True Beauty Gala 2016

True Beauty Gala

We are very excited to announce that our annual gala and fundraiser is in the works!

For those that don’t know or have never heard of our annual event, True Beauty Gala is an evening that was put in our heart back in 2012. For years, and I’m talking about YEARS, it has been in my heart to help the community. My mom, God Bless her heart was first diagnosed with breast cancer when I was at the mere age of 15. I was this naive 15 year old who didn’t quite understand the concept of cancer. Honestly, I was too focused on boys, finishing high school and friends.

Then, my mom used that ‘C’ word. “I have cancer.”

I knew she would be fine…she is such a strong woman, and I just knew that no sickness…not even cancer will weigh her down. After all, God is taking care of her.

But, still, I immediately felt the need to do something.

Anything.

I wanted to be part of a community outreach campaign that would support cancer research. Whether it’s an event, a fundraiser…whatever. I mean, I had to do my part to get my mom well again.

I went to some family for support. Their response: Don’t worry about that. Focus on school.

Feeling shot down, I let it go.

My mom started going to chemotherapy and radiation. My dad was constantly working while my mom couldn’t, so of course, I went with her. I didn’t want to miss anything. Even her nurses started calling me her guardian angel.

She started getting sicker and sicker.

It was then that I felt alone.

I began attending meetings for teens at our local hospital. It was there that I realized that I definitely wasn’t alone. There were teens like me who supported family members going through their cancer diagnosis.

Thankfully, my mom started getting better due to the chemo and radiation treatments. Thank GOD!

True Beauty Gala1997. I was 17 years old.

My mom got diagnosed with breast cancer for the SECOND time!

Again, I told myself…I just have to do something to support the cancer organizations out there!

Anything.

Again, I reached out to my family. Their response: Focus on school.

I let it go.

It was at this point, I can start to witness my mother’s self-esteem deteriorate. Still a strong a woman, but I can see sadness and exhaustion from all the chemo and radiation.

In turn, it made me sad.

I just wanted to boost her self-esteem again, but I didn’t know how.

Guess what?! It was 2005, and out came the THIRD diagnosis!

I just couldn’t believe it. I remember that day, like it was yesterday…I was at work, and received an important call from my mom.

“I have cancer again.”

Are you kidding me?! Why couldn’t it just leave my family alone?! More importantly, why couldn’t it leave my mother’s body for good??!

It’s been 10 years since the first diagnosis, and it was still eating away at my heart to do something, but I was shot down one too many times with the lack of support, that I gave up.

You know, sometimes, it doesn’t matter how passionate you are about something…if you get shot down by negativity time and time and time again, you start to believe you have no control. You start to believe you can’t do anything. You start to feel that you have no support anywhere and that you can’t do it on your own.

I was at the bottom of that pit.

By then, I had a beautiful family of my own, so my mind and strength became occupied with other things.

By then, my mother’s self-esteem was such at an incredible low that she just wanted to hide and let cancer take its toll. Her hair would fall out, and then grow back and then fall out again. She went for surgery after surgery after surgery. She definitely suffered way more than she should.

But, my family was not ready to lose her. So, for us, she attempted chemo and radiation one last time.

It worked.

We were happy as any family would be if someone you love so incredibly much beat cancer 3 times, but, something just wasn’t right.

I felt that something had to be done.

My mom felt ugly, sad, emotionally drained, upset…you name it! I, in turn, felt heartbroken. I didn’t want my mom to feel this way, but I just didn’t know what else I could do to lift her spirits.

And then, 7 years after her third diagnosis, in August 2012, it hit me.

I knew what I had to do. I finally had the support that I was looking for. And, it didn’t come from those family members that I had asked long ago.

It came from my true family: my husband. 

He showed me the light that I needed to walk through in order to make my childhood dream…that dream that has been in my heart for 15 years, a reality.

That was the start of True Beauty Gala.

But, here’s the thing. For years, I wanted to make a difference and support cancer research. I wanted to find a cure for this darn disease.

But, then, I had this vision.

I want to make a difference in not just my mom’s life… but in as many families as I can.

Instead of supporting cancer research, as many organizations do, True Beauty Gala chooses to support our local community.

We choose to offer our support to families who are currently going through or have gone through a cancer diagnosis.

True Beauty Gala wants to make a difference in these families lives.

We want to empower them. We want them to know that they are loved and that there are others out there that care about them. We want women who are going through a cancer diagnosis to lift their head high and be positive knowing that they are strong enough to beat cancer in the butt! We want them to re-focus their energy into embracing their True Beauty for all its worth, knowing that although they have lost their hair or their body has changed, they are still beautiful. They are still God’s creation, therefore they still remain our earthly angels.

True Beauty GalaWe want these families to focus on what matters most: Being together and living life to the fullest.

For years, I saw my mother’s self esteem deteriorate more and more each and every day that passes. She lost herself in the midst of dealing with her diagnosis. Although, I did everything I could to be by her side throughout it all, loneliness and depression consumed her. Her and my dad grew farther and farther apart until it came time to move in separate paths.

For all of this, True Beauty Gala exists.

We are incredibly grateful because True Beauty Gala 2016 is our 5th year!! Throughout these past few years, I’d truly like to think that True Beauty Gala made a difference somehow in someone’s life. Even if it’s only a handful of people, or even just one, I thank God, because this is why it is continuously in our heart. It is why we organize it each and every year.

We live to empower and inspire others in our path and because of this, we are empowered.

True Beauty Gala 2016 will be a night of empowerment, inspiration and love while we come together as a community and help unmask the face of cancer!

As we plan True Beauty Gala 2016, my mom now lives as a 5-time cancer survivor!

For those of  you who were wondering, yes, she has been diagnosed 2 more times…4th time in 2014 with ductal carcinoma, and the last time this year. Her heart and soul and her faith still remains strong, though. I greatly admire the woman she is.

We are currently on the search for local families who need our support. Families who are currently dealing with a cancer diagnosis and feel alone and need a helping hand of support (emotionally and financially) and friendship.

We want them part of True Beauty Gala.

So, on behalf of the gala, I’d like to request the community to help us and support us in finding these women and their families. After all, this is our way of offering community outreach, but we can’t do it alone.

We need your support. We need your care. We need your heart.

True Beauty Gala thrives to exist because of the incredulous support when our community comes together, in unity, to help each other. So, let’s make a difference and change lives and help those in need.

Welcome to True Beauty Gala!!

About The Author

Lis Perez

Lis Perez is the founder of True Beauty Online as well as True Beauty Gala. She is Co-founder, along with her husband of 13 years, of an international online branding agency, called Empower Media in affiliation with Empower Media TV where they 'Work Together to Empower You.' She has a huge passion for helping others and is a huge advocate for True Beauty and surely shows it as she helps many women and teens overcome self-esteem issues and find their Hidden Jewel as an Empowerment Coach for Women in her own business, Hidden Jewel Consulting. When she's not being her entrepreneurial self, you can usually find her spending time with her two teenage daughters and husband or planning the next True Beauty Gala. ~Transforming Your Heart, Empowering Your Soul!!~ ~ Believe in the Power to Change the World with Your Smile!~

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