Thursday, July 23, 2009

"I Never Knew What It Was Like Below the Surface"

I was honored to be interviewed by Pat Fridgen, editor of the Echo Pilot, a few weeks ago. Her story, "Cancer experience results in book," appeared in the local newspaper on Wednesday, July 15th, 2009. She describes many aspects of my book, including the initial shock surrounding the diagnosis, the lengthy treatment phase, and finally, the author's return to a relatively normal life.

Fridgen writes about our interview: "Today people ask of she is cured. 'I'll know when I'm in heaven,' Holmes replies.

"She explained that breast cancer does not have the five-year mark to indicate remission like leukemia does. The longer she is cancer free, the better.

"Though her career has been as a neurosurgical and orthopedic nurse, she realized immediately she had never truly understood what a patient went through. 'I never knew what it was like below the surface,' Holmes said.

"Then she became the patient. Her experience, chronicled in the book, shares the fears, triumphs, and daily realities of fighting cancer. She wrote of her love/hate relationship with wigs and the pink ribbon symbol for breast cancer awareness. Interactions with friends, neighbors, and medical personnel offer insight as to what is helpful and what may dishearten a cancer patient.

"'Breast cancer is not a death sentence,' Holmes declared. 'The sooner you catch it the better.'

"She is willing to talk to anyone about the disease. She encourages mammograms. She has one or an MRI every six months to keep on top of her condition.

"'God is great,' she said. 'He takes you through the rough times, but there's a reason for it.'"

Thank you, Pat, for a wonderful article!


Denise said...

Always nice to meet another Christian cancer warrior. Your post reminded me of a song I enjoy that at the end goes, "Sometimes He calms the storm and sometimes He calms his child."

Karen L. Holmes said...

Hi Denise! Thanks for responding! Yes, I often find profound strength in the lyrics of songs, so I can appreciate your post. What is the song's title? I've most likely heard it before, but I'm not able to place it at this time. Have a wonderful day!