Mega super-star Angelina Jolie shares that since she underwent a preventative double mastectomy in March of 2013, her story has allowed her to connect with people experiencing similar struggles.
"Wherever I go, usually I run into women and we talk about health issues, women’s issues, breast cancer, ovarian cancer," shares the Maleficent star.
"I've talked to men about their daughters' and wives' health…It makes me feel closer to other people who deal with the same things and have either lost their parents or are considering surgeries or wondering about their children."
In a moving essay she penned for the New York Times last May, the actress recalled her mother’s 2007 death from cancer at the age of 56, and how the discovery she carries the faulty gene BRCA1, which makes her a high risk for breast and ovarian cancers, made her spring into action.
**Angelina Jolie's Surgeon Believes She Has Saved Lives
“Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much I could. I made a decision to have a preventive double mastectomy," Jolie revealed in her op-ed.
"I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience."
They certainly have. The Oscar winner has received tons of encouragement from perfect strangers. "I was very, very moved by all the support and kindness from so many people," the 38-year-old says. "I'm great! I'm very happy I made the decision.”
The brunette beauty also adds, “I was very fortunate to have great doctors and very, very fortunate to have a good recovery and have a project like Unbroken to have something to be really focused on, to be getting healthy for, and to be able to just get right back to work."
Unbroken, the real-life story of an Olympic runner taken prisoner by Japanese forces in World War II, is Jolie’s third attempt at directing. It is scheduled to be released this Christmas.
Unfortunately for Jolie, she isn’t out of the woods yet when it comes to her faulty BRCA1 gene.
“There's still another surgery to have, which I haven't yet," she explains to Entertainment Weekly in its Mar. 14 issue. "I'll, you know, I'll get advice from all these wonderful people who I've been talking to, to get through that next stage."
And she’ll have her six wonderful kids and partner Brad Pitt by her side too.
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