Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Swing Low, Sweet Boobies!

Q: The other day I happened to be nursing and sat down in front of a mirror (for the first time in five years of nursing!) and was horrified to notice that my baby's head was *clearly* at the same level as my navel. Picture it, can you understand my horror? Please help with any suggestions you might have. Is an underwire bra in order (please say no!)?

A: You are quite a funny lady. I got your letter and after picking myself of the floor, I ran to the mirror. I am going to tell you what supermodels and others who make a living in front of the camera already know. Gravity works. Not only have you been lactating (which, by itself, does *not* change the shape of your breasts), but you've been pregnant once or twice and you have aged five years. Have you gotten a load of Susan Sarandon's boobies lately? They hang *real* low, and everyone labels her the sexiest mama in the known universe. What do actresses/models do? They know that angle is everything, and if they're over the age of 22, they use surgical tape to hold up their lovely assets. Of course, a fair percentage of my fellow Los Angelenos have assets of the silicone variety, so don't judge yourself against surgically enhanced perfection.

When you look in the mirror next, take stock, then breathe in deeply and straighten out your spine as if it continued up and out of your head and was being pulled from above. Use your back and abdominal muscles to support your spine, which will help your twins to stand as proud as they're able. Posture really counts!

Now, I know lots of lactation consultants are anti-underwire, but I used to wear them all the time and had no issues. Lots of bra companies even have mock underwire these days, which is like a flexible plastic version. Our own Belly Materna bra uses a flat, flexible version that shouldn't cause any mastitis problems. The real danger to nursing breasts is an ill-fitting (too tight) bra -- and lots of us just use the size we were pre-baby as our forever size. The next time you get a minute sans baby, go to a real lingerie store (NOT Victoria's Secret) and get measured properly for a bra. Don't just get the size you've always gotten. Try on a variety of styles, including underwire. You'll be amazed at the difference. And don't worry about how you look naked. Men are just happy to see any boobies at all, usually! :-)

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