Breast Cancer and The Black Apron

If you know, you know…if you don’t, follow along.

This is not my usual food blog post, so if it does not apply to you, feel free to skip this. But unfortunately, if Breast Cancer does not affect you personally, more than likely it will affect someone you know at some point and this is a good tip to pass along.

As many of you may know, 4 years ago I was diagnosed with Triple Positive Breast Cancer and had a double mastectomy with reconstruction followed by 14 months of chemo/infusions. There are certain things that you learn along the way, that you feel compelled to share with people and “The Black Apron” was a biggie for me.

When you get a mastectomy there are drains that need to be dealt with. These drains have weight to them and with them hanging, there is pulling and they get in the way and it is very unpleasant/painful. The doctor will give you a special sports bra looking contraption with hooks to hang the drains from and it will do the job. Lots of people suggested sweatshirts with pockets, specifically zip up hoodies, because you can’t lift your arms over your head. These zip up hoodies have almost inner pockets that are a result of how they are put together and these kind of worked.

One day I was looking for something and found an old black waitress apron from my bartender/waitress days and it had two pockets. I thought maybe if I wore that and put the drains in the pockets of the apron it might be more comfortable. It was life-changing. It was very inconspicuous and slimming and laid perfectly for the drains to reach. If I wore a long shirt over it you couldn’t even tell I had drains at all. In addition, I didn’t look huge from them swinging in front. But the most important thing, is the pain and unpleasantness was diminished so much. Not gone of course, but so much better.

The day I walked into the plastic surgeons office for a check up, he was instantly confused. Why did I look like my drains were gone? He loved the idea of the apron and said that he would recommend it to all of his patients. I am not the first person to come up with this, I have heard other people talk of it since, but it is my go-to gift when I hear someone has to have a mastectomy. I found this one Amazon from Boharers and it is very inexpensive.

If there is one thing I have learned is, it is that we are all in this together and we need to share our knowledge.

If your path demands you to walk through Hell, walk as if you own the place.


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