Here is the blurb:
This memoir traces a little over a year in the life of a forty-one-year-old breast cancer patient as she reflects critically on the loss of her breasts, her struggles as a patient and a person, and life on the other side of chemotherapy and radiation. In this book, the author, who is an English professor, addresses how writing and sharing her cancer story with the public is not only a form of self-treatment, but also crucial to one’s survival.
and two customer reviews from Amazon:
You are not alone
August 15, 2019
I met Misty on Facebook as I was going through my own journey with breast cancer. Our diagnoses and treatments were almost identical, including bilateral mastectomies, chemotherapy, and radiation. Our reactions to and side effects from treatment were similar. Even our careers were similar—university English professors. The one thing that was quite different was our public or social presentation of what we were going through during diagnosis, treatment, and afterward. Because my children live hundreds of miles away and have families of their own, they could not visit often during my treatment. Since they are on social media, I made the decision to be as positive and optimistic as possible in my posts. Family and friends were extremely supportive on social media, which I appreciated, and I frequently was complimented on my positive attitude. The problem was, my attitude in real life was NOT positive. Besides the indescribable physical pain and indignities, I was an emotional wreck. I felt lonely and isolated and like I was the only person in the world suffering the pain and trauma of disease and disfigurement. I have never felt so alone in my life. Misty, however, decided to be honest in her social media posts. She described her diagnosis, her treatment, her issues with medical professionals, her problems with insurance companies, and her emotional state on social media to help others going through similar situations. She does this same thing in her memoir. It is depressing at times and hopeful at times, but it is always raw and true. Her experience was so much like mine that her posts, and now her memoir, made me realize that I was not alone. Misty doesn’t sugarcoat the cancer roller coaster but offers an intimate glimpse into the real world of a cancer patient and survivor. This memoir will be so useful to other cancer patients and survivors, to caregivers, and to friends and family of anyone suffering from cancer and its aftermath. Highly recommend.
Poignant & Powerful
September 18, 2019
Written in honest language and with vulnerability and sincerity, this memoir beautifully illustrates Krueger’s story . I laughed out loud, shed many tears, and caught my breath quite often. I felt as though I was sitting behind her on the breast cancer roller coaster. The shift from prose to poetry captured the experience of uncertainty in a way a consistent narrative would not. I’ll admit that I had to put the memoir down at times because of my own emotional reactions. I cried at her pain. I raged at how she was treated. I empathized with her despair. And I rejoiced with her triumph. At the book’s conclusion, I have a deeper respect for cancer survivors (they’re warriors to the nth degree) and greater love and admiration for the author.
In the memoir I include a chapter about a dream I had early in my cancer year. In this dream I met my favorite living novelist, Neil Gaiman. (If you want to know more, read the entry!) A friend of mine, posted a picture of the chapter on her social media, and one of her followers–Neil Gaiman himself–looked at the post! I have evidence:
I am also adding audio tracks, in which I read chapters from the book, to my SoundCloud account.
Here is Episode 1: Introduction
Go to my SoundCloud site for other episodes.
I have also given a talk about writing a memoir and how empowering it is. I spoke at a special event called “My Body, My Story: Writing Illuminated Memoir,” sponsored by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) and the Maine Digital Collaborative (MDC) and held at the Wishcamper Center, Portland, University of Southern Maine. See the video below.