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Cancer Journey

A Caregiver's View from the Passenger Seat
  • By Cynthia Zahm Siegfried
On the day my husband, Jim, was diagnosed with cancer, we began a journey that changed us forever. I was just a passenger, along for the ride, but I was profoundly affected by the illness. Jim frequently said he believed cancer is harder on the caregiver than the patient; I don t believe that for a minute. One thing, though, is certain: the view from the passenger seat is .different. During our trip, I learned that being caregiver to a seriously ill person has problems different from, but equally as serious as, those of the patient. Like many thrust into this position, I was ill-equipped to handle the job. For help I turned to God, who showed me great and mighty things, which I had not known before (Jeremiah 33:3). After recovering from the initial shock of the diagnosis, I determined to help my husband fight the disease. I hoped that through diligent research we could learn which treatments, tools, and tricks might put him in the ten percent who survived this kind of cancer for five years. I became a woman with a mission. But I soon realized this missionary needed help. My real burden as a caregiver was the emotional stress not the physical. A cancer diagnosis is followed by a psychological and spiritual crisis as we move through the stages of grief toward acceptance. Before I could accept the possibility of my husband s death, I had to answer the basic question Why are we here and where are we going? Once I had done that I was able to rest on God s promises and find hope in the midst of a grim prognosis. When I relinquished all illusions of control and depended on God for my strength and wisdom my burden was lightened. I actually experienced moments of humor and joy on what would otherwise have been a dismal, terrifying trip. I found my place was not in the driver s seat but in the passenger seat offering support to my husband, as God lovingly chauffeured us over the peaks and through the valleys. True to His Word, He made a way in the wilderness and streams in the desert (Isaiah 43:19). On the journey I learned more about the character of God. He helped me develop an attitude of thankfulness. As He met our every need, spiritual and emotional, I learned how the Law of the Harvest works. He showed me how to share my experiences with others to bring glory to Him. When I responded in obedience, the floodgates of heaven opened and He showered me with abundant blessings in the middle of a life crisis. As I moved through the stages of grief, God held me in His hand. I have never felt closer to Him than during that time. When I handed the steering wheel over to God, He guided me through each stage of the journey and left me with the roadmap I share in this story. "

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  • Additional Details
  • Additional Details
    Product Specs
    • SKU: 9780615625836
    • Language of Text: English
    • ISBN 13: 9780615625836
    • Publication Date: 01/01/2010
    • Format: Paperback
    • Author: Cynthia Zahm Siegfried
    • Page Count: 135
    • Width: 5.40 inches
    • Height: 8.20 inches
    • Length: 0.70 inches
    Shipping & Returns
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