I still have my boobs for all of 34 hours 23 minutes and counting.
It is a strange place to be let me tell you. I have joined a number of Mastectomy groups to help me cope with everything and I have learnt a lot. I have also realised a few things. I fall into a weird group where I don't have Cancer (as far as i know), the Mastectomy isn't purely Prophylactic as in the case of those with the BRCA gene (therefore high risk for cancer) . I'm as usual, an oddity.
A medical marvel that experienced doctors can't fathom. Yet, I have found myself rejoicing, empathising & mourning with these women in my phone. At the end of the day, suffering is suffering. Pain is Pain and we all end up living our lives sans boobies.
Another thing that I've realised is my attitude to Cancer. I honestly don't know if it's a good thing or not. However, living with several lifelong conditions mean that I do ruminate quite frequently about my own mortality. I spent the next few months after my initial diagnosis of RA wondering if I would be lucky enough to see my children into adulthood. That is still my most terrifying fear. I don't want to miss out of that future.
Cancer to me now is just one more thing that could kill me. I have a pretty long list thanks to my immune system making my risks/ comorbidities higher. I do hope I never get that diagnosis. Lord knows I don't need anymore.
Being around women who feel let down by their bodies feels familiar to me even though it's in a different context.
I have worked super hard to let the anger go and focus on the truth which is that my body & I are on the same team even if most of the time it doesn't feel like it.
One final thing to say to my breasts. Thank you for letting me nurture & comfort my children for 6 years. Thank you for those sleepy milky moments. Thank you for the pleasure & thank you for the pain. I needed them all to become who I am.
Thank you for being with me on my voyage from girlhood to womanhood.
Even if my relationship with you has been complex, you were mine.
Life after you are cut away will be good. There will be times filled with insecurity and sadness. There will be times of joy.
I only have this life to live so yes, I intend to breath it all in.