Dorothy had spent many days in the chemotherapy clinic, being treated for her leukemia but the day she met Bryce was a special day for sure.
Bryce too was being treated for leukemia. While a little older (two years to be exact), Bryce was exactly what Dorothy needed – a new best friend who knew exactly what she was going through.
Over time, Bryce and Dorothy’s friendship blossomed and both of their families found comfort in one another. Dorothy became a sibling and friend to Bryce, an only child, and both had something to look forward to during treatment because they would get to see each other. In fact, they would run around after their treatments and play on the playground together.
“At first you’re scared and you feel alone,” said Dorothy’s mom, Meghan. “We have a lot of friends and support, but having Bryce’s family to share, cry and celebrate our experiences inside the hospital created a connection on an entirely different level.”
Whenever Dorothy was sick, all she did was watch princess movies. But her wish, to go to Walt Disney World® resorts, could only be complete if she could take her best friend with her. Luckily, Bryce wanted to go to Walt Disney World too – and Make-A-Wish Arizona worked with both families to make the trips happen together.
“I was so excited to go on my wish with Bryce!” Dorothy said. “My favorite part was meeting all the princesses.”
Once they arrived in Florida, the families stayed together at Give Kids the World. Dorothy met her favorite princess, Cinderella, followed by a surprise appearance of Elsa and Anna from Frozen, where Dorothy was first in line.
“It was like a double whammy!” Meghan said with a laugh.
After spending three days at Disney World, they braved the splash zone and fed dolphins at Sea World. Meghan’s favorite memory was watching Dorothy experience her wish with so much joy.
“You never imagine you’ll have a sick child,” Meghan said. “But Make-A-Wish Arizona put it all into perspective and gave us a chance to renew our energy. When Dorothy saw the fireworks show I could see it all through her eyes, it was truly a magical experience.”
Dorothy finished treatment in November, but Meghan said they try to schedule follow-up appointments on the same days as Bryce so the two can “terrorize the clinic” together. Dorothy and Bryce continue to be best friends, and Meghan jokes that they will probably get married someday.
“When you go through something like this together, it creates a bond that cannot be broken,” said Meghan.