Monday, October 27, 2008

Revenge of the boobs, or, How I learned to quit complaining

Last week, against my own better judgment, I wrote a post about how much I hate my boobs. The upshot was that they've become unelastic, unattractive, utilitarian (who knew how many "u" adjectives apply to human breasts?) appendages that I don't even recognize anymore. I was (and still am) tired of them and I said I wanted to have them removed.

Then Sunshine wrote a couple of nice
posts (thoughtful without being sentimental) in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, and then I felt like a total dork for a) complaining, and b) threatening to cut my breasts off.

Evidently my boobs also took offense at my complaints, and decided to make me pay for my insensitivity. Friday afternoon (at about 4pm; too late to get into my regular doctor or to the urgent care clinic, of course) I came down with a blazing case of mastitis. In case you've never had the pleasure, I'll summarize: it's a breast infection (most common in breast-feeding women) that gives you a high fever and the infected boob gets a big lump in it and hurts like it's been put through a meat grinder, but the rest of you also feels so incredibly sh**ty that you don't really even notice the boob pain. It. Sucks. As a result of this lovely disease, I spent the weekend in bed with a fever that gave me convulsive chills and I hurt all over and hated everyone and everything.

(I'm feeling better now, thanks for asking.)

As awful as this weekend was, it was a mere annoyance compared to the unthinkable and all-too-common experience of breast cancer. My boobs (contrary to what I thought 48 hours ago) were not trying to kill me; they just wanted to make me suffer a bit. (It worked, by the way.)

Even in the midst of feeling like hell, though, a couple of thoughts occurred to me:
  1. While my boobs have become very irritating, I am lucky to have the luxury of even joking about removing them: there are maybe hundreds of thousands of women this year alone who will not have a choice in this matter; and
  2. My boobs are evidently even more powerful than I had heretofore imagined, and have the supernatural ability to exact vengeance on me when I am mean to them.

I had it easy. I went to the doctor and got a prescription and am well on the road to recovery. I will heal without going through months of soul-wrenching treatment, emptying my bank account, wrestling with my self-image, or being forced to face my own mortality. Next time I find a lump in my breast I may not be so lucky. I know that.

It's Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


  1. I am sorry to hear that your boobs are plotting against you, they do that sometimes...who knew! Glad you are on the mend.

  2. Ugh! What a terrible way to spend a weekend. I'm so glad you're feeling better.


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