This is a memoir of Cynthia Leeds Friedlander's breast cancer journey after the death of her sister from advanced metastatic breast disease. It is also about her experiences as a single woman who has had her breasts removed.
In September of 1992, the author's sister died of aggressive breast cancer and three months later, doctors discovered suspicious pre-cancerous tissue in Friedlander's breast. Having witnessed her sister's slow and painful death, Friedlander chose to have bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction surgeries. In 1998, she wrote a poignant memoir about her sister's valiant fight and her own experiences through breast cancer diagnoses and surgeries and about her encounters with men, as a breastless single woman. Twenty years after her bilateral mastectomy surgery, she went through implant exchange surgery as a result of the collapse and internal leaking of one of her original saline breast implants. Following that more recent implant exchange surgery, she wrote Full Circle, an epilogue to her memoir.
When Angelina Jolie made her announcement that she had chosen to have prophylactic bilateral mastectomy surgery, Friedlander became highly motivated again to get her memoir published and share her story with women affected by breast cancer. She writes:
"This is a book from my heart. I have written it as a gift, as a celebration of love, loss and learning. It's a book for those who are making, or have made, decisions to alter their bodies and are dealing with intimacy after those alterations. By sharing a wide variety of my experiences, I can provide a mirror for others to validate their own experiences and to open up a hole new world of perspectives, possibilities and adventures for them."