Early this year I had some blood work done to find out if I carry the mutated BRCA1 gene.
What is BRCA1, you might ask? BRCA1 is a tumor suppressor gene that everyone has. But when the BRCA1 gene is mutated, it's no longer effective at repairing broken DNA. This leaves women with a high risk of developing breast cancer.
There's over four generations of aggressive breast cancer on my fathers' side of the family. So when my cousin found out she carried the BRCA1 gene mutation, my family decided to get tested as well.
When I got the call about the results, the first thing I heard was "I'm so sorry..." and my heart dropped. I tested positive for the BRCA1 mutation and I was given a 87% chance of developing breast cancer.
Knowing I'm positive has left me feeling like a ticking time bomb. For me, being in-and-out of doctors offices getting screened every 6 months, just waiting to get cancer, only eats away at the quality of my life.
So I’ve made the decision to be proactive. On September 29th, 2017, I will be having a Preventive Double Mastectomy, basically eliminating my chances of developing breast cancer.
But with this surgery, because it's so invasive, the recovery will put me out of work for several months. During that time, I will be in great need of help to pay my bills. Including: rent, utilities, electricity, recovery necessities, food, etc. Any amount you can donate will help since I won't have any income.
This is the hardest decision I've had to make. But at the same time, given the mutation that I carry, my family history, and watching my own father fight his own battle with cancer, it’s also the easiest decision I’ve ever made. I’m choosing my life.
Thank you so much for all the support. I'm beyond grateful.