Breast Cancer Awareness Tea for Neurodiverse Adults in Arizona

On Wednesday, October 26, the lady residents of Rainbow Acres came together in the lobby of our Health and Wellness Center for our second annual Think Pink Tea Party.

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Organizations around the world host Think Pink Tea Parties to raise awareness about the impact of breast cancer.

Such a serious topic can be difficult and uncomfortable to engage with, but our Health and Wellness Staff rose to the occasion. Decorating the lobby in white and pink, they created a fun atmosphere filled with pale pink balloons, a pink and gold photo booth, and round tables covered in white table clothes. In the center of the tables, beautiful pink roses backdropped the simple place settings and hot pink gift bags, which included a pink ribbon bracelet, pink ribbon ankle socks, and a makeup pouch proudly proclaiming, “She believed she could, so she did.”

Each place setting sparkled with a unique teacup and saucer. Designed with elegant white and silver flourishes, vibrantly floral patterns, or with old-fashioned berry springs, the teacups delighted each lady as they entered the room dressed in their Think Pink Tea Party tee shirts. After they found a teacup they liked, they choose a flavor of tea. Many leaned over to compare tea bags with their neighbors. Excited chatter filled the room as, table by table, they went through the snack line, choosing from artichoke dip, veggies, cheese, and apple slices. While they did so, Health and Wellness staff poured hot water into their teacups.

After the lovely conversation and cups of tea, the nurses talked the attendees through a pamphlet using lemons to demonstrate healthy breast tissue versus concerning abnormalities. The importance of regular exams was stressed and were made easier to track with the “Today Happens Only Once, Make It Amazing” 2023 Women’s Monthly Planner in the gift bags.

Last year, the Health and Wellness staff hosted the first Think Pink Tea Party to celebrate a resident whose breast cancer is in remission. We were blessed to hear from her and celebrate her remission again this year. It was a joy to see her loved on and applauded by her sister Ranchers.

We were also privileged to hear from Cecy Gilbert, beloved friend of Rainbow and a member of the Board of Trustees. Cecy shared her own touching cancer journey, which began two months after her husband passed away.

“I slid through chemo because I was surrounded by prayer,” she told the listening ladies. “I made it through.”

Cecy’s message, and the message of the entire Think Pink Tea Party, was one of empowerment. Our lady residents were encouraged to take action, to know themselves, and to advocate for themselves. Practical tips and procedures were presented, giving the lady’s tools by which they could implement the messages of empowerment.

When the presentations were over, the ladies lingered for another cup of tea. Many of them took part in the “photo shoot” before the pink and gold photo booth. A number of silly props on sticks were included to make the pictures all the more fun. Our hearts were touched to see our ladies laughing and enjoying themselves as they use sparkling paper sunglasses, glittering crowns, pink mustaches, and “Think Pink” signs.

As we wrapped up the party and took down the tables, the nurses shared that the roses in the centerpieces would be gathered up and gifted anonymously to a deeply loved friend of Rainbow who is ill. We wish her all the best, much love, and many prayers on her own journey Everyone agreed this was a successful Think Pink Tea Party, and we look forward to next year’s celebration.