'The Bachelor' alum Lesley Murphy undergoing double mastectomy due to high risk of breast cancer
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/20/2017
The Bachelor alum Lesley Murphy has revealed she will undergo a double mastectomy after discovering she's at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer.
Murphy, who competed on Season 17 of The Bachelor starring Sean Lowe when she worked as a political consultant, explained in a recent Instagram video why she's taking such drastic measures at the young age of 29.
"I've been thinking on what message to put out there about power, courage, and love and then it hit me... #InternationalWomensDay is the perfect time to share what I've been up to the past few weeks. It has nothing to do with exciting new destinations or more stamps in my passport," Murphy captioned the video on March 8.
"A couple of weeks ago I found out I'm BRCA2 positive, which means I'm at a high risk for breast and ovarian cancer one day. Buzzzz kill. I know. But it's true what they say -- knowledge is power."
Murphy wrote that she was left with "a few options" and ultimately decided that "preventative surgery" was the right one for her. On top of going under the knife, she will be screened multiple times a year for cancer.
"A double mastectomy at 2freaking9. Wtf?! Yep, it's happening. In no way am I looking for pity through this story," she continued.
"I've wanted to share the news since the beginning simply to be an advocate for early screenings, detections and girl power. Bear with the choppy edits/audio. Day 2 video is coming (reconstruction/plastics, exciting stuff!) but in the interim, I'll be celebrating boobs, knowledge, taking action, and my breast cancer surviving mother today. PS if you see dirt on my forehead, I shot this on Ash Wednesday."
In the video itself, Murphy sat on a couch and opened up to her fans while wearing comfortable, casual clothes. She also had her hair pulled back in a messy bun.
"My mom had breast cancer three years ago this month and she is a badass," Murphy said in the clip. "And I hope to grow up to be like her. And this is me trying. So I think the right move is just to take care of it right now and do the double mastectomy. I'm 29. It sounds young, but I'm not getting any younger."
The following day, Murphy shared another video of herself wearing an X-Ray apron from inside a hospital.
"Day 2 was filled with plastic surgery discussions plus a mammogram, ultrasound and MRI in order to rule out any existing cancer or other problems before surgery (I'm cancer free!)," Murphy wrote alongside the clip, which features her dancing around the room and playfully modeling her pink apron.
"I haven't spent much time in hospitals, so a long day like this gave me so much appreciation for those who must endure many minutes, hours and days inside their walls. As you can tell, I made it as much 'fun' as I possibly could."
She added, "Also, I can't tell you how much I appreciate everyone's messages on my video from yesterday. It feels SO good to have a support system like y'all, and I love how a platform like @Instagram brings people together who've gone through similar circumstances. You say I'm inspiring, but the stories told in my comment section inspired me just the same and reconfirmed my decision to move forward with everything."
Murphy disclosed her "surgery date" is April 11, and in the meantime, the travel blogger is enjoying an adventure overseas. She spent this past week in Wales, sharing daily photos of her European experience with her Instagram followers.
On Lowe's The Bachelor season in 2013, Murphy, 25-years-old at the time, was eliminated just before hometown dates during the seventh episode because Lowe felt the Washington, D.C. native wasn't opening up fully or fast enough to match where his heart was in the process.