For Foobs' Sake

#whatprofessorswear

This post might make you feel uncomfortable. I reveal something very personal about myself, something that you probably don’t want to think about. This post is about breast prosthetics, or what the breast cancer community colloquially calls “foobs.”

In my memoir I have a chapter called “Foobs,” and I made up my own definition. Here’s the entry:

Who knew there were so many definitions for the word, foobs. The trusted (har har ha) Urban Dictionary lists seven definitions! The one I will use today is the “featured” one: “term popularized by breast cancer patients to mean former, future, or fake boobs. Often used during the various stages of reconstruction after mastectomy.”

The term “fake boobs” sounds horrible, right? “Fake” is always bad, right? But that’s what I wear sometimes when I want to downplay my chest concavity and my Buddha belly (which is the result of the concavity, plus fat, plus bloating–all of which I have). Some days I fake it. Most days I don’t.

I decided to fake it on Monday. I wore a bra with size “A” prosthetics that my sister bought me. All day I thought, “Will people notice?” “Are they staring at my foobs?” It’s funny how when I don’t wear foobs I think, “Are people staring at my chest and thinking where are the boobs?” “Are they thinking about why my belly looks so big?” Without boobs, the belly looks bigger.

This post is a coming-out post. I am coming here to say, I had a double mastectomy, I didn’t have reconstruction, and sometimes I wear fake breasts.

Here’s what I wore:

Even though I have written a memoir exposing myself to the world, this post is hard for me to write. It’s a matter of pride and even embarrassment. But that’s why I am writing it. I need to be OK with saying to you all: some days I will be a flattie. Some days I will look like I have breasts. No matter what I will still be me.

Thanks for accepting that.

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