Thursday, June 14, 2007


I have had a love-hate relationship with my breasts ever since they sprouted. As soon as my tee shirts stopped lying completely flat, I demanded a bra. I still remember wearing it to school for the first time, hopeful that the strap would be snapped by the boy I liked, because that's what happened to the cool girls in seventh grade. Never happened. But still, it felt like an elastic ticket into adulthood.

It must have been an express ticket, because I experienced some lightening fast growth that required almost immediate underwire, trips to Victoria's Secret and a quick education into the world of men who leered. I never saw my breasts as a sexual symbol, which is why I wore tight shirts and was left to wonder over the whistles. I was frequently in trouble at school for my clothes -- the religious administration of my highschool did not embrace my very apparant appendages. My penchant towards ribbed sweaters did not help matters, but I was later amused when my younger sister told me that the boys from her class still ask if I wear them.

Which brings me to the more recent now. In the 90s, when the waif look exploded, I began to loathe my breasts. The kept me from wearing the strappy shirts and from ever feeling thin despite the fact that I always was. I wanted to feel lithe, wispy. I wanted shelf bras built into my tank tops and string bikinis. None of this was possible, as I vascillated from a DD to an E cup at any given time. Jogging was a painful experience and gravity was already taking it's toll far sooner than my perkiness was supposed to expire. I called my mother once in tears in a dressing room, telling her I was getting a reduction. "Don't you dare," she said, the very woman I have to thank for this genetic fate. "You will never be able to breastfeed". She played THAT card, even though I was not even pregnant. So I swore that as soon as I was done with kids, I would minimize them and finally enter the world of wire free lace and a bounceless walk.

And then I had Chloe, and my breasts became working ones. Their volume finally had a purpose, as I had enough milk to feed a small country, or at least fill my freezer. I was proud of them for the first time, and despite the excruciating experience of the milk coming in for the first time, I was able to breastfeed without a glitch. And they looked better than ever because they were always full. It was silicon-chic, something Dr. 90210 would approve of.

And after a year of breastfeeding, and gearing up for yet another, I am glad they have finally earned their keep. Amazingly, I have stopped caring about their size and I am more focused on if they will "work" again. Chloe does not recall nursing, but there is something about my chest that holds comfort for her -- I can tell by the way she rests her head and absently pats the area below my neck. She points to them now, and announces "Baby!", as if somewhere she knows she is about to share what was once her prime real estate. After all the unwanted attention, the self consciousness -- it finally feels good that they are so in demand.


At 8:25 AM PDT, Anonymous gila said...

so sweet. you're a hot mama, literally and figuratively!!

At 6:51 PM PDT, Blogger Janya said...

Again, we are on eerily similar wavelengths.

You go, dairy Queen! By the way, when are you due?

At 6:55 PM PDT, Blogger beri said...

'an elastic ticket into adulthood' is by far my favorite harrison quote to date.

At 7:15 AM PDT, Blogger Artsy Fartsy said...

What a sweet post! "prime real estate" You captured the feeling! I'll definitely be reading more.


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