Athena Orchard is like any other 12-year-old. She's a cheerful girl with lots of good friends. She's part of a big family as she watches over her 6 sisters and 3 brothers with care. However, she recently discovered a bump on her head which she didn't worry about until she collapsed in the kitchen. The doctors gave her a devastating diagnosis: bone cancer.
A huge unexpected shock for Athena and her family. After the surgery, she goes through chemo and loses all of her hair. She reminded optimistic and hopeful but unfortunately, the cancer was very aggressive. Shortly after she had her 13th birthday, she died surrounded by her family.
After their daughter lost her fight with cancer, Dean and Caroline Orchard knew they had to face the devastating task of sorting through her belongings.
What they didn’t know was that they would discover something that would make them feel closer to 13-year-old Athena than ever.
A few days after Athena's death, her dad was tidying up her room. As he moved the mirror from the wall, he noticed something on the back. It's filled with ink and the words are a message from his daughter. "I couldn't believe it. It was almost 3,000 words long. It totally blew me away. I started reading the words, but I had to stop after awhile, it was simply too much - it broke my heart" said her dad.
Athena’s handwritten goodbye was full of wisdom and comfort for her family and friends she left behind. Here are some beautiful quotes from Athena’s emotional words:
“Happiness depends upon ourselves. Maybe it’s not about the happy ending, maybe it’s about the story.
The purpose of life is a life of purpose. The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra.
Happiness is a direction, not a destination. Thank you for existing. Be happy, be free, believe, forever young.
You know my name, not my story. You have heard what I’ve done, but not what I’ve been through. Love is like glass, looks so lovely, but it’s easy to shatter.
Every day is special, so make the most of it. You could get a life-ending illness tomorrow so make the most of every day. Life is only bad if you make it bad.
Love is rare, life is strange, nothing lasts and people change. Life is a game for everyone but love is the only prize.
If someone loves you then they wouldn’t let you slip away no matter how hard the situation is. Remember that life is full of ups and downs, without the downs the ups don’t mean anything.
I’m waiting to fall in love with someone I can open my heart to.
Love is not about who you can see spending your future with it’s about who you can’t see spending your life without.
There is no reason to cry because I’ll know you’ll be by my side.”
Despite her illness, Athena never lost her ability to see the best things in life. These are her last thoughts and she wanted to leave an impression on her family and friends. With her strength and determination, I hope she can be an inspiration to us all.
SOURCE: DAILY MAIL
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