REALISATION

Hi reader(s), I want to write something for you which is positive, I promise but I just simply don’t feel positive. I am sorry about this but surely this is just part of the BRCA journey, right?

So, from that, you are in for another “not so positive” blog. It may not be positive but it is honest and if you are anything like me, I find it more helpful reading people’s honest feeling’s rather than the “flowered up” version.

Today’s blog is my reality, my absolute ‘hard to deal with’ reality that currently is resulting in me feeling as a stranger inside my own mind. BRCA has started to feel as an object and the object cannot be removed.

I almost feel I want to scratch myself to release the object from me, to feel the person I was 16 days ago, to have the same worries I had 16 days ago. The feeling I imagine is ‘freedom.’

I feel numb to any positivity around me.

This journey is only just beginning, I have promised myself; I will be kind, I will allow myself to feel how I do BUT I will work hard to remind myself that finding out I have BRCA is a blessing and is giving me the potential to live a longer life which I will forever be grateful for.

Jessica Jane x

THE DAYS IN BETWEEN THE NUMBNESS

We all have bad days don’t we? For example, finding out you carry a BRCA gene mutation, we can class that as a pretty sh*t day, right?

We all have good days in between though, surely? For example, seeing my niece, watching her grow and learn, mostly giving her all the love I can in the small doses of seeing her. These are good day’s, right?

I currently feel I have two type’s of days which are either numbing and I feel nothing, I suppose this one could be called a ‘good day.’ Or, what I call an ‘in between’ day where BRCA overrides my mind and takes over.

Since finding out I carried a BRCA 1 gene mutation some days (mostly the days I have been back at work, thankfully) I have forgotten, I have felt normal, my anxious thoughts have left me, giving me a peaceful break (thankyou anxiety pal.)

However,

Days like today are days where BRCA gets the better of me, my new reality seems daunting, fear keeps popping up within me and I compare the Jessica I am now to the Jessica I was, before finding out.

I usually feel a sense of control over my emotions, a sense of being able to change my thoughts from rational to irrational, but honestly I am starting to doubt this ability.

How can you manage something that scares you?

How can you manage something which is within you and isn’t a choice or option to have?

Yesterday I went for tea with a friend and she quoted something to me which has stuck inside my mind today, (maybe you’ll like it to.)

“Just because the world is dark right now, doesn’t mean that a light won’t shine.” – JH.

The above quote is popping up today to remind me, all these feelings are temporary and one day my feelings will change and I will thank BRCA for giving me the chance to live a longer life, the chance to meet other people, to be part of a community I never had and to be given the chance to have a different perspective on life which I once may never of had. (Maybe not right now but one day and trust me, that one day when it comes, you will know.)

Today’s day/blog may not be a positive one but this does not mean tomorrow will be the same.

‘One bad day does not equal one bad week/month or year.’

Jessica Jane x

BACK TO REALITY TEN DAYS AFTER FINDING MY RESULTS OUT

Ten days ago I was given my results, can you believe that? I sure can’t. Inside my mind we are maybe looking more at two days ago..

Since finding out, I have not been to work, I have a job where it would have been different people, different days and this was not sitting well with my pal called anxiety (thankyou my friend.)

The last ten days has been a complete whirlwind of emotions, I have spent a lot of time thinking + crying if I am honest (always feel better afterwards though, don’t we?) I have surrounded myself with people I know and love, I have napped when tired, I have researched and spoke to new people from the BRCA community online and ultimately I have done what has made me and my ‘friend’ anxiety feel as calm as we could with the news we had received.

Tomorrow will be my first day back at work and of course because I have a cloud of luck over my head, I will be in a store where I know nobody and nobody know’s me.

The last ten days I have spoken to only people who know, only people who understand if I am a little less talkative or a little less happier than usual, tomorrow I am stepping out of a comfortable safe zone and entering my NEW reality and I feel slightly terrified.

I feel a sense of fear that tomorrow I will feel alone, I will feel unable to process my emotions (which are still very much lingering at the moment) and that I will feel a different girl I was ten day(s) ago stepping outside my door.

It may not make sense, trust me, it doesn’t to me, but that my reader, is anxiety and what anxiety does best.

New reality here I come, I will keep you posted.

Jessica Jane x

THE RISK FACTOR FOR THE NEXT TEN YEARS (Age 25-35)

When I first heard that my Dad’s side of the family had a genetic mutation called BRCA1 which I could potentially of inherited I was not prepared for the journey I was about to experience, AT ALL.

Since having the first video phone call consultation with my genetic counsellor (two months ago) TO now there has been new evidence found to suggest that people with BRCA 1 or 2 may start to have an increased risk from 25 rather than 30. Due to this study I was informed my breast screenings may start at 25 rather than 30. (This would depend on family history, weight, contraceptive pill usage, height, drink and smoking.)

In a normal circumstance and in a normal rational person(s) mind (which is not mine right now) this is a positive thing, more chance to prevent, right? However, it has f*cked my plan up with having 6 years to mentally prepare and process. I said to myself there is no need Jessica for you to get ‘worked up,’ you have six years to prepare, plenty of time…

Today I received my phone call from my genetic counsellor, she told me I will need to start having my breast screening(s) from 25 rather than 30 as my risk is 1 in 12 for the next ten years (8.6%.)

Now, I am asking myself, ‘where is the time to process? Where is the time to accept? F*ck, f*ck, f*ck, think of a new plan QUICK Jessica.’

No guide book found yet then, readers? A guide book needs to be created, called ‘How The F*ck To Deal With BRCA And Feel Lucky At The Same Time?’

My new plan resulted in tears, resulted in accepting pretty damn quick, I know I am lucky in some weird round about way but currently I am not sure how much more I can handle and I don’t feel one ounce of luck (one day this will come, it MUST.)

It does, doesn’t it?

Jessica Jane x

MY BREAST(S)

The funny thing is before being told I had a BRCA mutation I had never referred to my boobs as “breasts” or even the generic name of “boobs” very often.

In actual fact you could say I have been an A**hole to my breast(s) and instead called them names such as “udders,” “lumps of fat,” or descriptive words such as “disgusting” and said sentences such as “I wish i could give some of my t*ts away to someone else.”

I know, right, don’t we all?

How often do we actually say anything nice about most of our body features in reality, but right now, focusing on the boobs, we still critique.

Do not get me wrong, I am not always in admiration for my breasts, I have even once tried to do a ‘Miranda Clap.’ They droop to the side when lying down, they cause back pain, they are not as perky as I would like, they don’t ever just stay one size and they don’t allow me to walk around braless.

BUT….

ONE thing they are and have always been is MINE, they are my “udders,” they are my “breast” to not only feed babies (I’ve heard this a lot in the last week) but they are for my personal appearance, they are apart of me and not ever have I had to consider before that I would loose my disliked boobs and they would be sliced from me.

They do say karma is a b*tch and currently I am seeing this. I will cherish every day I have left with my breast from now and I will appreciate that I can feel them, that they are not permanently cold and that to this day they have not developed the dreaded ‘C’ word, thankyou t*tties.

For anyone reading this and getting to keep your not so dangerous time bomb boobs on your chest, give them some love, don’t be too judgemental with them, check them for the ultimate ‘C’ word and most of all, have fun with them, flaunt them and appreciate them.

Jessica Jane x