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NorthPark member writes about cancer experiencecomment (0)

October 20, 2011

B. Davis Campbell has traveled a road he didn’t want to go down. But now he uses his story as a conduit for ministry.

Campbell, a nurse practitioner and member of NorthPark Baptist Church, Trussville, was shocked when he was diagnosed with Stage III bladder cancer in 2004 despite being healthy and possessing no major risk factors. At 43 years old, he underwent extensive surgery. His bladder was removed and a new bladder was created from a portion of his small intestine.

“I did a lot of soul-searching, trying to figure out why this had happened to me since I didn’t have any of the risk factors,” Campbell said. “So as a result, I learned everything that you would ever want to know about bladder cancer.”

After discovering the subject had not been featured in nursing journals for several years, he decided to write about it.

His article, “Bladder Cancer: Revealing News About a Hidden Threat,” was published in the April edition of Nursing2006. “That was really my first experience with writing,” he said.

When cancer was later discovered in his lymph nodes, Campbell went through more than three months of aggressive chemotherapy. He was hospitalized five times, received seven units of blood because of anemia and developed side effects including peripheral neuropathy (damage to the peripheral nervous system, which transmits information from the brain and spinal cord to every other part of the body).

One day after church, Campbell decided he would write about his entire cancer experience. His resulting book, “A Place I Didn’t Want to Go: My Victory Over Cancer,” is titled after John 21:18, in which Jesus told Peter that one day, he’d be led to a place “you do not want to go.”

“That verse gripped my heart,” Campbell said. “That’s what I was experiencing with cancer and its treatment. I was brought to a place I didn’t want to go.”

He hopes his story can help those facing cancer or other major illnesses. The book details facets of Campbell’s journey — his diagnosis, treatment and remission — coupled with spiritual insight. “My relationship to Christ was invaluable during the whole cancer diagnosis,” he said. “The Scriptures, the songs we sang at church … the support of my church family — [I] never could’ve made it without the Lord.”

The book is available on Amazon.com, and he is available to speak to church groups. Email him at daviscampbell@bellsouth.net.

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