SMITHTOWN, N.Y. -- October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Tuesday night, there's a fashion show on Long Island honoring survivors.
The focus is on aftercare for women who have had their lives changed by this disease.
"I'm not used to being taken care of. I'm used to being the strong one," Lake Ronkonkoma resident Marylou Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez, a nurse, never thought she'd become the patient, but in 2018, she got a life-changing breast cancer diagnosis.
"I had a lump in my left breast and one lymph node ... Being a nurse, I knew it had traveled and that scared me more than anything," she said.
It's been a long journey from chemotherapy to a mastectomy and radiation but determination got her through.
"I wanted to live, that was my main focus," Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez is among a group of brave women whose beauty and strength will be on full display at the Pink Ribbon Dinner for Breast Cancer Survivors Fashion Show.
The women are getting pampered before the event at Stonebridge Country Club and accessorized by Ask Alice Boutique.
The nonprofit behind this 10th annual event, World of Pink Foundation, provides women with bras and prosthetics following breast surgery.
"There is an after to breast cancer, and we want to help women feel good, look good and just adjust to their new selves. There's nothing better than making a woman feel beautiful," said Christine Guarino, with World of Pink Foundation.
That's what Tuesday night is about, and it's raising money for the Siena Breast Health Program at St. Catherine of Siena Hospital.
"Funds, of course, are used for our patients -- anything from transportation needs, food needs," said Dr. Jana Deitch, director of the Siena Breast Health Program.
Levittown resident Tina Creighton is excited for her first big outing since her surgery in August. She stresses the importance of routine mammograms.
"If I hadn't gotten my baseline mammogram, then I would be finally figuring out I had breast cancer this month, and now I've already been through surgeries. I've come so far," she said.
"It really has changed me, but I do appreciate things in my life much more," Gonzalez said.
These women say it's the support that helps them through.
CBS New York's Jenna DeAngelis will be escorting a breast cancer survivor down the runway, along with their doctors and NFL players, in a night celebrating courage, strength and, of course, the fight for a cure.
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