Will I be Pretty?

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Whatever one wishes to call them, they are beautiful.

I haven’t discussed mine much in my little corner of the interweb, but I think now is a great time to do so.  I have the BRCA 1 gene mutation. I’ve made a choice. It has been by far, thee most difficult decision I’ve had to make but I like to view it as my final Eff You to canSer.

Women with the BRCA genetic mutation are at a much higher risk of developing breast canSer.  In my situation, my risk is a lovely, whopping 87%.  So, off with their heads, I say.

See, here’s the deal. Even as I write this, I’m fighting with that nasty, choking knot that builds in the back of one’s throat.  I run a tough game but as I’ve always said, we are human. We are entitled to our breakdowns.  Maybe I need one right now.

Anyway, going to these appointments in preparation for a bilateral mastectomy got me thinking.  Pretty is what changes. Not the girl.   Sure, I’m losing my breasts. My natural breasts. The girls that bought me drinks in college, make my favorite dress pop in just the right places, fill out a bikini and balance out that honkytonk badonkadonk that we all know I have.  I can’t even begin to describe all the emotions that filled my soul when the doctor was sizing me up for tissue expanders and discussing taking tissue of my beautiful back to reconstruct the girls.  Somehow, I managed to keep it together and tell him that he wasn’t touching my back, as I already have enough scarring. (Just like many other women who have gone through this before me.) Fighting with my inner self, I struggle between “yaaayyyy I’m getting stripper boobies!!” and “holy crap I’m losing the last part of me that makes me a woman.”  It’s like a little demon in there fussing with my head.  I find it ridiculous, as we are talking about a girl who keeps her own head shaved simply to disprove societal standards about the definition of “Pretty.”  (so far, I think I’m doing a damn good job at it, too. hee hee.  Besides…it’s a badge of courage. Rock that baldness out!)

I think what gets me through these appointments is thinking about the invisible footprints of all the women who have been forced to walk down the same dark, twisted, scary path that I’m currently on.  They made it. They’re still beautiful. They’re still accepted.  They’re still wanted. They’re still loved. Just like I will be and just like the ones who will follow my invisible footsteps.

I’m coming to terms with all this slowly.  I’m one of less than 30% already. BAM baby. BAM.  I’ll still be beautiful. Why?

Because “Pretty” is what changes, homies. ;)

Hugs and Sunny Surf,

Jessica & Gertrude

13 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Arinn
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 05:07:55

    jess, this is so inspiring! i really look up to you because of how calmly you deal with all this. one step at a time. it’s incredible. <3<3 sending you so much love on this next part of your journey.


  2. Nicole
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 10:13:47

    Will you be pretty? My god, you already are! And so much! In and out.
    You keep going up and forward beautiful girl! I am here cheering for you somewhere in this also beautiful and cold Sweden.




  3. DiAnne
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 11:34:16

    You are, in all ways, beautiful! You have a streak of fantastic and bold grace! When you are ready and your lady’s are removed, Pang, you will remain the strongest, prettiest, most compassionate women I know! I luvs you Pretty Gurl!


  4. thehighwayman
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 15:18:56

    You are beautiful – the perverse cruelty that life sometimes brings can’t change that basic fact. I know this has to be an incredibly difficult,intensely emotional decision. Given the horrible odds you don’t really have a viable alternative, but that doesn’t make this sort of irrevocable choice any easier.

    Your courage and perseverance are an inspiration to anyone who crosses your path. Hang in there and keep fighting.


  5. Miranda Tjeerdsma
    Jul 17, 2012 @ 17:11:30

    You are amazing! Absolutely inspiring! Love you!


  6. Jonny
    Jul 18, 2012 @ 06:30:37

    As a survivor, I’m always nervous about the big C returning. I’ve been quietly following your blog for a while now. And as a dude, leave it to me to come say hi on the boob post. But in all seriousness, you do what you gotta do. You do it for you. You’ve got this all figured out, and I’m glad you’re taking steps to keep yourself ahead of the game. I look forward to reading your blog here for a long time to come! Keep it up, and thanks for being candid and having an amazing attitude. It helps me pay less attention to what might be lurking in my future, and pay more attention to smiling and living life. THANK YOU.


    • gurlinthacurl
      Jul 19, 2012 @ 23:05:26

      Thank you!!! Love hearing from male readers!! I just don’t have time to be bitter and negative about my life. There’s flowers to smell, rain to dance in and surf to hit. ;)


  7. JoeG
    Jul 22, 2012 @ 12:26:05

    What makes you beautiful is who you are, not what you look like. You just happen to also look like the most delicious cheese sandwich ever and that is NOT to suggest there is anything cheezy about, I just happen to love cheese sandwiches. There is a world of women out there who choose to have implants for no reason other than cosmetic and I for one don’t love them any the less (actually, I’d love to love them more, but for some strange reason that doesn’t happen – oh, what? Oh, I see… so that’s why… never mind).

    You are one of the most beautiful, inspirational people I sort of virtually know, and I’ve been telling you that long before that stupid canSUCKer wandered around. I would NOT kick you out of bed, lady, plastic boobs or no. I only wish for the day when you will finally, after all this bullshit, find a place where this is all history and you can look back with a smile and tell your fake boobs, “girls, you are adopted but I love you just the same,” and some incredibly lucky person alongside you will say, “Jessica, I love you and all your strangeness, too.”


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