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Athena Orchard: Young girl loses cancer battle, mirror reveals words of wisdom

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A young girl named Athena Orchard may have lost her battle to cancer recently, but a mirror in her bedroom has revealed the now deceased 13-year-old’s words of wisdom. The 3,000 word message including such lines as “It’s not about the happy ending — it’s about the story” is giving the teen’s family renewed hope after her devastating loss. ABC News shares Athena’s powerful history in fighting bone cancer this Thursday, June 5, 2014, and how her spirit is living on through her moving remarks.

Less than a week after Athena Orchard — who was 13 years old at the time of her passing — died from cancer, the young woman’s family learned of a secret message she had written prior to her death. Athena had scribed her words of wisdom onto the back of the mirror, and now such knowledge beyond her age is being shared with the rest f the world.

“Happiness depends on ourselves,” Athena wrote in one of her now viral lines shared across the Web. “Maybe it’s not about the happy ending. Maybe it’s about the story.”

Several months ago, the young girl was tragically diagnosed with oseosarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer. Athena Orchard had gone in for testing after feeling a small but painful lump on her head back in December of 2013. Upon collapsing shortly before the Christmas holiday, health doctors learned that the cancer had spread from her spine and her shoulder all the way to the back of her head. Immediate action was taken in the hopes of saving the girl's life.

Metro UK offers some of the latest details surrounding the 3,000 word message and the tough experience leading up to it. The brave 13-year-old had to deal with a harrowing eight hour surgery in order to remove the tumor from her spine, then began the chemotherapy process. Yet through all her struggle, Athena Orchard remained strong. She finally passed away on May 28 in her home in Great Britain after losing her battle with cancer.

Following her sad death, while going through her room to clear it out, her parents found the secret message hidden behind the girl’s mirror, and the words of wisdom found in that loving note.

“She never mentioned it, but it’s the kind of thing she’d do,” Athena’s father, Dean Orchard, 33, told Caters. “I started reading it, but before long I had to stop because it was too much. It was heartbreaking.”

Athena Orchard took the time to write succinctly yet poignantly, describing her final thoughts on the complex themes of life, love, joy, sickess, and death. Now, her recovering family has vowed that they will hold on to the mirror forever, and remember her words in the times to come.

“Every day is special, so make the most of it,” Athena wrote. “You could get a life-ending illness tomorrow, so make the most of every day … Life is only bad if you make it bad.”

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