When Avery Lynn Canahuati was born, her parents knew she didn't have a long life ahead of her… but they resolved to make it as rich as they could.
Avery Lynn Canahuati (averycan.blogspot.com)
Avery was born with Spinal Muscular Atrophy, a rare disease that prompted her doctors to estimate she'd live no longer than 18 months. In fact, she only lived five months. But her parents filled those five months with joy, watching her live instead of waiting for her to die. Knowing their daughter had limited time on this earth, they created a "bucket list" of things they wanted her to experience while she was here. And they got through a remarkable number of bucket list items.
Going to a baseball game (and throwing the first pitch) – check.
Appearing on TV – check.
Getting a tattoo (temporary!) – check.
Flying a kite – check.
Raising awareness of Spinal Muscular Atrophy and the fight for a cure – check.
That's just a drop in the bucket list – Avery's blog details so many more of the ways her parents helped her live her short life to the fullest, and helped bring the message of SMA awareness to readers all over the world.
Avery died yesterday, much sooner than her parents and doctors expected. Her parents posted a last picture of her on her blog – taken just minutes before she went into cardiac arrest, it shows a happy, smiling baby.
Avery experienced things in five months that some of us don't get around to in decades of life. Her bucket list is an inspiration to really live our lives… and her struggle is a call to support the fight against SMA and other fatal childhood diseases.
Written by Linnea Crowther