I am not Angelina Jolie

Mia

I know, shocking headline, right?
Because there was you thinking I was JUST like Angelina Jolie.

Well I’m not. And I’ve never been more delighted to announce that.

On June 1 my mum started a course of chemotherapy. Six rounds of basically having her body flooded with poison to ensure the cancerous mass they removed from her abdomen doesn’t spread it’s lethal tentacles elsewhere.
It has been a really really rough ride for her. She lost her hair, her sense of taste, the ability to walk at times.
She hit rock bottom. The absolute depths. My brave, amazing mum reduced to a bed-bound shaking mess.
She has endured when at times she didn’t want to. When despair was etched into her face.
And all that time her other half Drew has been by her side, making sure she found the strength from somewhere, any bloody where, to go on.

You hear about how rough chemotherapy treatment can be but you don’t have a clue until you go through it with someone; have to watch them suffer. Drew barely slept. He looked as exhausted as she did.
But what it did do was bring them even closer together. Life is too short etc etc. They are the cliche and they don’t care who knows it.

In the midst of all this mum was told she could be carrying the faulty BRCA1 gene – the gene which places you at high risk of developing breast cancer, and an elevated lifetime risk of ovarian cancer. Pretty scary words.
This is the same faulty gene Angelina Jolie wrote about so eloquently, so passionately and so beautifully two years ago.

My mum lost her mum to ovarian cancer. She also lost her most beloved aunt at a very young age. If tested positive it would mean I could have it; and my 10 year old daughter Mia could have inherited it too. That’s a pretty heavy load to carry around with you.

Anyway, the tests have revealed that mum doesn’t have the gene. I am not like Angelina Jolie. Her granddaughter is strikingly beautiful, but she’s also not like Angelina Jolie either.
And much as we love Angelina Jolie, we could not be more delighted.

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22 Responses to I am not Angelina Jolie

  1. Jen says:

    I have lost far too many of my family to cancer. The chemo is horrendous and after being found to have the BCRA gene I had no alternative than to make the decisions I did. I carry around the burden of knowing that my boys have a 50% chance of also having the same genetic spelling mistake. I like in hope that when they are 18 and are tested if they choose to be that they might have a way of rectifying it. When I was 18, they had not sequenced DNA, so I hope for them more big jumps in science do not leave them vulnerable to cancer. I wish you mum well and hope that she kicks cancers ass.
    Jen recently posted…Toilet Monster for HalloweenMy Profile

    • Tara Cain says:

      “Genetic spelling mistake” so well put Jen.
      So sorry you’ve gone through this. This is it, for all of the mes who are cheering, there are the yous who weren’t as lucky.
      Life seems to be like a series of percentages we lurch from. If they do have to go through anything similar, at least they have a mother with all the love and understanding who can help them cope. Much love x
      Tara Cain recently posted…I am not Angelina JolieMy Profile

  2. HelpfulMum says:

    I am very glad you’re not Angelina Jolie. So, so happy your mum is on the mend and the chemo was successful. It’s so tough seeing someone you love going through chemotherapy and I am so happy she has had such a positive outcome. x
    HelpfulMum recently posted…11.10.15 Silent SundayMy Profile

  3. So delighted that none of you are Angelina. It must have been a tough ride for you all x
    Domestic Goddesque recently posted…Micro burgers and hot dogsMy Profile

  4. Kim Carberry says:

    That is great news….It sounds like you have all had a tough time of it….
    I hope you mum is on the mend now x
    Kim Carberry recently posted…Our Weekly Meal Plan!! – #mealplanningmondayMy Profile

  5. So sorry that your mum is suffering but so happy for you that you don’t have the BRCA1 mutation. Btw, I’ve been reading that men can carry it too so if you had been a carrier then your sons could also have it. Men who have it have higher chance of breast cancer and prostate cancer.
    Midlife Singlemum recently posted…Why Can’t Adoption Be Reversed?My Profile

  6. TheBoyandMe says:

    This is such wonderful news, I’m really happy for you and your daughter. I hope your mum is starting her road to recovery, my sister has just had the all clear (for now), such a relief.
    TheBoyandMe recently posted…Trolley Bags (Review)My Profile

  7. Iota says:

    That’s very good news.

    When I was going through my breast cancer treatments, I remember being offered the option of finding out if I carried the “spelling mistake” gene. My initial reaction was no. I didn’t want to know. I didn’t want to burden my daughter (and sons) with the knowledge that they might have it too. But a kind friend who came along with me to all my appointments stopped the conversation, and urged me to think again. I couldn’t honestly think about it very clearly at all, but my friend’s quiet, calm presence in the doctor’s surgery, and the careful description by the doctor of the advantages of knowing, swayed me. I just thought “oh, alright then”. Looking back, I think they were both right, and I feel fortunate that I had such caring, careful people guiding me through. I don’t carry the gene, but even if I did, I still think having the test would have been the right decision. Hard, though.
    Iota recently posted…Old Bloggers AwardMy Profile

    • Tara Cain says:

      It’s bloody tough isn’t it Iota. But I guess it’s each to their own. I would want to know because I couldn’t live my life with the constant cloud of not knowing hanging over me but I can totally understand why some wouldn’t
      Tara Cain recently posted…I am not Angelina JolieMy Profile

  8. Kara says:

    I am so sorry your mum had to go through this but so glad she has beaten it and that you don’t carry the faulty gene, it must be such a relief xx
    Kara recently posted…Show Center Parcs what family fun indoors means to youMy Profile

  9. Cerys says:

    This post just stopped me in my tracks. Got me thinking of all sorts. So glad to hear your Mother is recovering well. Sending lots of love xx
    Cerys recently posted…Weekend ScenesMy Profile

  10. Notmyyearoff says:

    That’s such brilliant news. So glad your mum is cancer free, that’s just amazing!! my friend is going through it right now and I just want yogurt her tight, what a roller coaster of a journey it all is. Brilliant news about you all being clear of that gene too. I hope you’re doing a lot of celebrating 🙂
    Notmyyearoff recently posted…3 weeks oldMy Profile

  11. Susan Mann says:

    I’m glad you’re not Angelina Jolie. I am so pleased to her your mum is on the mend and the chemo has helped. Felt for your all. Big hugs lovely xx
    Susan Mann recently posted…Autumn Boots for Me And ToddlerMy Profile

  12. Oh that is good. I am so worried that my husband and boys might have the gene after losing my MIL last Christmas to cancer xx
    Louise Fairweather recently posted…And Relax…..My Profile

  13. Sarah says:

    Very relieved for you and your daughter. Wishing your Mum strength and a good recovery xx
    Sarah recently posted…First rock concert, with Miss 12! Maroon 5 in Auckland, NZ.`My Profile

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