She knew her time was limited – but she still had so much more to do. Five-month-old Avery Canahuati passed away Monday around 3 p.m., after complications from Spinal Muscular Atrophy, the crippling genetic disease she faced from birth. Doctors had told the Canahuatis that little Avery would have about 18 months to live, but she survived just a month past her early April diagnosis.
Her father Mike Canahuati shared the sad news Tuesday morning on the “Avery’s Bucket List” blog he and his wife Laura created for their daughter. He wrote a brief missive explaining that “one of her lungs collapsed and she went into cardiac arrest.” Attempts at CPR were successful at reviving her until they arrived at the hospital, where the five-month-old passed away.
His note then gave way to a lengthier message in Avery’s voice, which has been the theme of the blog since its start four weeks ago, when the girl’s crushing SMA diagnosis was delivered. Avery’s note thanked the flurry of friends across the world that came to rally behind her as she battled her illness. It also continued to push its mission for better awareness of the disease and more efforts to pre-screen parents who might be carriers of the gene.
When Laura and Mike Canahuati found out Avery only had months to live, they decided to start a bucket list blog so that their daughter could condense all essential experiences into her life, no matter how short. Over the past four weeks, Mike penned near daily updates, written in young Avery’s voice, details such joyous experiences as her first kiss and having a tea party.
Even in the blog post announcing her death, Avery’s father continued the ever-hopeful tone of the blog. The Canahuatis posted one final picture of their daughter, gleeful, with a smile stretching wide across her face. The farewell note “written by Avery” closed with a comforting quote for her parents: “And while I’m not here physically, I will forever live in your minds, as you will mine.” Somehow, though, we feel like she was really speaking to all of us.
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