After the BRCA diagnosis, I gave up my breasts to lower my chances of getting breast cancer. Now I’m embracing life with no boobs and blogging about it.
I was never what you’d call normal. Even at a young age, I was always too loud, too opinionated, and often laughed at the wrong time. My mind always worked a little differently than others. That hasn’t changed much.
I am still very opinionated, principled, and stand firmly behind my convictions. I’m also known for being stubborn and uncompromising – when I make up my mind that’s it. I am also an analytical person, who most often relies on data – statistics and experience of others before making any big, life-altering decision. And these are the things that came in handy when I learned about my situation.
In 2018 my sister lost her battle with breast cancer. At that time I decided to get genetic counseling, to see if I’m at (even bigger) risk of getting it too. I’ve received the results in July 2019 and they were shocking. I have a BRCA1 gene mutation, meaning I would likely get sick someday. Without a preventative surgery, I would have a 60-85% chance of getting breast cancer and a 20-40% chance of ovarian cancer.
When I started this blog I was faced with enormous, important decisions that would determine the course of the rest of my life. Most of them are now already behind me.
I’ve had a preventative double mastectomy (they cut off both my breasts) without reconstruction (I choose not to have implants or my own tissue to mimic the look and feel of natural breasts) in December 2019. At the same time, they removed both of my fallopian tubes to reduce the chance of ovarian cancer.
Even though most of my experiences with BRCA-related unpleasantries are behind me, I’m continuing blogging to share my views and thoughts about this subject, as well as explaining how my journey affected my life.
I hope this blog and my experiences help at least one person, dealing with a similar situation and making their difficult choices a bit easier. If what I’m going through can help someone else, then it’s worth putting myself out there and sharing what is usually a hidden, very private affair.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.