Since I posted about Ana’s last CT scan and the possibility that we may start a wish list and do some fundraising, the reaction has been overwhelming (understatement). After I posted the actual list on Thursday, truly amazing things started happening. So, I wanted to post a separate page to keep everyone up to date on where we are with wishes granted, wishes needed and wishes in progress.
Wishes Granted (Updated 3/31/15)
- Ugg Boots – Two friends I used to cycle with sent me a gift card to pay for Ana’s boots on Zappos. I purchased them for Ana right before Christmas and they’ve been attached to her feet ever since. Thank you Carma and Joe!!
- Wii U – This wish has been granted! A local family from New Paltz sent us a brand new Wii U two days before Christmas. The girls and I have been enjoying it almost daily (Jim’s not a big video game person). I’m horrible at it, but Ana seems to be a natural. The wish granter has asked to remain anonymous. Thank you so much!
- Go Ice Skating at Rockefeller Center – This wish was granted on 12/29/14 and 12/30/14 thanks to my dear friend Liz Mitchell who organized and funded just about everything involved. Another friend of mine, Kim Barke, put me in touch with an executive at NBC who hooked us up with a VIP experience (Ana didn’t have to wait on line to skate). This trip was filled with surprises which you can read about via this blog post. Thank you Liz and Kim!
- Visit the set of New Girl (meet Zooey Deschanel) – This wish was granted on 3/17/15! Through my amazing extended support network – and people who know people – Fox invited all of us to visit the set of New Girl, meet Zooey Deschanel and get some photos (and swag). A generous donor from Columbia Presbyterian’s Hope & Heroes Foundation paid for this trip, including plane tickets, hotel and car rental while in L.A. We used some of the money raised for Ana’s wishes from everyone’s generous donations for spending money and meals. It was a wish granted for all of us – a family vacation we couldn’t otherwise afford and an experience for the girls to bond.
- Redo my Bedroom – This wish was granted on 3/21! (the weekend we got home from our L.A. trip). Erin Musto, founder of Maddie’s Mark, reached out to me back in January about granting this wish. Erin’s daughter Maddie died three years ago from a rare brain tumor called DIPG. Maddie’s Mark helps kids like Ana enjoy their “best days ever” which means many things to many kids. Check out some example of some of “best days” that Maddie’s Mark has created for children. The organization also funds child enrichment projects such as donating playground equipment to schools. The big reveal was very special for Ana with many of her friends present to witness the unveiling of her room. Since Maddie’s Mark paid for everything, we were able to use some of Ana’s donation money to update Emily’s bedroom as well. Maddie’s Mark donated some extra special gifts for Emily (like a new desk and finishing touches for her room) so she didn’t feel a bit left out.
Wishes In Progress
- Shopping Spree in Soho – Update as of 1/10/15 – We’ve put this wish on the back burner until Ana’s next scan which is on 1/16. Ana’s grandma Janne will help organize this wish and drive us into the city. We may spend the night in Soho so Ana can take her time and enjoy as much shopping as she can cram in. Also, my friend Sara Munson and her extremely well-connected family have offered to help with this wish. They have some fashion connections and are working on arranging some special things for Ana in Soho, including a makeover with Clinique + goodies (I get one too). Sara and her family would like to give Ana a whole day in the city including a meal and possibly a show. The shopping itself will likely be funded in part, or in whole, via your donations. It’s not scheduled yet, but I think it will be something great to do with her after chemo starts and she may be feeling a little down. Something to look forward to.
- Ride a zip line – We’re working on this one now with some local contacts who may be able to facilitate setting this up at Hunter Mountain. Also, one generous donor specifically asked that his contribution of $100 go towards helping Ana realize this wish. His name is Jeffrey Shultz (thank you, Jeffrey!)
- Keep my hair during chemo (Update 1/10/15) – I’m working with a social worker at CHONY to get a freezer to store the cold caps (and freeze them) for when Ana’s ready. It’s a big job and the social worker has been amazing. She’s on the liver team, not oncology, but she’s knocking on doors and making things happen. Dr. Yamashiro has given approval for cold cap therapy, so all I need to do is figure out the details. I will be paying for this with your donations!! Thank you all and fingers crossed that this helps Ana keep her hair.
- See the Black Keys in concert (Updated 1/10/15) – A contact of mine from Town Square Media, a company that owns multiple radio stations and puts on many shows, has confirmed that we will get four tickets to see the Black Keys at the Mountain Jam festival this summer! She said they will make sure Ana gets front and center seats and/or gets to go back stage! Ana will likely bring two friends and Jim or I will chaperone. This is such an amazing gift – my sincerest thanks to Town Square Media.
Wishes Still Wished For (as of 1/10/15)
- Visit The Grand Canyon (Updated 1/10/15) – This trip will likely be funded by the generous Tula Love members who collectively raised over $12,000 for Ana. We have no idea when this will happen at this point, but most likely over the summer.
- See Black Sabbath (this summer)
- Play a Song with Black Sabbath (why not?)
- Trip to England – meet Scarlet (an online pen pal she’s known since she was 9) (Possibly funded by a friend who has offered to send us on a spectacular trip)
- Spend a week in Cape Cod (Updated 1/10/15) – Several people have offered summer homes/rentals for us to possibly use for this trip. At this point, we’ll likely go in the summer so Ana can enjoy the beach.
- Get a Nose Ring (Updated 1/10/15) – Unfortunately, this wish can’t be fulfilled. Ana’s oncologist said the risk of infection is significant and it could potentially require a hospitalization if she did get an infection. So, this wish is tabled for now.
- See Arctic Monkeys in concert (Updated 1/10/15) – apparently they’re not playing any time soon so this wish has been tabled.
If you want to contribute to Ana’s Paypal account (the source of funding for a lot of the above), please go here. If you’d rather send a check, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll give you my address.
If you want to send prayers, positive light, well wishes and healing thoughts – we accept and appreciate that currancy too. (what I’m trying to say is that, while we’re very grateful for donations to help us with Ana’s wishes, we know that money is tight for many people. Please don’t feel pressured or obligated to donate. Ana may not get all her wishes granted – and that’s okay! What’s happened so far is already pretty miraculous.
Love and light to all of you. I’ll keep this page updated and may add an occasional new item to the “still wished for” category – if I do that, then I’ll put a date beside it.