Like most Disney fans, six-year-old Jackson has long been fascinated by the big blue castle that pops up at the beginning of his movies. After all, the Disney castle isn’t just any old castle; it’s home to countless characters that spark our imagination and help make our childhoods unforgettable. Through the eyes of children and adults alike that castle represents a world full of endless possibilities. A few short weeks ago, Make-A-Wish® Alabama had the privilege of sending Jackson off to see the Magic Kingdom with his own two eyes.
Jackson was born with an inherited skeletal disorder. His bones are very fragile and break easily. The slightest incident has the potential to land Jackson in the Emergency Room, a situation he and his family try to avoid at all costs. His wish trip to Disney World gave him something he will never, ever forget: the chance to leave his worries behind in Prattville, Alabama, and just be a kid.
Jackson’s trip to Disney was everything he ever imagined. Mom, Lisa, was thrilled that he was able to do anything his heart desired and was so grateful for the Magic Kingdom’s hospitality. “I’ve always heard Make-A-Wish kids and families are treated like VIPs,” she said. “But I had no idea until we experienced it for ourselves. This trip is something [Jackson] will never forget in a million years!”
Although the weather was sunny and warm, Jackson was able to stay cool and comfortable by wheeling onto the parks’ splash pads. He loved all of the theme parks and had a blast riding roller coaster… after roller coaster… after roller coaster. Jackson’s favorite part of the trip, however, was completely unexpected. After a small scare during the Lost Continent show at Islands of Adventure, the guide asked Jackson and his brother, Matthew, who has the same condition, if they’d be interested in meeting a few heroes that were hanging around. They were then taken for an impromptu meet-and-greet with superheroes like Captain America, Spider Man and other Avengers! According to Lisa, that moment was nothing short of amazing for Jackson and will be remembered for a lifetime.
Jackson and his family couldn’t have asked for a better wish trip. It was truly a place where dreams come true. At Disney, he was able to experience everything a six-year-old boy dreams of. A chance meeting with another wish family also experiencing the same life challenges made the trip even more special. It’s amazing to think that a simple pair of snowflake earrings (snowflakes are common symbols of Jackson’s condition) sparked a conversation, which connected two separate families who were both on their wish-granting journeys.