In 2015, Miles was a typical, active grade schooler who enjoyed playing sports and spending time with his friends and family. His future seemed full and bright, until he collapsed while running a school race. Not only did he collapse, but he also seemed to have a seizure and kept losing consciousness.
In that split second when he collapsed, Miles’ world changed forever.
After a trip to the hospital, they noted that Miles had an irregular heart rhythm that wouldn’t resolve and he had surgery to have a pacemaker. Further testing showed that Miles has a genetic condition and he would require a 2nd surgery to implant a defibrillator.
Miles’ mom Tatum said that they had known a little about Make-A-Wish before all of this happened, but not well, so they were a bit scared when the nurse brought it up. As they learned more, they realized the experience would be something light and good to come out of a very serious situation.
Miles decided to go on a cruise since he loves to travel and the activities looked so fun. And he wasn’t wrong. Tatum said Miles’ experience was amazing from start to finish.
“His eyes kept lighting up every time someone did something nice for him,” she shared. “In the airplane the flight attendants had all the passengers write a wish on a napkin for him and he collected them to keep and remember this amazing trip.”
On the cruise, Miles continued to feel special when the staff greeted him by name. In addition to enjoying the regular activities on the ship, he also got a behind the scenes tour of the kitchen and theatre. It was a great week full of fun that gave the whole family an appreciation for those who help to make wishes come true.
“We’ve met so many people who have a common interest in helping through this experience,” Tatum expressed. “Their kindness gives us an extra slice of hope.”
As Miles’ continues to adapt to his new normal, restricted from impact sports and requiring some extra precautions to protect him from the sports he can still enjoy, he has happy memories of his wish and all the wonderful people he met along the journey to sustain him.
“This wish made him aware of people who care about others enough to work together to make him and other children with similar situations feel extra special,” Tatum said. “We were so impacted by the wish that we look forward to becoming volunteers.”