“Here’s to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.” – Unknown
My mum … “the Mothership” (as she’ll more affectionately be know here forward!) was one of the 3 who did inherit the gene. The Mothership has 4 kids including me, the youngest now being 15 years old (gosh… time flies). The first 3 of us were from her first marriage and the last from her second and current relationship.
Me and the mothership have really grown close in recent years and I think that’s not too unusual with girls as you grow older, you realise that you mum is actually one of your best friends! I think I was a bit of a rebellious teenager and that probably strained the relationship for a few years, but my marriage breakdown in 2011 was probably the turning point. I think the mothership used to struggle to understand some of my views on life, my attitudes and outlooks; but its probably more of a generational gap more than anything. I like to read psychology and self help books in my spare time and it altered how I dealt with a lot of the emotional turmoil i was facing, and not everyone can always understand how I chose to cope then – I mean, each to their own right, I managed to get out the other side with my dignity intact and some additional coping mechanisms, cant be all bad!?
Mum was the first in our family to have a double mastectomy and reconstruction about 6 years ago now I think, and more recently a hysterectomy too, which will almost totally remove the likelihood of cancer. Hell yes – up yours booby cancer -what relief to know that I wont have to see my on mum go through something so dreadful. There have been many operations and tough times for her during the whole process, and ongoing effects since. She has been incredibly strong, brave and inspirational – and the support that have seen her receive from the “BRCA sisters” has been totally invaluable. Its amazing to know that the support will be there for me too when I do have to make some tough decisions about my own body and whether surveillance will always be the right thing for me.
Heres a truly fabulous photo of my mum which was part of a Nationwide Campaign to raise awareness fro Hereditary Breast Cancer – one of the exhibitions was held in the House of Parliament in London- Not many people can say that their mother has had her tits out in there!