Welcome to Tammy’s CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement.
I realized that maybe everyone doesn't understand how we got here. In April I went for an annual mammogram and received a call that asked me to come back asap for an MRI. I was a little taken back and didn't even tell Lee but went back the next day for an MRI. The radiologist was very concerned and called my primary Dr and got me an appointment with her that afternoon. She said she was sure I had cancer in my left breast and my lymph node in my underarm was enlarged. I told her I was planning to go on a long weekend trip and she said this can't wait and you need to cancel. At this point, I'm more than freaked out and tell Lee what is going on. We go to the Dr that afternoon and she also reviewed the MRI and referred me to CHI Memorial Mary Ellen Lochner Breast Cancer Center in Chattanooga. On May 9th I have my Biopsy. I asked her whether she thought I had breast cancer and my Dr who is amazing and very direct said Yes and you wouldn't be here if we all didn't think so. She asked me to wait for the results and to stay off the internet until she called me with results and I listened. The amount of data on breast cancer on the internet is insane and if you don't know what you have then well you start creating your own diagnosis. Not good. On May 11th she confirmed I had Invacive ductal carcinoma cancer that was triple negative in both my left breast and my lymph node under my arm. I didn't grasp the meaning of all of this and I'm not sure I still do. The diagnosis of triple negative while not rare is less common, more aggressive and resistant to many breast cancer treatments. They confirmed through the PET scan and the lung biopsy that my cancer has spread through my lymph nodes to my lungs moving me to Stage 4 cancer. Treatable but not curable with limited options due to my triple negative diagnosis. This diagnosis has taken the wind out of my sails and has also given me the strength and courage to fight this every step of the way. I have a great breast cancer and oncology team working with me and we are executing their plan to reduce the tumors and stop further spreading. While some days are harder than other for us just knowing we have an amazing network of family, friends and Dr's cheering, loving and supporting us gives us the strength to power through this.