In a heartfelt op-ed published this evening in the New York Times, Angelina Jolie writes of her decision to undergo a preventive double mastectomy.

Cancer killed the director/actress's mother at 56 after a 10-year long battle with the disease. Although only a small percentage of breast cancers are from a hereditary gene mutation, Angelia Jolie carries mutation BRCA1 which increases her risk of cancer to 87 percent.

The double mastectomy took three rounds of surgery, the last of which was a reconstruction of her breasts on April 27th.

Jolie writes of partner Brad Pitt, "I am fortunate to have a partner, Brad Pitt, who is so loving and supportive. So to anyone who has a wife or girlfriend going through this, know that you are a very important part of the transition."