ATLANTA – The mobile mammogram unit sits in the parking lot. A woman is clutching her paperwork, waiting her turn.
“When was the last time you had one?” Delphyne Lomax strikes up an easy conversation. “This is the first time? Really?”
Maybe she can sense the woman’s trepidation. Maybe she is reminded of how she felt, standing in this parking lot three years ago, waiting her turn to get a mammogram.
“It may be a little uncomfortable but it is not bad.” She tells the woman the ins and outs of what’s about to happen, talking like a longtime girlfriend, giving the inside scoop.
Lomax became chief counselor and adviser the hard way. That mammogram three years ago led to a diagnosis of breast cancer. After a mastectomy, radiation and chemotherapy Lomax is cancer free. She is using her 2nd chance to help other women.
Before she was diagnosed three years ago, Lomax was newly divorced, having lost her health insurance. She found out about the free mammograms from The Center for Black Women’s Wellness. At a Stone Mountain fitness event, she learned how Komen Atlanta partnered with the center for the mammograms.
Delphyne is using her experience to help others, to be a voice in the African American community, telling women 'don't wait.'
Jemea Dorsey, the head of the Center for Black Womens Wellness says Lomax’s voice is important. “We know that African American women are more likely to die from breast cancer. We know that often it's due to later diagnoses. They are not getting routine screening mammograms.”
Lomax volunteers and speaks at events spreading the word – that screenings save lives, hers included.