Tammi – Texas

This year, we will begin featuring stories from our collection as our monthly Faces of Hope. These stories show the common experience shared by people facing cancer, but they also illustrate the highly personal nature of storytelling, reflecting the unique thoughts, feelings, and language of their authors. By sharing these stories here, we hope their words will be an additional source of strength for our scarf recipients, help friends and supporters better understand what it’s like to hear, “you have cancer,” and be a source of inspiration for all who read them.

If you would like to see your story featured as a Face of Hope, please submit it here.

Tammi – Texas

Tammi was diagnosed with Cervical Cancer at age 39, and even though her story was recently submitted it has already been attached to 6 scarves. Thank you for sharing your story, strength, and hope with others, Tammi!

Tell us a little about your diagnosis and what brought you hope during your treatment.

On February 26th 2019, I was given a diagnosis of endometrial adenocarcinoma. When I applied for Medicaid, they told me I did not have the right type of cancer to get the Medicaid (there is a breast and cervical cancer Medicaid.) I applied for Social  Security hoping and praying to get approved for the medical part most importantly. Then in June, I started having so much pain, I was going to the emergency room every four to seven days for pain medication refills basically and they would treat the immediate pain. Then in September, I decided to drive two hours to MD Anderson in Houston, Texas. I went to their emergency room and they were so quick and kind hearted. I was – and still am- amazed at everyone’s level of care that they showed to me. They admitted me to get my pain under control, and they finally did the cervical biopsy that I needed so badly. They also did a CT scan, MRI, pet scan, blood work, and they found that I have a pelvic mass. They called it “malignant neoplasm of cervix uteri” … so I asked what my primary cancer is since I have endometrial cancer, they said I have Stage 3B cervical cancer. Also the mass has grown to block my urethra, so I had get a nephrostomy tube inserted in my right kidney. That is where things stand right now. I do have a few people helping me at this point, so I kind of see a light at the end of this tunnel.

What was the hardest part?

I have found it difficult feeling the frustration of just knowing I have cancer and it seems like no one wants to help. I’m still struggling and fighting to get insurance.

Please share any thoughts or words of encouragement for another woman going through treatment.

I know how it feels to sit alone in silence with the thought that most of us facing cancer may have: “Am I going to die or am I going to beat this?” It’s hard, but cry when you need to, yell when you need to and don’t be afraid to talk about what you are feeling. It’s ok to be scared, but never give up! You have to fight for yourself you have to fight for the people who love you! You can do this.

Passing of time… the days to come

The dawn of this new day also brings the start of a new year & a new decade.  What a brilliantly new wide open beginning.  The possibility, the potential…

The Fear.

One of the first things that came to mind for me as my eyes opened to the newness … will this be the year I get sick?   Will this be the decade that I die?  Statistically speaking, probably.  Yet, that’s no way to “fresh start.”

I shake off the worries and take a deep breath.

When you live with unknown of stage 4 cancer wide open possibilities are tinged with fear.   Dreaming of the future is hard… our oldest son graduates from high school in just three years… will I be there?  New Year’s resolution- Be healthy… Don’t die.   What new talent would you like to learn?  Ukulele – seems manageable given my time constraints. Only 15 more years until retirement dreams are realized … should I even consider this as a possibility?  Lighthearted New Years conversations – daggers in my heart.

And, my biggest heartbreak… the reality that as time slips away so does this chapter of good health, adventure & laughter.   This past decade was a warp speed roller coaster.  Some days seemed to last forever (like those spent waiting for doctor appointments).  Despite the pain we laughed and traveled and loved. Years slipped by in the blink of an eye.  Our little boys grew taller than me.  “Mama, Mama, Mama”  transformed from an annoyance to an echo I long to hear just once more.

How do we balance the passing of time with the anticipation of what is to come?

We live one breath at a time.

And, we celebrate what is known:

  • We are surrounded by love
  • Each day is a gift
  • Our hope is not contingent
  • Struggle is part of the story
  • We are the authors of our lives… living a great story.

3-2-1 … Jump!

In this new year I am embarking on a new chapter professionally & creatively.

I am jumping into an initiative to expand my writing and connections … My Hopeful Life will soon not only be this blog but also a podcast, speaking events, social media and eventually, a book. Anchored by the short film, The Lara MacGregor story.

I hope to create a safe place for vulnerability & hope.  A place where we can share our stories and find common ground to celebrate all of our Hopeful Lives.



Together we will accept the passing of time with gratitude, live intentionally in each moment and be open to what is to come.

Here goes.

Happy New Year!