I’ve known the month of September to be a wily foe. Perhaps her cunning is a mere protesting of the confusion that comes with bearing two seasons at once. Still, I haven’t liked her much. It was during her days that I lost my mom to breast cancer 26 years ago. Two years ago, my brother ended his life in September. Why, then, would I schedule a preventative double mastectomy for this dreaded month? To give September a chance to redeem herself.

She didn’t disappoint.

In mounting cascades of prayers, love and assurance, September rushed me along with a rapid, knowing force. So bolstered, I cast no backward glances, and awoke ready on the day of surgery.

Read the rest of this story on my Huffington Post blog.

2 Comments
  1. Kristina,

    I can relate to your breast screening and options! Your story is so helpful to me as I have have 3 biopsies this past year, mri, multiple mammograms and ultrasounds. My diagnosis is calcifications and atypical hyperplasia. I’m scheduled to have my bilateral prophylactic mastectomy in less than 2 days. Thank you for sharing your story.

    Did you find surgery difficult to recover? Are you happy with the results?

    Thank you,

    Christina deAndrade

    • Dear Christina–I’m so glad my story has helped you. It sounds as if you’re navigating a path similar to the one I took. I too had calcifications, atypical ductal hyperplasia, and flat epithelial atypia. My recovery was swift. Far faster than I imagined it would be. I did have some side effects, related to digestion after the strong antibiotics, and my hair became quite dry from the anesthesia. These symptoms may well have been magnified because I have Hashimoto’s Disease.

      I’m happy with the post-op results, as well. I don’t feel my body is much different. My plastic surgeon is top-notch. I see him once a year for checkups. He’s both skilled at his practice and equipped with good bedside manner. These two elements are key, I believe, when dealing with breast health before, during, and after mastectomy surgeries.

      I’d be happy to share more by email. My email address is kristina.cowan@gmail.com.

      My best to you!
      –Kristina

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