Voices of FORCE

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Tammy L., Boston, MA

Quick Info About Me

  Voices of Force

Age: 46

I'm more than my risk… some fun facts about myself:

Favorite book / authors:
Anne Rice books-Patricai Cronwell, love a good murder mystery or something that takes me away from reality for a while

Favorite TV / Movies:
That 70's Show, that was so my life in the 70's!

Favorite Quote:
"Life is too short to waste-enjoy every single moment of it" "Pixie Dust & Dreams" (silly I know but it takes me away to where the magic is and my problems aren't)

Favorite Song:
Hard to pick just one song-So many I love and I love to sing, used to sing in a Barbershop Chorus and my DH & sued to sing karaoke-lots of fun!

Favorite Superhero:
All my sisters who have ever had to fight the beast!

Other favorites?
Tinkerbell (my fav. place is Disney World-it's where I met one of my sisters and 2 brothers for the first time!)
Person: my Husband Paul
Sheryl Crow, she sings what’s in my heart is a wonderful person and has met the "Beast" and was not afraid to talk about it to everyone.

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My journey

Found out about BRCA2+ status less than 6 months ago. Tested because previous Breast Cancer (self), grandmother (paternal) died at 48 ovarian cancer, father died in 60's of pancreatic cancer, uncle Prostrate Cancer (deceased), Aunts with BC (deceased) all on fathers side- was unaware of this history until a few years ago as I never knew my birth father and found my siblings only 7 years ago. I have had breast cancer. I am managing my risk with increased surveillance. Will have Ooph surgery soon-waiting on date now. Had Tram reconstruction (lft breast) 9 years ago due to Breast Cancer and MRM.

And my journey continues – 2 of my daughters have now tested, one positive and one negative for the gene mutation. My oldest tested positive and is currently going through the healing & reconstruction stage of having a dbl. mast. Also my niece just recently tested positive.

The hardest part of my journey

Thinking after almost 10 years being cancer free I was going to be alright... and like a bad habit it all comes back to roost-seems like starting all over again...

If I could do it over again

Asked my oncologist about this test a lot sooner and pushed to have my ovaries removed sooner.

My participation with FORCE

FORCE has been an incredible asset for me, just knowing I am not alone dealing with this makes it much more manageable.

Other thoughts

I am a mom of 4 girls, 28, 25. 24 and 17 and grandmother of 9! (At 46 years old-not too bad-lol) 8 Boys and 1 girl (almost a baseball team-lol) I'm a 10 year BC survivor, soon after my DX I was a volunteer Chat and Board moderator for AOL breast cancer areas and did this until AOL decided they no longer needed us (oh well). 7 years ago I found my siblings, I never knew my father and often through the years searched for him and other family-my BC actually was the final push for me to find them and know more about my own history. Though my father died several years before I found my siblings it was one of the most wonderful and fulfilling experience I had ever had, thankfully my siblings welcomed me openly. I am a graphic designer and have designed several items that were BC related. I feel very lucky to have an extremely supportive and loving husband as well as family. I am kind of a laid back quiet person but can talk quite a bit (as you can see-lol) and am always willing to listen and give support to anyone in need. Sadly I have a laundry list of other medical issues that keep me at the Dr's but I am not the type to give up or give in. Mostly I want people to know I am here for them-my shoulders are wide and patience is long (well at least until the Ooph-not sure how I will be when in menopause....ugh)

I'm afraid of Clowns! LOL But really I am who I am and take people as they are. I am open and not afraid to answer questions, I often joke about how my stomach is up where my breast used to be and have been know to show someone when they didn’t believe me! I believe life is too short to worry or fight about the little things.

FORCE:Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered