#WorldTeacherDay: A Teacher’s Journey through DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction
Today is #WorldTeacherDay. This quote is taken from one website explaining the purpose behind this day.
The United Nations’ (UN) World Teachers’ Day celebrates the role teachers play in providing quality education at all levels. This enables children and adults of all ages to learn to take part in and contribute to their local community and global society.
That is why I signed up for this profession. I was certain my years in the classroom would continue after I completed my M.Ed. by mentoring new teachers into this vocation. I wanted classrooms to be filled with passionate, well-trained educators providing quality education.
A second breast cancer occurrence in 2014 changed my course a bit. I began a Journey through DIEP flap breast reconstruction. I put my education on hold after a double mastectomy and breast reconstruction seven months later. Little did I know the Journey would continue.
I knew today was #WorldTeacherDay. I knew I would be writing a blog. I read a passage in a publication from the Fall 2017 edition of Plastic Surgery News (PSN) magazine. It was dedicated to breast reconstruction. I was asked to write an article for this edition. What I didn’t know was that my own plastic surgeon would be featured in an article just two pages before my article.
I read it with a full heart. He talked about the difficulties and joys of being a breast reconstruction surgeon. He spoke about the positive impact breast reconstruction has on the women who choose to have it after mastectomy from breast cancer. This part of the article truly gave me pause as he explained why he performs breast reconstruction:
Discussing potential results and showing patients their possible outcomes can be a huge help and often provided much-needed hope. I love seeing how far breast reconstruction has come and the results we can achieve. Much more importantly, I love seeing what it means to them. That’s what makes everything worthwhile. Seeing patients complete their journey is wonderful. Reaching the end of something is often a sad event but in this case, it’s very positive. It signifies moving on. ~ Dr. Minas Chrysopoulo
I realized after reading this part of Dr. Chrysopoulo’s article, I never completed my Journey. My wonderful Journey only began when my DIEP flap breast reconstruction was completed. The gifted hands of this microsurgeon inspired me to become an advocate to educate others about what positive impact plastic surgery can have after mastectomy from breast reconstruction.
I chose teaching as a profession. I stepped out of the classroom and into the world of patient advocacy because this compassionate man chose the profession of microsurgery and breast reconstruction. I continue to educate because Dr. C, as his patients call him, chose a profession with no less passion than an educator. In fact, I stand on the shoulders of this gentleman who so willing gives his extra time to educate others about the advances and benefits of breast reconstruction to the breast cancer community.
My Journey continues. I honor all educators on this #WorldTeacherDay. No matter what form of education you are sharing with others, you are empowering them with a gift that cannot be taken away.
Thank you Dr. Minas Chrysopoulo for your passion in educating others about breast reconstruction options. You did not see this teacher complete her Journey. What you did is begin a new Journey for me after my DIEP flap breast reconstruction.