LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A real-life fairy godmother is helping women all across Central Arkansas feel beautiful.
But not just any women – cancer patients.
“I absolutely love my job,” says Carolyn Garrett, the cancer resource coordinator at the CARTI Resource and Appearance Center in Little Rock.
It’s a story that doesn’t always have a happily ever after but Garrett says she tries every day to give all she has.
“If I make at least one person smile today then I’ve done my job,” says Garrett.
For nearly two decades she has been quietly performing little miracles for cancer patients – transforming them both inside and out.
“They sit down in my chair and go, ‘Oh I’ m not pretty,” she says. “And I am like, yes you are it doesn’t matter if you have hair or no hair you are beautiful.”
Back in 1996, Garrett was first diagnosed with breast cancer.
“I went through six weeks of radiation in Conway,” she says. “Everyone is different but I try to sympathize with anyone and everyone that walks through that door.”
Since 2017, the Resource and Appearance Center has directly served
3,503 patients and caregivers.
“I have a lot of people tell me how can you work with cancer patients day in and day out and I say because I don’t see them as patients but people,” she says.
Garrett is a two-time cancer survivor. She’s also a wife, mother, and grandmother, but for many cancer patients, she becomes their very own fairy godmother.
“Cinderella left in a beautiful gown and glass slippers and birds chirping and everybody about her. Okay. They are not going to leave here in that way,” she explains. “They are going to leave here with hair on their head that they feel good about. They are going to leave here and they are going to smile and they’re going to feel good about themselves when they hit that door and walk out in that hallway. ”