Simona Lazinsk has known adversity ever since she was a child. At age 13, she and her family left British Guyana and moved to the States seeking a better life. Hoping for a prosperous future, Simona’s family was overwhelmed by grief when she lost her mother to pancreatic cancer. Not long after, she would lose her father and sister.
Despite so much tragedy, Simona worked hard to create a life for herself and her family in the States. She would go on to own a landscaping business and eventually work in real estate.
One day Simona noticed a lump in her breast. Concerned, Simona reached out to a primary care physician but was not able to get a mammogram scheduled for another two months. Her physician showed little concern, but eventually an ultrasound and MRI resulted in a grade 3, stage 1 breast cancer diagnosis.
Simona knew that she needed more efficient care to walk through cancer, so a friend of hers recommended getting a second opinion, which brought her to AdventHealth. “When I first walked into the hospital, I immediately felt a difference. There was so much hope written on the walls,” shared Simona.
Dr. Devina McCray, an AdventHealth surgeon led her care and in their first appointment looked Simona in her eyes and assured her, “You are going to be okay. You will live a long life.”
Simona had to endure 8 rounds of chemotherapy, a double mastectomy, and various maintenance medications. “I was truly touched by the care and service. I was treated with so much kindness and love by the hospital.”
It has been four years since Simona’s last round of chemo, but she continues to be under the care of AdventHealth oncologist Dr. Mchayleh and has bloodwork every six months. Since her diagnosis, Simona released an autobiography titled The Bridge Method and went on to become Mrs. Central Florida. Recently, Simona was awarded Mrs. Woman Entrepreneur 2023 by Woman Entrepreneur International.
When asked what words of encouragement she might offer to other cancer survivors, Simona shared, “There is life after cancer. You can still live a full life.”
Simona and her husband now own a classic car dealership called Past & Present Motor Cars and a promotional products company called Economical Quality Products.