There was a time when I thought the postpartum life didn’t exist. In my pre-baby mind, I had always thought that the word postpartum ended the minute you step outside of the hospital doors. So here I am just a month shy of my son’s third birthday as the most unhealthy I have ever been. Both emotionally and physically. I decided to kick off a series about my postpartum health and while I thought all of it was related to postpartum life, turns out it may not all be.
I recently posted this on Instagram:
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I'm terrified of the way I look in the mirror. I didn't expect my postpartum body to reflect what I see. I am blessed beyond measure to have created a human but 2+ years past that and this where I didn't want to be. I hate that I even have to think this way. I hate the stigma of postpartum body's. I hate that I constantly wonder what people think of me that knew me as a size 6. But also truth be told my exterior is a direct reflection of what's going on inside. I have been through A LOT in the past 5 or so years. Some good, a lot bad. And my mental health wore thin. My health was at an all time low as the ball dropped in New York City this year. I don't have a plan or a NYE resolution because the past few years I never can keep them. So what am I doing? Chipping. Chip by chip I'm tackling all that is wrong and needs some fixing with what's inside. The past month I have seen such tiny improvements but I am hanging on to those and chipping away at the next… All of which have nothing to do with my exterior. Which is OKAY. And I'm starting to finally believe that for once. Shirt: @curlyqscounter #bebonafide @bebonafide @circlesofchange #mothermovement 📷: @meagangibsonphotography #curlyqscounter
Chipping. Chip by chip I’m tackling all that is wrong and needs some fixing with what’s inside.
So I have wanted to start a health series on my blog for a while but I have been so SO inundated with LIFE that my health, my body, my mind ALL OF IT was still on the back burner. (I’m sure you all can relate to THAT.) This year by far I have had to use my health insurance the MOST I have ever used it; starting from mid January. Countless Urgent Care visits, 10+ Primary Care visits, Cardiologist, EKG/Stress Test/Echocardiogram, Counseling, a MRI, Neurologist, too many blood draws to count on two hands, Ophthalmologist, Dermatologist, Psychiatrist and lastly Plastic Surgeon.
I never thought that SOME of my health issue might be related to something other than my horrible pregnancy, stressful newborn year with the sick baby, married life mess and daily stress. I just assumed that what was wrong with me and that is what lead me to where I am now, the most unhealthy state I have ever been.
As I unpack what is going on with me personally with my health, I will be posting blog posts about it all under this series “Taking Care of Myself”. This series will also be getting very personal and at times awkwardly personal (bodily fluids for $200 Alex.) Maybe you can relate to having some crazy health stuff postpartum? Or you may possible still be down in the dumps. Maybe you know someone else that does? I do want to stress though that EVERYone and everyBODY is different. What goes on with me might not be happening to you and THAT’S okay. But maybe it can help you ask questions or dive into something else a little bit deeper.
First up… MY BOOBS.
…well that got awkward fast.
The year was 2005 and I can remember in my 22-year-old mind how excited I was to get breast implants. I was a full A/small B and wanted to become more proportional to my heavier derriere. To fit into cute low-cut tops… And to look and feel more feminine. A close friend of mine at the time got breast implants and I loved her result so much so that I went to her plastic surgeon. Just a short time there after, I was wheeled out of the surgery room with 425cc/435ccs of saline in each breast. AND I WAS SO EXCITED.
It wasn’t long into my recovery that I realized my right breast wasn’t “falling into place” like the Plastic Surgeon stated it would. A year after my initial surgery, I had to have another surgery to remove the scar tissue and start from scratch with recovery. The second surgery was a “success” and both implants fell into place.
Fast forward to August 2016. I got sick on our yearly Sticker Chick cruise mid January. I had reoccurring illnesses all through February and March. But it didn’t stop there; random and weird things (like seeing double vision and having tremors) started to be the “norm.” I was sent to so many specialists and doctors and ALL of them said: “well all test showed everything is okay, you’re just stressed.” I hate that answer.
Well one day in August, I was scrolling my Facebook feed and I came across an article by chance.
Its not everyday that I am quick to read a post relating to a Playboy bunny let alone Hugh Hefner’s wife. But I did. And I kept reading. And I started to click around. I started to connect the dots. Is THIS what has been wrong with me all year?
And then I joined the Healing Breast Implant Illness Facebook group which at that time only had around 5,000 other women JUST LIKE myself with identical situations and symptoms.
So let me catch you up to speed. Breast Implant Illness in a nutshell is your body’s way of rejecting a foreign object (the implants) which sets off a variation of different symptoms. This is NOT being studied as the people who would be studying it (i.e. Plastic Surgeons and Doctors) are buddy buddy with the manufacturers.
“Unfortunately, you will not get help identifying breast implant illness from your doctor and especially not from your plastic surgeon. This illness is not acknowledged by the medical community yet. In fact, the medical community clings to the false belief that silicone and breast implants are safe. Your plastic surgeon may even deny breast implants cause illness or refute your symptoms in order to avoid liability. Mine did. Plastic surgery is big business built on silicone and breast implants are their greatest source of revenue. Plastic surgeons will refuse to admit that breast implants are unsafe and will actively refute the truth with their junk science in order to protect their cash cow.“
“Breast implants cause toxicity in the body several different ways. First, breast implants are large, foreign objects which engage the immune system on an ongoing basis eventually overwhelming the immune system and causing immune system dysfunction and failure. Immune system dysfunction leads to auto-immune symptoms and diseases. Immune system failure allows opportunistic organisms such as bacteria, fungi, viruses and parasites to grow unchecked and spread out of control. These bacteria, fungi, viruses and parasites produce bio-toxins which cause an inflammatory cascade and overload our organs of detoxification. Bacteria and fungus can cause or contribute to autoimmune diseases. Further, breast implants are essentially two large sacks of aggressive cyto-toxic, neuro-toxic and carcinogenic chemicals which are highly inflammatory to our tissues, organs and glands.
Inflammation and the body’s natural systems of detoxification are body processes which work together like a teeter totter. When inflammation in the body increases due to breast implants, detoxification is down regulated by the body. When inflammation in the body decreases, detoxification is up regulated by the body. So, the presence of toxic implants in the body substantially increases inflammation which hampers the bodies natural systems of detoxification. The entire time you have implants your systems of detoxification are diminished and you are collecting toxins from all sources. In addition, high inflammation from breast implants is known to cause disease and illness such as cancer, auto-immune diseases and metabolic diseases.“ Excerpts from Healing BII
Yes, I believe I have Breast Implant Illness or a variation of it. Do I think everyone can get this with implants? No, I believe that different bodies, genes, chemistry act different when it comes into contact with a foreign object. That is why some women have IMMEDIATE reactions to the implants and then there are others out there, like myself, where it can take upwards of 10+ years to come to light.
“Breast implant illness is a period of sickness affecting the body caused by silicone or saline breast implants. Symptoms of breast implant illness vary from body to body due to personal differences, the type of breast implants and the progression of the illness however it appears that a few symptoms show up a little earlier and more consistently such as fatigue, cognitive dysfunction (brain fog, memory loss), joint and muscle pain, hair loss, recurring infections and problems with thyroid and adrenals or other endocrine glands.” Excerpt from Healing BII
Holy breast check batman, I think I’m onto something here!
After making these revelations, I started to search around for the best plastic surgeon to do my En Bloc/Total Capsulectomy. This means completely removing the implant AND the scar tissue (capsule) that your body creates around the scar tissue. There are stories of girls that have implants removed containing mold, “floaters”, bodily fluids, leaky valves, strong chemical odor etc.
“But Bre., isn’t this just for those that have silicone fill?” NOPE. The SHELL of the implant is silicone. Just read how many chemicals it takes to make one implant. It.will.shock.you.
“Methyl Ethyl Ketone, Cyclobexanone, Isopropyl Alcohol, Denatured Alcohol, Acetone, Urethane, Poly Vinyl Chloride, Lacquer Thinner, Ethyl Acetate, Epoxy Resin, Epoxy Hardener, Amine, Printing Ink, Toluene, Freon, Silica, Flux, Solder, Chlorplantinic Acid, Metal Cleaning Acid, Formaldehyde, Talcum Powder, Chlorplatinic Acid, Metal Cleaning Acid, Formaldehyde, Talcum Powder, Color Pigment Printers Ink, Oakite, Cyanoacyrylates, Ethylene Oxide, Carob Black, Xylene, Hexone, Benzene, Hexanone, Thixon-OSN-2, Rubber, Acid Stearic, Zinc Oxide, Naptha, Phenol, Methylene Chloride, Platinum Salts, Platinum, Tin and other heavy metals.” Excerpt from Healing BII
But implants are safe right? Wrong…
This list quickly identifies most of my symptoms I have had within this past year. Some symptoms I can backtrack to 4+ years ago when abnormal health issues started to surface with no reason why. Remember how I had to have a second surgery after my implant didn’t “fall into place”? I also wonder if there was possible contamination then as well. I had TWO chances of contamination in addition to what the toxins have done to my body.
November 4th, 2016 over 11 years later, these implants will be a thing of the past and detoxification will begin. I am SO excited to get back to being healthy and getting back to me… being… me.
With all of this boob talk, I thought it would be appropriate to start a closed Facebook group for us girls that want to chat. You don’t have to have implants to join. And make sure you “unfollow” the group if you want to avoid seeing tata pictures in your Facebook feed.
Disclosure: Please note that I am NOT a doctor nor claim to be one. The above referenced post is purely informational purposes and opinion only. If you feel you are sick and have a health issue, please contact your doctor or other medical personnel.