The Journey & Beyond
Central Florida Health News|October 2020
How One Woman’s Breast Cancer Brought Her New Perspective
TIM CRAIG

FOR TOSHIKA CHAMBERS, it was a moment that put everything in perspective.

Sitting in the lobby of her doctor’s office, the Lakeland native and Haines City resident waited for the results of a biopsy. Her mind swirled. A self-described “routine person,” her life revolved around her work, children, and husband. This, the doctor’s office and everything it represented, threatened to derail the routine.

She looked over. She sat next to another woman, sitting in a gown. What are you in for, the woman asked. Chambers told her.

“The woman said that she had just had her breast cancer surgery and proceeded to show me where she had surgery,” remembers Chambers. “Then she looked at me and said, ‘I’m fine, you’re going to be fine, too.’ ”

That was a key moment; it gave Chambers a glimpse of the tough road ahead, but it also put her nerves at ease.

“Thinking back, that moment represented a huge example of the community of support I never knew existed,” she says. “It was my first interaction with a Pink Sister.”

Only a few weeks earlier, Chambers had felt a lump she knew wasn’t supposed to be there. She had turned 40 in 2019 and had scheduled a mammogram earlier in the year, but she had to cancel because of her busy work schedule.

“I thought that as long as I got one before the end of the year, I would be on track,” she said. So when she felt the lump, she didn’t hesitate. She set up the appointment the next day.

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