THE OTHER SIDE
I'm waiting for the fall so I can have a mastectomy on my right breast. The left, cancerous breast was operated in April, 2015. My breast surgeon, Dr. Michele Blackwood, advised operating one breast at time; in the case that the non - cancerous breast took longer to heal, it would have effected the start of radiation on the cancerous breast, which could have been lethal. I'm choosing to have a double mastectomy for symmetry, I want my breasts to look and act the same. Yes, Dr. Ross Cooperman can lift the right breast so it's got the same dimensions as the left, but mastectomy veterans have told me when I'm older, the real breast will droop, while the operated breast will be perky: I simply want them to match. I'm sad to be rid of my natural breasts, their droop and sensitive nipples - I'll especially miss the arousal during sex. To learn more, watch the video "Chiara's Story" in the Wall Street Journal. Come Autumn, the same routine: mastectomy, with an expander in the right breast. Once that's been expanded to match the left, Dr. Cooperman replaces the expanders with implants. Renee Maschinot performs the last step: nipple tattoos. There's quite a road ahead of me, and I'm grateful to be alive and have the option.