I have been seriously thinking about this question since Joe Longo Photography came out to the farm, at my request, to capture photos of my body changes as I go through the bilateral total mastectomy (pre and post surgery). Let me say friends, that it was much easier to show the breasts, scarred, bruised, stitched and with no nipples than it was to disrobe with boobies in their 40 year old state — hanging a smidge and not as ripe as they used to be pre-breast feeding and again 40 years. My favorite joke to tell is that “before breast feeding Mo’ and ’Ox for three plus years, I went from a 38DD to a 38Long”. And that my friends says enough.
My opinion even before this event in my life, is that breasts are for breastfeeding. They are mammary glands .. as in we are mammals. They are meant to assist in sustaining life for our offspring until they are able to eat food on their own. I wholeheartedly believe this fact, and will not engage in any debates about this. To try and capture pre-surgery breasts (“electively”), made me feel uncomfortable. I think this was attributed to this stupid social stigma that displaying breasts is corrupt and pornographic. I was once asked to take Mo’ at the age of 1 month at a restaurant (even though my chest and her head were covered with a blanket) to the restroom to breast feed her as it was offensive. Believe it or not folks, it is against the law in Pennsylvania to ask a woman to do that. So I kindly told her to take her plate to the loo, consume her meal while sitting on the shitter, with the smell of piss and shite, and then report back to be the appropriateness of it – and heads up… I still won’t ever do it.
Now I know I wrote a post earlier about a worry I had about the act of sex perhaps changing should I not have a nipple any more and sexual pleasure may be altered. Guess what… that doesn’t change what breasts are made for (mammaries -mammals, remember) but women have the added bonus of getting sexual pleasure from the nipples being touched. ALSO… it aids in vaginal secretions to assist in the motility of semen so we can get pregnant easier and the human race can grow and evolve. All things around breasts, their sight, their sensations, and that they produce milk assist in the evolution of the human race. So why the hell did I feel uncomfortable about having pictures taken of them? I don’t think I will ever know.. but I can tell you right now… I have no reservations to show ANYONE how they have changed, and why. I am forever changed.
I do think the story behind each picture that has thus far been taken are funny, so I’m gonna share some thoughts that went through my head during these two experiences — our next photo session is March 20th or 21st… so we can post some more funny pictures of this amazing experience. Now on to the funny stuff … OK?
So let’s talk about the first session with the breasts intact. I have known Joe longer than I’ve known my husband. He is a GOOD friend. He was married to another good friend. I love them so much, they are family. I don’t consider him a regular male, because of that “married to my friend” connect. He might as well be gay (he is not) because he was married to the most outstandingly honest and humbled woman I have ever met, I felt comfortable showing him my body (as an aside, so too did SuperHubs). Secondly, there is something about the camera being between me and him, as if he wasn’t there. Lastly, with the first series we hurriedly tried to get the pictures done, before the kids came home from school or else I’m certain Mo- rumors would circulate that school “My mommy does porno” by the next day’s lunch time. Anywho… while standing their with a jacket/shirt on, I couldn’t help but feel the need to act as if I was being naughty. Why? Well, I think the first is because I don’t have cancer. I’m sure if they were infested with Cancer that would’ve put a different spin on things, but I kept making jokes and facial expressions and dammit Joe was quick with the button and got all of ‘em. So the first started out like this…
Then I felt the need to cover my embarrassment by perhaps being sexy:
But then I was embarrassed at trying be sexy, because this is serious documentation …. So we went for just the body and not the face — the face gets me in trouble.
With a failed attempt at trying not to show the face… I got a weird mouth shot and NO BREAST are even shown….
This is when Joe then just had to comment “you look like a librarian”… well that got the giggles going… I think this opened conversations at the pearly gates “hell or no hell”…
We then decided to change the shirt, so it could be easier to slip off. Plus it was SuperHubs and I felt the need to have his smell and his presence during such an exposing time. I do love my husband very much!
Now this is where I got really seriously SILLY. I had just texted the nanny (Fantabulous Amanda) and asked her to give us 30 minutes before bringing the kids home. Disconnected the call, looked at Joe and stated “Hurry, we don’t want the kids to see mommy doing porno!” I admit this was OUT OF LINE… and fucking Joe got it on film. Great. I’m now definitely going to hell.
Then we got serious… as I saw Joe was seriously quick with that clicker and I knew this was going global. We started focusing on the mission and I lightened A LOT.
Ok maybe not that serious…. I think I was getting bored with the location, and that the front door was 4 feet away. Kids were iminent and I still felt that this was more “sexual” than having a greater purpose of documenting my life.
Now it was time to get brave. Nothing really has been seen, I’ve covered the ninnies appropriately and used humor to soften my embarrassment of my body.
We ended that day’s session with an excellent picture of breast, contentment and comfort.
The surgery was February 27th, 2013. Joe came to my home the day after I was released on March 3rd, 2013. These pictures have changed my life. And I love him. I have no comments for each picture, because as I stated the first session left me with confused feelings of how not to make them “sexy” and purposeful. And after the surgery it was all about showing the world what a bilateral total mastectomy is. So here they all are. Much love to you all M3 fans…. xoxo M3