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Old 02-28-2011, 11:24 AM   #1
shruley
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TRIP REPORT- The "you should've made her wish for something else" Wish Trip

Our daughter, Gabriella, has been recently granted a wish by the Make a Wish foundation. They came last week, and as expected, Gabriella wished to go to Walk Disney World! We are currently waiting for the final approvals to come back and for us to get some DATES! When I was trying to come up with my title, I was reminded of what all our friends and family keep telling us "You've already been to WDW, why didn't you have her wish for something else?" (As you can see in my signature, we're been to WDW before, but not near as often as I think we should!!!) Well, for one, it's HER wish , and two, what the heck does it matter? Even you non-wish people get this, right? The "don't you want to vacation somewhere else" speech. I just didn't realize I'd get it about my daughter's wish for Heaven's sake! But here we are, and WE'RE excited, even if everyone else isn't!

Our Cast of Characters...

Gabriella- Our Wish Child. Four years old and full of spunk. Gabriella was born with a Congenital Heart Defect. She had 3 open heart surgeries before the age of 3, and recently had a fourth surgery and had a pacemaker placed. She was misdiagnosed at birth, and we almost lost her because of this. Gabriella had emergency surgery less than 24 hours after being diagnosed and stopped breathing and had to be intubated just hours after arriving at the Children's Hospital and being diagnosed. You can read her full story here http://www.reachingmylimit.com/2010/...s-story-1.html
She has been incredibly brave through every surgery and is just HAPPY. No real favorite characters or anything right now...she maintains she LOVES them all. Over the last several weeks she's told us she wants to meet Princesses, fairies, Mickey, ride Dumbo, Teacups, and eat in the Castle.



Aleah, age 7. Aleah was 3 when Gabriella was born. For all of Aleah's life that she remembers, everything has usually centered around her sister being "sick" and she's handled it with amazing grace. Actually, for Aleah, doctor's visits and surgeries are "normal" for her. She routinely plays "heart surgery" on her animals, with full intubation tubes and cutting open the chest. She's spent months in the Ronald McDonald House, and weeks away from us with relatives. Some days I think she deserves this almost as much as her sister does.


And my husband Kevin and I. Were both first went to Disney a few years after getting married. We had the best time, felt like little kids, and have been taking our kids back ever since, but not near as often as we'd like to. We live in the Frozen Northland so dreaming of Florida helps pass some of the cold days. We are so excited for Gabriella to be granted a Wish and can't wait to see how the process unfolds.

PS- I used the names on here to correspond to the names on our Blogs, where I may copy posts occassionally (and, because I'm a Child Protection Worker "names on the Blog have been changed to protect our privacy".) An FYI in case there's any confusion over names I've posted in the past!
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Old 02-28-2011, 11:38 AM   #2
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Not that it matters, but Aleah and Gabrielle are not your kids names? And are you Julia or Sarah? I'm already confused, lol!

Either way, WELCOME and have fun planning your trip! When do you hope to take your trip?

And for what its worth, from what i've read on here (as we haven't gone on our Wish trip yet), a Wish trip is VERY different then a normal trip to Disney. Plus, staying at GKTW is a once in a lifetime experience that you will never get at any other visit to Disney!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:12 PM   #3
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Nope, Aleah and Gabriella are not their real names.... yes, it's confusing and I debated a lot about what names to use. In the end, I am just all about not being able to Google their names and having these trip reports (or my blog) show up! You know, for those clients who say things like "I'll show you what it's like to have your kids taken away". (Such a fun job.)

Perhaps I should just change my signature to be consistent!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:21 PM   #4
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YEA!!! You started! We are still waiting on dates, sigh...But only because of all of our stuff. Your family is BEAUTIFUL!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mom2Miracles View Post
Not that it matters, but Aleah and Gabrielle are not your kids names? And are you Julia or Sarah? I'm already confused, lol!

Either way, WELCOME and have fun planning your trip! When do you hope to take your trip?

And for what its worth, from what i've read on here (as we haven't gone on our Wish trip yet), a Wish trip is VERY different then a normal trip to Disney. Plus, staying at GKTW is a once in a lifetime experience that you will never get at any other visit to Disney!
The girls have seen pictures of GKTW on their website and can't wait to go! It's one of the parts they are most excited about! We requested late May, October, or April 2012. To get the most out of the trip, we'd rather not have to fight either possible cold or high heat...she either really works to breathe or she turns blue, and I want her to be able to go swimming!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:27 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by blessedmom4 View Post
YEA!!! You started! We are still waiting on dates, sigh...But only because of all of our stuff. Your family is BEAUTIFUL!
Thank you!!!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:28 PM   #7
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Glad you got it started.... and good idea about the name change.... Look forward to reading more!
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Old 02-28-2011, 12:29 PM   #8
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PS Great photos!
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Old 02-28-2011, 05:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shruley View Post
Nope, Aleah and Gabriella are not their real names.... yes, it's confusing and I debated a lot about what names to use. In the end, I am just all about not being able to Google their names and having these trip reports (or my blog) show up! You know, for those clients who say things like "I'll show you what it's like to have your kids taken away". (Such a fun job.)

Perhaps I should just change my signature to be consistent!
I get this totally. I have been a little worried about the long lost parents finding my kids on here

I am so glad they finally contacted you. Wouldn't it be great if we end up going the same time. We are looking at the 3rd week in May or Oct too
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:51 PM   #10
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I found ya!!

to the DIS and to the pre-trippie thread!!

ETA - ok...I suppose I can't really welcome you! Since you have been here longer than me. lol But I am glad to "know" you now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shruley View Post
Nope, Aleah and Gabriella are not their real names.... yes, it's confusing and I debated a lot about what names to use. In the end, I am just all about not being able to Google their names and having these trip reports (or my blog) show up! You know, for those clients who say things like "I'll show you what it's like to have your kids taken away". (Such a fun job.)

Perhaps I should just change my signature to be consistent!
I feel you here...someone I know from around here found Lauren's trip report by simply googling "plan a disney wish trip"...FREAKY! And she read the whole thing!!

lol

Your children are beautiful and they both deserve this awesome trip! Don't listen to the nay-sayers! You can only go to GKTW as part of a wish trip - so it will be something special!

(are you going to stay at GKTW??)
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Old 02-28-2011, 09:09 PM   #11
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WE BELIEVE IN MIRACLES! ~~Nearly twice as many children die from Congenital Heart Defects in the U.S. each year as die from all forms of childhood cancers combined.
 
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I found ya!!

I feel you here...someone I know from around here found Lauren's trip report by simply googling "plan a disney wish trip"...FREAKY! And she read the whole thing!!

lol

Your children are beautiful and they both deserve this awesome trip! Don't listen to the nay-sayers! You can only go to GKTW as part of a wish trip - so it will be something special!

(are you going to stay at GKTW??)
Maroo, I just googled that and it brought me straight to your TR for Lauren...that IS freaky!

Julia/Sarah This is what I tell people about Making a Wish in general and have said it since Lisa was 3 weeks old and they told us she would be eligible...This is HER wish , not mine or anyone else's and whatever SHE chose to do is what the wish would be...when she was old enough to ask for it...so that has always been our thought on it, after all she only gets one and we are in this for life...she will never be "finished" with treatment...as you know, complex heart children never are...so she deserves to make whatever wish she chooses...good for you!!
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Old 03-01-2011, 12:21 AM   #12
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Hi there. Glad you started Gabriella PTR. The girls are such cutie pies. We got the..why don't you do something else. Even from the wish granters. My youngest had her wish in 08 and we went to Florida. My second daughter was granted a wish and wanted to go back. Ok...she wanted to go to Japan, but mommy will not be on a plane that long. I'm already panicking getting on one for 4 1/2 hours. I hope you get dates soon.
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TR..http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=40564833

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Old 03-01-2011, 09:25 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by tinytreasures View Post
I get this totally. I have been a little worried about the long lost parents finding my kids on here

I am so glad they finally contacted you. Wouldn't it be great if we end up going the same time. We are looking at the 3rd week in May or Oct too
That would be awesome! Our granters were pretty vague about it all, and just said it will take awhile to hear if we're approved, 2-4 weeks or more? I had been meaning to ask you, though, who is your Immunologist? Are you at Children's or the U?
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:30 AM   #14
shruley
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Originally Posted by maroo View Post
I found ya!!

to the DIS and to the pre-trippie thread!!

ETA - ok...I suppose I can't really welcome you! Since you have been here longer than me. lol But I am glad to "know" you now.



I feel you here...someone I know from around here found Lauren's trip report by simply googling "plan a disney wish trip"...FREAKY! And she read the whole thing!!

lol

Your children are beautiful and they both deserve this awesome trip! Don't listen to the nay-sayers! You can only go to GKTW as part of a wish trip - so it will be something special!

(are you going to stay at GKTW??)
Pretty sure we'd be at GKTW! Although our wish granters were VERY vague about just about anything dealing with this wish being approved, they did specifically say that we would stay at GKTW! We can travel whenever and Gabriella has no travel restrictions (her Doctor already knows she wants to go to DW and has already told us that's fine) so I can't think of a reason it would be denied. I'm assuming they're just being cautious.

Any really, I don't care what anyone says, I know the girls will love this trip! I just think it's funny people feel the need to comment. Why? Can't you just say "They will have fun" and move on?
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:43 AM   #15
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Maroo, I just googled that and it brought me straight to your TR for Lauren...that IS freaky!

Julia/Sarah This is what I tell people about Making a Wish in general and have said it since Lisa was 3 weeks old and they told us she would be eligible...This is HER wish , not mine or anyone else's and whatever SHE chose to do is what the wish would be...when she was old enough to ask for it...so that has always been our thought on it, after all she only gets one and we are in this for life...she will never be "finished" with treatment...as you know, complex heart children never are...so she deserves to make whatever wish she chooses...good for you!!
Thank you. Yes, we are in this for life! Our Cardiologist told us that she considers her to have chronic cardiac issues now. Really, when we started this, we were supposed to be a "one and done". One surgery, good to go for life. Well, first it was one complicated surgery, baby so sick she was on ECMO! Then we'd barely been home 6 weeks when they found stenosis, no blood flow to her left lung. Another full repair, found huge inflammation and given a 50% chance of this being fatal. Magically, her Pulmonary Veins stayed open after this repair, but she had other issues, SVC Stenosis, ASDs, at one point she actually had blood flowing into both atriums of her heart at the same time, which the surgeon said wasn't even possible (until he opened her up and had to concede that statement)! And now the Pacemaker (she has Sick Sinus Syndrome). She bascially gets every weird, rare complication there can be. If there's a 1% chance of it happening, it happens to us. We had a 2% chance of needing a Pacemaker! We have 2 Chylos, which are rare.

We still laugh because when we left the hospital after that first surgery we had this big dramatic moment leaving of "Oh, we'll never set foot in this hospital again...." It's just hilarous to think back to!
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