Voices of FORCE

There are so many stories on FORCE and so many members willing to share their experiences. We hope these profiles can help you connect with our community and get advice from people like you!

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Maria, Melbourne Beach, Florida

Quick Info About Me

  Voices of Force

Age: 47

Stage 1 IDC in 2009, lumpectomy, chemo, radiation. Aunt diagnosed with stage 4 Ovarian 2012, tested pos for BRCA2 Nov 2013. Surgeries scheduled 2014

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

Favorite book / authors:
Steig Larsson, any mysteries

Favorite TV / Movies:
Dexter, The Killing; Hunger Games

Favorite Song:
Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day

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My journey

Hoped my journey with cancer was over after treatment in 2009. Tumor was triple negative so no follow up meds (tamoxifen, etc). No history of breast or ovarian cancer in my direct family until my Aunt was diagnosed with Ovarian and she came up pos for BRCA2 mutation. Rest of my family is resistant to getting tested-I have several female first cousins and a brother with a daughter.
I scheduled surgery to remove ovaries and uterus for early 2014 but am struggling with the decision to have a double mastectomy. Not sure why, I think it may be related to my family thinking I am overreacting. My oncologist is being very persuasive, however, and I am likely going to schedule for summer 2014. I am nervous about the possibility of multiple surgeries but have a very supportive husband and parents who will be supportive.

If I could do it over again

Get genetic testing earlier, should probably have had the mastectomy instead of lumpectomy in 2009. No one recommended testing since I didn't have a family history and didn't have any children.

My participation with FORCE

Reading other women's stories has already helped me find peace with my decisions regarding surgery.

FORCE:Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered