Breast Cancer Survivor Transformed Her Scars Into Beautiful Works Of Art

“I have a secret. Underneath my clothes, hidden away from the world, is a piece of art — and it makes me happy.”

After a mastectomy and reconstruction, Patsy MacDonald wanted to love her body again. She wanted to get to know it in its new form — and she wanted to turn her scars into something pretty.

When Patsy was diagnosed with breast cancer, her surgical oncologist told her that she could get a mastectomy with immediate reconstruction, since there was no cancer present in any lymph nodes.

After the reconstruction, she considered what to do about her new look.

Photo: YouTube/Patsy MacDonald

“I think a lot of women like to get back to as close to what they had before,” Patsy says. “Almost all the women in my group who’ve had reconstruction, they’re getting nipples of some sort done on their breasts. And you know what? Everybody has to make their own choice.”

For Patsy, getting nipples tattooed on just didn’t seem to fit.

Photo: YouTube/Patsy MacDonald

“Your body is forever changed,” she continues. “You’re never gonna look like you did before, so you gotta give that up. And for me, it wasn’t trying to necessarily get back to what I looked like before. It was kinda like, ‘how can I be new, improved, and love me again in all of my new bits and pieces?'”

Photo: YouTube/Patsy MacDonald

Article continues below

Our Featured Programs

See how we’re making a difference for People, Pets, and the Planet and how you can get involved!

While getting nipple tattoos didn’t resonate with her, she’d always liked tattoos. What if she got a beautiful tattoo design over her breasts? She was thrilled by the thought of having a “secret” underneath her clothes, hidden away from the rest of the world.

Patsy wasn’t necessarily trying to cover up her scars, but rather, transform them.

Photo: YouTube/Patsy MacDonald

“I look at them now, and they’re beautiful and they’re joyful. It’s almost like a new beginning. They’re blossoms. You know, it’s life. It makes me happy.”

Watch as Patsy transforms her body into something beautiful; something that better reflects who she is.

Take a look!

Support Research

Fund Diabetes research and care at The Diabetes Site for free!