Then Came Life (Paperback)

Living with Courage, Spirit, and Gratitude After Breast Cancer

By Geralyn Lucas

Avery, 9781592409228, 224pp.

Publication Date: October 6, 2015

Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (10/1/2014)
Hardcover (10/2/2014)
Hardcover, Large Print (2/11/2015)

List Price: 17.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

Author of Why I Wore Lipstick to My Mastectomy Geralyn Lucas’s funny and moving story of leaving the traumatic experience of cancer behind and learning to survive all the challenges of a life she thought she would not have.
 
When Geralyn Lucas, author of Why I Wore Lipstick to My Mastectomy, put on red lipstick in the hall on the way to the operating room, she was showing her doctors, her family, and, most important, herself that she planned on coming out of the OR and living life to the fullest. She figured that that day in the OR would be the hardest day of her life—but, it turns out, the twenty-seven-year-old cancer survivor was a bit short-sighted.

Then Came Life picks up almost two decades later, when Geralyn is now living the life she was afraid she’d never be able to have. After having almost died from cancer as a young woman, Geralyn felt that growing old enough to get wrinkles is a gift—one she prayed fervently for in her youth. But she is now in her midforties: Her two miracle babies (both C-sections, both advised against by her doctors) have grown into a mean tween with a fierce eye roll for her mother’s failures and a tornado of little-boy energy who refuses to play by his preschool’s rules; a storybook romance with her husband has become couples therapy with a grumpy prince; and her demanding corporate job at Lifetime TV that she loves moves across the country without her. She has lost the wonder of that cancer gratitude moment, and when she looks in the mirror at her hard-won wrinkles, all she can think about is that she wants to have Botox.

Then Came Life is a charming, quirky, delightful yet poignant story of surviving life, a collection of coming-of-(middle)-age stories of trying to be a role model for her daughter while being dissatisfied with her own looks, and what happens when her adoring son is more intent on romancing her than her husband is (right down to dueling Valentine’s Day cards). With the clear-eyed wit and observations of Nora Ephron, she not only explores the dissonance of facing the challenges she was afraid she wouldn’t be alive to have but also confronts them with a great sense of infectious empowerment and a hilarious voice. Geralyn harnesses her fighting spirit and leaves behind the trauma of cancer to battle all the rest that life has to throw at her. Then Came Life is not a cancer recovery story: It is about rediscovering the resilience, courage, and optimism it takes to reinvent yourself at every age. 


About the Author

Geralyn Lucas is an award-winning TV producer, author, lecturer, and women’s health advocate. She lives in New York City.


Praise For Then Came Life: Living with Courage, Spirit, and Gratitude After Breast Cancer

Praise for Then Came Life
 

"The candid and perceptive author talks about motherhood...marriage, body image, self-worth, family, and the loss of loved ones as she ultimately seizes living over living in fear. ...Lucas’s sage commentary will bring a nod of recognition from fellow cancer travelers and a smile to everyone’s lips, even if they aren’t cherry red. Highly recommended.
-Library Journal

"Lucas’ success in overcoming breast cancer would give nearly anybody the sense that other, more “manageable” obstacles can also be overcome. Different challenges—learning to parent, resolving marital difficulties—have called on her to tap into other inner resources, and she continues to handle them with a positive attitude. ...Women inspired by the way Lucas marshaled her resources for treatment will enjoy seeing how such strength can be channeled into other challenges."
-Kirkus Reviews

Prone to self-criticism and with an affinity for Botox, Spanx, and antidepressants (as well as the red lipstick that gives her courage), Lucas doesn’t hold back as she confronts aging, negativity, and living fearlessly. This forthright tale of a woman facing her future after cancer will resonate with survivors as well as others caught in the throes of midlife.
-Publishers Weekly

“I love this honest, funny, and deeply emotional book. Geralyn charmed her way into my heart and took up permanent residence.”
-Delia Ephron, author of Sister Mother Husband Dog (etc.)

“The author of the original girl power cancer tome is back with a tour de force. THEN CAME LIFE isn’t just for cancer survivors, but for anyone who’s survived anything. I just love this book!”
-Marissa Marchetto, author of Cancer Vixen

“As the physical embodiment of aspiration and audacity, she has paved the way for our generation of young cancer survivors to become the change we wished to see.”
-Matthew Zachary, cancer activist and CEO of Stupid Cancer

“l loved Geralyn’s words of wisdom, wonder and whimsy. She is my pink soul sister!”
-Betsey Johnson, fashion designer

“It takes a tremendous amount of courage, determination, and confidence to rise up and reinvent your life after breast cancer treatment is over. Life feels fragile and frightening. Geralyn Lucas’ book is a fresh, smart, funny, open and honest account of the raw moments from low self-worth to new self-appreciation, mourning to celebration, marriage to motherhood, and from hiding to bold extroversion. It’s a fascinating real life bumpy ride. Buckle your safety belt and read this book!”
-Marisa C. Weiss, MD, President and Founder, Breastcancer.org




Praise for Then Came Life

“The candid and perceptive author talks about motherhood . . . marriage, body image, self-worth, family, and the loss of loved ones as she ultimately seizes living over living in fear. . . . Lucas’s sage commentary will bring a nod of recognition from fellow cancer travelers and a smile to everyone’s lips, even if they aren’t cherry red. Highly recommended.”
Library Journal
 
“Lucas’ success in overcoming breast cancer would give nearly anybody the sense that other, more ‘manageable’ obstacles can also be overcome. Different challenges—learning to parent, resolving marital difficulties—have called on her to tap into other inner resources, and she continues to handle them with a positive attitude. . . . Women inspired by the way Lucas marshaled her resources for treatment will enjoy seeing how such strength can be channeled into other challenges.”
Kirkus Reviews
 
Prone to self-criticism and with an affinity for Botox, Spanx, and antidepressants (as well as the red lipstick that gives her courage), Lucas doesn’t hold back as she confronts aging, negativity, and living fearlessly. This forthright tale of a woman facing her future after cancer will resonate with survivors as well as others caught in the throes of midlife.”
Publishers Weekly
 
“I love this honest, funny, and deeply emotional book. Geralyn charmed her way into my heart and took up permanent residence.”
—Delia Ephron, author of Sister Mother Husband Dog (etc.)
 
“The author of the original girl power cancer tome is back with a tour de force. Then Came Life isn’t just for cancer survivors, but for anyone who’s survived anything. I just love this book!”
—Marisa Marchetto, author of Cancer Vixen
“As the physical embodiment of aspiration and audacity, she has paved the way for our generation of young cancer survivors to become the change we wished to see.”
—Matthew Zachary, cancer activist and CEO of Stupid Cancer
 
“I loved Geralyn’s words of wisdom, wonder, and whimsy. She is my pink soul sister!”
—Betsey Johnson, fashion designer
 
“It takes a tremendous amount of courage, determination, and confidence to rise up and reinvent your life after breast cancer treatment is over. Life feels fragile and frightening. Geralyn Lucas’s book is a fresh, smart, funny, open, and honest account of the raw moments from low self-worth to new self-appreciation, mourning to celebration, marriage to motherhood, and from hiding to bold extroversion. It’s a fascinating real-life bumpy ride. Buckle your safety belt and read this book!”
—Marisa C. Weiss, MD, president and founder, Breastcancer.org and author of Living Beyond Breast Cancer
 
Praise for Why I Wore Lipstick to My Mastectomy

“This is the first time that wearing lipstick is a metaphor for courage and hope. Geralyn Lucas’s story of her experience with breast cancer is written in a breezy, inspirational voice. Her energetic enthusiasm and fears are balanced beautifully and expressively to rivet the reader on each page.”
—Evelyn Lauder, senior corporate vice president of the Estée Lauder Companies and founder and chairman of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation
 
“I played it, Geralyn lived it. Read this book and you’ll never wear lipstick the same way again.”
—Kim Cattrall, actress
 
“In this gutsy, touching, and often hilarious journal, Geralyn takes the reader on her roller coaster of emotional experiences, from the heartbreak of hearing her diagnosis to the triumph of her daughter’s birth. Millions of women, and those who love them, will be forever grateful for this powerful and life-affirming book. At Lifetime, I know we are immensely grateful and proud to have Geralyn’s passion and knowledge dedicated to our advocacy campaign to stop breast cancer.”
—Carole Black, president and CEO of Lifetime Entertainment Services
 
“This book is an extraordinary perspective from the inside out. As Geralyn’s self-discovery and triumph over breast cancer unfolds, she takes us with her from her doctor’s office, to work, through her living room, to the bedroom, right into the bathroom, and in and out of taxicabs. You need to be with her through each of these moments to see—right up close—how much sheer sweetness, sadness, love, honesty, uncertainty, terror, courage, excitement, hope, and guts were bundled into each piece of every day. Geralyn is bigger than life and death. Now I’m wearing lipstick!”
— Marisa C. Weiss, MD, president and founder, Breastcancer.org and author of Living Beyond Breast Cancer
 
“Geralyn Lucas makes you laugh and cry in the very same moment. . . . Her vivid scenes are cinematographic in detail and sweep you along her journey with unerring perception, insight, and, ultimately, acceptance and personal growth. This unique story is a must-read for any woman who has a friend, loved one, or who is herself enduring the experience of breast cancer. It’s like nothing else ever written on the subject, and adds a note of humanity and humor to a topic that often lacks either. You can’t help but thoroughly enjoy this book.”
—Lucy Danziger, editor in chief of Self magazine (the founder of Pink Ribbon)
 
“A bold memoir.”
People
 
“Surprisingly optimistic and immensely empowering.”
Publishers Weekly
 
“Outrageous and often hilarious . . . This is a totally frank, inspiring, and defiant account of undaunted courage.”
Seattle Post-Intelligencer


Praise for WHY I WORE LIPSTICK TO MY MASTECTOMY

"This is the first time that wearing lipstick is a metaphor for courage and hope. Geralyn Lucas' story of her experience with breast cancer is written in a breezy, inspirational voice. Her energetic enthusiasm and fears are balanced beautifully and expressively to rivet the reader on each page."

-Evelyn Lauder, senior corporate vice president of The Estée Lauder Companies and 

founder and chairman of The Breast Cancer Research Foundation
 

"I played it, Geralyn lived it. Read this book and you'll never wear lipstick the same way again."

-Kim Cattrall, actress
 

"In this gutsy, touching and often hilarious journal, Geralyn takes the reader on her roller coaster of emotional experiences, from the heartbreak of hearing her diagnosis to the triumph of her daughter's birth. Millions of women, and those who love them, will be forever grateful for this powerful and life-affirming book. At Lifetime, I know we are immensely grateful and proud to have Geralyn's passion and knowledge dedicated to our advocacy campaign to stop breast cancer."

-Carole Black, president and CEO of Lifetime Entertainment Services
 

"This book is an extraordinary perspective from the inside out. As Geralyn's self-discovery and triumph over breast cancer unfolds, she takes us with her from her doctor's office, to work, through her living room, to the bedroom, right into the bathroom, and in and out of taxicabs. You need to be with her through each of these moments to see-right up close-how much sheer sweetness, sadness, love, honesty, uncertainty, terror, courage, excitement, hope, and guts were bundled into each piece of every day. Geralyn is bigger than life and death. Now I'm wearing lipstick!"

-Marisa Weiss, M.D., breast cancer specialist, president and founder of breastcancer.org, founder of Living Beyond Breast Cancer, and author of Living Beyond Breast Cancer
 

"Geralyn Lucas makes you laugh and cry in the very same moment...Her vivid scenes are cinematographic in detail, and sweep you along her journey with unerring perception, insight, and ultimately, acceptance and personal growth. This unique story is a must-read for any woman who has a friend, loved one, or who is herself enduring the experience of breast cancer. It's like nothing else ever written on the subject, and adds a note of humanity and humor to a topic that often lacks either. You can't help but thoroughly enjoy this book."

-Lucy Danziger, editor-in-chief of Self magazine (the founder of Pink Ribbon)
 

"A bold memoir."

-People
 

"Surprisingly optimistic and immensely empowering."
-Publishers Weekly
 

"Outrageous and often hilarious…This is a totally frank, inspiring and defiant account of undaunted courage." -Seattle Post-Intelligencer