Robin Roberts and the Power of Prayer
- Robin Roberts has openly talked about the power of prayer for many years. Now, she’s using it to help her through the breast cancer survivor’s most recent struggle as her partner, Amber Laign, takes on her own battle with the disease.
- Although it’s not for everyone, leaning into faith can help cancer warriors stay positive when times get tough.
- Many women develop breast cancer every year, and the disease is the subject of much research. There are many treatment options out there, but treatment paths depend greatly on the specifics of each case.
Robin Roberts, 61, has been with her parter Amber Laign, 47, for about 17 years. The couple has been together through many highs and lows including Roberts’ battle with breast cancer.Read More
Robin Roberts received her breast cancer diagnosis in 2007. Ironically, she was diagnosed after finding a lump in her breast thanks to her prep for a news segment on performing self-checks. Thankfully, she was cancer-free after her surgery.
But just last month, Robin Roberts shared that Laign now has to face breast cancer as well. And in an update from just the other day, Roberts seemed optimistic about her partner’s cancer journey thus far.
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“You know so many people have asked how Amber is doing. And I have to just tell you that she is doing well,” she said in an Instagram video. “There have been some issues with her chemo treatment and we are confident that they are going to be resolved soon.
“And we know that everybody’s got something and we want you to know that we are thinking and praying [for] you.”
A Prayer from Robin Roberts
Robins has kept up with her morning prayers throughout Laign’s cancer journey so far. In her most recent post, she shares more uplifting advice for all who are praying through the obstacles in their lives.
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“When you face adversity, is your typical prayer,’ God get me out of this?'” she asked her viewers in the video. “There’s nothing wrong with that. But before you get out, you have to invite Him in. Sometimes the miracle is in what he wants to do in the situation.”
She then continued my offering her own suggestion of a prayer.
“Why don’t you try this prayer? ‘God come into this hospital room, come into this troubled relationship, come into this anxiety,'” Roberts said. “Although adversities are going to come, He will be with you in them. Are you trying to get out of the fire? Are you trying to get out of that fire? He’s going to be with you. Maybe he’s just waiting for your invitation.”
“And Now, the prayer for today: Father, oh, gosh, Father, thank you. Thank you for your promise to be with us through life’s fires. We know that you’re here with us right now. And we invite you into every challenging situation in our lives. Help us to grow through it to increase our faith to let our character come up even higher. In Jesus name, Amen. Right sweet Amber?”
As she often does, the TV star ended her prayer by pressing a button that lets out a sound of someone’s voice – likely Laign’s.
Turing to Faith during a Cancer Journey
Roberts has been very open about how faith has gotten her through tough times and encourages others to lean into their own faith. So, it’s no surprise that she’s still incorporating prayer as the cancer survivor’s partner tackles her own battle with breast cancer.
For some people, turning to faith can be a great way to keep spirits high when cancer starts taking an emotional and/or physical toll. Monica Layton, for example, also believes in the power of faith during a fight with cancer. She turned to her church congregation for support as she battled ovarian cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic and then went through recovery.
“[I’ve] gone to the same church for a long time, so it’s like another family that really supports me,” she told SurvivorNet in a previous interview. “We’re Episcopalian, and when I was having surgery my priest came to the hospital and stayed and prayed with my family the whole time – and it was a long surgery. And then he came back to the hospital every day to pray with me.”
In addition to praying for her, Layton’s church also sent flowers, cards and a prayer blanket and often visited her.
“They were so kind,” Layton said. “I think my faith has been very important, crucial for me. Just the prayer really helps, I think.”
Understanding Breast Cancer
Breast cancer is a common cancer that has been the subject of much research. Many women develop breast cancer every year, but men can develop this cancer too – though it is more rare, in part, due to the simple fact that they have less breast tissue.
Screening for breast cancer is typically done via mammogram, which looks for lumps in the breast tissue and signs of cancer. And while mammograms aren’t perfect, they are still a great way to begin annual screening. The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends women begin mammogram screening for breast cancer at age 45. Even still, we know that a breast cancer diagnosis can come at any age.
It’s also important to be on top of self breast exams. If you ever feel a lump in your breast, it’s important to be vigilant and speak with your doctor. Voicing your concerns as soon as you have them can lead to earlier cancer detection which, in turn, can lead to better outcomes.
There are many treatment options for people with breast cancer, but treatment depends greatly on the specifics of each case. Identifying these specifics means looking into whether the cancerous cells have certain receptors. These receptors – the estrogen receptor, the progesterone receptor and the HER2 receptor – can help identify the unique features of the cancer and help personalize treatment.
“These receptors, I like to imagine them like little hands on the outside of the cell, they can grab hold of what we call ligands, and these ligands are essentially the hormones that may be circulating in the bloodstream that can then be pulled into this cancer cell and used as a fertilizer, as growth support for the cells,” Dr. Elizabeth Comen, a medical oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, told SurvivorNet in a previous interview.
One example of a type of ligand that can stimulate a cancer cell is the hormone estrogen, hence why an estrogen receptor positive breast cancer will grow when stimulated by estrogen. For these cases, your doctor may offer treatment that specifically targets the estrogen receptor. But for HER2 positive breast cancers, therapies that uniquely target the HER2 receptor may be the most beneficial.