Dec 5, 2014 2:17 PM by NBC News
Sending out holiday cards this week? You'll want to add another name to your list.
Addie Fausett, 6, of Fountain Green, Utah, is likely celebrating her last Christmas this year due to an atrophy of her brain that has left doctors puzzled. And in the face of devastating news, her family has come up with a beautiful idea: They are asking people to send Addie a "lifetime of Christmas cards."
So far, hundreds of cards have poured into her nearby post office. "We really just started spreading the word. I think it's just going to grow and grow," says Amber Brosig, managing trustee at Children and the Earth, Inc., a nonprofit organization that is assisting with the project.
While fulfilling wishes like this one is for the child, for sure, it also goes a long way for the parents, siblings and other relatives. "We're creating lasting memories for the family, with the family," Brosig explains.
Addie was just 3 years old when her mother, Tami, noticed that her girl could no longer hold a crayon or spoon, suddenly had difficulty speaking and her growth came to a standstill. Doctors found that her brain was shrinking and filling with fluid-a condition called diffuse atrophy-but the underlying cause of Addie's atrophy remains undiagnosed, a medical mystery. Even now at 6 years old, Addie has never weighed more than 25 pounds. Last month, doctors delivered heartbreaking news: Addie had roughly a year to live, and her mental state would deteriorate before her physicality-she will forget what and who she knows.
"She's just darling and fragile," Brosig says. "She has the sweetest little soul. We're so glad we can assist."
Making this time even more difficult for Addie and her sisters, Shayley, 10, and Audree, 7, is the unexpected loss of their father, who passed away over the weekend; he and their mother were separated.
Cards should be addressed to Addie as well as her older sisters. "They are going through a hard time, too," Brosig says. "We are encouraging the public to reach out to them as well."
If you'd like to contribute a greeting, send it to:
Addie Lynn and Sisters, P.O. Box 162, Fountain Green, UT 84632
What kinds of cards does Addie like? All kinds-but especially homemade. "Obviously, you can go to Hallmark and get the ones that play music or this or that," Brosig says, "but the handmade ones-or artwork, if you have a child-is even more special for the family, though, of course, they are just grateful for it all."
Children and the Earth, a nonprofit that directly pays medical bills for those in need, is also taking donations for Addie. Donate here or send a check to Children and the Earth (write "Addie" in the memo), 252 W. Cottage Ave., Sandy, UT 84070.
You can also stay up on Addie's Christmas wish by visiting her Facebook page.
1 hour ago