Aged 12, Lucy was diagnosed with nephrotic syndrome resulting in her missing almost all of her first two years of secondary school. Suffering from headaches, nausea, and fatigue daily means that it takes a huge effort for Lucy to go to school or hang out with her friends. Since she rarely gets to enjoy time outside with friends and have an active childhood, Lucy wanted to wish for something that would keep her company when she was too ill to leave her bed or the house. Lucy’s mum Christine said that she “was very sick and very down” but she started brainstorming what her ideal wish would be and it was clear to the Make-A-Wish volunteers who virtually met with Lucy that the idea of owning a cat really would be a dream come true.
Lucy loves animals and had her heart set on a cat, but unfortunately had developed allergies to cats and dogs as a result of her treatment. However, she was extremely determined and took it upon herself to do research into hypoallergenic cats and even arranged for her Doctor to do specific blood tests to make sure she wouldn’t be allergic to her chosen breed. Lucy found her dream cat, a Russian Blue, which was an extremely rare breed of cat and extremely difficult to find in Ireland. The Wishgranting team spent a lot of time searching the country to find this special cat. Eventually, they found a wonderful Donor who was so moved by Lucy's story that she offered to give her own two-year-old Russian Blue cat to her. Lucy's parents were overwhelmed by the generosity, saying it was “the most touching part of the whole process, it really showed the magic of Make-A-Wish”.
To get ready for the new arrival, Lucy visited her local pet store to buy all the best cat supplies and the very next day her grandparents came to the door, holding her beautiful cat Provence (nicknamed Provi) and a big bunch of Make-A-Wish blue balloons! Her mother stated that “her face was absolutely priceless. I’ll never forget it, it was such an emotional day”.
Lucy is now 16 and according to her mum Christine, is “the funniest child I’ve ever met, hilarious without even meaning to be! Lucy is like a different person, from a sick child trying to get on with things and now she’s a cat mum!”. This is the first time since this all started that our lives haven’t revolved around Lucy’s kidneys and that Lucy is obsessed with Provi. Lucy has to spend a lot of time in bed due to her fatigue, but Provi has become a great companion and is loved by all the family. Lucy’s mum told us the wonderful news that she is “happier than she has been in four years” and that her wish being granted truly was “life-changing; we can’t even express gratitude in words”.