I have the BRCA2 gene mutation. I have known that I have the gene mutation for about 7 or 8 years now and decided that I would move forward with screenings every 6 months or so. This May, after many scans without issue, it was suggested that I have a breast biopsy after an area of concern was noticed. This was a pretty big scare for me and I have started thinking more strongly about prophylactic surgery, something I have been very resistant to in the past.
I am starting to think about having my ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. I am 46 years old and I am probably perimenopausal. Medically induced menopause was one of my largest concerns and now that I am 46, it is less of a concern. I haven’t decided on a prophylactic mastectomy yet, but it is something I am considering.
On a weekend in October, my nieces, salty girl beauty, are having a retreat weekend. After much hemming and hawing, I decided to attend. One of the biggest issues is I also have a family wedding that weekend and I am going to miss it so that I can attend the retreat. The amazing thing about the weekend, at least for me, is the medical panel as well as the keynote speaker. Making these decisions about surgery is not something that I am making lightly. I am very much looking forward to talking with and hearing from these speakers.
I have multiple concerns about having surgery. The most obvious is just having surgery in general. Another concern is the medical induced menopause. Medically induced menopause means that I’ll go into menopause immediately, with no ability to deal with things slowly. Then there’s a mastectomy and all the complications that go along with that. A big thing, though it feels like it shouldn’t be a big thing is a sexual component. Without going into a lot of detail, I’ve heard some tough stories about people’s’ sex life or lack thereof. I’ve heard stories about lack of desire, lack of feeling, and I have a great man, but what will he think after surgery. We have had that discussion, and he has basically said he wants me around without having to worry about the cancer risk like it is now. Having my ovaries and tubes removed gives me a big reduction and I will probably have that surgery sooner than later. I need to get a little financially more secure, but once that happens, maybe in the first part of the new year, I will have that surgery. Losing my breasts is not something I am willing to consider right now.
I keep saying I’m going to eat better, exercise more, and look at other alternative practices. I haven’t really done that yet, but it is still a thought that I need to work on. I’m worried about how my family member is going to react to me not going to her wedding, and even more so her mom. I am really looking forward to this retreat and learning and speaking with others. I’m not sure how much my mind will change, but I am really hoping that this weekend will help me feel more confident in what I want.
I’ll have more to write as the weekend gets closer. I’ll have even more to write during and after. I have a physical coming up Friday and I know she will ask about surgery. I know that she is going to push for surgery, especially after my biopsy scare. I will have the ovary/fallopian tube surgery sooner than later, but that is all the decision I am read to make.