This blog's purpose is to chronicle my journey, which I think will be a means of catharsis for me, but the main reason I'm publishing it online is in hopes that it will raise BRCA genetic testing awareness and maybe even help others along their own journey. When it came time to make decisions regarding my medical care, I found that the blogs of other women in similar circumstances were the most helpful for me.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Anniversaries, Updates, & Fat

True story: in our high school US History class, our teacher would have us spend the first 5 minutes of each class writing in a journal. It didn't have to be US history-related, we just had to date each entry and write for 5 solid minutes, about anything. I'm not really sure what the educational purpose of this assignment was...Honestly I think it was mainly to keep us out of his hair while he prepared himself for the day's lesson plan. (No peanut gallery comments on the California school system please! lol). Anyway, the point of this story was, I failed that assignment. At the end of the school year I turned in a mostly empty journal. I couldn't even be counted on to write for 5 minutes a day, 5 days a week consistently. Clearly, as evidence by the lack of posts, some things never change. :)

There really hadn't been too much in the way of updates since my last post though, in my defense. My summer has been blissfully uneventful.

A few new developments have come up though. I realize, as summer starts winding to a close, I'm coming up to the one year anniversary of my BRCA testing. It seems so surreal! I remember looking at the test kit sitting on the passenger seat of my car and putting it off because I knew once I took the test, my whole world would change. I was right. Everything DID change. Some good, some bad. In the span of a little under a year, I've found out who I can count on and who I can't. I've found out how much pain I can tolerate. I gained a cup size and lost a part of my femininity that I will never get back. Before my mastectomy, I always told myself I'd never breast feed. It seemed ridiculous. Your partner can't pull equal weight on the feedings, you get sore, you leak...It didn't seem important. Now, I mourn not having that option. I also mourn the loss of feeling in my breasts and nipples, which, I never really paid too much attention to prior to my mastectomy. (I know this may be TMI but this whole blog is TMI so I'm not going to apologize.) It's also a bit daunting to know that my battle is only half way fought. While I am now celebrating the relief of knowing my chances of getting breast cancer are slim to none, I'm also dealing with the fact that my lifetime ovarian cancer risk is still 40 - 60%. For some one who's already a self-admitted hypochondriac, this is a tough pill to swallow. Pun intended. :).

So where does this all put me now? Well, the last surgery on my breasts will actually be my second to last. I'll be going under the knife again in October for some minor alterations. Basically my plastic surgeon will be performing a teensy bit of liposuction on my tummy and injecting the fat into my breast over my implants to cover up a little rippling. I can't say that I'm bummed about the free lipo. :) If only I could convince him to harvest 5 more pounds of it for posterity's sake. Haha!

Also, starting on my 30th birthday I get alien probed (trans-vaginal ultrasound) and poked with a needle (CA-125- a test that measures the amount of cancer antigens in your blood) every 6 months until I decide to have an oophorectomy (ovary removal surgery). Haha! Yay 30 sounds SO exciting! My gynecologist has also put me on a low dosage of birth control (double yay) to help lower my risk of ovarian cancer until I am ready to begin trying to become pregnant.

Unfortunately, TVUs and the CA-125 test haven't proven to be very effective at detecting early stage ovarian cancer. While they are better than nothing, the most effective way of decreasing my risk is with an oophorectomy, which is suggested by 35 for women at high risk. I'm not too sad to let the twins go to be honest. Those two have been nothing but trouble since puberty! I'd be ready to wish them bon voyage right away if it weren't for needing those suckers to procreate. So the two little ticking time bombs will just have to stay for a while..BUT they shouldn't make themselves TOO comfortable.

I'm not going to set myself up for failure and promise to be better about posting but I will post in November after my birthday probing. LOL!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Rosanna! I was checking a few of your posts and had a quick question about your blog. I was hoping you could email me back when you get the chance -emilywalsh688 (at) Thanks : )