Early this morning my wife and I accompanied our daughter, Stephanie, to the Mix 92.5 Make-A-Wish Radiothon at Bellevue Square in Bellevue, Washington.
To give you some background, early last year Steph was diagnosed with ovarian cancer—a rather unusual diagnosis for someone so young. The next morning she underwent surgery to remove a tumor that resembled a large water balloon, which necessitated removing an ovary. Through it all, she was quite a trooper—a profile in courage.
Children that go through such an ordeal lose a part of their childhood, I think. She had to grow up pretty quick and contend with the litany of examinations with looming uncertainty. I think it’s especially difficult to come to terms with such an adult disease.
Months later, she was encouraged by friends to contact the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Some time ago the mission of Make-A-Wish expanded from terminally ill children to those with life-threatening illnesses, too. A true “drama geek”, her wish was to visit Broadway and attend as many shows as possible.
A few months later, she got her wish. This February, we flew to New York City and found ourselves on The Great White Way. The hotel arrangements had us overlooking Times Square and Steph was loving the entire scene. She was a child again in awe like she was on her first trip to Disney World when she was five.
On Broadway, we saw Rent, The Producers, Phantom of the Opera, Wicked, and Avenue Q. She was especially enthralled with Wicked. After the performance, she even received a backstage tour and met some of the actors. That week we also had dinner at Sardi’s where we caught sight of Alan Ruck, Tim Curry, David Hyde Pierce and Hank Azaria.
This morning we were the first Wish Family interviewed for the Radiothon. When the Morning Show host, Mitch Elliott, asked me if Steph had any brothers or sisters my emotions reached a tipping point. She’s an only child, which makes her that much more precious to us.
A year is usually measured in time—12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes. 525,600 precious minutes. Don’t waste them.
Please visit the Make-A-Wish site.