When Nick was diagnosed with lymphoma, his entire world turned upside down. “With cancer, your life just stops,” Nick’s mom said. “You totally forget about everything else and you are just trying to keep your child alive and get him through treatments.” Due to the aggressive treatments, Nick was not able to see anyone, go anywhere, or do anything outside of his home.
When Nick found out that he qualified for a wish, he immediately knew what his wish would be! He wanted to go to Australia and see the Great Barrier Reef.
While Nick and his family were in Australia, they got to go to a crocodile preserve, go on a train ride through the jungle and hold a little koala bear named Violet. They even went on a helicopter ride over the Great Barrier Reef and got close enough to see turtles and sharks. “The wish was like an unattainable dream come true,” Nick’s mom said.
More than all of this, the trip was wonderful because rather than having to focus all of their attention on cancer and the struggles they were going through, Nick’s family was able to focus on being with each other and enjoying each other’s company. They finally had the chance to rebuild relationships in ways Nick’s treatments hadn’t allowed before.
Through the wish experience, Nick developed an interest in giving back to others. He wears his Make-A-Wish® gear everywhere he goes and makes sure he lets people know the life-changing experience he had. Even while he was on his wish trip, he wanted to bring back souvenirs for all of his caregivers who had helped him along the way.
Nick is now in remission and is 14 months out of treatment. He is preparing to go to Southern Virginia University in the fall and has dreams of becoming a doctor one day.