ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Granting the birthday wish of a sick Albuquerque teen will only cost you a stamp. Her mother is asking people to send birthday cards to their home.
In just the past few months a sudden illness has turned Dayshaunarae Graves-Shaw’s life completely upside down. Her mom says a trip to the mailbox is one of the last things she still enjoys. She hopes next time they open it a card from you will be inside.
“She’s been sick for a long time so with all of her medical I don’t see her smile as much,” said Dayshaunarae’s Mother Athena Graves-Gass.
Dayshaunarae is just a couple weeks from turning 20. Her mother devotes day and night to her care. That birthday will be a major milestone for the girl who has been fighting for her life, from the second it started.
“She has a lot of medical problems,” said Graves-Gass.
Dayshaunarae was born premature but grew into an active teen. She was an athlete and an honors student. Towards the end of high school her kidneys failed and an illness left Dayshaunarae reliant on a feeding tube.
She rebounded and just this fall she and her mom moved to Albuquerque from Texas. They were excited to start a new life here when suddenly Dayshaunarae started acting strange.
“It started going downhill again,” said Graves-Gass.
Doctors discovered Dayshaunarae’s brain is shrinking. She now needs a wheel chair and suffers from memory loss. With her birthday approaching, her mom says everything she has lost becomes even more apparent.
“I’m sad because it’s not as exciting for her anymore because she can’t do the things that she used to do,” said Graves-Gass.
But Dayshaunarae still enjoys one simple thing.
“We put her in the wheelchair and wheel her out there and let her check the mail,” Graves-Gass.
So her mom turned to Facebook with a simple request.
“What I’m hoping for is cards, notes, postcards,” said Graves-Gass.
“I just want to see her smile. I want her to be happy on her birthday.”
Dayshaunarae’s birthday is May 6th. She loves Disney characters. Her mom says she’ll gather up any mail that arrives and save it for her to open that day.
Mail can be sent to Dayshaunarae at:
13201 Lomas Verdes Ave NE
Albuquerque, NM 87123
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