Two and Too


At two o’clock today I am getting two silicone implants to replace the two beautiful breasts that I lost two years ago due to the BRCA 2 gene and Stage II breast cancer.
That is a hell of a lot of two’s, II’s and 2’s.

Too many doctor’s offices. Too much blood work. Too many pills – WAY too many pills. Too many families in infusion rooms. Too many gauze pads. Too many hospital gowns. Too much ginger ale. Too many hats and scarves and wigs. Too many tears.

I don’t mean to complain, because today is a really great day. I am thrilled to be getting my two new boobs. I am lucky – very lucky and filled with gratitude to be alive today. But as I write this, I’m overwhelmed by all of the too.

Too many children grow up without parents. Too many people never have the chance to become a parent. Too many people have been complacent for far too long. Too many of us are dealing with cancer – 28 million to be exact. Let’s do something about that – together.

Below are some pictures from my cancer experience:

A day of chemo


Photos by Liz Kreutz


  1. Karen Ogg says:

    Good luck for today and here’s to many happy years in front of you

  2. David P. says:

    Nicely put. Simple, but so correct and to the point. You are outstanding though, as all 28 million of us are. Keep it up… do what you can to make a difference, and know there are those of us who you don’t know who also hope and wish for you.

  3. Brian Curran says:

    good luck! i have family members going through the same thing. keep pushing forward!!!!!

  4. ellen says:

    You are too beautiful!

  5. Ralph says:

    Hope all goes well today. You are an inspiration to all!!!!!!! Keep up the fight, LiveSTRONG

  6. Laz says:

    Best wishes for a long and very happy life. You’re beautiful.

  7. Erik says:

    Great story, but I still love the flaming orange wig!

  8. Carol says:

    You are TOO amazing. Good luck today.

  9. Anna says:

    Thanks for sharing your story. Best of luck today and always!

  10. Nico Kuipers says:

    Amazing story, and very well put: it brings tears to my eyes.. Thank you. Good luck today: it is a mayor landmark! Live life to the fullest!

  11. Dean says:

    U Rock……

  12. You are an inspiration, Renee. So glad you shared today.

  13. Katherine McLane says:

    Full circle, kiddo. You’re a brave girl. Good luck today!! xoxoxo

  14. Bailey says:

    We love you, Renee!!

  15. Chad Blessing says:

    Good luck, Renee. I had a great time working with you for a short period of time…. I wish you the very best.

  16. Linsey B says:

    Good luck today, Renee! I think this warrants a new chalkbot shirt that lists today’s date!

  17. D Reid says:

    I know the feeling you have today. It is a long journey that we travel but today is a new beginning. Congratulations to you on “living strong” and thanks for sharing your story.


  18. Laura says:

    Just had double mastectomy w/ reconstruction 9 days ago… Thankfully, shouldn’t need chemo… You’re an inspiration!! Thank you for sharing your story.

  19. Steve Rea says:

    I’m an ex-Navy Commando and I’m welling up at your amazing story and strength.

    Cancer is a cowardly animal that sneaks up from behind. No one should be scared to face it down, too many have been lost and we need to go get this f@&kin’ thing once and for all.

    Enjoy your 2 new friends!!

  20. Antonia says:

    You are amazing! When I first met you I could not help but notice your sweet smile and that warm glow….all through your cancer experience you never lost that. You embody LIVESTRONG, and know that we are your family and we all love you, no matter what the boob situation might be!! That pic of you and lance is going up in my cube.

  21. Jennifer Jeansonne says:

    Go get ’em Renee!!! You’ll be in our prayers!!! See you in Austin in October!!!!!!!!!
    Keep up the fight with all you determination and drive!
    We love you!

  22. Brandy Davis says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and pictures! What an inspiration you are to so many! Good Luck & keep Living Strong!!

  23. Crystal Dean says:

    Good luck Renee! I am scheduled for my exchange on September 16th. Keep Living strong!

  24. Joyce Faughnan says:

    You said everything I want to say but could not communicate. You said it so well. You will be in my thoughts today and hope to hear about you during recovery. Bless you.

  25. Rene Max Baez says:

    Keep up the fight.

  26. Shirley says:

    We will be praying for your speedy recovery.

  27. Sharon Salonen says:

    I am right there with you. I will be starting the reconstructive process in a few months ? finishing up chemo and radiation 5 years ago ? I’m excited but also very nervous. Thanks for sharing your story. Good luck and good health!

  28. Rob says:

    I think you are too cool! Good luck today! Blessings too you!

  29. Mary Kay says:

    Bless your heart. here’s wishing all the best TO you and for you.

  30. Bill Harris says:

    Here’s to wishing you a long, happy and healthy life.

  31. I also am BRAC II, as is my mother. She had breast cancer at age 40, I had it at age 42,stage III. She is currently being treated with chemo at age 70 for pre-lukemia, a blood disorder.
    I had a double mastectomy, 6 months of dreadful chemo, 35 radiation treatments, complete historectomy, and have had 2 implants.
    My husband of 25 years(our anniversary is Aug.3) was diagnosed at age 39(8 years ago this month) with a RARE cancer called Pmp, cancer of the appendix. He has had 12 major surgeries, spent lots of time in the hospital, has 2 colostomies, 2 fistulas that drain constantly. We have 3 children. Life is certainly interesting, and we live each day to its fullest. God bless you on your journey.

  32. Michael Cavinta says:

    I admire you deeply for your will and courage. You inspire me very much. Great post! God Bless.

  33. Chris Hornbeek says:

    Good luck today! See you in October.

  34. Ellie Green says:

    Renee – good luck to you sweetie. I had DCIS and my one breast needed to be removed and I also have an impant. I had Zero stage so I did not need the chemo, radiation or tamaxofin. I told my breast Cancer doctor that if the other has to go, then I wanted 36’s or 38’s. We laughed because I am 61 and 4 ft. 9 inches. The doctor asked me if I was going to poll dance. So far 3 years have been fine with my mammograms so I wish you nothing but the best doll My prayers are with you. Ellie Green from New Castle, Delaware.

  35. Toni King says:

    Good luck to you…working in the operating room I see this type of surgery a lot…9 years ago I also dealt with the chemo and radiation treatments. I wish you the best.

  36. Kelly says:

    Rock on Rene!!! You are a totally awesome kickass cancer survivor – as am I! Just a little over 3 yrs ago I was diagnosed with Stage II triple negative breast cancer. I had chemo, a total of 4 surgeries & radiation. Today is truly a celebration as you will absolutely low your new girls! :) And never having to wear a bra is a really nice added bonus – as my mom jokes, we outta get something for all of this! Haha.. Yes, every day is a true blesssing and as I’m sure you’ve found, the person you become after going through all of this will blow your mind! God Bless & keep on smiling my fellow survivor!

  37. Wishing you all the best!
    We were less lucky – my wife’s Stage2 returned as Stage4, but she fights on, helped by inspiring stories such as yours!

  38. Brienne Fisher says:

    Renee, you’re such an inspiration – that photo of you and Lance is precious and I wish you a very speedy recovery from this final leg in your journey. A toast to your new ta tas!! Cheers!

  39. nige marsh says:

    u are two beautifull – on the inside as well as the outside. God bless u renne. x

  40. Nathalie Maskrey says:

    I just read your post for the first time… my aunt went through the same thing 2 years ago, it is hell on earth for you guys!
    I broke my neck this winter and with all my surgeries and all, I still think it’s nothing compare to what you have had to go through.
    Congratulations on today’s surgery, enjoy the new boobies and life free of scarfs and all…
    Stay strong !!!

  41. Julie Mueller says:

    Renee – Thanks for sharing something so personal. Your journey has touched and inspired many people. I wish you the best of luck and much happiness with your two new friends. :)

  42. Renee
    It’s 8.00pm here in Ireland [it’s 2.00pm in Austin] so I guess you are, just now, embarking on the latest ‘adventure’.

    GOOD LUCK & BEST WISHES from Ireland :-)

    (TC Survivor)

  43. Terri D says:

    Renee, I’ve been there, done that. Lost only 1 breast to cancer in Dec 2005 at age 38. I just had reconstructive surgery this year (2010) and am quite happy with the results, although it was a long 6 month process! But then, it beat 18 months of cancer treatment.

    I just wanted to say – you go, girl!! You can do it “too” ! Best wishes for a fantastic result, quick recovery, and the new you =)


  44. Yvonne B says:

    Good luck with your new cupcakes. I have been through breast cancer three times over the last four years and have undergone bilateral implants after bilateral mastectomies. Livestrong and enjoy life. Be proud of your new breasts. You’ve earned them. We are sisters tied by a pink ribbon.

  45. Pauline T says:

    Inspirational story Renee….with tears in my eyes you give us all strength….half way through healing after surgery and awaiting radiation therapy DCIS age 48….my mom had a total mastectomy at age 68 and is still going strong at 82yrs (no chemo or radiation, her decision), my Dad passed away two weeks after her surgery, he was so afraid he was going to lose her that he didn’t let anyone know his cancer had metastasized (lung)and he was also being treated for prostate cancer….My brother passed away the same week I found out I had breast cancer….God works in mysterious ways….God Bless….long and wonderful life to you :)

  46. Amy @ RadioShacl says:

    Thinking of you all day today Renee! Can’t wait to hear the continuation of your story and journey.

  47. Jack Gray says:

    Renee: Congratlations! I’m so proud of you and happy for you. The fact that you are so open and honest about your experiences are exactly why LiveStong is such a great foundation and does so many wonderful things. Your honesty will insspire and empower others to follow in your footsteps. God Bless You. See you soon. LiveStrong!

  48. As you Rennee, I am a survivor of breast cancer, yasterday I had one year since my mastectomy of my right breast.
    I see your pics and I did too a history of this, to show women that the cancer when is detected earlier… is posible to live longer!
    Receive a hug and blesses!!!!!
    Lorena Balarezo from La Paz B,C,S, Mexico

  49. JZ says:

    28 million reasons to LIVESTRONG! I lost an aunt two days ago to breast cancer…all the best to you for a long, full happy & healthly life – thanks for sharing…it means a lot to so many!

  50. Kelly Lathrop says:

    Thinking of you today and always Renee.

  51. Linda Santos says:

    Dear Renee,
    You’ve been in my thoughts all day-so thankful this
    day has come. Thank you SO for sharing your story, like Lance shared his. We’ve learned to lift each
    other in the dark times and celebrate sweet moments. LIVESTRONG and fight on together!
    The pic of you and Lance brought tears-honored to
    know you, Renee. Hugs and cheers to you,

  52. Irina says:

    Thanks for sharing! God bless you and your life!

  53. Don Pomeroy says:

    Renee — Hope you are doing well after the procedure yesterday! In Charlotte, NC, we start the 24 Hours of Booty cycling ride tonight to raise money for LAF and local cancer-fighting organizations ($1 million+). I ride for YOU, my family and friends, and the 28 million tonight and tomorrow. Best wishes to you!! I hope you have a restful weekend.

  54. Renee says:

    Renee Rocks! R squared. What I really admire about you is you know how to suck it up, your steadfast, and when the going gets tough you step up and find a way to win. Very cool!

  55. Greg Renstrom says:

    Sorry renee did not have my coffe yet! I wanted to acknowledge and appreciate your comback!

  56. Jere Carpentier says:

    Renee, you have grown so much through this experience and what you have to offer others is as beautiful as you are. We tend to lose our modesty during cancer, but it is sharing those vulnerable moments that becomes the most powerful in helping others share their story also. Our stories, who we are and how we survive, are important tools in making cancer go away and helping others survive. What a club we belong to. I know the “price of admission” is not one anyone wants to pay or should ever have to pay, but once we are in…amongst us are the HEro’s and “SHEro’s” in this disease we are working together to end.

    Go Renee (Cougar) Go and keep LIVINGSTRONG!!!
    Jere Carpentier

  57. Marsi White says:

    Awesome and thanks for sharing! I am about to have my second mastectomy and start the reconstruction process. It has been a long road since my stage three diagnosis–so the pictures look all too familiar! Anyway, wishing you warm wishes and a speedy recovery!

  58. Anji Moore says:


    Your support has meant so much to me through my journey with breast cancer. I am so thankful for Brooke for introducing us..although we have never met officially!! I am doing well and have had my implants for almost one year. They are great!! No, not the same, but firm!!

    You are awesome!!! This recovery is Noth’n compared to everything else!!


    Anji Moore from Houston

  59. Sherry Moyes from Salt Lake says:

    Dear Renee-
    Happened upon your story just now and inspired and moved by you. We follow TDF every year and watching Lance ride for all of us always brings cheers and tears. What a happy moment that must have been for you on the Champs this year!! Thank you for shining your own light for all of us who are touched by cancer. Live long and strong:)

  60. Hi,me have 5 year in practice of mountain bike,and
    stay in cooperation (help) with two foundation
    of cancer one from taiwan and one from méxico,when
    livestrong foundation begun,gave thanks a God,yesterday
    in my practice of the mountain bike,has an accident that
    carry me to the hospital, in the way to hospital
    remember not only to God,too a Lance Armstrong,
    i am a Physician in Child, only to see my arm , me
    know that have a broken bone,the friend that carry to
    my house with my wife,question about pain,the true me
    has little bit,because me think that no loose the
    memorie, and not have vomit,remember that when arrive to the hospital,did question about orthopedist, and
    the diagnosis was broken bone and need two cloves ,my
    recuperation will be in 6 to 8 weeks,my sons and daugther do the question if will combe back to mountain bike and did mention about the life of
    Lance Armtrong,definitvly wjth more decision and
    motivation will comeback to drive my bike,So Long
    and my motivation to help to child with cancer is best.

  61. Jim and Foncine Wood says:

    Your courage to continue through is so uplifting! I hope you are getting your strength back now. You were such a help to us in Paris and we will never forget you. Hugs and kisses, stay in touch, love, Jim and Foncine

  62. Dear Renee, Bonjour!
    Here is Nicolas from O Chateau, the Wine Tasting Company in Paris.
    Thank you for sharing your story with Internet visitors from all over the world!
    I would appreciate if you could answer back to my email.. God Bless You!

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