It is said loudly and defiantly, by many professionals in the field, that breastfeeding does not change your breasts. As a non-professional with pregnancy and breastfeeding experience, however, I call shenanigans. Sorry, but I just don't buy it. My breasts were different while I was breastfeeding, and they were sure as hell different afterwards. In fact there are lots of things my boobs look like after breastfeeding, and none of them are things my breasts looked like before breastfeeding. I find it's helpful to have a sense of humor about it, though, because if you fake a laugh loud enough you can hide your sobs.
OK, scaling back my dramatics a little bit, I'll explain. I nursed two ravenous, greedy babies (I called them my little boob goblins). My son was breastfed until he was a 17-month-old toddler and my daughter breastfed until she was 21 months. After I weaned my son, honestly (and miraculously) my breasts were exactly the same as they had been before I started nursing; same size, shape, and firmness. It was almost eerie, actually. Then came time to wean my daughter, at which point Reality must have roused its friend, Karma. Together, they launched an assault on my poor boobs, reducing them to a tiny pair of withered dugs. However (and thankfully) after about six months, Reality and Karma were like, "OK, we've more than made up for her getting away with keeping her boobs that first time around. Let's give her a little bit back," and my breasts sort of fluffed up a little bit. It's not like I was blessed with the rack of a 20-year-old again, or anything, but I got some fullness back and they were more like what I'd been used to if not exactly. (Apparently, this is common.)
Still, I stand by my unscientific assessment that breastfeeding can absolutely change your breasts, because it certainly changed mine. During the time when they were most altered, here's what they looked like (because if I can laugh about it, you can, too):
Balloons That Have Started To Deflate
You know when your kid has a balloon they refuse to get rid of and you wind up kicking it around the house for a few days, even after it has started to shrink down and loose some of its taught bounciness? Yeah. That's kind of what I feel like I'm working with some days.
Inactive Wind Socks
You remember the days when they were fuller and higher, but nowadays they're, well, just kind of hanging there. Good news, though: inactive windsocks make for excellent flying conditions!
(I don't know what that metaphor means or if that fact is even true, but I'm trying desperately to find a silver lining to go along with my droopy ta-tas.)
Sad-Looking Dinner Rolls On The Discount Rack At The Grocery Store
It seems that near the registers of every grocery store I go to, there's a rack of baked goods past their prime and sold at a discount. There always seem to be a squished-looking pack of dinner rolls and I wonder "Who buys squished bread?"
These days, however, I feel a certain affinity to those subprime rolls. Like, I feel ya, girls. I feel ya.
Like They Lost A Fight With A Rabid Weasel
Even the smallest baby has crazy sharp nails, and they use those nails to work over your boobs like a mafia thug who says you owe them money. I'm pretty sure they don't do it on purpose, it's more of an absent-minded thing, but I'm also not ruling it out.
After weaning my children, my boobs had to heal from the crisscross of scratches all over them.
Whatever The Sad Trombone Noise Would Look Like As Human Flesh
Seriously. I could hear the sound effect in my head every time I took off my bra. Ugh.
Droopy Roses That You're Too Lazy To Take Out Of The Vase
They're still roses and there's still a beauty to them, but they don't really look up anymore. They look like they're checking their shoes for something.
Because it's not all bad, guys. I can't look down at my breasts anymore and just see what society tells us we should (that is objects meant exclusively to be visually pleasing by conforming to a very specific standard of what's sexy). These boobs were (and are) what my children nuzzled up against to feel protected and soothed.
My breasts also fed two fat, happy babies until they were robust and lively toddlers. That's some sci-fi level craziness. I grew a human and then after they emerged from my womb, continued to nourish them with nothing more than the body I was born with. That's unbelievable!
I breastfed for a collective three years and two months. There were times when it was difficult, and there were definitely times when it was annoying, but on the whole I loved it.
The Breasts Of A Woman Who Has Breastfed Two Babies
And, seriously, what's wrong with that?