I wish to meet a unicorn
Charlotte's Wish to Meet a Unicorn
"When Charlotte was diagnosed, we didn’t know what to think. We had never heard of this illness before. To hear it compared to leukemia was terrifying.” Estela, Charlotte’s mother, recalls upon receiving her daughters diagnosis.
“The first treatment failed, so we had to proceed with a bone marrow transplant.” Charlotte, age 5, was battling severe aplastic anemia –a rare disease in which the bone marrow and the hematopoietic stem cells that reside there are damaged causing a deficiency of all three blood cell types. During her transplant surgery Charlotte was confined to a hospital for two months and in addition to nausea, and pain, she began to lose her wonderful energy and showed signs of depression. It was at this point that Make-A-Wish Central and Northern Florida stepped in to grant Charlotte a wish.
When presented with the opportunity to have anything in the world, it was no surprise that she wished to meet a Unicorn! “Charlotte has always loved unicorns, she had talked about meeting one for a long time, so when she found out she was meeting a REAL unicorn, she was over the moon!” After spending two months in the hospital, her wish day was finally here! Charlotte and her family arrived at the Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota, Florida, and found themselves in a princess themed room. While on their trip they met Pastry Chef Amy, who gave Charlotte her very own purple (her favorite color) chef coat and taught them how to decorate cupcakes! For dinner, she received a unicorn dress and headband to prepare her for a very important date - she was meeting her Unicorn tomorrow!
The next morning, Charlotte met the Unicorn of her dreams! They were inseparable and wearing matching flower headdresses. She was able to ride, hug, and tell her Unicorn “I love you!” According to the 2015 Israel Wish Impact Study, medical professionals found that a Make-A-Wish experience lead to increased emotional and physical health in children diagnosed with critical illnesses.
Charlotte and her family finished off their wish trip with a visit to the Mote Marine Aquarium. She loved seeing all the different types of fish and sea creatures. Overall, her and her family made memories together that will last them a lifetime.
Charlotte will continue to battle through severe aplastic anemia with renewed strength derived from the hope and joy the wish experience brought to her and her family.
A wish is more than a nice thing, a wish brings joy to critically ill children that gives them an edge in conquering their illnesses. You can help transform the lives of children like Charlotte, learn how by visiting cnfl.wish.org.