Friday, April 1, 2011

The CF body

Have you noticed the typical CF body?  Skinny arms, wide chest, barely having hips.  Yeah I have it too.  And I HATE it! 

With bathing suit season fast approaching (though when you look out my window and see 3 inches of snow on the first of April you don't see how it is fast approaching), I went shopping for an updated new two piece.  I can't wear one pieces, they make me feel like a boy, seriously.  Unfortunately I haven't tried it on yet; I'm too scared.  I know exactly how I will look and I am dreading it.  To this day I still feel like one of those mal-nourished kids from Africa that you see plastered on the TVs all the time.  Skinny arms and legs and big, bloated bellies.  Only mine is up higher in my chest area, well an partially down in my gut too. 

I have no boobs (Victoria's secret stopped making my favorite bra years ago in my size from lack of consumer need - I've been told) but this HUGE chest.  Think size 14 bridesmaid dress and a dress sales lady trying to tell me I need a 4 not a 14.  I proved her sorry ass wrong haha!  But it has me very self conscious.  My chest is wider than my hips.  I can't wear any tops or dresses that zipper because they won't fit.  Anything tight looks stupid on me.  I feel fat and gross.  And I KNOW I am not.  That's what gets me.


And its not like it is something I can change.  I can't make my rib cage get smaller.  I can exercise all I want but its not going away.  When I put on weight it doesn't go to my skinny arms, it goes to my already bloated belly.  It's something I need to work on and improve. 

CF doesn't fuck you up enough it has to mess with your self esteem too :P


  1. I hated those same things about my old CF body too. I love swimming, but I felt self conscious in a swimming suit. My barreled chest and rounded back really made my tiny butt look even smaller. It was hard for me especially in high school. Since I'm Post transplant some of the rounded back/ribcage has improved and some of the clubbing too :)

  2. I've been having the exact same thoughts recently :( I've been putting on some well needed weight too and it's just went to my belly. I long for some hips to hold my jeans up!

  3. I hope some of it does go away post transplant! That would be a huge help lol

    Amen Lawrun!!!!!!!

  4. Its funny, my CF friend & I both said to our Tx surgeon "while in there, couldn't you have given us boobs, I mean you were already in the vicinity". I'm always surprised when I see CF'ers with big boobs - I think, where on earth did they get those from. LOL.

  5. Everything always goes to our tummies. It doesn't really change after transplant. But something that used to bother me more than the bloated belly and skinny arms was my rounded shoulders from coughing so terrible all the time. I think my posture is slowly getting better since my tx, its great. But, like you said, I'm still not comfy in my body either. Most ppl aren't.

  6. I don't know if it will help you, but I did find that when I accidentally put on some more weight (I was already at a good/healthy, MD-approved weight), while initially I felt like a lardass just because none of my clothes fit, when I went to get some new ones, everything fit better because I was more filled out overall. The issue I had with long-sleeved shirts (esp. button-downs) where if they fit around my ribs, they were huge in the arms, didn't disappear but got MUCH better; dresses filled out much better too, because I didn't gain much *fat over my ribs*, haha, but my hips and butt filled out such that the "built-in hips" that many dresses have weren't really that far from my actual hips. Don't get me wrong, I still don't have anything near a rockin' body, but I've changed my mindset from being so focused on the number on the scale ("I may not be the hottest, but I can be the lightest, damnit!") to thinking, OK, I'm not going to get fat around my ribs unless I REALLY get FAT, but if I allow myself to really fill out more, and then *tone* the areas that have filled out, I'll look a lot closer to normal; even though my "pooch" has gotten a little bigger, too (and it really, really didn't need to at all), even it doesn't look as disproportional and weird now that my limbs, butt, hips, etc have a little meat on them.

    So counterintuitive as it sounds, maybe if you let yourself pork up a little, and then worked to tone those areas (which wouldn't be hard, because you'd still be nowhere near fat, just trying to define the muscles underneath a little bit so you don't feel "skinnyfat"), it would actually help?

    Anyway, please don't think I'm being flippant about this - it's made me crazy self-conscious for years, and I totally get the feeling sucker-punched with a) the disease then b)feeling like you look different enough to be self-conscious, but not different enough to be able to have people look at you, know you've got health issues, and cut you some slack, haha. Just a thought, because it really shocked me when it happened to me - I nearly heaved when I saw the number on the scale, but then noticing the difference in the way clothes fit blew my mind - and I know it wasn't just in my head, because I virtually stopped getting carded :oP I'm still not anywhere near "curvy", by any means - CF or no, my body was never shaped that way - but I do look like an actual grown-up, and not just an oversized kid, I think.

    Swimsuit-wise, have you tried the halter/strapless tankinis that have ruching down the sides, and actually hang over the bottoms kind of like a longer t-shirt rather than that goofy, cut-you-off-at-the-middle crap they used to do? they have some at Target for like, 20 bucks - I'm going to get one today, actually, so I can start laying out without worrying about my massive scar/current prednisone belly.

  7. You definitely said it well. Even though I'm post transplant, I still seem to have a more filled out belly than other parts, and i have no boobs...would really love some. I really need to try and work on my belly...i keep saying that but don't get around to it, and have no idea what will help. You do lose some of these uncomfortable features you mentioned post-transplant, but it just depends on the individual. I had scoliosis and surgery for it, so my rib cage in the back sticks out, and i have to always get an bigger size shirt to cover it up, which sometimes makes it look weird in the front. I have so many scars post-transplant, that i hate looking at my stomach. I would love to wear a bikini, but are self-consious because of the way my stomach and chest look. I don't wear a one piece, but i do wear a tankini or tankini top with bikini bottom. It sucks. I keep saying i'm gonna have plastic surgery to cover up all my holes and scars-LOL. Maybe after i graduate i can save up some money-LOL. You can tell I hate this topic too!

  8. Seriously Amy we have a lot of the same thoughts. It's weird. I freaking dread swim suits. In fact, I haven't really went swimming in years. Except last summer, I bought a two piece (with some help for my non-existent chest) and still felt retarded. But to be honest, the padding makes you look stupid. Agree?
    It's funny; I've always had the thought in the back of my head that when I go for transplant I want to ask the doctors for boobs too lol.
    I try really hard to accept my body the way it is (I'm real skinny - 5'6", 104 pounds) but it's damn hard when every once in awhile you have some jackass point out the fact that you have no boobs. Seriously??? What's the difference between someone saying that and me saying "boy you sure are heavy"???? Come on. No wonder we struggle with our body image.
    Thanks for reminding me that I'm not alone :)

    For some reason this won't allow me to post my live journal address: it's squeegee25.


  9. Thanks for the support! I tried on my new bathing suit yesterday and I didn't look as bad as I was dreading :) Maybe my 5 minutes of cardio a day is helping my mindset more than my body lol (I can't do more than that but its hardcore cardio haha)