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My WHY is HOPE

Taminator Harrison

Taminator Harrison

When I was 26, after my third miscarriage, I was undergoing a series of tests which included an ultrasound. This ultrasound, along with a myriad of other tests, brought forth a discovery that would change my life forever.

I was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer.

Since early childhood, there were two things I’ve always aspired to be. To be a mermaid - we all know that is still an unrequited dream… and to be a mom. Every failed pregnancy chipped away at my being, at my soul. Now cancer?

While tending to more emotional chaos than I thought I could manage, I soon began treatments. It was probably one of the biggest times in my life that I cannot ever verbalize. I still find it difficult to tell my own story today.

After more than a year, surgery and having the cancer and ovary removed, I announced my official remission when I was 28. I learned through that time, so much about myself and who I wanted to be and that a second chance at life wasn’t going to be in vain.

Six months later, while moving on with my life, fighting for the cure and fighting to find myself anew, I discovered I was pregnant. Evidently, the one remaining ovary that I had was fighting too. Hard.

This one was different. From day one this pregnancy felt so much different that there was a will inside of me that insisted that I was going to carry this baby full term. I sought advice from my gynecological oncologist and the rest of my team and we were given the thumbs up to at least try. To hold onto hope. HOPE is all that I had left.

After a good, long fight, some bed rest and lots of care, on February 2nd, 2001, my son Gabriel was born. Healthy.

Call it what you wish, a miracle, luck, fate…

I call it HOPE.

As years went by, cancer loomed. I ended up requiring a complete Salpingectomy, (removal of the fallopian tubes) and eventually, a full Hysterectomy (removal of my uterus and cervix).

There will be no more pregnancies for me. But I still have HOPE.

This year, my son turned seventeen. He's my Superhero. In all of my sons seventeen years and in all of the rest of my own years, I will fight. I will fight for hope. I will spread the word about who the VCU Massey Cancer Center is, what they do, who they do it for and why.

My son is why.

Help me and my team, Superheroes for HOPE, put cancer on the run on April 14th in our annual fight to raise funds for the VCU Massey Cancer Center. Help us keep hope alive that there will someday be a life without treatments, because there MUST be a world without cancer.

Help me to help us HOPE.

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