It was a year ago that our corporate sponsor, White House | Black Market, partnered with us for a call-out to honor and highlight 25 inspiring women who are living beyond breast cancer. All 25 women were dolled up for an expense-paid photo shoot and then featured in White House | Black Market’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month catalog.
Wonder how the experience changed the women over the last year? Let’s hear Charron Walker’s story:
I became familiar with Living Beyond Breast Cancer several years ago. I went to a conference they sponsored for young women affected by breast cancer (C4YW). It was a life-changing event. I was able to connect with other young women like me – women with the same struggles, the same fears and the same fight. LBBC had also contacted me in 2009 to participate on the Consumer Advisory Committee for their brochure: Guide to Understanding Insomnia and Fatigue. I was honored to be chosen and to give my input to help others.
Last May, I received an email from LBBC about an opportunity to participate in a photo shoot for White House | Black Market’s 25th anniversary. WHBM was celebrating 25 unique women who are living beyond breast cancer. I decided to send my photograph and my story. I remember sitting at my computer when I got the call that I was chosen as one of the 25 women. I was at a lost for words. I began to cry tears of joy and disbelief. I could not believe I was selected. I was so thankful for an opportunity to be the face of someone who conquered this disease.
I never thought that by attending a conference several years ago with LBBC that I would build a solid relationship with an organization that has lasted so many years. I have been able to help women through LBBC that I probably would have never gotten the chance to meet face to face. The chance to be an LBBC Ambassador in the Elle and Self Magazine spread, as well as White House | Black Market’s October Breast Cancer Awareness Month catalog was beyond my expectations. I’m still in awe!
My family and friends were very excited for me. One of my friends at the time, Melissa accompanied me to the WHBM store to get my outfit for the CBS Early Show and another friend, Kim, went with me to the photo shoot. My Pastor, Reverend Steve, called me up to the front of the church the Sunday before the shoot and announced to the congregation that I was modeling now and that I would be featured in two magazines. It was an opportunity of a lifetime. I got so much support from everyone.
The whole experience has made me a better person. I don’t have to look at my scars and feel uncomfortable about my body anymore. My self-esteem has grown by leaps and bounds. I still stare at the pictures that were taken of me with amazement. I have learned from this experience that it does not matter who you are or what you’ve been through, you are beautiful in spite of your circumstances. Beauty comes from within and compliments who you are on the outside. It has also given a boost to my “I can do anything if I put my mind to it” attitude. The only roadblock is myself and the limitations I set. It has also helped me with my program, Young Survivors Network. I am able to tell breast cancer conquerors that your diagnosis is not a death sentence.
I encourage all of you to speak life and walk in your destiny and healing. With God, all things are possible!
To hear more about Charron’s personal journey with breast cancer, visit our website for her short video on being a breast cancer conqueror!