On December 27th 2011, we brought our otherwise healthy 16-year-old Lewie to the ER for what we thought was a reaction to antibiotics prescribed for a sinus infection. Around 11 pm that night, he was diagnosed with a tumor in the base of his skull and was prepped for emergency surgery. While at the time, we couldn’t comprehend the severity of his illness or what the doctors were even telling us, we remember that day as if it were yesterday. It is the day that our lives and our family would change forever.
While the surgery went well, Lewie suffered from a pulmonary embolism, his lung collapsed and he slipped into a coma for over 4 weeks. When he finally came out of the coma, he was not able to eat, talk, walk, or hold his head up by himself. He had a trach and was on oxygen. He was very weak. And if that were not enough, he still needed to undergo 35 radiation treatments for the Cancer to prevent the tumor from growing back. Lewie was hospitalized for over 7 months.
It was during this time that we received a letter saying Lewie had been referred to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Included in the letter was a form to fill out which would help the Make-A-Wish team determine Lewie’s wish. Now don’t forget that when Lewie came out of the coma he couldn’t talk. In order to communicate, we had worked out a form of communication through a series of blinks and pointing at a letter chart to spell out words. It was a challenge, but those words were as clear as day; Beach, Florida, Miami Heat and Lebron James. And as sick as Lewie was at the time, Make-A-Wish never gave up on granting him his wish. In November 2013, our family was blessed with a 6-day trip to Fort Lauderdale..
From the moment we were picked up at our house in the chauffeured limo, we were treated like royalty. For us as a family, this was a milestone in Lewie’s recovery. He was finally able to travel and that was something to celebrate for sure.
The Hotel was on the beach and was so luxurious. The trip included a dinner cruise on a riverboat, tickets to a zoo, and tickets to a Miami Heat Game. A beach wheelchair was provided which allowed Lewie to actually go right down to the Ocean and put his feet in. The pool and Jacuzzi were one of our daily favorites. Not a detail was missed. Up until this point, we had been nervous to travel with Lewie, but Make a Wish made sure we had what we needed and we never felt as if we were on our own.
This trip was exactly what Lewie needed. For over 2 years, we had occupied our days with Doctor Appointments and Therapy Sessions. Since we have returned from Florida, we approach each day with a new outlook. This trip has given us the courage to dream big. We are not afraid to venture out of our circle and explore new things. We welcome new experiences and look forward to Lewie’s continuous recovery.
We would like to thank the Make-A-Wish Northeast New York for working so hard to make Lewie’s wish come true. It was perfect. It is our goal to raise $1600 to help another child receive a life changing wish. We have been challenged to find 40 people to donate $40 each. We realize that 2020 has been a tough year. If you can find it in your heart to help us with our challenge, together we could help a child’s life be a little brighter.
Your donation today will help make every wish come true. Together, we can continue to be a light of hope throughout this time of crisis - and beyond.
Thank you for your support!