Athena Orchard is like any other ordinary 12 years old. She’s a cheerful and beautiful girl with lots of good friends. As part of a big family, she watches over her 6 sisters and 3 brothers with care. However, she discovered a bump on her head which she didn’t worry about until she collapsed in the kitchen.
The doctors have their devastating diagnosis: bone cancer. That was a huge unexpected shock for Athena and her family. Doctors race her to hospital where she endures 7-hour operation to remove a tumor. After the surgery, she goes through a chemo and loses her hair. She remains optimistic and hopeful in her bout for cancer but unfortunately, the cancer cells became more aggressive. Shortly after her 13th birthday, she died surrounded by her family.
A few days later after Athena’s death, her father was tidying up her room. As he moved the mirror from the wall, he noticed something in the back. It’s filled with ink and the worlds are 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 a while, it was simply too much-it broke my heart,” said her dad.
Athena’s written goodbye was full of wisdom and comfort for her family and friends she left behind. Here are some of beautiful quotes from Athena”s words:
Happiness depends upon ourselves. Maybe it’s not about the happy ending, maybe it’s about the story.
The purpose of life is 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 a 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 everyday. 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 sleep you 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 her 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, she can be an inspiration to all of us who may not live long but has made short life worth living—a legacy to cherish forever.