Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Don't Ever Look Down

by Dick and Debbie Church, with Diane Moody
Sheaf House Publishers, LLC
ISBN 978-0-9824832-3-7
Due out in April 2011

Marriages don’t always survive cancer, even when patients do. In this unique book, the authors share their journey through cancer as husband and wife with honesty, humor, and hope. DON'T EVER LOOK DOWN offers encouragement and practical advice to couples who are facing the same steep mountain climb.

As an oncology counselor, Debbie Church worked with hundreds of cancer patients. Through her own experience with this disease, she gained a greater understanding of cancer’s impact on individuals and families. Her husband, Dick, shares a man’s perspective on entering the mysterious worlds of gynecology and oncology. An experienced mountain climber, Dick compares Debbie's battle with cancer to the difficulties, dangers, and triumphs of climbing a mountain.
  "As I sat in my chair, I tried to lean forward and watch 
the images appearing on the monitor. I prayed so hard . . . 
harder than I have ever prayed. Does she see anything? Does 
it look bad? Is Deb okay? Is this a false alarm?
  Dr. Corgan pinpointed the location of the questionable 
area and did a needle biopsy. I kept praying. Please God, 
please don’t let anything be wrong . . . especially not 
cancer! Deb prayed hard too.
  A small piece of tissue was removed. I’ll never forget 
the image of Deb lying on that table. Thin streaks of 
blood flowed down her left breast from the small puncture, 
absorbing into her paper blouse. It was so surreal.
  This should not be happening, I thought. Deb does not 
deserve this.But she was so brave. I kept praying. 
Please God. Please! 
  As an oncology counselor, Deb knew the process and 
exactly what doctors can surmise without a full pathology 
report. “Does it look cancerous?” Deb’s question filled 
the room with anxiety, fear, and trembling. Hope hung on 
every word, but barely.
  Dr. Corgan placed the tissue sample in a small vial and 
labeled it Debbie Church.“Without a full pathology report, 
I can’t be 100 percent sure—but maybe ninety-nine.”
  That was close enough. Deb knew Dr. Corgan had done 
thousands of biopsies like this and could usually tell.
  My heart broke and fell to the floor. Life would never 
be the same again."

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month so I wanted to bring this book to your attention. My cousin, Jill, has breast cancer so my family has a taste of the fear and frustration that comes with this terrible disease. Add Don't Ever Look Down to your wish list for purchase when it is available in April 2011, and say a prayer for the many women and their families who are facing this dread disease.