Stacey and Erik heard the most dread words any parents can hear. Their twelve-year-old daughter, Jessie, had an inoperable brain tumor. The family was devastated praying to God to heal Jessie. They couldn't think of anything else to do.
Bit Jessie was a very special little girl. Instead of focusing on her own plight, she noticed that some of the children fighting cancer had to stay in the hospital and couldn't go home the way she could. She wanted to help them – to make them smile. From this desire was born the concept of Joy Jars, jars filled with toys and goodies that were passed out to hundreds of children during Jessie's short life.
If you're a parent, this is a very hard book to read. It could have been written as the perfect family faces cancer together, but Erik's book is more honest than that. The family has many crises. There were strained relationships between grandparents who wanted to help and the parents who were carrying most of the burden. Reading it, you realize that Jessie's slogan, Never Ever Give Up, has a special meaning for parents, too.
If your family has a child fighting cancer, I highly recommend this book. Even if you are lucky enough to have healthy children, this book makes you realize how lucky you are, and encourages you to do what Jessie did – help others.
I reviewed this book for Handlebar Publishing.