As the boat driver hits the throttle, air begins filling the parachute causing an intense upward ascension for Kinsey above the magnificent waters of Lake Wakatipu. The view 200 feet up from the parasailing boat is breathtaking, and one of the first experiences that kick started the rest of the wish adventure that awaited Kinsey and her family. But just months prior, this trip didn’t seem like a possibility.
One morning in mid-October 2015, Kinsey found herself fighting for her life as an intense form of pneumonia was trying to take over her body. In the days that followed, the pneumonia became so debilitating and threatening to Kinsey’s survival that an ECMO procedure was needed to take over the work of Kinsey’s lungs and heart. During this procedure her heart stopped beating three different times, but Kinsey proved to be stronger.
Roughly one year later, with a rejuvenated spirit and spring in her step, Kinsey followed her adventurous heart with the wish to go to New Zealand. While there, Kinsey was able to engage in both the rich culture and the many adventurous activities that were planned for her and her family. In addition to parasailing, Kinsey was able to test the waters with a white water rafting adventure, an adrenaline filled jet boat rides down and around the bends of the Shotover River and a touring cruise of the Milford Sound. All in all, the trip was a great experience for Kinsey and her family as they cherished improved health and quality time together.
“Honestly, this was the first opportunity that our family has had to stop, rest, process and breath together since Kinsey’s hospitalization in October of 2015” said wish mom Kari about Kinsey’s wish trip.
When Kinsey looks back on her time of severe sickness, she realizes just how strong her body was and how it still yearned for more adventures. Although Kinsey’s sickness was an adventure for herself and her family, the adventure that she shared with her family in New Zealand is the one to celebrate!
A very big thank you to everyone that made Kinsey’s wish come true including Make-A-Wish® New Zealand and a special thank you to Jack and Gina Hopkins of Sioux Falls for adopting her wish.