Fearless After Fifty: The Importance Of Breasts

By Maria Grazia Swan –

“A college degree stops being important once you have one,” said my friend Claudia. Made sense to me. I feel the same way about breasts. Let me explain. Most of my life I looked like a boy. I wasn’t thrilled about it. I mean, the big screen stars in Italy were Gina and Sophia. They didn’t look like boys. After giving birth and breastfeeding my kids, not much changed, and that was good because I liked to run and I could get away without wearing a bra like most of my girlfriends did. At some point, Jane Fonda got breast implants. I took it personally. What a disappointment. After my divorce, I discovered padded bras. Years went by.

Breast cancer became a front-page issue. I felt blessed not to have sizeable breasts. My reasoning was no breast, no cancer, right? Wrong. Through the years I watched friends going through surgery, radiation, chemo and mastectomy. I was in awe of how calmly and without resentment they went on with their lives. How did they do it? How could they smile with this Sword of Damocles forever shadowing them?

The answer was acceptance. As a rule, I don’t talk about cancer, mine or others’. I felt the need to write this column because of e-mails from readers who lost their breast to cancer. They wrote with aesthetic questions. I can only offer emotional support, as I’m not an expert in breast reconstruction. Each of us responds differently to the same problem. Not because we are better or worse, simply because we are unique individuals and like my friend Claudia said, the only time something doesn’t matter is when we have it. I wish I could offer more than mere words dear readers. Words are all I have. From my heart to yours.


Local author and realtor Maria Grazia Swan decided a long time ago that aging gracefully wasn’t her thing. She is open to new experiences and products touching all aspects of life, from body to soul, from head to toes. She’s also happy to share her successes and mistakes with anyone asking. For more information, visit mariagrazia.tv or email her at mariagswan@gmail.com.

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