I want to write for a moment about a subject very near and dear to my heart. 

My boobs. 

Yes, I said the b double o b word right here on my blog. 

This is something I have contemplated a lot over the past well, most of my life.  I nursed for a year on my sacrificing mother’s gift of nutritious wholesome milk and when I was old enough to walk, at the age of one, she decided that she was finished. It wasn’t long after, that I received my first baby doll for Christmas.  And you know what?  I remember nursing that baby doll with all the motherly intent I could muster, without conjuring up any milk of course.

A few years went by and I asked for my first Barbie doll.  A doll so well branded in history that I automatically just capitalized her first name.  Every little girl had to have one, it was almost a right of passage into play land.  Now this chick Barbie, has caused a lot of controversy over the years, being blamed for much distortion in girls self image.  I don’t blame her though, I doubt she herself had much to do with it.  But I am pretty sure her creator was a man

*just sayin*

After all, girls are made to compare their developing little womanly bodies to a {six foot, 100 pound, size 4 doll with the measurements of 39/21/33} Also she would not be able to menstruate, hold up her back and neck, would have had to crawl on all fours due to her legs and feet, and suffered many medical problems.

{Now that sounds like something horrifical from the movie “The Ring” if you ask me}.

I remember staring at that unattainable plastic body and wondering when I was going to start developing.  I contemplated if I would be melon sized or kiwi sized.  If they would sag early or stay perky..or possibly so perky they would embarrass me.  I checked out every girls measurements and weighed the probability in my head of following after my mother or my impossibly large chested Aunt Jan.  She had a tiny little frame with two monstrosities attached to her like aliens.  I recall staring almost memorized and entranced as they bounced on the boat as we drove over the waves.  Part of me was horrified that a body could muster up the energy to develop that, and part of me knew that a woman’s body held a certain power.

Age 12 rolled around and I started to spring forth those little annoying hard bumps under the skin that nobody can see yet, but that cause such uncomfort.  I will never forget the day my little sister jumped off of the coffee table and landed each foot square on each underground growth.  I didn’t cry, but I wanted to.  And the itching…was miserable.  Why do I still remember hiding behind the cafeteria door to scratch that itch?

Oooo, I want to scratch just thinking of it!

That summer we had a picnic at my Grandma’s house.  She spent most of her time at her condo on the beach in Manzanillo Mexico but always made it home for the summer months complete with BB Q’s, fireworks, picnics, horseback riding, golfing, and socializing.  She was a beautiful woman with dark olive skin that I didn’t come even close to inheriting, big brown eyes that were also lost somewhere in the gene pool, and a great body.  She stayed in shape by swimming laps in Mexico,  riding horses and working her ranch in Utah. She was always so accommodating and offered a drink anytime we visited.  We loved her crushed ice machine that was built right into her fridge and the cans of soda available upon request unlike my home where  water and milk were our options.  She had collections spread across her ranch style abode from all her world travels.  Tiny trinkets in shapes of elephants, shells, and pretty jewelry whisked my imagination away into distant lands as I stared at them, but nothing,  I’m shouting, *nothing* surprised me more than the day I accidentally walked in on her changing in her closet.  The image is burned into my memory.

*Oh my stars*…would I have THOSE someday? Is THAT what will happen in my old age? That must have been why when I walked outside onto the patio with my two other 13 year old cousins that summer she said,

“My, you girls are lookin’ perky!”

I about died right then and there.  It was the first time that an adult had talked about my chest size in public.  I wanted to run and hide.  Luckily my bold cousin Kelly just laughed and said,

“YEP!”  She was proud, was I supposed to be proud?

That same week Kelly’s mom Aunt Barbara was staying at my house.  She was my mother’s older sister and never held anything back.  Her laughter is big, her personality is big, and her comments are big.  I think she takes pride in being able to shock people into beet red shades of skin tones.  Such was the case when I walked upstairs one night to say goodnight.

“Good night mom.  Good night dad.  Good night Aunt Barbara!”

Next thing I knew, she grabbed both sides of my shirt by my arm pits and smashed it against my chest.  “Well, lookie here.  Janae is growing bobbies!!”

I wanted to fly away like a bird..far far away.  I wanted to disappear, to melt.  I wanted to yell are her, “Don’t you know how rude you are!!” But being the sensitive embarrassed girl that I was, my face turned red and I just ran back down the stairs to my room where I had come from.  Maybe that’s what spurred my mom on to take me to Kmart to get my first bra, I’m not sure but the next thing I knew I was standing in a dressing room and my mom was handing me bra’s over the door. 

“Here try this one on, it has a pretty pink bow on the front.”

I don’t want a pink bow.”

“Well then, try this one.  It has  a little white flower.”


My mom was trying to hard to be calm despite my raging hormones and boob issues that must have been growing as fast as my ratted 80’s style bangs.  Once I was in ballet, a fly got stuck in them because my Aqua Net hair spray was so thick.

“Janae, just pick one.”


And I meant it.

I meant it with all my might until I began noticing all the girls my age that were putting off the inevitable.  Little pokies started taking my attention away from my friends faces as the talked.  It looked wrong.  They weren’t boobs yet but they were sure something,  I wasn’t sure what, but I did know that I didn’t want to look like them. I reluctantly pulled out the dreaded white training bra.  By the time I sucked it up and put it on, I am quite sure it didn’t fit anymore.

And oh, it was uncomfortable.  Thoughts of boys flipping the back strap horrified me. Why didn’t they go through anything as embarrassing?  What did they experience anyway?  I still hadn’t started my period and it was like the great unmentionable secret that only really daring girls brought up in complete solitude.

That next year, I don’t know what my mom fed me but whether it was her homemade wheat bread or all the ice cream I snuck for after school snacks…there was no controlling it.  Girls were starting to tease each other for their varying sizes.  It didn’t matter if you were too big or too small. Everyone was too something.  Much to my chagrin, I was on the to big end of the spectrum.  I decided that if I layered two or three sports bra’s that I could smash them down pretty well.  It didn’t help the fact that I was about a size 2, so they stood out even more.  When I ran in gym class, I learned to hold my forearms against my ribs to force them into an unmovable submission.

How was I going to survive these boobs the rest of my life?  Who would ever like me with my unbalanced body shape?  It wasn’t long until I figured out that there were indeed some that didn’t mind my out of proportion portions.  Girls judged me in high school because if you were “lucky enough” to have boobs, you were labeled certain things that I didn’t like.  I found safety in usually having a boyfriend because then I didn’t get as much negative attention from all of the boys.

My dad started teasing me which at first seamed horribly mean, but taught me not to take my body too seriously and it’s a good thing.  He would say things like

“When did those start growing?”


“Man, if your feet don’t start growing you will soon tip over!”

I laughed and slugged him in the arm, and went about whatever I was doing.  My body conscious self was learning to relax a bit and just take puberty as it came.  That is until I turned about 15 years old and I was at the store buying a new bra with my mom.  I found a bra that I really liked but the price was out of our budget. 

“Mom, I found one but I think it is too much.”

And then she said it

“It’s OK, when you grow out of it you can pass it down to me.”


I had never considered the thought of outgrowing my own mother! I was sickened, disturbed.  Who outgrows their own mother?  S.I.C.K. Well eventually I did, and I passed down my bra, or up in my case.

Fast forward several years down the road.

I get pregnant, and my b double o b’s grow to a staggering G when the milk came in.  Get that? Let me spell it out for you.  ABCDEFG, yes a G.  I didn’t even know they made bra’s that big!  Problem was that they did make them that big but not with a small rib size.  My poor body grew and shrank 5 times with 5 pregnancies.  I was like elastigirl.  I gained on average 50 pounds per kid.  I lost it, but I gained it every time.  I spent countless hours trying to reinforce swimming suits and find t-shirts that would fit me without being too tight up top or like a tent all over.

Finally after the ultimate sacrifice I decided to have a breast reduction.

  I have never been one to hate a woman’s body shape, but I did however hate the strain they put on my neck and back.  I hated rolling them up like a sock before I tucked them into my bra, so I did it.  I chopped them off and do you know what?  They took out a full D on each side and I still had a double D left!  Plenty to go around and I had offers from close friends to donate my extra to their cause because you see they have struggled with their gifts in the opposite way.  I have friends that cried all the time because they didn’t have enough on top.

We women are never satisfied I tell ya! It is never good enough. 

And now I get to hear my own daughter’s complain about their bodies.  Some are fine with being “blessed with plenty” and other’s fantasize about being as flat as a table.  Some can’t wait until that day they get to buy their first bra, and other’s would rather eat spaghetti off the driveway without a spoon.  Every girl is different. My own sister, flesh and blood, embraced her destiny!  She owned bras from an early age just for the day they decided to show up.  All colors and varieties.

But here is the deal.

I submit that whether we are a watermelon or a pear, apples or even bananas that we are proud of who and what we are.  If we all looked the same, life would be ever so boring.  So strut your stuff, own it, and love it because it is enough!  And guess what?!  Guys are happy with whatever they can get.  Jon never saw a problem with my deflated balloons.

I only ask one thing of you.

Go get measured at the store and buy a good bra.  You will feel uplifted and your clothes will fit better.  If you are confident, that is beautiful.  A good attitude is beautiful and a smile changes the world.

Not Barbie beautiful…real beauty.

So tell me: Which were you growing up?  Did you have plenty or not enough?  How did you deal with puberty and what message would you pass to your younger self concerning puberty if you could?