January 31st is IndiesForward day – a special blogging event dedicated to spreading the legacy of Julie Forward DeMay and her touching memoir, The Cell War Notebooks.

What would you do when faced with a battle for your life? Author, photographer and creative spirit Julie Forward DeMay took on her fight with cervical cancer like she was playing for the new high score in her favorite video game, Asteroids. Inspiring, witty, beautiful and brutally honest, The Cell War Notebooks is a compilation of the blog Julie kept during the last seven months of her life. It’s a powerful read for anyone, whether your life has been touched by cancer or not. Check out the paperback on Amazon and keep up with the latest news on Facebook. All proceeds from book sales go to Julie’s nine year-old daughter. 


I’d like to share very briefly how cancer impacted my life.

Thankfully, I am a healthy man and always was. My parents though, both suffered from this disease. My mother battled breast cancer twice and won! I won’t go into the details, as many of you likely know what’s involved with traditional cancer treatment and operations. All I will say is that I learned how strong a person can be and how the will to live can triumph over fear and desperation. My mom is my hero.

My father, may he rest in peace succumbed to Lymphoma after years of struggle and have died 11 years ago, almost to the day. I watched my father, a proud farmer, who used to wake up before the roosters and leave the fields well after sun down, being limited more and more with every passing month. Although I can categorically say my dad fought that damn disease with all his might, The thing that made it painful for me as a son was this very limitation. My father was an honest hard-working man who provided for us and was always a role model for me. I knew how frustrating it was for him not to be able to continue to do so. I found it extremely hard to deal with his loss and only in very recent years I was able to “come to terms” if that is at all possible.

I know now that traditional cancer treatment is not the only means of fighting cancer (some say it is actually the worst alternative). I would’ve said I wish my father was alive so he could fight it with better tools, or better – I wish he never got sick. But I am grateful for the many years I lived by his side. I’m proud to be his son, and the fact that he’s no longer with me in body is but a temporary obstacle. He’s here with me as I write this post.

I love my two heroes – My mother and father. I’d be happy not to have witnessed them fight cancer but I’m a wiser man having seen them teach me important life lessons.


In memory of my father – Moshe Shalev
1942 – 2001

Don’t forget to check Duolit’s IndiesForward Page: http://selfpublishingteam.com/indiesforward so you get a chance to participate in this fine initiative!

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