Thank you to Diana for sending me her book to review.
About the Book
Healing With Words: A Writer’s Cancer Journey is a memoir and self-help book highlighting Diana’s cancer journey. In 2001 at the age of forty-seven, happily married and the mother of three, she was diagnosed with early breast cancer and five years later, diagnosed by seemingly unrelated and incurable blood cancer—multiple myeloma. The book candidly chronicles in a wry and inspirational tone, her experiences, using reflection, poetry and journal entries. At the end of each chapter writing prompts and blank journaling pages are provided for readers to express their own personal story. The book also contains extensive appendices with support organization and writing tips.
Raab considers journaling to be like a daily vitamin—healing, detoxifying and essential for optimal health. Since early childhood, Raab has found solace in writing after her mother gave her a journal to cope with the loss of her beloved grandmother. In lieu of allowing cancer to destroy and take over her life, she has gracefully embraced the experience and views it as a positive turning point in her life.
Get more information about Healing With Words from Diana Raab's website.
Read the guest post Diana posted here on JustJenniferReading.
You can also "Like" Healing with words on Facebook.
I think everyone has been touched by cancer in some way. I've lost a few family members to cancer and there are also a few survivors in my family. I'm sure I'm not alone in that. While I've never had cancer I know what the fighter is going through in their battle. Most people have their own way of dealing with cancer, but for those who don't I think this book could be very helpful.
The book is both a biographical story and a journal. I liked the format that it was written in. Raab talks about different points in her cancer journey and then gives prompts for the reader to write about their journey. She gives small prompts like "Describe your admission to the hospital". I think these are the kinds of things that are difficult for people to talk about, but I also think that keeping all these feelings bottled up inside is not the way to deal with them.
I also liked the poetry that Raab wrote through her journey. She talks in the book about the different emotions she was feeling and these emotions come through in the poetry she has dispersed throughout.
For someone who is dealing with cancer I think this book could be a beneficial tool to help the cope with what they are going through. While I've never written anything significant I used to keep a journal and also wrote poems and short stories. I've always found writing to be therapeutic. And while cancer is a disease of the physical body the medicines and treatments do little to heal the mind and soul.
If you, or someone you know, are struggling with cancer I would recommend this book. It was sometimes difficult to read and it was very emotional. But at the same there were moments of hope and I think that those are the things that we all need to hold on to, regardless of what kind of struggle we are going through.
Healing With Words: A writer's cancer journey