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Valley of the Shadow, A Mother's Journal Through Her Child's Battle with Cancer [Paperback]

By Linda Hovestadt Clark (Author)
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Item Number 44221  
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Item description for Valley of the Shadow, A Mother's Journal Through Her Child's Battle with Cancer by Linda Hovestadt Clark...

The inspiring true story of the indomitable spirit of a child battling cancer, the faith of her family, the skill and caring of dedicated physicians, and the sustaining power and grace of our God.

Publishers Description
Mom, I'm having trouble swallowing." With these words from fourteen-year-old Jessica, the Clark family is plunged into the frightening realm of cancer diagnosis and treatment. The diagnosis is squamous cell esophageal cancer, an adult cancer rarely seen in one so young. This painfully honest account, written from a mother's heart, describes the harrowing roller coaster ride a family endures when a child is diagnosed with cancer. It is the true story of the indomitable spirit of a child, the love and faith of her family, the skill and caring of dedicated physicians, and the sustaining power and grace of our God. Linda Hovestadt Clark and her husband were raising three beautiful daughters when their youngest was diagnosed with esophageal cancer, rarely seen in children. The family's world was upended. Linda, having worked in the medical field for over thirty years, demystifies cancer treatment for her readers, but even more importantly, her faith enables her to see God at work through her daughter's illness. Linda has crafted an inspiring and uplifting story she's eager to share.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Pleasant Word-A Division of WinePress Publishing
Pages   232
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.53"
Weight:   0.66 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2006
Publisher   PLEASANT WORD #888
ISBN  1414106939  
ISBN13  9781414106939  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Leaders & Notable People > Religious
3Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Professionals & Academics > Medical
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Inspirational

Christian Product Categories
Books > Inspiration > Motivation > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Valley of the Shadow, A Mother's Journal Through Her Child's Battle with Cancer?

A detailed, real-life story that you never want to experience...  Sep 6, 2009
Jessica Clark was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer of the throat at age 14. This was a bizarre occurrence, in that she was much too young to even have such a disease, and that she experienced none of the lifestyle or genetic issues that could have predisposed her to this cancer (squamous cell esophageal cancer).

Valley Of The Shadow is mother Linda's recollection of the diagnosis, treatment, and progression of the disease. It is utterly frank, honest, and open. I read the original 2003 edition (twice). and was captivated by the battle (yes, battle) of Jessica, Linda, and her husband, Alan. Their life was already stressed, with their older daughter Janelle diagnosed earlier with a complicated mental illness, and recently moving from their beloved Maine to a new community in Utah.

Sadly, the story ends after this book was published, with college junior Jessica dying a few months after she marries her sweetheart, collapsing after an intimate dinner with husband Scott in 2007 (and after the 2006 publication date of this edition).

What is this book about?

- The terror of a parent watching her child combat a devastating illness.

- The interactions of caring physicians with a young patient and her family.

- The life adjustments that must be made when things happen.

- The caring of communities, agencies, and individuals for one who needs support.

- The trials of Job, experienced in modern times through the heart of one who is a devout believer in Jesus Christ. "I hope that by seeing God's hand at work in our lives, others might be encouraged to call upon Him in their distress, for He is faithful to respond," Linda Clark concludes.

I am absolutely, positively sympathetic to the Clark family. Linda and Alan appear to be wonderful parents. Jessica was an extraordinary young woman, taken too early from this earth. Unfortunately, I am less comfortable with the constant reminders of a determined faith in God's plan for Jessica. Why? How is this book to be perceived by a mother or daughter without this faith, but suffering similar trials? Guilty? Underprepared? Not doing enough? I am reminded of some the arguments in "why won't God heal amputees." There were prayer circles numbering hundreds, even thousands. Linda was a rock in her faith. There was probably not a single person on this planet wishing ill on daughter Jessica. Yet the suffering of Jessica continued, no matter how brave she was, no matter that Linda and Alan, and their physicians, did everything humanly possible to support, care for, and cure Jessica.

Enough of that. This book's value is in the discovery of a disease, the development of balance in an unbalanced life, and the stoic acceptance of what needed to be done to preserve a young woman's potential. I'm not sure what Linda Clark is doing today, but I hope she heals enough to be able to be a patient advocate for others going through similar trauma.

I certainly would want her on my side.

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