To My Little Brother, Who Supported Me After My Stroke at Age 10

To my dear brother Michael,

I want to thank you for being so supportive these last six years. I know when I got sick you might have felt abandoned by the family and others close to you. I’m sure those first few months when our parents were with me in the hospital were very confusing. You were only 8 years old, and probably didn’t grasp the enormity of my situation.

We were at the beach playing on a summer day, and I had a stroke. I was in the hospital for months and couldn’t be with you or see you. Our family was torn apart in an instant. One day we were together as a family, and the next you were left to bounce from house to house and find new friends to take you to school every morning. I know this must have been hard for you. You may have had questions other people did not have the answers to, and wondered what life was going to be like from now on. Your new life living with an older disabled sibling can be rough sometimes; it’s not something you were prepared for.

I understand how this situation has forced you to grow up faster. While all your friends are spending time just being kids, you’ve had to deal with so much more. Many days of your childhood have been spent waiting for me at doctor’s appointments and surgeries. While people sent me gifts and well-wishes, you never ask for anything, even though sometimes I think you deserve them more than I do. Our family has not been able to do some things we wanted to because I would not be able to participate. Thank you for understanding and always trying to make the best of it.

I want to thank you for being nothing but helpful and supportive of me through this whole ordeal. You’re always there to catch me when I fall. We still fight sometimes, but no one defends me more and louder than you do. Knowing you are there for me means so much to me. It’s a unique bond we have; not many others can relate.

I always say that life is like a roller coaster. There’s ups and downs and twists and turns, but all that matters is who is riding with you. So I want to thank you for riding the ride of life with me.

Your sister,


Follow this journey on Gracie Doran’s website.

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