In December of 2004 at the age of 28, I felt changes in my right breast. After visiting with my doctor in January 2005, I was advised that I had a cyst that was not cancerous. As the “cyst” continued to grow in size, it also grew to be very painful and I found myself frequently in my doctor’s office questioning the pain, mass, cyst, and discomfort that was becoming more profound. After four months of prescribed testing and reexamining of my right breast, again, I was reassured that I only had a cyst. However, I disagreed with my physician’s diagnosis and requested to have it removed as a precautionary measure to give me a peace of mind and reassurance for my family and future husband, as I became engaged on March 30, 2005.
On July 13, 2005, the surgeon opened my right breast and found three tumors and my lymph nodes under my right arm overflowing with cancer. Two days later the cancer was confirmed by the lab and on July 25th I transferred my services to the City of Hope for treatment. During my consultation with my soon to be Surgeon and Oncologist, I was advised that I didn't just have breast cancer, I had Triple Negative Inflammatory Breast Cancer and my treatment would be very aggressive...
This was the beginning of my journey through cancer.
Today I am a 14-year survivor of Triple Negative Inflammatory Breast Cancer, wife and mother, despite the statistics. Sadly, with my diagnosis I was given less than a five percent chance of surviving two years, and if I survived I would not be able to conceive children. Fortunately, that was not my fate.
Now as a survivor, I am active in the Fight Against Cancer, however my heart goes out to those simply trying to survive the treatment process, let alone the disease. Therefore, I choose to use my skill set to increase funding for those in treatment, advocacy, awareness, and survivor research. I am a founding member of City of Hope’s Patient and Family Advisory Council, National spokesperson for City of Hope, Steering Committee Member for OurHope, RIE participant, City of Hope’s Center of Community Alliance for Research & Education Community Partner and Navigator. I am Certified in Professional Advancement in Philanthropy, and Protecting Human Research Participants. I am a woman of many hats with a heart for those in need.
With a Bachelor of Arts in English, a Master of Science in Leadership and Management, and over 20 years of public speaking, I am on a mission to make a difference for those fighting for their lives. I will work alongside of those in the trenches and I look forward to making what seems impossible, POSSIBLE!