Marinka’s post a couple of weeks ago, on mammograms, made me remember this – so blame her.
I have a BB in my left breast, courtesy of a car load of teenaged boys who shot me one evening when I was out jogging.
It was about eight o’clock on a September evening, and I’d been running for a while, so my pulse was up. I was heading up a hill near my house when a pale green sedan pulled to the curb. There was a catcall and what felt like the snap of a rubber band hit the side of my breast. Then maniacal laughter and the screech of tires as I stood there under the streetlight, watching my shirt change colors.
My first thought was that they’d thrown a cigarette at me and it was burning my tee shirt away. Since I wasn’t wearing a bra, this meant I’d get to run home essentially topless. But then I touched the dark spot and my fingers came away wet and I realized it was blood. I turned around and headed home.
When I got there, my husband wanted to take me to the ER, but I refused to go. I had this weird, rape-type reaction going on. I felt I’d brought it on myself by a) running after dark and b) not wearing a bra.
“You can’t tell anyone,” I kept insisting. “No one can know.”
Finally, hubby agreed to let me talk to the doctor the next morning, when I took our daughter in for her scheduled allergy shot.
The doctor was frustrated with my inability to identify my attackers.
“If this has been a foot higher,” he said, “you would have lost your eye. Six inches, it would have hit your carotid and you would have bled to death before you reach help.”
He also said it couldn’t be removed – a BB is so small, and breast tissue is so soft – “We could destroy the whole breast and still not get it out.”
Fast-forward to Monday morning, at work with Stan and Tom and a new character we’ll call Tim.
Stan, of course, was nowhere to be found while this discussion was underway. The Tim and Tom show, however, was in full swing.
“Got a BB in your booby?” said Tom.
“They can’t treat you like that,” said Tim. “You’re my bosom buddy!”
“I think you’ve gained a full cup size.” Tom again, squinting at my chest.
I’m starting to realize why my first thought was that no one could know.
It was a long time ago, though, and I don’t think about it very often, except when the weather changes and my breast aches a little.
Or when I get a mammogram and forget to say anything, and they call afterwards, asking, “Were you wearing a…necklace…today?”
Yeah, right. It matches my shell casing earrings.