I have something in common with Lauren Hutton and writer Peggy Orenstein. I accept the gap between my two front teeth. After three sets of braces when I was younger and years without a retainer, I can still look a dentist and my reflection in the eye and say, “I like my smile the way it is.” It’s a trademark passed down to me by my mother.
But while I’m able to embrace my gap, a couple of scars, and other “flaws,” I’m still unable to come to terms with the cruel joke DNA has played on me. You see, I’ve always wanted boobs and figured I had a pretty good chance of getting them because ample bosoms run on both sides of my family. I was delighted when my breast tissue started growing at age 10, even though it was painful. But after seven years of growth, I thought, “This can’t be it.” But it was. A 32NB (nearly B) was all the DNA gods blessed me with. Thankfully, the retail gods weren’t so cruel. They’ve come up with a wonderful selection of padded bras that can mask my “flaw” in the winter.
But in the summer camouflaging my itty bitties is a lot harder. You see, no one looks cute in a padded swimsuit. But when I go au natural, I think I look like Vera, Jim Carrey’s female body builder character from “In Living Color” who only needed a thin strip of fabric to cover her nipples. And strapless bras are even more annoying to deal with because my breasts just don’t want to stay in place – and by “stay in place” I mean nicely supported by double padding. (I feel like I’m revealing a dirty little secret by discussing this!)
I’ve been considering augmentation more and more lately. But can I justify spending thousands on an elective surgery when I don’t live on my own, haven’t started saving for my retirement, and owe student loans? Sure, it would make me feel better, but so would finally seeing myself the way others do. I’ve never had any man I was dating criticize my body. Most have told me not to have surgery. But I just want to look and feel normal, to be proud of my physique without having to constantly adjust myself to look good in clothes.
I never thought I’d say this, but I envy people like Paris Hilton and Kate Moss who’ve been known to go braless, tiny breasts and all, and still appear comfortable in the spotlight.