By Sarrah Peters
Southside Senior Taylor Clough, 18, wrote and published her first book The Perfect Match last month.
“I wanted to tell my story,” said Taylor.
When Taylor Clough was only 12, she got some devastating news. Her little brother, Ben, was diagnosed with leukemia at only 9 years old.
To help her brother and best friend fight the aggressive cancer, Taylor, donated bone marrow. The treatment allowed Ben an extra year and a half, but then he relapsed. So Taylor donated again. This time the treatment was not successful. He lost the struggle against the disease on June 5, 2011.
“They say it (donating bone marrow) is a very painful process, but I’ll be honest, because I was young, I didn’t experience a lot of pain,” said Clough. “It’s been more of an emotional struggle with it because of it not working than it has physical.”
Now, four years later, Taylor has written a book about the devastating experience and how it helped her grow spiritually.
“It (the book) is also about perseverance through trials,” said Clough. “First off, I wanted to inspire siblings going through something like this, and then as I began writing I knew that it was not just siblings that were in the position I’m in. There’s many people that lose someone close to them.”
Taylor held a book signing at White Springs Baptist Church in Rainbow City during a tablescape hosted by Bayleigh Philips, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2006. Both Clough and Philips spoke at the event.
Clough has been speaking about her experience since shortly after the book was released.
“It’s called The Perfect Match because me and Benjamin were a perfect match through our DNA, and that’s what made us a match as far as donating bone marrow,” said Clough. “But when I do speaking events I tell them that everyone has their perfect match, meaning that everyone has someone that comes into their lives, and changes them for the better and teaches them that when they leave, not only do you grieve them, but you learn the price of love and how powerful love is.”
Clough also emphasizes the spiritual growth she has gained from her experience.
“I was honored to lose my brother,” said Clough. “It was a hard, difficult process, but I’m honored to have lost him because it taught me that I’m capable of loving like Christ does…”
Proceeds from the event were given to Camp Smile-A-Mile, which gives children with cancer the opportunity to attend camp and participate in traditional camping activities, such as arts & crafts, fishing, boating, archery and canoeing.
Clough is planning to attend Gadsden State Community College next year. She has not decided her major, but is leaning towards the education field.
The Perfect Match is available online at Amazon.com for $12. To find out more about book signings and speaking events, follow Clough on facebook at www.facebook.com/taylorcloug3.