When I read Angelina Jolies stunning revelation in The New York Times that she had both her breasts removed as a precaution against breast cancer,I immediately recalled a scene from the Julia Roberts starrer Erin Brockovich. It was a scene where Erin is comforting a character called Donna Jensen who is dealing with her cancer diagnosis. Donna poignantly asks Erin,If I dont have breasts or a uterus anymore,am I still a woman? To this Erin reaches over,gently takes her hand and says, Of course,youll always be a woman. You just wont have to buy any more underwire or maxi-pads.
By sharing her personal story with the world Jolie has started a conversation that can save lives. This in my book,makes the 37-year-old a womans woman in the true sense. The decision to talk about her surgery must have been a huge call for Jolie who is feted for being a global icon of beauty her legs,her breasts,those lips,even the vial of blood around her neck are discussed as much as her acting,philanthropy and personal life. So when she writes,I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity, she redefines beauty and authenticity.
Jolies disclosure sends out an empowering message. By sharing her deepest fears and courageously talking about her surgical scars,she wants all women to learn the valuable lesson of self-preservation. By sharing her story,Jolie has made it every womans story. Its really not about Angelina Jolie and her breasts but about womens health and breast cancer prevention. In the entire Brad Pitt-Jennifer Aniston-Brangelina saga,I picked my side in the opening rounds. I was always Team Jen and proud of it. But now I wouldnt mind sporting a Team Angie tee. You go Girl. Go,Do,Be.