I learned at an early age that everyone has a gift from God and it’s important to use that gift for good. You have to give back. For me, the gift of music is something that I was born with. My mom says I sang before I talked, even humming as a tiny infant!
At first music was something that I did because it made me feel good, but I began to realize that I made others feel better with my music and that makes it important to share. My grandpa died when I was younger and my mom was very sad. I wanted to comfort her but I didn’t know what words to say.
So, instead of talking I began to sing. It meant so much to me that I was able to lift her spirits. It was also the best way I knew how to deal with my own pain. I still didn’t understand the power of music but I could feel how it made a difference to people.
A few years later, I met a little girl named Taylor Love. Taylor was fighting neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer with no cure. One day I visited Taylor and took a bag of toy musical instruments. She was shy at first but once I brought out the instruments she really opened up. We had so much fun. Later, I played a few songs for her on a blanket in her backyard. By the end of the day, it felt like we were sisters.
I made up my mind that day that I would help Taylor in any way that I could. We would fight cancer together no matter what. I learned that Taylor’s doctors needed money for research and they needed to raise awareness of childhood cancer. I didn’t have any money but I did have music and I promised to use it to try to help save Taylor ‘s life.
A few weeks later I went to a local shopping center and performed to raise money for Taylor. I raised about $189 that day, but I knew that I could do more. The next month I posted song a YouTube and asked people to donate to Taylor. In the first day alone over $500 of donations came in. Next, I played on the streets of Washington, DC and in the Metro stations. The response was amazing. Even a homeless man named Rob put all of his change in Taylor’s donation bucket!
In the past three years, I have used the power of music to help raise enough money to fund a new cancer treatment. I hope it is in time to save Taylor and other children like her. Taylor’s doctors hope this will put Taylor’s cancer in remission again so she can have her childhood back.