Tuesday, July 21, 2009

When Someone You Love Has Cancer
by Cecil Murphy

This book is beautiful in illustration (by Michal Sparks) and purpose. My family has been hit hard by cancer. I wish I'd had a book like this when my father was first diagnosed, and it may have even helped when my daughter was diagnosed with a brain tumor last year. I'd love to pass this precious book on to one special commenter.

About the Book:

The World Health Organization reported that by the year 2010 cancer will be the number one killer worldwide. More than 12.4 million people in the world suffer from cancer. 7.6 million people are expected to die from some form of cancer. That's a lot of people, but the number of loved ones of cancer sufferers is far greater. What do they do when a special person in their life is diagnosed with this devastating disease?

Murphey brings his experiences as a loved one and many years of wisdom gained from being a pastor and hospital chaplain to his newest book When Someone You Love Has Cancer: Comfort and Encouragement for Caregivers and Loved Ones (Harvest House Publishers). His honest I've-been-there admissions and practical helps are combined with artist Michal Sparks' soothing watercolor paintings.

Readers of When Someone You Love Has Cancer will receive:
  • Inspiration to seek peace and understanding in their loved one's situation
  • Help in learning the importance of active listening
  • Guidance in exploring their own feelings of confusion and unrest
  • Suggestions on how to handle anxiety and apprehension
  • Honest answers to questions dealing with emotions, exhaustion, and helplessness
  • Spirit-lifting thoughts for celebrating the gift of life in the midst of troubles
Murphey explains why this is a much-needed book: "Most books about cancer address survivors. I want to speak to the mates, families, and friends who love those with cancer. I offer a number of simple, practical things people can do for those with cancer."


A Word from The Man Behind the Words

When Shirley walked in from the garage, she didn't have to say a word: I read the diagnosis in her eyes. I grabbed her and held her tightly for several seconds. When I released her, she didn't cry. The unshed tears glistened, but that was all.

I felt emotionally paralyzed and helpless, and I couldn't understand my reaction. After all, I was a professional. As a former pastor and volunteer hospital chaplain I had been around many cancer patients. I'd seen people at their lowest and most vulnerable. As a writing instructor, I helped one woman write her cancer-survival book. Shirley and I had been caregivers for Shirley's older sister for months before she died of colon cancer.

All of that happened before cancer became personal to me--before my wife learned she needed a mastectomy. To make it worse, Shirley was in the high-risk category because most of her blood relatives had died of some form of cancer. Years earlier, she had jokingly said, "In our family we grow things."

In the days after the diagnosis and before her surgery, I went to a local bookstore and to the public library. I found dozens of accounts, usually by women, about their battle and survival. I pushed aside the novels that ended in a person's death. A few books contained medical or technical information. I searched on-line and garnered useful information--but I found nothing that spoke to me on how to cope with the possible loss of the person I loved most in this world.

Our story ends happily: Shirley has started her tenth year as a cancer survivor. Not only am I grateful, but I remember my pain and confusion during those days. That concerns me enough to reach out to others who also feel helpless as they watch a loved one face the serious diagnosis of cancer.

That's why I wrote When Someone You Love Has Cancer. I want to encourage relatives and friends and also to offer practical suggestions as they stay at the side of those they love.

The appendix offers specific things for them to do and not to do--and much of that information came about because of the way people reacted around us.

It's a terrible situation for anyone to have cancer; it's a heavy burden for us who deeply love those with cancer.

5 comments:

Ruby (Mouth) said...

Dineen,

This books sounds like such a godsend to anyone going through the pain of having someone you love go through the hurt of cancer. My grandma passed away with lung cancer many moons ago and this books would have been so nice to give to my father's family. Sad it was not out yet! Anyway, I hope that someone who really needs this book comments. It would be quite a nice gift. :)

grammygail said...

So sorry to hear about your dad and daughter. I lost my father to cancer in 2004.
Thanks so much for sharing this information. When someone you love has cancer it changes your life as well as theirs’. As a former pastor’s wife so many times I longed for words of comfort, encouragement and even prayers for ill friends and family members. I know Cecil Murphey’s book will be a great help to the many of us who’ve lived with and love cancer patients.

Becky Yauger said...

What timing. I think it's harder on family members the second time around. And knowing Cec, he won't gloss over anything, but be real, and true, and honest about the emotions that overwhelm all of us.

Edna said...

I know about cancer, a lot of friends has it and just yesterday we lerned our 35 year old son-in-law has CML the lowest case of leikemia and they have 2 small children, but thank the good Lord his is the type that can be treated with medication and for now he will not have to have and bone morrow transplant if the medicine works for him, He had bone morrow test this morning and will know next week which type of medicine he will be on, so this book would be a good one for my daughter to read.

mamat2730(t)charter(dot)net

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