Aside

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