Posts Tagged ‘cancer’

 

Family Caregivers

Posted on: August 16th, 2021 by Alden No Comments

This is a prayer to be said on behalf of those family members and friends who have taken on the task of daily caregiving of another member of the family or a close friend, devoting their days and energy to the care of mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, and other dear ones.

Family Caregivers
G-d of health and healing,
Bless our family and friends
Who have taken on the sacred task
Of giving care and comfort
To their loved ones,
Committing their time, energy, and physical labor
To the well-being of dear ones
At a time of immeasurable need.
Grant them wisdom and skill,
Compassion and dedication,
Energy and endurance,
As time passes and tasks increase.
Remind them to care for themselves,
And to nourish their own bodies and souls,
So easily forgotten in this time of need.

Source and Shelter,
Rock of life,
Bless all who dedicate themselves
To the care of others,
And bring lasting health and healing
To all in need.

© 2021 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com.

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Postscript: Thanks to my friend Joel Africk for the idea for this prayer.

Please check out my CCAR Press Grateful/Joyous/Precious trilogy. The individual books are: This Joyous Soul , This Grateful Heart, and This Precious Life. Here’s a link to my ELItalk, “Falling in Love with Prayer..” For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: CDC

For a Loved One’s Cancer Treatment

Posted on: July 26th, 2018 by Alden No Comments

Another prayer in a series of prayers that follow the cancer journey. These prayers appear in my book Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing. Options for adapting this prayer to an individual circumstance are shown in [brackets].

For a Loved One’s Cancer Treatment
Today is the day,
God of old,
That my [wife][husband][partner][dear friend][companion],
_____________________________ [insert name],
[Begins to receive][Begins another cycle of]
Treatment for cancer,
This disease,
This intruder,
That has invaded his/her body and our lives.

God of compassion,
Grant him/her a path to healing.
See him/her through this day and the days ahead with dignity.
Strengthen our resolve to live fully and to love deeply.

Grant healing power to his/her [surgery][radiation][and][chemotherapy].
Reduce the side effects and eliminate any complications from this procedure
And grant him/her a full and complete recovery from this disease.
Grant his/her physicians insight and perseverance
And his/her caregivers knowledge and skill.
Grant scientists and researchers tools and understanding
To develop new treatments for this cancer,
Speedily, in our day.

God of Mercy,
Give me the poise and clarity
To provide steadfast support on this journey,
With love and respect,
With kindness and compassion.
Grant our family comfort and relief.
Ease our burdens and ease our minds.

Blessed are You,
God of health and healing.

© 2018 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

New here? Subscribe here to get my newest prayers by email.
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Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: Doctors Beyond Medicine

Living with Medical Uncertainty

Posted on: January 29th, 2017 by Alden No Comments

Last week I posted a “Cancer Anniversary” prayer. I received many responses. Several readers, each facing metastatic disease, wrote asking for a different prayer, one for living with medical uncertainty. I wrote this two years ago after speaking with a young man rocked by the discovery of a rare medical condition, shaken by the contrast between how healthy he felt and the extent of disease going on in the secret workings of his body.

Living with Medical Uncertainty
This life is a gift.
Our moments, a blessing.
The hours, a sacred trust.
Our days, a flicker in the lamp of time.

G-d of Old,
You call on me to face my fleeting presence.
By confronting my ___________ [condition, such as: cancer, stroke…],
You have brought me this challenge:
To see my mortality,
To comprehend, more deeply,
The fragility of my body and the dangers within.
Truly, my life is like a driven leaf,
A passing cloud,
Grass that withers,
A flower that fades.

Knower of All,
I wonder:
What is my body doing in secret?
Has my treatment been effective?
For how long?
Has this threat passed?
Will I face it again?
Am I cured? Am I safe?
Can I ever know?

Bless all who have walked with me on this path.
Grant them health and long life.
Bless all who face these questions.
Grant them comfort and peace.

As for me,
Holy One,
When I am weary, give me rest.
When I am lost, give me refuge.
When I am yearning, give me words of prayer.

Rock of Life,
G-d of All Being,
Source of Mystery,
Stronghold and Shelter,
Guide me on this journey.
Grant me solace and consolation.
Give me strength.

.ברוך אתה ה’ אלהינו מלך העולם הנותן ליעף כח
Baruch atah adonai eloheinu melech ha’olam hanotein laya’ef ko’ach.
Blessed are You, Adonai our God, Ruler of the Universe, who gives strength to the weary.

© 2017 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: See also: “For Cancer Treatment” and “On the Recurrence of Cancer,” as well as two related Hospice Prayers. See also: “For Surgery,” “Upon Recovery from Surgery,” and “For Healing the Spirit” and “R’fuat HaNefesh.” Many of these prayers appear in Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.

Please check out my Meet the Author video and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers For a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: Emory

Cancer Anniversary

Posted on: January 26th, 2017 by Alden No Comments

imageThis prayer is for all who are marking an anniversary of being cancer free. Having fought the battle – the one you’ve won that others lost – gratitude may be matched with an overt or underlying sense of anxiety. This is written to allow you to bring your emotions into the text, with space for those emotions to be different from one year to the next. This prayer appears in “Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.”

Cancer Anniversary
G-d of health and healing,
As I approach the [first, second…]
Anniversary of successful cancer treatment,
[My anxiety and (add your other emotions: fear, anger, grief) have returned.]
[I also have a wondrous and surprising sense of optimism and hope.]

I remember clearly the shock and trauma of my diagnosis.
The concern of family and friends.
The fear.
The sleepless nights.
The sadness and tears.
The moments of hope.
The moments when hope seemed lost.
I remember those who have succumbed to this disease.
And I am aware of the fragility of life.

Thank you, G-d on high,
For the past [year/years] of health,
Years with my cancer in remission.
Thank you for the gifts and blessings in my life,
The diligence of my physicians,
The support of those around me,
And the hope of tomorrow.
May vigor and vitality accompany me always.

Blessed are You,
G-d of our fathers and mothers,
G-d of gifts and blessings,
Source of life.

© 2017 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: My other cancer prayers include: “Cancer Fear,” “For Cancer Treatment” and “Cancer Remission.”

Please check out my Meet the Author video for This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers For a New Day. Please consider making a contribution to support this site and my writing. For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: Testimonies

For My Children as I Enter Hospice Care

Posted on: January 27th, 2016 by Alden No Comments

hospice-handsThis is prayer of contemplation and love for a difficult moment that forces a family to recognize the fragility of life and inevitability of death. It appears in my book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing. Optional inserts appear in [brackets]. Fill in details using the blank lines and following the instructions in (parentheses).

For My Children as I Enter Hospice Care
My G-d,
In the days ahead,
[The weeks and the months,]
I will face challenges as I surrender to _____________ (name of the disease).
My heart and my hopes,
My love and my questions,
Also turn toward my children [and grandchildren].
How will they cope?
How will they continue?
How will their experience of my passing
Shape their lives?

This I pray:
In the time that remains,
Let me be a source of love,
A light of comfort,
A lamp of hope,
A well of blessings.
Grant me the ability to care for my children,
Even as they yearn to provide support and understanding for me.

[Optional insert: Repeat the following paragraph for each child]
Bless my child ___________ (child’s name)
Who _____________ (thoughts about what he/she is feeling now)
With _____________ (specific concerns and prayer for that child).

G-d of health and healing,
Watch over my children
In their hour of need.
Watch over them when I have departed.
Let our love for each other
Shine brightly through the days ahead,
So that it lasts beyond the length of my days,
As a testimony to your Holy Name.

© 2016 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Here are two additional prayers about entering hospice. Other healing prayers from Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing include: “For Surgery,” “Upon Recovery from Surgery,” “For a Critically-Ill Child,” “For a Critically-Ill Mother,” “For a Critically Ill Father” and “For Healing the Spirit.”

Please consider making a contribution to support this site and my writing. For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: Here Women Talk

For A Critically-Ill Sister or Brother

Posted on: December 1st, 2015 by Alden No Comments

IV in SurgeryThis is a healing prayer for siblings, structured like my prayer “For a Critically-Ill Mother.” My prayer “For a Critically-Ill Child” has a decidedly different structure and tempo.

For A Critically-Ill Brother or Sister
Holy One,
G-d of health and healing,
My brother’s/sister’s body is failing.
Illness holds him/her.
Grief and fear hold me.

Ancient One,
Well of hope,
Grant my sister/brother
A quick and complete recovery.
Relieve her/his suffering.
Remove her/his pain.
Return her/him to health.
Restore her/him to life.

Rock of my heart,
Comfort and shelter,
You know the path ahead.
You know the journey.
You hear our prayers.
G-d who healed Miriam in the desert,
Bring Your healing power to my brother/sister
_______________ (sibling’s name)
So that he/she may know life and health,
Joy and peace.

Blessed are You, Adonai our G-d,
Source of love,
Rock of life.

© 2015 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Other prayers for healing include: “For a Critically Ill Child,” “For a Critically Ill Mother,” “For Surgery,” “Upon Recovery from Surgery” and “For Healing the Spirit.” These prayers appear in my book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.

Please consider making a contribution to support this site and my writing. For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: European Society of Intensive Care Medicine

Cancer Fear

Posted on: December 2nd, 2013 by Alden No Comments

cancer-checkmark-horizI wrote this prayer after my doctor strongly suggested a third prostate biopsy. Fortunately, I was also able to write “After News of a Clean Biopsy” from my own experience. My new book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing, will include 14 prayers to be used at various points along the cancer journey, including: For Cancer Treatment,” “Cancer Remission” and “On the Recurrence of Cancer.” In the coming weeks I will post another version of this prayer to be said on behalf of a family member or a friend.

Cancer Fear
G-d of Old,
I am overwhelmed with fear,
Devoured by terror,
At the news that [I may have cancer]
[My cancer may have returned].
This dread in my chest,
In my throat, in my heart and in my eyes,
Fills the core of my being
With a hungry panic,
Consuming my security,
Consuming my peace of mind.

G-d of health and healing,
Release me from worry and alarm
As I seek answers to challenging questions,
[Unbelievable questions,]
Unwanted questions.

Gracious One,
Grant me strength in these hours of uncertainty.
Grant me serenity as I wait for news.
Release my family and friends from worry
And make me an example of dignity and courage
Even as I live in the shadow of the unknown.

Compassionate One,
Let health and healing surround me.
Let health and healing surround all of Your children.

© 2013 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Related prayers include: “Waiting for a Pre-Diagnosis Biopsy and Results,” “After News of a Clean Biopsy,” “For Cancer Treatment,” “Cancer Remission,” “On the Recurrence of Cancer” and two Hospice Prayers.

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. Connect with To Bend Light on Facebook and on Twitter.

If you use this prayer, please take a moment to post a link to your Facebook page, your blog or mention it in a tweet.

Photo Source: She Knows Cares

For Superman Sam and His Family

Posted on: November 15th, 2013 by Alden No Comments

leu ribbonSuperman Sam has relapsed. As his mom wrote: “His ninja leukemia is so very strong.” They’re nearing the end. At various times during the Sommer’s journey, various people, not knowing what to do but wanting to help, have asked me to write something for Sam or his family. It happened again today, after the crushing news. I’ve been reading the posts by Rabbis Phyllis and Michael Sommer about their family and their son, wondering at the depth of their pain and courage, yet hesitant to offer something that they may or may not find appropriate. Again this morning, I received an email from a friend asking me for a prayer. I wrote this today for Sam’s parents and decided to post it after an email exchange with a friend of the family. For those who wish to pray for Sam, his Hebrew name is Shmuel Asher Uzziel ben haRav Michael Aharon v’haRav Pesah Esther.

On the Journey to My Child’s Passing
Soul of the Universe,
When we dreamed of becoming parents
We never expected to face the death of our son,
Still a child,
Or to prepare him and our family for the end,
Or to face the day to come when we bury him.

Oh grief,
You know no bottom,
You spare no heart,
You leave us breathless and cold.

And yet, G-d of Ages, You offer
Holy choices,
To walk with our son,
In courage and fear,
In strength and heartbreak,
Toward a destination we cannot enter.

G-d of All Being,
The well of cures has run dry.
The horizon of life nears.
There is a single destination.
Bless our family with wisdom and strength,
Kindness and care,
Just as we ask You, Holy One,
To cover us with Your tabernacle of peace.

Author of Life,
Grant our son Sam
Joy and wonder in the days that remain.
And give him an easy passing.
Grant us the wisdom and ability
To be examples of steadfast love,
An inheritance for the generations.

Rock of Old, You are my comfort and my strength.
צור עולמים, אתה נחמתי וכחי
Tzur olamim, atah nechamati v’chochi.

© 2013 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: I cried writing this. A lot. In the coming weeks I’ll post a generalized version of this prayer for use by those who, sadly, find themselves with a similar need. In writing it, I’ve borrowed from two other prayers: “Meditation on the Burial of a Young Child,” which I wrote after the shootings in Sandy Hook, and “On Removing a Child’s Life Support,” which I wrote at the request of a hospital chaplain. Both prayers will appear in my forthcoming book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. Connect with To Bend Light on Facebook and on Twitter.

Photo Source: Bunny Tales, A Shabby Rabbit Book Blog

After News of a Clean Biopsy

Posted on: October 9th, 2013 by tobendlight No Comments

child-cancer-sucks-most-affordable_designThe results of my third prostate biopsy brought good news yesterday evening, a clean report. This is a quick prayer to be said after receiving the news of a clean biopsy. The tone here is different from my prayer for news of “Cancer Remission,” which recognizes the fight against the disease after a diagnosis and treatment. Of course, this prayer can be used by anyone at any stage of the disease; I wrote it, however, with a pre-diagnosis perspective.

This is the 15th prayer I’ve written to be said at various stages of the disease. I’m not posting them in sequence of the disease process. I posted “For Cancer Treatment” as several of my friends and family members battled their cancers. I posted “Cancer Remission” when my friend David emerged from his knock-down, drag-out fight with the disease. My new book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing, will include 14 prayers to be used at various points along the cancer journey. This one did not make it given the timing. I’m just grateful to have the reason to write it.

After News of a Clean Biopsy
G-d of blessing,
G-d of wholeness,
My biopsy is clean
And I am told, [at least for now,]
That I’m free of _______ [type of cancer suspected: breast, prostate, etc.] cancer.
Thank you for this news.
Thank you for this relief, this joy,
This moment of renewal and celebration.

G-d of life,
Keep me free of this and any cancer.
Grant health and healing to the men and women who are fighting this disease.
Grant comfort, solace and strength to the families of those who have succumbed.
Grant scientists and researchers tools and understanding
To develop new treatments for this and all cancers,
Speedily, in our day.

Blessed are You,
G-d of gifts,
G-d of health and healing,
Source of life.

© 2013 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Other prayers in this series posted so far include: “For Cancer Treatment,” “Cancer Remission” and “On the Recurrence of Cancer,” as well as two related Hospice Prayers. See also: “For Surgery,” “Upon Recovery from Surgery,” “For a Critically-Ill Child,” “For a Critically-Ill Mother,” “For a Critically Ill Father” and “For Healing the Spirit.” Thanks to the friends and family who assisted with writing the series of cancer prayers. Most asked not to be named. You know who you are. I appreciate your wisdom.

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. Connect with To Bend Light on Facebook and on Twitter.

If you use this prayer, please take a moment to post a link to your Facebook page, your blog or mention it in a tweet.

Photo Source: Caffeinated Autism Mom

Waiting for a Pre-Diagnosis Biopsy and Results

Posted on: September 15th, 2013 by tobendlight No Comments

cancer-colours-web-pageLast week I had my third prostate biopsy. The waiting begins again. I’ve heard the phrase “you’re too young for these numbers” about my PSA in every possible form, in two languages, from doctors, nurses and secretaries. The emotions of not knowing has an odd rhythm that changes from the time the doctor says something like ‘let’s check this out’ to the date of the procedure and again waiting for results. For me, this prayer reflects increasing uneasiness as time passes. It is one of 14 cancer-related prayers that will appear in my forthcoming book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing. Others include: “For Cancer Treatment,” “Cancer Remission” and “On the Recurrence of Cancer.”

Waiting for a Pre-Diagnosis Biopsy and Results
G-d of health and healing,
Source of my life,
Has my body has turned against me?
Have my cells have become agents of disease?

G-d of my ancestors,
G-d of hope,
Grant me strength as I wait for [my biopsy][the results of my biopsy]
With dignity and resolve,
With [confusion /sorrow/anger/fear/doubt][and]
[____________________________ (insert words to describe your feelings)].
Stand with me as I await news and, if necessary,
Grant me the clarity to make sound choices
For my treatment and my life.
Grant my family comfort and relief.
In this time of uncertainty.

Ancient One,
G-d of old,
Provide my physicians knowledge and insight.
Give scientists and researchers tools and understanding
To develop new treatments for all forms of cancer,
Speedily, in our day.
Grant me courage.
Set my life on a path to wholeness and well-being.

© 2013 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Other healing prayers include: “For Surgery,” “Upon Recovery from Surgery,” “For a Critically-Ill Child,” “For a Critically-Ill Mother,” “For a Critically Ill Father” and “For Healing the Spirit.”

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. Connect with To Bend Light on Facebook and on Twitter.

Photo Source: Roy Yeoman’s Charitable Trust

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