Flickr Pictures

ScrapAddict74. Get yours at


My Life with Laura.....a book review

Today may be the Inauguration, but I'm not here today to talk about that. Today I post my review of the book My Life with Laura: A Love Story.

When I was first approached, asking if I would like to participate in this book tour, I happily agreed. Though I knew the story ended tragically, I was eager to read the love story behind it all. I find often times breast cancer consumes our lives, and at times even defines us though it should not and does not. For once I thought it would be nice to know more about a person than just her diagnosis – and I was right. Though I set out with a promise not to cry when I read the book, I can say that the shear magnitude of real and raw emotions portrayed left me with no other choice in the matter.

Upon receiving my copy of My Life with Laura, the first thing I noticed while flipping through the pages, aside from tons of lovely photos, was the personal inscription that Chad had written to me. As I read through the book, this inscription stuck with me the entire time because it truly was a fitting description of who Laura was – Chad wrote “I hope you appreciate this book and Laura’s strength & faith battling her breast cancer.” From what I read, Laura was a deeply grounded individual who had a good set of morals and values, a positive disposition, unshakable faith and understanding, and strength like no other. Testament to this was her detailed list of ideal traits for what she was looking for in a man - her ten must haves and ten can’t stands – a list every single women needs to have!

From the get go Chad and Laura seemed like a perfect match – this here was not a case of opposites attract. Both Chad and Laura were similar in nearly every way. So it stands to reason they both fell in love with each other around the same time. Over the course of a year they went from emails to courtship to living together to becoming engaged. They even discovered upon moving in together that their furniture and pictures even went well with one another. Within six months they were married. By the next year they became parents. Life was perfect for them until Laura began experiencing pain in one of her breast that ultimately forced her to stop breast feeding after just 10 months. The pain continued on for many months even after being treated with antibiotics. It was during this time they learned Laura had cancer despite having a negative mammogram. Over the course of the next year and a half Laura’s condition worsened greatly as the cancer metastasized throughout her body and skin.

As described this book truly is a love story despite its tragic ending. Laura remained positive throughout her battle, never giving up hope. She kept meticulous records – calendars with appointments, schedules, baby’s firsts & journals of many private, personal thoughts and prayers – all of which helped Chad to write this memoir for their daughter, so she can know her mother and how she came to be. There are many details to this story, and the story’s main focus is NOT about the cancer, but rather their life together. I think this book serves as a beautiful reminder of that life and love, and it’s something their daughter will cherish forever. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it because of those reasons.

Some of my favorite parts of the book are listed below:

  • “She was less concerned about how others perceived her; instead she knew that she needed down time, either with me or on her own. I came to appreciate and respect this aspect of her, knowing that it was not personal. After all, I often needed my alone time too.”
  • Chad’s Valentine’s letter to Laura in 2006 – it’s rather long so I won’t re-type it.
  • “I finally know what I am dealing with; I can deal with cancer….can’t I?”
  • “Sitting there among these senior citizens, we were reminded that this was not supposed to happen. No one should be dealing with cancer and radiation and chemotherapy in their 30’s! (Or at any age for that matter.)…..My favorite part of the lesson was the topic of sex. She discussed the need for using condoms during chemotherapy, and I looked around the room. Laura and I both laughed later that Trish was clearly speaking to us and not our fellow classmates!”
  • “Her breathing had been erratic for some time, but it was not until I sat beside her and held her hand that she let go. I do not know if that notion is true – that Laura waited for me before she died. Regardless, I was so happy that it was just the two of us together when she passed. I will never forget that last moment with Laura for as long as I live. Although it was tragic, it was at the same time profoundly romantic – the two of us holding hands just as Laura’s spirit was released to heaven.”
Originally, I planned on asking Chad a few questions - but by time I finished the book I was so flooded with tears I could hardly lay down and go to sleep, let alone think a single thought. I laid there and sobbed uncontrollably, feeling as if I was about to have a panic attack. I felt as though I had lost a friend, because the way Chad wrote this book was completely inviting - taking you into their life, sharing private thoughts and journals - you really do feel as if you know them personally. And from this experience, I walk away sad that Breast Cancer claimed another life before a cure was found, that this woman left behind a daughter that will have virtually no memories of her mother, and a husband who loved her very much - so much that he wrote a book of her to share with the world.

You can check out Chad's site here, and purchase the book from Lulu here.


Christina said...

Yours words moved me this morning as I read your entry. I too read Chad's book, but through your words I feel as if I have seen Laura through a new set of eyes.


NotPerfectDeb said...

Great review!