As September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness month, I wanted to share some important information about resources available to those who may a family history of these cancers.
My sister and I lost both of our parents to cancer so we try to remain knowledgeable and vigilant about ways to remain cancer-free. Since our mother passed away from ovarian cancer at the age of 42, we decided to have genetic testing for breast and ovarian cancer when we reached our 40s. The results revealed that we both carried a mutation on the BRCA2 gene, indicating we have a much higher lifetime risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer. With our diagnoses came confusion and questions about our options and the best chances for lessening our chances of a cancer diagnosis.
Knowing that you are at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer can be emotionally confusing and overwhelming. We found that meditation and mindful living have helped immensely to handle the stress and to make decisions about next steps. Taking care of your emotional and mental health and ways to cope with anxiety is what inspire us to work on Be Mindful®
We want others to know that there are resources for assistance and a variety of choices available for those with BRAC1 and BRAC2 mutations and their loved ones. A few that we like are BeBRCAware, Color, Bright Pink, Facing Our Risk, Cancer Support Community.
Ultimately, my sister and I both chose preventive surgery. Michele had an oophorectomy – a surgery to have her ovaries removed and I had an salpingo-oophorectomy - the surgery to remove my ovaries and fallopian tubes - and we both schedule mammograms and MRIs twice a year.
Having lived with loss from cancer, we created Be Mindful® to provides resources for anyone confronting stress, and to create awareness, explore wellness, mediation, and living mindfully.