Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins opens up about her recent health scare and her perseverance to overcome the challenges she had to face while living with sickle cell anemia. The veteran songbird of the multi-platinum group TLC went through some major obstacles in her life, but miraculously, she is alive today to talk about it.
In an interview with CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, T-Boz recalls a time when doctors told her that her prognosis with sickle cell anemia was grim. “Doctors, they didn’t give me a happy ending,” she says. “You won’t live past 30, you’ll be disabled your whole life. You’ll never have kids. I was looking around the room like, ‘I don’t know who he’s talking to cause that’s not my story.’”
Five years ago, the 41-year-old singer received even more bad news when doctors told her she had a non-cancerous brain tumor. T-Boz was able to find a surgeon who successfully removed the tumor but it has left her with a side effect of having a poor sense of balance. T-Boz is not letting that setback bring her down. She is currently recording a new album of inspirational songs.
In the end, T-Boz relies heavily on her faith and her strength to overcome her fears in life. “At the end of the day, I do think there’s a higher power and the way I feel about things and choose to do things has an effect on that outcome,” she states. “If you want to live, you have to face your fears. I had to learn a lot about myself during the situation with my brain tumor. The hardest thing was waiting to see what kind of brain tumor I had and getting back to where I am today. I’ve been through a lot with sickle-cell, but my recovery from the brain tumor was THE hardest thing. I’m proud of myself for seeing this through and to be here for my daughter. You have to make a commitment to yourself and that was important to me.”