Let’s Reduce Breast Cancer Risk Together! #BCERP #Ad

    Those of you who have been following Tough Cookie Mommy for a while know that cancer advocacy is a cause that I am deeply committed to. As a Leukemia Survivor, I know all too well the importance of being proactive about my health and the medical care that I receive. Additionally, I also educate myself on the foods that I eat as well as what I expose my body to on a daily basis. In my role as a parent, I have also worked hard to impart this awareness on to my children.     Since this month is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, it is fitting that we should discuss how we can attempt to lower the risk of breast cancer by having these important conversations with our daughters, our nieces and the other women in our lives. We all try to help our children grow up healthy. But the environment around a young girl may change the way her body develops.    It is too soon to say for sure that avoiding certain chemicals or foods lowers the risk of breast cancer. Still, to help protect our … [Read more...]

Take A Stand Against Domestic Violence! #HopeLine @Verizon @SheSpeaksUp #Giveaway #Ad

     October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and it is definitely a cause that I feel very strongly about.  Unfortunately, a friend of mine whom I attended high school with was physically abused by one of her boyfriends.       I can still remember sitting on the floor of the bathroom at school while she confessed to me that some of the bruises she had on her arms and legs had been cause by him.  Honestly, I never imagined that anyone I loved would be treated this way and I was at a loss as to how to get her help.  One thing I did know is that I had to get her away from him.     Fortunately, my friend had a great support system and was able to remove herself from an abusive and dangerous relationship.  Sadly, not all women who find themselves in this situation are so lucky.     This is why it is so important to keep the dialogue going about domestic violence.  It  is a national problem that … [Read more...]

September Is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month! #beBRCAware @beBRCAware @SheSpeaksUp #Ad

    The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 21,000 new cases of ovarian cancer will be diagnosed in the Unites States in 2015, and that a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer is 1 in 73.  Those are sobering statistics and they highlight the importance of being your own best advocate when it comes to your health.  BRCA status in ovarian cancer affects treatment outcomes, and there are treatment options available specifically for women with BRCA mutations.     This month, we are hoping to raise awareness about ovarian cancer by having conversations with our friends and family members about the importance of BRCA testing and to dispel the misperceptions around it.  There are a number of myths floating around about BRCA testing, such as the misconception that only those with a family history of breast or ovarian cancer or who are diagnosed at a young age should be tested. But, family history and age are poor predictors of BRCA … [Read more...]

What You Need To Know About BRCA And Ovarian Cancer #beBRCAware @beBRCAware @SheSpeaksUp #Ad

    As many of you know, I have been a Leukemia Survivor for the past almost eight years.  Throughout this time, one of the things that I have maintained as a Survivor is the importance of advocating for your health and of early detection when it comes to cancer.      In today's modern medical times, getting treatment early on, and taking advantage of modern detection and treatment options, can mean the difference between life and death.  When faced with such a serious health crisis, it is normal to be afraid and to break down but, after that, you have to move forward and fight the good fight.     Many of you are probably not aware of the fact that there is a test you can take that can identify whether you are at a higher risk for a gene mutation that is commonly associated with breast and ovarian cancer.  Being armed with knowledge about your BRCA status can assist you in making important decisions about cancer treatments that are currently available.What is a BRCA gene?     In … [Read more...]

Start The Conversation About HIV/AIDS With Friends And Family! #OneConversation @TalkHIV #Ad

    How has HIV or AIDS affected your life?  Unfortunately, chances are that you know someone, or are related to someone, who is HIV positive.  Since there is still a huge stigma around the disease, most people choose not to talk about it.  As a result, they forego having important conversations with their friends and family about how they can protect themselves or what the facts are around how one can contract it.     Our own family has been directly affected by HIV because both my husband and I have cousins who are HIV positive.  I was 13 years old when I found out my older male cousin had HIV.  I can still remember how it was something that was discussed only in whispers and that the entire family went to great lengths to keep a secret from outsiders.  These were just not topics that were openly talked about in the Latino community.     Honestly, I didn't know much about HIV back then and, every time I asked an adult in the family about it, they shushed me and changed the subject. … [Read more...]

Break The Cycle Of Violence-One Family At A Time! #PurplePurse @Allstate #Ad

*This sponsored post was written by me in collaboration with Latina Bloggers Connect and The Allstate Foundation®. All opinions are 100% mine.       Many years ago, when I was in high school, I had a friend who was being abused by her boyfriend.  It was a very scary time for me because it was the first time that one of my friends approached me about domestic violence.  She would often have bruises and marks on her skin and I can remember sitting with her in the bathroom at school holding her while she cried and wondered what she should do.     I tried everything to get her to leave this guy but it became a vicious cycle where he would apologize and be loving for some time which would convince her that he was really going to change.  Eventually, she became strong enough to break away from him and she used her newfound independence to help her heal from the years of abuse that were inflicted upon her.     An unfortunate reality is that domestic violence affects one in four women … [Read more...]

Support The Creative Cups™ Project To Raise Breast Cancer Awareness! @AdelphiU #Sponsored

*I wrote this post as part of my participation in a blog tour on behalf of TapInfluence and Adelphi University and received compensation to thank me for taking the time to participate. However, all opinions expressed are my own.    As a Survivor, cancer awareness is a cause that is extremely personal to me and close to my heart. I'm a seven-year Leukemia Survivor and my family and loved ones have also been affected by other kinds of cancer. My great-grandmother died from Breast Cancer and I actually had my own mammogram scare last year when I was asked to return for further testing because they saw something on my images. One of the things that most people will tell you is that receiving a cancer diagnosis can be devastating and extremely lonely. At that moment, you feel like you don't have anyone to talk to or who understands what you are going through.    I was very excited to find out that Adelphi University is home to the NYS Breast Cancer Hotline. They realized that … [Read more...]

Pass The Purple Purse To Raise Money For Domestic Violence Victims! #PurplePurse #Sponsored

*This sponsored post was written by me in collaboration with Latina Bloggers Connect and The Allstate Foundation.  All opinions are 100% mine.    Many people are unaware that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  Unfortunately, many of us have been affected personally by domestic violence, myself included.  Back in high school, I had a good friend who was being abused by her boyfriend and I recall how frustrated I felt and how worried I was for her welfare.  I just couldn't understand how she could continue to stay with someone who was treating her this way and I didn't know how I could help her. WHEN IS IT TIME TO GET HELP?     The scariest moment for me was when her boyfriend beat her in the car with his friends present and then kicked her out of the car.  As she recounted the story to me and I gazed upon her badly bruised face, I knew that I had to do something to help her because I was afraid that he was going to kill her.  I was able to get help from teachers whom … [Read more...]