I have to admit first off that I am not a big fan of NewsWeek. That being said, I read this story on the internet, not in the magazine. The story title, ‘The Deepest Cut’, by Jennie Yabroff. “The author off a new memoir talks about her decision to have her breast removed to lower her cancer risk and her desire to be a mother” http://www.newsweek.com/id/131985
The author is Jessica Quellers and her book is “Pretty is what changes”.
I was touched by the honesty in Jessica’s answers to the question posed by the interviewer, Jennie.
Jessica’s mother died of breast and ovarian cancer at age 58. Jessica finds out she has the same gene mutation that can cause the same death she saw her Mother endure all before she is 35 years old. Jessica made the very difficult decision any woman can make, that being to have a prophylactic double mastectomy. A carrier of the BRCA1 gene, she is in the statistically high range to have breast cancer, ovarian cancer or both. Her pathology report showed precancerous changes in one breast. Jessica takes the higher risk option not to have her ovaries removed yet so she has the opportunity to have children.
Wow, right? What courage, what challenges for this young woman. Right?
What does the NewsWeek reporter ask? “Do you ever miss your old breasts?”
How about one of her other questions, “ Were there times when you wished you’d waited longer to take the test so you wouldn’t have to deal with all this so close to your Mother’s death?”
OK, Jessica already stated her path report, her genetic disposition, and the agony of watching her Mother die; couldn’t the reporter have omitted these sensational questions? Jennie the reporter does ask some relevant and good questions, but you have to read to the end of the story to find them. All along the good and bad questions, Jessica shows remarkable resolve to stay on topic and her story. Her memoir, “Pretty is What Changes”, is an inspiration to help other women, educate and empower.
I was moved by Jessica’s story and wanted to comment on line. I looked at some of the other comments and was outraged. Some people were commenting on ‘boobs’, on Jessica’s outcome of finding a husband with no boobs and other outrageous comments. Who are these people? They do not understand breast cancer. Then there was a thread of comments about the comments. Where is the NewsWeek on line monitor? There were people making comments that were supportive and applauded Jessica as I do. Rather than get into the fray of comments, I decided to post here!