By Robert Walsh
Tuesday, Feb. 03, 2009
OREM, Utah -- Chante Wouden knows about bad news, pain and hope. She prefers to focus on hope.Wouden was diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer, at the age of 3 and again at age 5. The ensuing years were filled with doctor visits, hospital stays, family sacrifice, prayers, hope and reality.The story of Wouden, whose family lived in Mantua, Utah, was shown Jan. 23 in the film "Chante Wouden: Faith and Miracles," a 27-minute documentary, at the 8th LDS Film Festival 2009 at the SCERA Center for the Arts.
Wouden's family had documented her health struggles in numerous home movies, and that made this project relatively easy, said Manju Varghese, who directed the film.Wouden displays her courage and humor from the time the first tumor was discovered in a hip, and doctors thought they would have to remove her leg. Her family made videos of her dancing around the yard so she would be able to see and they could remember what she could do before the surgery.
One doctor figured out a way to save her leg, however, so she was able to keep the leg. Later, tumors were discovered in her neck and spine, so she underwent more treatments.The film shows many of Wouden's struggles ("My hair fell out. I will make the best of it") and shows her speaking to various groups about her "bad hair days."Recently, at the age of 27, she faced more challenges: Doctors discovered that she had a tumor in her liver and an enlarged heart.
The documentary takes viewers through her day of surgery, when the tumor and much of her liver were removed. That left just a tiny piece to regenerate.Wouden, who was present at the screening, participated in a question-and-answer session after the film was shown."I basically grew up in the hospital," she said. It's not clear what lies ahead, but she is on medication for the enlarged heart condition. "It doesn't freeze me with fear," she said, but "it propels me forward ..."Varghese said the film is a "story of survival and perseverance."Wouden, who works in the audiovisual department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said, "I was nervous seeing it the first time. I bawled -- it was so beautiful the way it was put together."She added that it was overwhelming to look back at her life condensed into a 27-minute film.But through it all, Wouden's hope shines through.
Helen comments: Chante Wouden, What a girl!! I am so amaze that from 3 years to now 27 years old, still fighting with various cancer and still living. I would say Wouden is beating that cancer real well....very very well. I respect her way of fighting the cancer with positive way. You are the winner Ms. Wouden!!!! Keep that fighting with your faith!
Shirley and Karl came over last 2 week ago to visit us in Bangkok. Shirley, She is now cancer free for 6 years! When Shirley was fighting with breast cancer, she send emails to all her friends. I had read her emails and followed her situation as we love her. I have seen her faith in that many many emails to us.
Some of my faith built up in Christ seeing the way Shirley fought
her cancer with her faith and her prayers. I feel that "How her faith bring her to that far" even I do not have cancer at that time. Now I feel the same, "My faith and by the mercy of Christ I am walking that far!"...
Then I got hit by liver cancer! Seeing fellows liver patients and just being with them I am starting to question to myself .............
Cancer hit to many different ages, some are from very young age to old. Why some are living longer, some are die very soon and some got cured??? If you answered me "They got the chance to see the good doctor and money talks! "... I agree with that only 50% because I have seen people got a good doctor and tons of money but live only very short time. Another answer is because of massive??? Than see the Wouden, why she is living with cancers so long, actually unbelievably years!
My answer is.....
"Thank you Lord for not let me know all the questions that I ask. If I know every thing I might be Goding myself and I do not need you anymore do I? I know I will never know everything but I know one thing.."you are in control"!! I simply prayed to you that...Thank you for the good doctors and medical teams that you blesses to us. Thank you for Wouden is still with us and I trust you that she is under your care because you are the one know all the best for her and to me. Thank you for Shirley is still with us. Thank you for Jean is still with us. Thank you for Chris is still with us...there are many who are still with us. The good Lord, Yes...you give many to us and Yes..I know you can take it back any from us. That's why you are God and I am just Helen."