Coincidental Procedural Closure

Posted: October 12th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

Through a string of coincidences, of which I do not believe in, last night I found myself being offered an opportunity by Personal P.INK to have my bilateral mastectomy lines tattooed over, for free! In New York City, come October 21, 2013. Just seven days prior to my three year anniversary date of becoming a Survivor — my bilateral mastectomy surgery date.

I'm choosing courage.

Personal P.INK is a foundation that organizes events all across the country where professional tattoo artists assist breast cancer survivors — via tattooing over mastectomy scars and providing instead, meaningful and personalized body art. [Please visit their page. They function solely upon donations.]

This opportunity, oddly enough, has knocked me for an emotional loop. Remembrance of the excruciating pain during the three separate attempts at tattooing my areolas came rushing back. Fear. Big time.

Amidst the fear of not being able to endure that kind of pain again, I found myself facing down unexpected childhood dogma that I had no idea still lingered in my head. “Good girls don’t get tattoos.” Many of my friends have tattoos, I’ve never, ever looked down upon them for their body art. Yet, there was my brain fearfully spitting out, “tramps get tattoos.” Bah!

I’m not used to feeling scrambled. Since this morning I’ve found myself having to fight back  random bouts of tears — crying over what? I still don’t know. Honestly, I still have no clue as to what is at the root of the tears. I’m not much of a crying type person. I’m a “Buck it up, Sunshine” kinda gal. That attitude is what allowed me to dance through my breast cancer journey the way I did.

Thankfully, my loving circle of strong heart-sisters yanked my ear and started to set my butt straight. “This is fear talking. Since when did you ever buckle to fear?” This almost got me to snap out of it … almost.

Then Snoopy Girl posed the perfect question to ask myself.


 “What would this [tattooing] do to your life as a whole?” ~ Snoopy Girl


The first chunk of an answer to the poignantly question is … I’ve learned to actively ignore my ugly scars. But, if the tattoos turned out right? It would allow me a daily visual sense of peace again. I’d get to gaze upon beautiful artistic closure to the one and only thing I’ve found as being “ugly” and unresolved in my Survivor journey — the angry looking mastectomy scar lines that span nearly the entire width of my new perky ample bosoms.

Cherry blossom Oil painting by Ele Art

Oil painting by Ele Art

For art, what seems to speak to me the most is a knobby Cherry tree branch over each scar line, with a few delicate blossoms on it. Cherry blossoms have deep symbolism in Chinese and Japanese cultures. They symbolize feminine beauty, sensuality and strength. They also embody the never ending cycle of life. Cherry blossoms represents the fleeting transitory beauty of life. Enjoy the beauty of it while it is present.

So, the last chunk of  my answer, is? Why, yes, I am indeed going to go through with this opportunity. I’ll get to feel even more uniquely beautiful and blessed, via the symbolic body art that will bring closure to my journey. Finally provide  me total procedural closure.

Other than the scars though? Everything else has truly been a blessing in this life-changing journey, that of breast cancer and as a Survivor. So much good came out of the journey. The love and support of my loved ones and discovering that I’m a writer. All forever treasured within my consciousness.

So, “Buck it up, Sunshine!” Ingest some pain meds, and a strong tranquilizer, and get on with it! Time to roar back in the face of cancer, yet again.

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2 Comments on “Coincidental Procedural Closure”

  1. 1 Brianna Hays said at 5:04 pm on October 12th, 2013:

    I am thrilled that you are doing this! As scary and painful as it may be, I’m so proud of you!! You are one of the most courageous women I know.

  2. 2 Tattoos Transform #Mastectomy Scars into Art « Life in the Lost World said at 11:28 am on October 13th, 2013:

    [...] taken from Chérie’s post Coincidental Procedural Closure [...]