Naya is home, surrounded by what matters to her ... Love. Family. Dogs. Home. Friends. We are blessed to have this precious time together and be with our beautiful girl. Whispering in her ear to tell her how much we love her. Reading notes from all of the people that are sending her their love. Telling her stories that remind her of funny moments and her amazing courage. Caring for her with the same love and gentleness we did when she was a newborn. Kissing her beautiful skin. Holding her hand. Caressing her legs to give her comfort. There is nothing we won't do for our amazing daughter. She has given this world so much in such a short amount of time. We all witnessed her incredible positive energy and spirit as she climbed many mountains to see her life dreams fulfilled. We continue to be inspired by her strength, courage, humor, love and beauty even when she is so weak. She has never given up, and never will. But now, we are inspired by what she is going to do.
Naya knew she might not make it through this battle. While she never dwelled in that possibility or felt sorry for herself, she did make her wishes known. She wants to change the world by giving kids their lives back. Her desire is to cure pediatric cancer. When her health was good, even then she wanted all of her leftover college money to go to CHOP and wanted to support their research for the rest of her life. She is inspired by Alex Scott of Alex's Lemonade Stand, and wishes to make a similar difference for children.
Along this journey, you have seen her words on posters and videos. Smile. Never Quit. Follow Your Dreams. Enjoy Life.Stay Strong. Fight Like a Girl. Enjoy Each Day. I came across a gift she gave Hank for his 50th birthday, before she was diagnosed. In her typical way, she chose something very special that will live with us forever. She chose a small wooden box with a quote:
"It's not the years in life that count, it's the life in the years." - Abraham Lincoln
Thank you Naya for being our daughter. There is no greater honor.