Yes, I went through breast cancer. But when you look at these portraits, I hope breast cancer is not your first thought. I hope you see femininity, peace, art and love. I identify with all that is woman and I am truly thankful for femininity.
That sense of self was challenged when I lost my left breast, lost my hair, lost my monthly cycle; and when I lost the hormones that make me feel sexy and desirable. It was all gone in a matter of months, leaving behind emotional and psychological scars. Not to mention the obvious scars spanning the most intimate parts of my body. So many parts of me that I identified as feminine were mangled. This is something I cannot accept even to this day.
That feminine voice whispers that does not want to die. The circumstances and events of going through cancer wanted to extinguish that feminine light. As a result, I became filled with a sort of rage that did not want to allow that fire to go out. I wanted to come back stronger, more feminine than before. As I walk this journey, however, I recognize that that fire is no different than what it was and always has been. I’m just now embracing it, honoring myself and who I was born to be.
More than just surviving we must live. This is what I mean to change; so that life after cancer can still be whole; so that who we are and how we identify doesn’t have to be sacrificed to survive.
I am a mother of four boys, a teacher, a writer; a Zumba instructor, I dabble in commercial real estate and have my hand in entrepreneurial endeavors.
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