Before sunrise, Olivia’s mother woke her from a dead sleep to come into the kitchen. The 3-year-old, who often goes by Livvie, was surprised to see her three older sisters waiting up, as well.
“I told my girls that we were going to visit Nana and Poppy because they just arrived home from a two-week vacation, and that we were taking them out for breakfast,” says Mom, Kathleen. Much to their surprise, a black-stretch limousine pulled up to their house, and squeals of excitement could be heard from blocks away when the girls learned that limousine was for them. “They wondered why we were taking a limo to visit my parents, and then I just said, ‘Maybe because we are going to Disney!” Livvie was in awe, riding in style to catch a plane to Walt Disney World®
At the airport, Livvie was greeted by her wish granting volunteers, who brought with them a very special note from her favorite princess, Ariel. It read in part, “A special girl like you deserves a magical trip! I can’t wait to meet you and hear all about the fun things you’ve been up to.” The message, fit for a princess, helped build the excitement for Livvie’s journey ahead. “With Livvie battling Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, she has had to deal with so much in her young age, but Make-A-Wish was there to bring a bit of hope and happiness for her and her sisters.”
The family was whisked off to the enchanted grounds of Disney, where they enjoyed sunshine, encounters with the Disney Princesses, and a special moment with Mickey Mouse. Livvie was treated to a grand makeover at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, where she modeled a Cinderella gown adorned in sparkles, and a crown covered in gems. When it came time for Princess Livvie to meet fellow Princess Ariel, Kathleen remembers her daughter’s eyes in complete awe, as Ariel guided Livvie around her castle and spoke with her in private about royal duties. “Livvie puts a smile on her face even when she is undergoing aggressive rounds of chemo, but the joyful smile she wore in Disney was truly priceless.” Ariel handed Livvie a toy flounder and gave her a special spin before saying farewell to her beloved new friend. Kathleen says her daughter wasn’t just able to take away souvenirs, but also memories to keep with her forever.
Kathleen, and her husband believe that Make-A-Wish provided a gift. “Livvie’s diagnosis scared all of my girls, especially Livvie’s older sisters,” she explains. “To even think about losing your little sister is just heartbreaking.” The family relies on faith, and love from those around them to get them through the most challenging times.
A wish bringing her much hope, strength and joy!