I was just at a park day playgroup with some lovely friends of mine, and one of the moms began to jokingly talk about how her son “ruined” her breasts and that she’s all “National Geographic” now. Rather than having the moms chime in with comments affirming her beauty and that she looked just great, there were comments more along the lines of “well you can fix that, just don’t go all vulgar” which I am assuming means go ahead and go under the knife, just don’t get super huge ones.
[Enter disappointed heart.]
See, the thing is, we have a problem in our society with accepting that things change and supporting each other through these changes. The body was never meant to stay exactly the same throughout our lifetime. Our bodies have been in a state of constant change since birth. And specifically for women as we go through the stages of puberty, pregnancies, postpartum, and menopause, our bodies are always changing! For some reason we accept this as good/positive all up until the moment that we trade in the appreciation for function for a hyper-focus on form. Something has happened specifically with breasts in the last 20 years that a narrower and narrower “form” of breast is considered beautiful. There are very few women these days who can say with a joyful heart “I love my breasts. They are beautiful.”
This was not always the case. Just as there are many many different forms of flower, there are many different forms that the breast takes, each beautiful and unique. There is a really neat article written in 1997 for Cosmopolitan magazine called “I never met a breast I didn’t like” where the writer (a male) talks about an experience when he was a young boy of discovering a magazine (probably published by some produce association) that featured dozens of cute happy women wearing sweaters. Underneath the picture was a saying such as “Cherries. Make a man’s heart sing with joy” or “Nectarines: Tender and sweet” or “Apples. Always keep you satisfied”. This guy took notice from a very early age that there are lots of different kinds of “fruit” out there, each with a special and wonderful quality.
Our breasts have special and wonderful qualities no matter what size or shape our “fruit” is. If they are in the process of providing milk for a baby, they are very literally sweet with the milk that is made. And if they are pre-breastfeeding breasts or post-breastfeeding breasts then they are wonderful for how they are made by our creator.
Breasts do not make up the total package of a woman. A woman is a whole package person from top to bottom. Men have been saying this for years.
As women WE need to broaden our scope of what makes a beautiful breast to include all of our sisters. A breast that sags is not a broken or ugly breast that needs fixing. It is a breast that’s been warmed by a man’s touch, given strength to the young, a breast that has wisdom and experience and beauty. All it needs is some appreciation.
Here are some real “National Geographic” women, and I think they look pretty awesome if you ask me!