This book is about Wendy’s journey with a child with brain cancer and a resulting physical disability – hemiplegia. The book is written from her perspective as the mother of a child who was diagnosed with a brain tumour at age three. Her daughter, Victoria underwent eight and half hours of surgery for a partial resection of the tumour. Eighteen months later the tumour grew again requiring fifteen months of weekly chemotherapy treatment at John Hunter Hospital, NSW, Australia.
The book, ‘Victoria Grace – living with victory through childhood cancer,’ includes both Wendy’s story and practical information for families in similar situations or people who have been struggling with traumatic on-going life circumstances. The book includes information such as how to set up your home when you have a child receiving chemotherapy treatment; caring for the carer – coping with depression; being creative with strategies for physical therapy; helping siblings understand and process grief; and an example information pack she gave to our daughter’s school teachers to assist them to understand what was happening. Throughout the book there is the underlying theme of persistent faith and relying on God’s strength to get them through the tough times in life.
One of the charities that greatly helped Wendy and her family on this journey is Redkite. Redkite is an Australian cancer charity providing essential support to children and young people (0-24 years) with cancer, and the family and support network who care for them. One of the Redkite Senior Social workers wrote the following review of Wendy’s book.
“This book is a very helpful guide for parents who gather strength through their religion in times of severe challenge to assist them to maintain hope and sustain the energy needed to manage the treatment journey. It may also be helpful to those who might struggle with their faith during these times – particularly with relevant quotations from psalms.
“For those parents who prefer to find other ways to assist in staying strong, this book is full of lists of practical suggestions and plans which will save time and energy – both usually very scarce for most families. Wendy also lists the support resources available to all families to support their children through brain cancer both through the text and in all appendices at the end of the book based on her own lived experience (including the mention of Redkite’s telegroup program which is how I came to know her). Support strategies for siblings and for the child with cancer are there too.
“Victoria Grace” is also a very well written story of human strength and resilience – I couldn’t put it down even though I knew the story. Thank you Wendy for providing so much meaningful assistance to other parents, extended family and support networks!”
Linda Brown, Senior Social Worker – Redkite
Please Note: Redkite is an Australian charity that helps families with children with cancer
- Heartfelt | Honest | Awe Inspiring | Helpful
Having this book read by the author gives it another level on insight into the journey a family goes through in these circumstances. I love that I could hear the emotion in her voice. This book gives a vivid and thorough window into what life is like for a family supporting their child through cancer. It has given me a new appreciation for the burden the family carries, the importance of a support network and the invaluable work of charities. I thought I knew this family before reading the book but now feel as though they have taken me on a deeper journey into their lives. I cannot thank them enough for their openness and honesty in sharing their story.
- A unique perspective, rarely shared. Highly recommended
This is a unique and emotional insight into the challenges and victories of a family dealing with disease and its disruption to everyday life. Helpful not only for those families facing their own medical struggles, but also for their friends, loved ones and health professionals who will benefit from this insight. An honest and uplifting record of fear and faith, highly recommended
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