When Arlo was four years old, his mother noticed that something was wrong when he couldn’t fight off a cold and began to limp.
Arlo was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 20 months old, and since then his family had kept a close eye on his health. Arlo was taken to multiple doctors until, finally, his parents ordered blood-work and he was diagnosed with Leukemia.
The diagnosis immediately shifted his childhood and how his parents would raise him. Arlo’s parents worried that balancing diabetes and Leukemia would be difficult and have worked diligently to protect him and his health. Arlo hasn’t been able to do everything he’s wanted because of his diagnosis, and for a long time, the thought of travelling or any sort of normalcy seemed unrealistic.
When a wish is granted, a child replaces fear with confidence, sadness with joy and anxiety with hope. Arlo wished to go to the Florida theme parks, something that seemed impossible at the time. On February 29th, his wish came true.
Arlo’s parents knew he was brave, as he rarely faced any procedure or treatment with fear. What they didn’t know, was that he was fearless. During his Make-A-Wish trip, Arlo went on every roller-coaster he could and courageously fought Darth Vader during Jedi Training Camp, something his family had never expected or dreamed would happen.
Wishes help kids look past their limitations, families overcome anxiety and entire communities experience joy. Most importantly, wishes can improve a child’s quality of life, giving them a better chance of recovering. Sure, wishes are amazing and fun, but more than that, they inspire and have the power to change lives.
Today, Arlo has less than a year until he finishes treatment. He comes out of his shell more and more each day, enjoys learning, and medically, he’s doing well. Arlo’s wish gave his family the hope and confidence that they can still have fun as a family, despite a diagnosis.