When Wayne Cooke came up to me after church to offer a manuscript about his cancer treatment, my heart sank. Oh no. Not a would-be author. How could I let him down gently? Then I read his manuscript, in fact, I couldn’t put it down. It laced funny and poignant personal experiences with practical tips on how to be a patient and survivor.
I turned it over to my boss, Rich Rein, editor/publisher of U.S. 1 Newspaper, who declared it a compelling story. He made it the cover story of our end-of-year issue in 2007, entitled “Strength Renewed,” and Craig Terry did the photos. This 5,000 word first-person story may seem like an unlikely topic for a newspaper, but Rein has made other surprising choices.
So encouraged, Cooke reworked his material and has just published his book under the title “On the Far Side of the Curve: a stage IV Cancer Survivor’s Journey.” It’s available with excerpts at Amazon.com .
The first version, sans photos, is online in the archives of U.S. 1 Newspaper.
Even if you are not a patient, it’s a good read. If you know a patient, the tips in this book (“Lessons Learned”) could help them.
Please also consider encouraging your patient (or the caregiver) to become an informed “e-patient” and/or a believer in participatory medicine. A good way to start is with the blog “The New Life of e-Patient Dave,” who also finds himself “on the far side of the curve.” For instance, he just published “Advice to a Cancer Patient Facing News He Didn’t Want.”
Another excellent resource: Association of Cancer Online Resources (ACOR). Pick your diagnosis — there’s an ongoing conversation about every form of cancer and just “lurk” or ask questions. Five years ago ACOR was my lifeline. I recommend it.
3 thoughts on “On the Far Side of the Curve”
Another patient-empowering resource is Trish Torrey's "You Bet Your Life: 10 Mistakes Every Patient Makes) http://trishatorrey.com/
Barbara – What a compelling story, filled with honesty, humor and grace. Thank you to Wayne for writing this, and to you for seeing its merit and getting it into print. Karyn Colombo
Well hi! Thanks!Seriously, so glad you find this conversation valuable enough to spread.