This is Anitra


She grew up in Missoula, MT and had a rough go at life since she was little. Starting just shortly before her first birthday, she was diagnosed with cancer. With her being so small, it was too dangerous to operate.

It took several years before finding a surgeon willing to help. In 2003, she and her parents flew out to Denver where the surgeon removed over ninety percent of the tumor.

With the removal, it brought other complications to the forefront. The nerve damage from the tumor had an impact on her feet and she had scoliosis. 

A few short years later, she was given two options from a surgeon. Either to fuse her bones and flatten her feet or completely take everything out, leaving her with just her heels. She chose the latter.

By 2008, she had been in remission for five years.

            “Looking back now, I knew God was with me the whole time. He was helping, showing me how to be patient. I was taught faith”

Her freshman year, her back had gotten to the point that her spine was the shape of an S. Decisions for a spinal infusion were made, to prevent more curves and to stabilize it. 

First attempt comes, the surgeon lost signal to her legs. He wasn’t sure if it was accurate or not, but he went to consult with her dad about either continuing or postponing. Her dad mentioned later, it felt like God was with him during that moment. His gut feeling told him that if he had chosen to continue, she wouldn’t be here today.

            “As I grew older, I learned that He was showing me to take everything in stride as they come. He taught me to not only have patience with the community, but to also have patience with myself.”

Today, she shows her passion for baking and writing with her church family. She may not verbally speak much, but she speaks volumes in her poems.

Crepuscular Rays
Through darkness, you’ll find me.
A place of solid grounds
hidden within miles of trees.
On a mountain with a crystal view
of clouds, you’ll see me waiting.
Waiting are the dark clouds 
looming, bringing a weight to you.
A burden on your shoulders
only you can remove.
Through failures, you’ll find your strength in me.
A small grasp of freedom, flowing
as you walk along the sides of a river.
The trickling of water over rocks on it’s bed.
Where hope resides and gives
you a voice to say, “I’ll try again.”
And keep trying until one succeeds.
Through time, I’ll find the bright side.
A small slip of light pouring out
of those dark clouds above.
Reminding me, there’s light in everything.
Whether for yourself, or a friend. 
Tell them to keep looking.
If they look long enough, you’ll find me
there, deep within.

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