You wouldn’t expect a 27-year-old woman from Australia to provide the kind of advice that makes people around the world stop and think about their lives, but obviously Holly Butcher is pretty special.
Last year, she was diagnosed with Ewings sarcoma, an extremely rare form of leg and pelvis cancer. Based on statistics from here in the US, being diagnosed with Ewings is literally a one in a million chance, and Butcher was simply unlucky.
While children can usually survive Ewings, it proves to be fatal in about half of all adult cases, and Butcher died from the disease last week. But before she passed away, she took to Facebook to write an open letter about what she learned from the disease.
“It’s a strange thing to [realize] and accept your mortality at 26 years young,” she wrote about her diagnosis.
“It’s just one of those things you ignore. The days tick by and you just expect they will keep on coming; Until the unexpected happens. I always imagined myself growing old, wrinkled and grey – most likely caused by the beautiful family (lots of kiddies) I planned on building with the love of my life. I want that so bad it hurts”
But while Butcher didn’t get the life she wanted, she learned a few important life lessons before she died, and her full letter proves we could all learn a thing or two from her.