Battling an endocrine disorder, 9-year-old Waianae wish kid Keirstyn—affectionately called Keke by her family—has coped with a lot in her young life, at times making it difficult to simply feel like a kid. Says aunt Chasidy, “Keke has been through so much in her short nine years, more so since she has been diagnosed.”
The diagnosis has also been challenging for the entire family to navigate, including Chasidy and Keirstyn’s three sisters. “We’ve all struggled with some major changes,” Chasidy explains, describing how medical treatments have resulted in the family spending much of their time apart. “It’s really been a lot for all of us.”
When Make-A-Wish Hawaii entered the family’s lives to grant Keirstyn’s wish to go to Walt Disney World, Chasidy recalls feeling both nervous and excited. “The best part was her even having the opportunity,” she says, grateful for the chance to give Keirstyn and her sisters time to have fun and make memories together.
Meeting some of her favorite characters, riding the attractions, and donning sparkly face paint were just a few of the highlights that kept Keirstyn smiling the whole time. And with her family by her side in such a magical environment, her spirits were remarkably lifted and strengthened. “I think she was able to grasp joy that comes from hardships,” Chasidy said, recalling the lasting impact of this experience for Keirstyn. “I think she definitely will remember the memories for the rest of her life. When she thinks about [her wish], it brings so much joy—you can see her light up.”
She added that the wish gave the family “so much joy and happiness,” providing memories they can all hold close to their hearts as they continue to support Keirstyn and each other through her medical journey. In every wish experience lies the opportunity to not only strike joy in the hearts of kids living with critical illnesses but to also bring their families closer together in such transformative ways. Learn how you can make wishes like Keirstyn’s come true here.