by HANNAH DOWNEY
Hearing the news about Angelina Jolie’s double mastectomy has inspired me to share something close to my heart, that until now has been a struggle to share.
A family tree shows that almost every woman in my mothers line has fought breast cancer at some stage.
As a result, I too, recently made the decision to undergo genetic testing to find out whether I carried one of the two breast cancer gene mutations common within the specific Jewish tribe my family stems from.
After six weeks of waiting, I was sat down within a grey room and told the grey news.
My risk of breast cancer had suddenly increased from the average Australian of a one in 10 chance and jumped to an 80% risk.
The stale room, the seriousness of the news, and I literally felt hollow, because not only was I at risk of breast cancer I was also at an increased risk of ovarian cancer. Worse than all of this – Bonnie, my young, innocent daughter, had a 50% chance of carrying the mutation too.