Once upon a time I had fabulous breasts. It wasn’t in my pre-kids years – my bust wasn’t anything to write home about then – but rather it was thanks to what I like to call the ‘breastfeeding boob job’ – those early months of breastfeeding your baby when your boobs are rock hard with milk, porn star huge and sit proud on your chest like you’re Wonder Woman.
Behold the mighty breasts!
But then, one sad day they disappeared, and now all I’m left with are two flat pancakes. It seems that I have experienced the eight stages of mummy boobage.
Which one are you in now?
1. The shock of pregnancy nipples
One of the first things I noticed about my pregnant body were my boobs. I remember looking in horror at the mirror as huge dark circles were forming around my nipples. WHAT. IS. THAT?! I thought, instantly looking up ‘changing areola’ in What To Expect When You’re Expecting.
While perfectly explainable under ‘pregnancy hormones‘ (what isn’t due to hormones in pregnancy?!), I did wonder if my breasts would ever be sexual things again, especially as in addition to the WTF colour change, the area around my nipples also got bumpy and lumpy.
2. The look-but-don’t-touch magnificent pregnancy boobs
Once my ‘Holy Dark Areolas’ shock had died down, I started to enjoy the fact that my boobs were swelling and going up a cup size as my pregnancy progressed. Yay! A full cup size. This was a big (excuse the pun) deal for modestly chested me. But I didn’t enjoy how tender they were in the early days or the fact that during the third trimester they got very veiny – eww.
3. The breastfeeding war zone boobs
Nobody warned me about how painful breastfeeding would be initially. I know now that my little milk monster had a tongue tie and that explained the feeding issues we had early on, and also why my boobs looked like they’d been to war. Seriously, they were tortured. One of my nipples was so cracked, blistered and bleeding that my friends even had what they called a ‘nipple intervention’. They arrived one day on my doorstep with a breast pump just to give my poor boob a break. It did the trick and I was back feeding from both breasts three days later.
4. The breastfeeding Wonder Woman boobs
Once my early breastfeeding woes had resolved, I realised I was sporting some rather impressive boobage! Like bazoomers. Not only were my breasts enormous (well, for me), they were also rock hard and sat high and proud on my chest. Of course when I fed my baby they shrunk as they drained but it didn’t take long for them to pump right back up for the next feeding session. It was like getting a fresh boob job multiple times a day.
5. The still-impressive-but-weird boobs
While I pretty much enjoyed my larger bust for the entire year I breastfed, there were days where they were just plain weird. They’d sit lopsided with one carrying more milk than the other and my nipples were scarily big and long. I was in full-blown dairy cow mode.
6. The emotionally fragile leaky boobs
I don’t think I’ve cried as many tears as I did in in my baby’s first year. They were often the overwhelmed, ‘what the hell am I supposed to do’ tears but they were also tears of absolute joy and awe at the beautiful little gift I’d been given. Those moments where I felt like my heart might explode would inevitably lead my boobs to let-down and have a little cry too. They would also do this when they found it too cold in the fridge section of Coles. Get a grip, boobs!
7. The slowly deflating weaning boobs
Then the day that I never wanted to come arrived and I was forced to wean my babies. I’d so enjoyed feeding them, despite the painful start, and I was heartbroken when the time came to say goodbye to our breastfeeding journey.
As I fed my baby less, my body got the message that it didn’t need to produce as much milk. Then one day, it forgot how to do the job entirely and before I knew it, my once impressive bust, was reduced to this:
8. The flat and floppy pancake boobs
Now my boobs are soft and floppy. They are back to being an average size but look as tired as I feel.
My friend, on the other hand, who started on her breastfeeding journey with pretty good boobage to begin with, tells me her breasts are now “two deflated balloons” after weaning. She went to a bra shop the other day in search of some serious support because she has grave fears they’ll hang over her belt some day soon.