A woman who passed away from terminal cancer earlier this week left a heartfelt letter for friends and family, asking her husband to post it to Facebook after she died.
Heather McManamy, 36, was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer in April 2013. But despite gruelling treatment it spread to her liver and bones, and in 2014 she was told her cancer was terminal.
Knowing that her time was limited, Heather started to write letters for loved ones to read after she passed away.
She started with a collection of letters for her daughter Brianna to read at important milestones in her life, such as getting married or having a child of her own, and then addressed family, friends and, most importantly, her husband.
Despite the bleak news of diagnosis, Heather and Jeff decided "to live life, rather than focus on the unfairness of the universe". Over the past 18 months the family spent quality time together, travelling to Disney and having parties at home.
But there is no truer testament to the adoration Heather felt for those close to her than her own words, posted to Facebook earlier this week.
"The bad news is, apparently, I’m dead. Good news, if you’re reading this, is that you are most definitely not (unless they have wifi in the afterlife).
"Yes, this sucks. It sucks beyond words, but I’m just so damn glad I lived a life so full of love, joy and amazing friends. I am lucky to honestly say that I have zero regrets and I spent every ounce of energy I had living life to the fullest. I love you all and thank you for this awesome life.
"Whatever religion brings you comfort, I am happy that you have that. However, respect that we are not religious. Please, please, please do not tell Brianna that I am in heaven. In her mind, that means that I chose to be somewhere else and left her. In reality, I did everything I could to be here with her, as there is nowhere, NOWHERE, I would rather be than with her and Jeff. Please don’t confuse her and let her think for one second that is not true. Because, I am not in heaven. I’m here. But no longer in the crappy body that turned against me. My energy, my love, my laughter, those incredible memories, it’s all here with you."
She also asked friends not to talk about her cancer journey as a "battle".
"Cancer may have taken almost everything from me, but it never took my love or my hope or my joy. It wasn’t a “battle” it was just life, which is often brutally random and unfair, and that’s simply how it goes sometimes. I didn’t lose, dammit. The way I lived for years with cancer is something I consider a pretty big victory. Please remember that."
After speaking with great fondness of individuals, she had some heartfelt words of advice asking people to live life to the fullest.
"Take a few minutes each day to acknowledge the fragile adventure that is this crazy life. Don’t ever forget: every day matters."
Since posting the status on Tuesday, Jeff has been overwhelmed by the support.
He wrote on Facebook: "Wow, just wow. I can't believe the outpouring of support from all around the world. Thank you all so much! It's easy to forget sometimes, but seeing all of these posts and messages show how much good there is in the world."
While Heather was still alive the family set up a fundraising page Heather's daughter, to help create 'Brianna-Mummy Memories'. So far the page has raised more than $44,000 (almost £30,000) and counting.Suggest a correction