Eww! There’s A Hair On My New Boob

SPOILER ALERT: This post might potentially offend some with its utter political incorrectness. For that I apologize.

Hamadryas Baboons at the Singapore Zoo have every right to hairy boobs. And now, so do I!

This morning as I am toweling myself dry after my shower, I look down and notice a little teeny tiny hair where it should not be.

It measures about 1/2 a centimetre long, and is quite thick at the root.

It’s growing out of the patch of skin that Dr Andrew Khoo, my plastic surgeon, used to recreate a new breast for me.

So, I have a hair on my new boob.

I whip out my tweezers and poise the tips over this offensive follicle — and at that moment, it strikes me that I’m looking at my tummy really up close and personal for the first time. Because it’s that belt of fat and skin that used to be under my belly button that’s now playing right breast. I stare at the skin, and realise, it’s really different from breast skin! Tummy skin has bigger pores, and the texture and feeling is totally different from the breast. Plus, small hairs have been known to grow on mine… Duh!

I recall seeing a photo of a lady who had had a TRAM flap done too. Unfortunately, her new boob bore stretch marks from the Area Formerly Known As Her Tummy. It looked like a bacon cookie in the centre of her breast. At the risk of sounding vain (which I am), I’m glad I don’t have that problem.

Also, it makes me realise that my new breast is actually growing! It’s alive! That’s how the hair can grow, right? Having a TRAM flap means that I have a reconstructed breast from my very own body, no synthetic parts. It may be a while before it feels “natural” to me, but at least I know it really is 100% me.

So, I put my tweezers away and leave my little teeny tiny hair where its new home now is. A teeny tiny reminder to be grateful for all things, big and small.

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Pam & Ning Come To Visit

My sweet and super-gifted former colleague from Vanilla, now 938LIVE Living Room host (and one of the most awesome WMD volunteers I ever had the privilege to have) Pamela Ho and her bestie Ning (aka Magic Babe Ning, aka tech queen, aka future Le Cordon Bleu patisserie school graduate) came to visit today.

Not being able to get out of the house has driven me slightly batty so I Whatsapp Ning and beg her to swing by a McCafe and buy me a lowfat caramel latte.

Which of course takes them out of the way to East Coast Parkway McCafe, which of course of all days, did not have lowfat milk…

Anywayyyy, I got my coffee (thanks guys, kiss kiss kiss) and I got to see these two beautiful chicks who made me laugh and wonder and miss being in a room full of super-women (Vanilla magazine’s team really was All That!).

They let me tell them the blow-by-blow of my cancer story, and Ning shared some pretty scary stories of her own. It was like that scene in Lethal Weapon where Mel Gibson and Rene Russo compared scars. Ning has a back problem like mine too — we could be sisters!

She later blogs about this — I’m really touched by this young woman, who has the wisdom and demeanour of such an old soul. (No wonder Neil Gaiman is not-so-secretly attracted to her! And come on, have you seen Amanda Palmer?)

It’s really nice to be able to tell your friends the truth without mincing it or acting “hero” — that it sucks losing your nipple. It blows having your 43-year-old breast that deserves a long-service medal, removed. And it’s sad that no matter how gifted Dr Andrew Khoo my plastic surgeon is (and he is remarkably talented), my breast will never be as perfect as the one God gave me.

And [cussword I promised never to utter again] I miss my breast. So there.

Ning then astutely notes that nipples are just Braille for “suck here”. LOL! She has a point. Two, actually.

And as Pam always does, she brings out the positive in me. I share with them how discovering it before it’s even a real mass really saved me. So I lost a breast — but I have my life back. I don’t have to undergo chemotherapy, which I was really dreading, or radiotherapy, which I watched destroy my mother’s skin. I’m as good as cured! My cancer was really a parenthesis in my life.

Ning has brought me a really special gift: a fantasy wand she handmade! She even had it all wrapped up in a black felt pouch with a red drawstring — move over, Harry Potter. Kiss my heinie, Hermione.

We share chocolates and black coffee (except for Ning who’s “allergic” to coffee – bring me that wand, I’ll cure you of it!), and laugh about other people (yes, Gossip Girl’s older siblings).

I feel good after having these two crazy BFFs over. It’s been therapeutic just telling it as it is, instead of worrying about how my friends or relatives are going to take it. If they think I look sickly (which I don’t — till I stand up and they notice I walk like Sheriff Woody). If they are secretly afraid that by breathing the same air, they are going to get cancer too (I sh*t you not, someone actually said that to me).

Worse, I don’t think I could deal with PITY. As someone who doesn’t believe in pity — self or any other variety — pity is the worst baggage any visitor could bring me. So, in fact, I will be radically honest and say that I haven’t accepted visits from people who might potentially hold me a pity party.

I’ve done well — I haven’t heard “You poor thing” from anyone else apart from Dr Khoo, and he was talking about my crooked spine.

Pam and Ning have made me decide I’m okay with having friends over now. Thanks guys. I love you both.