One of the world’s most beautiful women is redefining beauty for Hollywood with an amazing show of courage! The mother of six said that she had to explain to her children that “mommy’s mommy died because of cancer” and she didn’t want her kids telling their children the same story.
So she took life in her hands and it cost her much. Or did it? Angelina’s likelihood of having breast cancer was 90%. She knew this thanks to a new test for two cancer related genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2.
So in the early months of 2013, Angelina Jolie, famous for her physique, had a double mastectomy.
Would we do that? Would we cut off a part of ourselves to be around for our kids? In my heart, I say I’ll find another way but that’s not exactly true. Many women live with a condition called Endometriosis. That’s where cells of the uterus migrate outside of the uterus and attach themselves and grow. For some it causes infertility. For me, it was life threatening. So “it” had to go.
Have you heard the saying, “real women have ovaries”? I think it means that if you are a real woman, you can’t be bullied and you aren’t a door mat. Ok, I can appreciate that. But because of Endometriosis, which for me, made it nearly impossible to function, the ovaries, among other things, had to go.
No more babies. No more periods. No ovarian cancer. Premature menopause. identical hormone replacement. Hey, all of life contains a litany of choices to live or die. So at the age of 28, I prayed and went unconscious for a hysterectomy. It was a last-resort. I told my doctor, not knowing if he’d take the ovaries or not that “if things look bad, take them out. I can’t live like this anymore.”
If you are facing bad news, be encouraged. This trial is for your good, as it is for Angelina and was for me. I sometimes wish I was like other 34 year-olds, still slightly concerned that this month might lead to a pregnancy. But the trade-off is that I am here now for my DH and the babies I’ve already been gifted. I am a different woman this side of hysterectomy largely because now, I am healthy.
What defines a woman? Sure, anatomy does define a “woman” but so does her heart… A heart that says “yes” to life… I think we’d all agree that women are most beautiful when they are supporting life in any way possible. Think about getting tested for BRCA1 & BRCA2. It could be the courageous life-saver you and your family needs!
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