By Clarissa Hickmon, Copyright 2010, All Rights Reserved
Breast Cancer Survivor Story of God's Gift
March of 2009 I was diagnosed with Stage One Breast Cancer. After completing courses on how chemotherapy would affect me, I was devastated to know that about the time I got to my 4 th treatment I would lose all of my hair. I accepted the fact that this was going to happen so I started to think about a wig. I visited some free wig closets offered through American Cancer Society but unfortunately, there was a wig that fit an African American Woman, so I was faced with the expense of having a wig made by my beautician.
I often prayed to God to reveal to me how he wanted me to share my experience with breast cancer to help other people and he did. In July of 2010, I was asked by Dress for Success Metro Jackson to represent them at the annual Dress for Success Worldwide Summit in Chicago , Illinois . I had no idea what I was about to witness nor did I know I was going to be challenged with an assignment before coming home. At the summit we listened to many women who have had some tragic past life experiences and through those experiences they have given back to their communities in a positive way.
The light bulb went on! Lord this is it. In some way, I'm going to use my experience to help my community, I thought.
When I returned to Mississippi I still didn't know exactly what I was going to do for my project, but I was sure it had something to do with my experience with breast cancer. A few weeks after I returned from the Summit, I was traveling with family to a reunion and we were discussing hair and wigs. I started to talk about how I had such a hard time finding the right wig when I lost all of my hair and BAM! The light bulb went off.
That's it! I'm going to help women who lose their hair through chemotherapy with wigs. I need to bring awareness of the shortage of wigs for African American Woman in the wig closets in the Metro Area.
I was even more inspired when I brought the Idea back to Dress for Success Metro Jackson PWG group. Everyone embraced the idea and the Lord confirmed it even more when one of the members told me she was working with her church to have a Pink Gala for Breast Cancer Awareness month at Celebrity Salon in Jackson . This gala was going to feature making wigs for cancer patients who lose their hair. It's just amazing how God's timing works. How ironic would it be that one of the Dress for Success PWG members is working with a salon that will be making wigs for cancer patients. I found it amazing!
We now have salons making wigs and I am truly overwhelmed with how generous everyone has been that's heard my testimony.
I want to give a very special thanks to:
- District Missionary Gail Fulgham of Liberal Church of God and Christ for donating the first 10 wigs to be made.
- Dr. Christina Dial of Breast Care Clinic of Jackson for using her office as a drop off spot for wigs.
- Our Prayer for the inspirational booklets, Tiffany Young with Ms. Health Dept. Breast Cancer Unit.
- Shalonda Quinn of Pure Illusion's Salon for currently making wigs.
- Ms. Shunta of Celebrity Salon for completing the first set of wigs.
- And most of all, the American Cancer Society for embracing this partnership with Dress for Success Metro Jackson PWG Group.
Breast Cancer Survior