A letter to every womanOctober 20, 2016
Dear wondrous woman,
You are the reason for my existence, the entire human race springs forth from the creative burst of your womb. You have been the creator and sustainer of the family and human society, blessed is your body. Your breasts are a tool of attraction and nutrition, your assets in this experience of starting and raising a family. The aesthetic curve of female form and the source of sustenance for your beloved child as you nurse a small struggling life with the milk of your bosom.
However, with great privilege there can be a problem . Your breasts are also the commonest site of cancerous growth among women across the world and in India. The same growth required to produce its unique nourishing fluid, when going out of control, produces a malignant tumour that disobediently spreads through your breast and body, causing destruction and death. A cruel twist of fate can cut short a young life as yours.
Would you not rather suckle your infants than lose your breast on the surgeons table?
Would you not rather revel in their naughty pranks than be harassed by poisonous therapies?
Would you not rather bask in the love of your spouse than lay bare in the radiation room?
Then awake, arise and be aware of the risks you may be harbouring in your frame and keep those tissues healthy as best you can. Try to go with the flow of life as you balance the varying demands of family and work. Don’t delay your children too long, the jobs and career can learn to cope with them. Breast feed tenderly your infants for 6 months to nine at least. Keep active wherever you are, there is no substitute for exercise be it walking, running, cycling, swimming, dance or sport. The aerobic activities tone your body and tune up your immune systems that keep a check on you cells’ growth. Eat healthy most days with fruit and veggies. Use hormonal pills very sparingly and discuss this with you doctor. Say no, never to tobacco. Keep off the alcohol as best you can – an occasional drink, for celebration permitted.
If a close relative has had a brush with the dreaded disease, you will need to assess your own risk. Check it out with your doctor or an online calculator. If your risk is significant, a regular check with your surgeon is time well spent. A mammogram may be used to have a closer look.
In spite of your best efforts, cancer does strike like a mysterious plague. Be aware of your body and breasts, get used to the feel of the tissue, the cadence of change with your menstrual cycle; then you can recognize when there is a misstep! Could the small lump, the tethered nipple, the armpit lump, the dull pain felt recently be a sign of the disease? Have a good look in the mirror, don’t hesitate to feel yourself and check your findings with a doctor to make sure. For cancer comes in varied forms, one must be alert to catch the fledgling growth and strike early and successfully to survive the beast.
Take heart my dear; for with all these measures, you can possibly change your future, those orbs will be a source of joy and not a sign of misery.
With best wishes,