A woman threw herself a 'new life' birthday party a year after she survived being set on fire in a tragic accident while on a girls holiday.
Maddi Scordia, from Parramatta, Australia, suffered third degree burns after a blaze erupted next to a methane fire pit.
The 25-year-old entrepreneur sustained third degree burns on 60 per cent of her body including her chest, arms, stomach and the majority of her legs.
Maddi was sitting right next to a the fire pit when it was lit.
It had rained the day before and air molecules trapped in the pit caused the fire to erupt and engulf her.
Maddi then spent three months in Royal Adelaide Hospital while the city was in lockdown and her family was unable to cross borders to meet her.
She suffered vascular burns and had to have skin grafts and specialist burn treatments.
This procedure was incredibly painful, but it also meant Maddi was able to regain movement across her body and start walking again within 19 days of the accident.
After 61 surgeries, and nearly 12 months of recovery, Maddi had the compression garments on her skin grafts removed on November 19, 2021.
To celebrate the occasion, an exact year after the accident, she threw herself a 'new' life first birthday party.
She said: "I am throwing myself a birthday party because it happened. I made it, now my recovery is nearly complete and I will celebrate.
"My friends and I are a lot closer after it happened, my family is much closer. It was painful, it still is a lot of the time but that will change over time.
"This accident changed the course I was on in my life. I wanted to be this funny Australian girl that worked in motorsport, and just make a career out of that.
"And I have no doubt I still will but the difference is I notice people in a different way and I don't get intimidated by people with physical disabilities or impairments.
"I used to think that it must be so scary to go through something like that, but going through it myself, I can say it's scary but life's going to go on and a lot of great things have happened in my life since.
"I thought my life was over and I felt that way until I started being myself again, which is a strong, determined, somewhat annoying, occasionally loud woman."
She added: "One of the things that I thought would be different for certain is dating, I thought it was going to be awful and no one would ever like me.
"I thought being what I assumed was an ugly burnt woman with no prospects in her life, I would end up a spinster like Bridget Jones.
"It wasn't that at all, in fact, one of the greatest compliments received from someone recently was 'I am not intimidated by how you look. I am intimidated by how you are.
"'Because you're so out there. You get it, do it. And you don't want to be known for your burns, you want to be known for who you are.'"
Maddi credits her recovery to her incredible support system and herfamily and friends that stood by her throughout her three-month hospital stay.
She said: "My friend Caroline McCarten and her husband came to see me every day in the hospital, they were there for every milestone. I spoke to my dad and my business partner Ryf every day," she said.
"When I learnt to walk, and use the toilet again, shower, they were there. But looking back on it, I know I must have given them so much grief.
"It was a really bad time and I must have annoyed and abused them, being angry about what happened, but they stuck by me. You should have people around you that love and support you, whether that is nurses and doctors or family and friends.
"And don't feel like this is the worst thing in the world that can ever happen to you, because it is not. Life will go on with or without you, you want to be here. Give it a shot, you've almost died once, what's the worst thing that can happen now?"
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