I am Marga Abejo-Momper. I am a classical guitarist. I’m writing my story now, almost 2 years after my accident, because I think I can finally share my thoughts about it. My accident happened at midnight, on the 1st of June 2016. I was lighting some coal with denatured alcohol to heat a brick oven. In the process, a little flame caused the big canister to explode beside me, covering me with alcohol and fire. I was quick to think and I ran (on fire) to the outside bathroom and doused myself in water from a pail and then turned on the shower to kill the last of the flames. Luckily, there was a full pail of water- my injuries would behave been worse if it was not there and if I didn’t have the presence of mind to run and extinguish the flame. I was left with 36% of my body burned with 1st, 2nd, and 2nd deep partial burns on my legs, arms, chest, hands, and face. This accident happened 3 months before my wedding, and a few weeks before a very important concert tour. I didn’t expect my injuries to be so grave but I was in and out of the hospital for 2 months doing re-dressing and finally a skin graft surgery. The doctors took skin from my other leg to help my other leg heal faster. My doctor was amazing and kind- he didn’t charge me for any doctors fees for all the surgeries he did. I am forever grateful for his kindness.
I’ve always been an active person and at the time the accident happened, it forced me to halt my career as a guitarist. 10 years of work on my fingers and calluses were peeled away during my healing process. It frustrated me because I had worked so hard to get to where I was and the thought of starting over just made me want to stop completely. Luckily, my family , friends, and my husband encouraged me to play again and I realized that you can never really lose the music in your spirit.
Now I am currently studying guitar in the Conservatory of Luxembourg. As a burn survivor and reading all the stories of other people like me, i’ve realized that getting well takes time. The skin is not the only part that gets damaged, but the mind and spirit too. It’s difficult to deal with the idea to live a normal life after such an accident. Living with the new skin that we are in is a struggle, but day by day- it gets better. We are all slowly accepting our scars, and accepting that these scars do not define you as a broken or damaged person, but an extraordinary person who lived through dark times and can carry on better, stronger, than anyone would have imagined you to.