I stand in front of the mirror.
Wide hips. Defined shoulders. Still-rounded abdomen. Full breasts.
And it all means something different than what it once meant.
For so long, I considered breasts only as decoration, rounding out shirts perfectly, taking the spotlight away from the imperfect parts of my body.
During my school years, they were something to be celebrated, admired, displayed.
And if I'm being honest, I didn't think of them as much more.
When John and I were newly weds, he wrote me love letters rooted in Song of Solomon.
And, thus, breasts became more than just a visually appealing part of my body; they morphed in my mind to something dear, beloved in marriage.
I've nursed two babies.
My breasts have nourished them, sustained them, comforted them and shown them a fullness of love I don't entirely grasp.
They've become more than just accents beneath clothing.
Perhaps this is why I see breast cancer as such an epic assault from an enemy who has had it out for women since the creation of Eve -- because these breasts, my breasts, have become an integral part of me, of who I am as a wife, a mother, a woman.
The enemy sinks his diseased claws into a place within our bodies that is so representative of who we women were created to be with every breast-cancer diagnosis.
Breast cancer is a deeply personal disease -- not because it has affected my family or close circle of friends but because it seeks to destroy us by beginning in the very part of our bodies that connects us to so many roles that only we women can fulfill as wives and mothers.
So I will fight for my breasts -- all of our breasts. I will exercise prevention.
And while the importance of prevention -- being fit, knowing my body, avoiding known toxins, checking my body -- has been etched into my brain by the survivors who have shared stories during Write Pink!, the importance of praying for our women who are being attacked has come front and center in my mind.
The survivors have shown me that breast cancer is a wild, somewhat-unpredictable beast that doesn't always follow the rules even when you play by the rules.
We're not just battling genetics or unhealthy diet or sedentary lifestyles; we're battling an enemy who knows how to hit us where it really hurts -- in the deep, life-nourishing tissues of our womanhood, located conveniently adjacent to the heart.
It's my deep desire that every time I put a prevention piece into motion, I'll consciously be reminded to pray for a world with more survivors.
Because this battle requires more than the discipline of prevention habits; it requires the endurance of a praying heart intent on defeating an enemy greater than breast cancer.
Link your Bigger Picture Moment about breast cancer survival at Sarah's and you'll automatically be entered to win $50 to The Vintage Pearl!
I would also like to extend a HUGE thank you to the Write Pink guest writers and sponsors. Will you remember the sponsors during your holiday shopping as great businesses whose owners care deeply about supporting women in their health? I know I always like to support socially-aware businesses, many of which happen to be owned by talented, supportive women.