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Massey breast cancer patient embraces the power of positivity

Feb 25, 2021

Farrah-w-Flowers-Fave In the face of her own breast cancer diagnosis in 2019, Massenburg is embracing the power of positivity

“Positivity is a powerful tool,” says Farrah Massenburg, a fun-loving wife and mother, current Massey breast cancer patient and this year’s special guest at the 2021 Women & Wellness webinar to benefit women’s cancer research at VCU Massey Cancer Center. Massenburg’s favorite quote is “Use your power wisely,” and in the face of her own breast cancer diagnosis in 2019, she is embracing the power of positivity, laughter and even a bright new lipstick for support through her breast cancer journey.

“Even though a smile is silent, it can still be the loudest thing somebody can do to help someone else feel better,” said Masenburg. “You never know someone else’s story.”

Massenburg is a VCU grad, business professional with W.M. Jordan and an advocate for Massey and for the importance of self-examinations, which is how she discovered her own cancer while breastfeeding her daughter in 2019. She was the subject of CBS 6 WTVR’s February Buddy Check segment, hosted by Women & Wellness emcee Reba Hollingsworth. This monthly segment encourages women to remind friends and family members about the importance of breast self-checks to increase early detection.

Massenburg shared her story and stole the hearts of the more than 350 virtual guests who tuned in for Massey’s 26th annual Women & Wellness event on February 9.

The Zoom webinar continued the event’s time-honored tradition of bringing together strong, dynamic and compassionate women to advance women’s cancer research and health at Massey, and beyond. The event took place two days before International Day of Women and Girls in Science, and both served as a reminder of the immense contributions to the fields of science and technology by women and girls around the world.

Following an introduction by Massey Cancer Center director Robert Winn, M.D., four of Massey’s rockstar female cancer experts, Mary Helen Hackney, M.D., Susan Hong, M.D., Kandace McGuire, M.D., and Leslie Randall, M.D., led a panel discussion about updates in cancer research, clinical trials, Massey’s newly created survivorship program and advancements in cancer research over the event’s 26-year history. Each speaker also shared what thriving with cancer means to them.

Massenburg brought her spunk and personality to the event, acknowledging the incredible care, both physically and emotionally, that she is receiving at Massey, and why finding ways to laugh and stay positive is so important.

She also shared some of her favorite tips and tricks for how to stay positive and feel beautiful despite chemotherapy and the pain associated with cancer, including finding a bright new lipstick. Her current favorite is called “I am Powerful” by Milani, which she purchased and wore especially for Women & Wellness.

“My advice is to always try to find positivity in something that is negative. That’s another way for me to thrive,” said Massenburg. “And, find a nice bright new lipstick to help you feel beautiful. Today, because it was fitting for Women & Wellness, ‘I am Powerful.'”

2021 Women & Wellness raised over $37,000 and counting to support cancer research and care at Massey and to help advance its bold vision for a future without cancer.

Women & Wellness supporters were encouraged to make tribute gifts to honor or remember loved ones affected by cancer, with messages visible during the event and on a Tribute Wall online.

Massey extends its gratitude to our generous 2021 Women & Wellness sponsors, including ACG - The Actuarial Consulting Group, Buckingham Greenery, CBS 6 WTVR, Davenport & Company, KPMG, Owens & Minor, Patient First, S.W. Funk Industrial Contractors, Inc., TowneBank and Weinstein Properties, the more than 60 Tribute gift donors who donated to the event through a tribute gift, our Friends of Women & Wellness and the many dedicated volunteers who helped to make the first virtual Women & Wellness event a success.

If you missed it, you can watch the Women & Wellness event video, and there is still time to make a tribute gift in honor or memory of a loved one.

Watch Women & Wellness 2021 Event

Donate to the Tribute Wall in honor or memory of a loved one

Written by: Katherine Layton

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