I am part of a national realtor organization known as Agent of Excellence. It is an organization that brings like-minded real estate professionals that have a love for all things Disney together to network, share ideas and change lives. I never knew how immensely being a part of this organization would enhance my life...
Just eight weeks ago I met Mary, a vivacious and strong five-year-old from Northglenn, Colorado. In her short life, Mary has already experienced more obstacles than most adults do in their life span. In October, Mary was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), which is a rare, incurable, and inoperable form of a brain tumor. When she was diagnosed, doctors told the family that children typically found with DIPG live another six to nine months after diagnosis and a mere 10% of the children make it to two years. Her family is determined to break the statistics and even with all of the treatments and rounds of car T-cell therapy Mary is determined to still go to school (when she is able) and be a "normal" kid. Just like every five-year-old, Mary has big dreams to see the magic of the world, her biggest dream was to see Cinderella's Castle in Walt Disney World.
A wish by the Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Mary along with her mom Kristen, father Bobby and little brother a trip to the castle, but with covid protocols they were unable to travel out of state for the trip.
This is where my Agent of Excellence family came in!
Mary's story was brought to our attention by our national membership director Britt Kreutzer and shared to the group of over 170 agents Nationwide - we quickly realized Mary was in need of some Disney Magic! Within a few short hours we had raised enough funds to send Mary and her family to Walt Disney World on an all-expenses-paid trip with VIP access and anything that they needed! To make the experience even more special we hired Cinderella with a horse-drawn carriage to deliver the amazing news in Colorado.
The result was nothing short of Disney Magic! Last week Mary's family was able to enjoy all of the Disney parks with unlimited fast passes, a private VIP tour of the Magic Kingdom, dinner at Cinderella's Royal table, a Disney Fine Art photographer to document the day at the Magic Kingdom and so much more! I was lucky enough to be a part of the trip and to share these special moments with Mary and her family. To see the love and excitement not just in Mary's face but her brothers and her parents during this amazing week was life-changing! My favorite part of the trip was watching Mary burst into smile when all of the Disney Princesses paraded by waving and calling her name.
That is a vision that will live in my heart for the rest of my life.
I wasn't alone in recognizing how team effort could make such a large impact on a child. I have established incredible friendships through AOE and this trip with Mary pushed myself, Adam Jacques, Britt Kreutzer, Kristi Byrnes Reed and a few other AOE colleagues to think about how we could bring more magic to more people.
We decided to establish a non-profit in Mary's name - Mary's Magical Moment.
The purpose will be to provide Disney Magic for children and their families going through life-altering circumstances. We shared this news and presented the foundation's logo to Mary and her parents in the shadow of Cinderella's Castle last week. Mary's parents expressed a deep interest in being a part of the non-profit to bring happiness to more children and families for years to come. The experience was extremely emotional as all agreed that as we watch Mary live, we also want to create a memory and legacy in her name.
This strong Disney Princess is the first of many to be a part of Mary's Magical Moment. No matter what she will be remembered and the lessons she teaches will remain.
Mary changed my life...she reminded me that even while we plan for the future of our families and loved ones, we must also keep an eye on today. We can create change now, not just in our own lives but those that we touch. We never know what someone is going through so why not give them extra love, extra joy, extra care?
Our lives are so short on this earth and the ability to bring warmth to others is what should drive us day in and day out! To me that is what I strive for and that is what Mary's Magical Moment, Agent of Excellence and Disney Magic are all about!!