A Mom’s Story
My mother has always been a source of inspiration for me. Her humble beginnings growing up in rural MS allowed for many an excuse not to succeed. Still she managed to put herself through college, graduating from Mississippi State University, all the while raising a daughter and putting her younger sibling through the same university. Her strength of character and perseverance withstood many an obstacle. However, her struggles were not over. My mother was stricken with breast cancer at the age of 43. I watched with the eyes of a teen, as cancer slowly ate at the great strength, which had endured my mother for her entire life. I recall words such as "mastectomy" and "chemotherapy" being whispered about effortlessly in my home. Eventually my mother received a radical mastectomy for her disease.
To this day, my mother remains cancer free, but although singularly, she only bears the physical scar of the mastectomy. Our entire family continues to manage the emotional scar from the fear, which this disease left within our home. My mother's ordeal propelled me toward a life in medicine, particularly women's health. I believe that the mother is the centerpiece in most American homes. And her physical and emotional health is vital to the state of health of the entire family. Although many conditions in medicine can only be treated after they have developed, I have a particular interest in preventive women's health issues. My mother's strength and courage have motivated me throughout the years and I hope to repay her by providing sound medical care to the lives of women that I provide medical care towards.
By Dr. Taryll Jenkins