12/10/2012 3:47 PM
By Becca Atherton
Last night I went to my little sister's church choir concert and they sang this song at the end. I was so close to tears, as was my mom. I knew that I had to share this song with you all. It's called “Go Light Your World” by Chris Rice:
There is a candle in every soul
Some brightly burning, some dark and cold
There is a spirit who brings a fire
Ignites a candle, and makes his home
Click here for the rest of the lyrics.
Living with CHD, there were times for me that I never thought I was special. I thought that I was the “weird kid” or the “different kid.” Bullying and teasing about my scar and the way my voice sounded because of all the ventilators from open heart surgery left me not wanting to even be me. I was ashamed of who I was. I was ashamed of having a heart defect. With the help of counseling and an amazing camp for kids with heart defects, I learned to accept myself and to realize that I am special.
I realized that I had a candle burning inside of me. Some people tried to put it out. And sure, at times it got dimmer. But it never extinguished. We all have a candle burning inside of us. We all have a passion, a desire, something unique that has brought us this far in our CHD fight. And I'm sure at times it felt like there was nothing left inside of us. But if we fuel that fire that's in us, and we go out into the world, we can help light another person's candle just by letting ours shine. Don't be afraid or ashamed of your candle. It's what makes you, you.
Maybe, if we let our candles shine and we run out into the world to help brighten it up, maybe we can help bring awareness to CHD. And maybe, as a CHD community, we can help our fellow CHD patients to not give up and to keep fighting. So I ask you to “Go Light Your World” and help each other as we light our candles.
Becca Atherton was born with tetralogy of Fallot, pulmonary atresia and pulmonary hypertension. She was adopted as a baby into a large multiracial family, where she is the second youngest. Becca was given a 13% chance of surviving to the age of five, but she is 19 years old and a college sophomore at her local community college. She loves to read, perform American Sign Language to music and write on her blog.
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