Lincoln has multiple medical complexities, one being that he has CDG (Congenital Disorder of Glycosylation). This is a genetic error in his cellular makeup that results in many rare medical complications. His disease marks him as terminal and results in many limitations such as hearing loss, speech and learning delays, failure to thrive, etc., but that does not limit this sweet boy’s joy!
“Lincoln lights up every room he walks in to,” Grace, Lincoln’s mother, shares. “His joy and his laugh are contagious. You cannot resist loving him with your whole heart for your whole life! We noticed that his light was dimming, so as a last hope we filled out the referral for Make-A-Wish® Iowa. The volunteer wish granters came to our house and listened intently as our sweet, deaf boy tried to express to them his wish. In May of 2019 we got the call that Lincoln was being granted a wish to go to Walt Disney World!”
Grace and her husband sat their whole family down to tell them the exciting news, and the joy in the room was palpable. They immediately hit the ground running with preparations, both medically and personally. They bought all the Mickey shirts, packed their bags, and boarded the plane for Florida on March 7, 2020 and that when they say the true magic began.
“Make-A-Wish communicated with us so well and we felt so heard and cared for,” Grace remembers. “They went over and above to get Lincoln a private Meet and Greet with Buzz and Woody. A memory we will have forever. We shared the excitement with our community, friends, and extended family. Grandpa, Grandma, Lincoln's Aunts and Cousins all decided to come so that they could see Lincoln experience his wish.”
Lincoln and his family stayed at Give Kids the World. Here they could spend time together without a worry. Together they enjoyed unlimited ice cream at Give Kids the World, Walt Disney World parks, Universal Studios and much more. In addition to staying together, they meet many other families wanting to hear Lincoln’s experience and sharing their own stories of Make-A-Wish.
“One evening, while walking back from the merry-go-round we heard our older children talking together about how they had never been anywhere before where they felt like people ‘got it’,” Grace expresses. “We asked them to explain a bit more and they just expressed how having a brother who is terminal and who battles daily to survive is a something that others struggle to understand but at GKTW, everyone is the same boat, and it was like an instant extended family.”
Lincoln’s family cannot choose one favorite part of his wish, but the feeling of magic and joy they experienced is truly irreplaceable. “We have never been so spoiled in all our lives, but the absolute greatest gift is that we saw our son’s joy come back,” Grace exclaims. “He has that sparkle in his eye again and lights up when asked about his wish trip. From the youngest to the oldest of our family, it was the greatest week of our entire lives. We made an entire Wish Wall in our home to remember all the magical moments, and as a family, we look forward to partnering with Make-A-Wish Iowa to make other children's wishes come true.”