When I was eleven, my older sister Brea was diagnosed at age thirteen with an extremely rare version of Leukemia. Doctors concocted many versions of experimental chemo, seeing that she was literally one of a handful of people to get this. During this time, myself and my two younger siblings still had school and other tasks to keep up with. I struggled to keep my grades up above a B average while being the only person who acted like Brea wasn't bald and in a hospital bed, like nothing had changed.
With both my parents taking shifts looking after Brea in the hospital, I was the one who made dinner, cleaned house, and kept my two younger siblings in check. My mom would come home around 6 each weeknight so we wouldnt be alone at night. We would see my dad on Saturdays and visit with Brea before going back home that night.
After many months, the doctors.decided to do radiation for two months. At this point, we got to see my parents only on weekends. My siblings and I became mini foster kids, living in a new home every few days. No one in our extended family liked us enough, cared enough, or were safe enough to just stay with. So we stayed with church friends. Finally, someone let us stay for the rest of her treatments. They were a very nice family. But once again, I became both parents.
Like Daddy, I made sure chores and homework were done and would be sure they weren't trying to get away with anything. They being ages 8 and 10, you see how this could be an issue. Mommas role was the hardest, though. I got news, good and bad, and I had to tell the kids. I was the shoulder they cried on. I was the one who had to try to console them. I had no time or energy to even consider my own feelings and deal with them. It was a really rough two months.
Looking back on it four years later, I can see the blessings I had been given. I know my siblings better than I ever thought I would. I saw how much my parents had to deal with and have more respect for them now. Even though Brea died, I feel her still. She cheers me on. Because I now have her to hold me up, I can now continue to hold up everyone around me. Even if I am only almost 16. Who ever said that trails have no worth or value in the end? My hardships don't shape who I am destined to be. I do.
Are you making excuses as to why you do things you probably shouldn't? My best friend, my protector, my inspiration, my sister died 10 days after my 12th birthday. I don't cut. I don't fall into depression. I don't block out the world. Instead, I find ways to serve, I force a smile (real or not, it becomes real eventually), and I embrace the world and all it has to offer.
I leave you with a simple question: Are you dwelling in darkness or will you find the light in all that you do?
Submitted by Anonymous
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