LEHIGHTON, Pa. — Nearly six years ago, Kimberly Gerhard of Lehighton went in for her yearly mammogram.
Just days later, she was given a diagnosis she never thought she would get.
"To all being told like," Hey, you got breast cancer," is like wow. I never thought it would happen to me," Gerhard said.
In 2016, Gerhard had to have both of her breast removed.
As she was going through treatments and surgeries, She says the biggest struggle was finding a bra that fit her.
"It's not that easy finding any bra off the shelf that's going to fit you," Gerhard said. "So I was at a loss. We went to visit my sister in North Carolina, and she said hey, there's a Mastectomy shop here. I said, okay, let's go check it out, and the lady changed my life."
Gerhard knew she wasn't the only woman going through similar struggles after being diagnosed with breast cancer. That's when she decided to open the Perfect Balance boutique in Lehighton in 2019.
The boutique carries bras, swimsuits, and shirts for post-surgery, wigs for cancer patients, and breast prosthetics for women who have had a mastectomy.
"There's a huge need for us boutiques that just pretty much dwell on the mastectomy type because it makes it more intimate," Gerhard said. "You know women don't feel so bashful coming in."
Gerhard says Breast cancer runs in her family.
She was lucky enough that the disease was caught early.
"You may not even have a history there of breast cancer," Gerhard said. "Right now, our youngest client is 23 years old. So, no matter the age, you really need to be doing your exams, and if it does run in your family, please go and get your yearly mammogram."
Gerhard says the majority of the items inside her shop are covered by insurance.
For more information on The Perfect Balance Boutique, click here.
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