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Cancer as a Crucible: The Story of a Teenage Immigrant Who Survived Cancer and Built a New Life for Herself
Date:1/15/2009

BEVERLY, Mass., Jan. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- No one who survives life-threatening cancer emerges from that dark tunnel the same person who entered. In her new memoir, "It Gets Better!" (published by AuthorHouse -- http://www.authorhouse.com), Maria Machado Munroe draws together her experiences as a teenage cancer patient and her struggles and joys in building a new life for herself. By telling her story in clear and powerful prose she creates an inspirational recounting for anyone whose life has been touched by cancer.

When she was eleven years old, Maria and her family immigrated to the United States from a small island off the coast of Portugal. Unlike her older brother, Maria did not adapt quickly, and the strangeness of the language and customs made her miserable. Just as she was becoming adjusted, at age 16, she discovered a lump on her neck, and began her struggle with deadly non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Shortly after Maria's treatment for cancer started, her diabetic mother died at age 35. Both Maria's priest and her father suggested that her mother's death was caused by grief over her daughter's cancer, and as a result the author began a long struggle with a deep sense of guilt. The frequent and lengthy hospital stays required by her treatment temporarily halted Maria's schooling. She had hated her classes, and held the childlike thought that she had brought cancer on herself by wishing she had chicken pox so she could stay home from school for a while.

Her treatment involved such painful and unsettling procedures as surgery and chemotherapy, even more frightening for a young person than for an adult. During the fear and loneliness of that lengthy therapy, she gradually developed trusting personal relationships with her nurses and other caregivers. "It Gets Better!" includes tributes written by her medical team; they movingly describe what cari
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SOURCE AuthorHouse
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