Famed actress and humanitarian, Angelina Jolie Pitt, has written another beautiful piece in the New York Times detailing some very personal information about her health: she decided to remove her ovaries and fallopian tubes.
Angelina revealed two years ago that she had a preventive double mastectomy because she had a mutation on her BRCA1 gene that gave her an 87% chance of getting breast cancer. Many applauded her courage to speak out and use her platform to help other women.
Angelina writes that she wanted to tell people about any future choices she would make regarding these cancers that greatly affect women, so she can possibly help others. She had some tests?taken fairly recently that were normal, including the CA-125 count in her body, but the doctor told her that there were other “markers” that when put together, could be a sign of early cancer.?She also writes how the’doctor told her?how much she looked like her mother which made her break down; Jolie has lost her mother, grandmother and aunt to cancer.
Wanting to live for her children and future grandchildren, and with her family history and increased risk of cancer, Mrs. Jolie Pitt decided to remove her ovaries and fillopian tubes.
Angelina doesn’t want to force her decisions on women, and this is clear. She?wants everyone to be educated on their options. For example, she writes:
“There is more than one way to deal with any health issue. The most important thing is to learn about the options and choose what is right for you personally.”
She also warned that it is impossible to remove every risk for cancer and she still remains at risk. There are effects for having this surgery and removing her ovaries and fillopian tubes. Perhaps most dramatically, Angelina will enter into menopause. She is only 39 years old. She will also not be able to have any more children.
Part of why?I love this woman so much (and she is my favorite celebrity) ?is her ability to remain grounded and understand her place of privilege. She?has offered humbled words directed at other women, saying:
“I feel deeply for women for whom this moment comes very early in life, before they have had their children. Their situation is far harder than mine. I inquired and found out that there are options for women to remove their fallopian tubes but keep their ovaries, and so retain ability to bear children and not go into menopause. I hope they can be aware of that.”
Throughout, she wants women to know that each decision is personal and you have to make decisions based on what is right for you. She still encourages women to feel beautiful and strong no matter what, and that she continues to feel feminine despite the changes she has had to undergo.
For a woman with such fame, money, and iconic beauty, speaking on these issues is courageous and?empowering. To have a voice like hers speak to what so many faceless women go through every day, helps us realize the vastness of this situation and how we can take control of our lives by not living in fear. Mrs. Jolie Pitt seems to understand and be grateful that she has the ability to see doctors whenever she wants with money being no factor. Her grace through all of this, mixed with her humble nature, shows how she is truly developing into a beacon of strength and compassion. But she is just one of millions of ?women who are living through this and she would admit that millions are even stronger and more courageous than she is. And that’s what makes her so special.
Read Angelina Jolie Pitt’s post in the New York Times in?its entirety here.