At the back of my church was an old bookshop, piled high with old tapes and video’s, books that were never sold and random Christian gifts, all covered by an even greater pile of youth work supplies. One evening during youth group, we decided to finally sort the cupboard. We pulled out all the boxes, flicking through the books that no-one had thought worth buying. Crammed into a box, I found a book, Last Dance by Melody Carlson. It reminded me of a book I had read years ago by the same author, about a girl whose mother faces terminal cancer; I had kept hold of it in case any of the young people should face that situation.
I didn’t take me long to find that book, and within no time I had read the book cover to cover. I cried with Kim, the main character, as she faced situations similar to my own, and was glad to know that how I felt was okay and normal. I read about her difficulties in balancing caring for her mum, and her friends, financial worries and role reversal. I knew she wasn’t real, just a fictional character, but I related to her so much. It encouraged me to see Kim facing the same questions I faced, having many of the same arguments with God. Her mum even had a long-lost sister that Kim had no idea existed, who she tracked down on behalf of her mum, over the internet!
If you are going through a tough time with a loved one suffering from cancer, or you know someone who is, I would recommend Meant to Be by Melody Carlson, along with it’s sequels. It comforted me and encouraged me to talk to others about how I felt, and to God.