Will I be Pretty?


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BREASTS

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

About that hair…


I hope y’all actually click this music video this time because it really tells a great story about Identity and what it means to women.

I was inspired to write this little quip by a comment on my last blog post. Most people have no idea just how much something as simple as hair means to an individual’s identity; especially for a woman. I keep my hair short. That is my identity. I change the color about as often as my underwear. That buzzed up backside is a badge of courage. I do it so women know that you are NOT your hair! Hair is an accessory. Just like a scarf or a wig or hat. Hell, glue little rhinestones on your baldness and rock that out! (WHY didn’t I think of that last year when I was getting chemo???? dammit.)

Recently, I saw the film 50/50 and if one wants to make a valid attempt at understanding the emotional roller coaster canSer takes its host on, watch that film. There is absolutely NOTHING more dehumanizing than being forced to shave your hair off. NOTHING.

In order to feel that I was in control, I buzzed it all off before mine even started falling out. It was liberating but nonetheless dehumanizing. I never cried in front of anyone about it, even though I often wanted to. But you know what? If you need to cry, then do it. You’re entitled to that. Have your breakdown. Then later, remember that YOU are not your hair. Be free of it. Those who truly got your back will love you with or without hair, ovaries, boobs, Jimmy Choos, (insert whatever you want right here.)

Pretty is what changes, folks. Bald IS beautiful. There’s your proof.

In the meantime, here are a few videos that will show you how to wrap up your noggin in some awesome ways. I would often glue up some fake bangs underneath the front. (use hairglue and weaving tracks or eyelash glue.) Also, you can get pretty inexpensive weave from lots of different beauty supply stores….especially ones in “da hood.” Those were my favorite ones! To be honest, I STILL wrap it up sometimes. Just because I LOVE the look so much. Pashima and cotton work the best as silk and satin tend to slip and get really hot. And don’t worry about needing a “hair bun.” It isn’t necessary. I speak from experience. ;)



watch?v=uFVhHdTiY_w

I swore by this whole Youtube channel when I was playing the chemo game.

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheStyleUnderground

LOVE it!

Hugs and Sunny surf,
Jessica & Gertrude

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