“Laila has little to no attention span and usually can’t focus on something for more than a couple of seconds. But the movie Frozen completely changed that. She was instantly in love,” said Diane, Laila’s mother.
According to Laila’s mom Diane, Laila has had a hard life. At 10 months old, she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and other life-threatening medical conditions of the respiratory system, causing Laila to have problems with sensory processing, swallowing and speaking. According to her mother, the little girl is rarely interested in things around her. Yet, when she was first introduced to the movie Frozen, she instantly fixated on the characters and the music.
“When we were contacted by Make-A-Wish Arizona, we knew exactly what her wish was going be – to meet her favorite Frozen characters, Elsa and Anna, in person at Walt Disney World.”
Anticipation and excitement soon followed for Laila and her family. Even though Laila doesn’t speak directly, she would light up every time someone mentioned seeing her Frozen characters in person. It was also special because this was going to be the family’s first vacation.
Just months after finding out her wish would be granted, Laila, her two brothers, her sister, and her mom and dad set out on their Disney adventure.
“They flew us to Walt Disney World in Florida, a trip we never could have made on our own. It was the happiest we ever saw Laila. She loved every minute of it and the entire family wore constant smiles for a week seeing how happy she was,” said Diane.
They spent their first couple of days exploring the different Disney parks. Laila loved meeting all the characters, being in the hustle and bustle of the crowds, and just being around people!
“She just wanted to do everything!” said Diane.
With her sensory conditions, Diane and the family had never seen Laila so excited. The staff at Disney spent the day paying extra special attention to Laila. During the parades, they interacted with her and her family, making her smile from ear-to-ear.
“Our third day there, we finally found Elsa and Anna. It was the most magical moment and was more than I could have ever imagined,” said Diane. “Her jaw dropped and I never saw her smile so big.”
The entire rest of the day was like a fairytale to Laila. Disney staff surprised them with special tickets to ‘A Frozen Holiday Wish,’ the light and firework show that was completely centered on the Frozen characters. Laila had never been more energized and in awe. She loved every second of it.
“I will never be able to thank Make-A-Wish Arizona enough for giving us this memory that we will cherish forever,” said Diane.
“I don't think we will ever stop talking about how great Make A-Wish Arizona is for doing this for our family. This was our very first family vacation and it couldn’t have been more special,” said Diane. “I know Laila felt like a real princess that week. We couldn't have asked for a better time.”