March 1, 2016
Dear Make-A-Wish Hawaii,
On behalf of Alexander aka “Z” and our entire family, we want to say thank you for granting Z’s wish to go to Disney World in Florida. It was an amazing journey that we will cherish forever.
Z was three months cancer-free when we were cleared to go to Disney. The wish trip gave our family so much happiness and hope for our future. We feel that many good things are ahead for our family and Z’s cancer is hopefully behind him forever. Several times during Z’s treatments, our family felt broken and hopeless, but Make-A-Wish Hawaii gave our family something positive to dream about during the rough chemo sessions. Make-A-Wish Hawaii helped Z smile on days he was feeling his worst, because he could imagine what his wish might be like in the months ahead.
One of the most magical moments during Z’s wish was the Pirate Experience that Make-A-Wish Hawaii arranged. Z was made up as a pirate from head to toe, which included a costume, pirate name (which was Jim Coalflint, but he insisted on being called "Captain Alexander"), and all the accessories a pirate needs. He also took a pirate oath and was slipped through a secret door to a room where he received a piece of pirate treasure. When Z opened the treasure chest, a glowing light filled the room and his eyes lit up. The pirate walking him through the secret room gave him a necklace. He told Z not to ever tell where he got this piece of treasure, because the treasure room is a "secret." Z was so into this moment of accepting this treasure necklace that throughout the day, if anyone asked him where he received the necklace, he replied, “YO HO HO… It is a secret! I cannot tell you where the treasure rests.” It was so cute to watch him do this. Z became a pirate every time someone would ask him about the necklace, and many people did. This was a special memory and we are so thankful Z was able to become a magical pirate for a day.
Another special time that was so incredible was the Medieval Times dinner experience with his eldest grandparents. Z was so into cheering for his "Green" knight. At first, he wasn’t too sure about eating with his hands, but quickly got over it and enjoyed eating his HUGE chicken leg. Z was so moved by this experience that he even cried when his knight did not win, but he was relieved when he saw his knight get back on his horse and parade around the arena waving his flag. This experience was very real to Z and he talks about it a lot even to this very day. He calls the dinner show the "Knight’s Fight!"
This Make-A-Wish adventure was so incredible for our entire family. We have experienced the POWER and MAGIC of a wish firsthand and we totally BELIEVE that what your non-profit is doing for these children with life-threatening illnesses is truly a cherished moment and blessing for each family.
It was really hard when Z was first diagnosed with cancer, because we were so far away from our family. It was extremely special to have his three sets of grandparents visit us at Give Kids the World. The time we shared on the wish trip with his grandparents was so healing for them and us. One set of grandparents are in their upper 80s, so each day we were able to share with them was precious and so cherished! I sit here writing you as tears roll down my cheek. I am truly so thankful for their involvement! Z and his brother, Christian, took many pictures with them, and this trip might be their only memory that they will have of their great grandparents. These memories are sacred.
We believe in your mission so much that we even enrolled as monthly donors. The magic and happiness that Make-A-Wish brings to a child and family dealing with so much sickness is priceless. We are forever grateful for Z’s wish. The wish began our family's healing process and showed us of how lucky we are, because as our child is healed, we realize there are so many other children still struggling and fighting every day!
With Sincere Thanks and Lots of Love,
Nicole, Z’s Mom