Growing up on the Spectrum part 4

Hey friends, I wanted to do another post about growing up with my beautiful sister, this one is more about me this time…

Being an “only” child.

Growing up with a special needs sibling is a wonderful and beautiful adventure but if I am being totally honest, it can be lonely. Unlike my peers who have brothers and sisters who they fought with or played with, I couldn’t fight with Rachel. Not that I ever wanted to but I never understood what it was like to argue with a sibling. I remember I had a friend who would fight with her brother and I would laugh because I had never seen siblings fight.

Playing wasn’t like how you would play with your friends at recess. Rachel and I would reenact parts from our favorite movies or sing songs. I never wanted to play outside because I was afraid something would happen to Rachel.I always wanted to protect her from the world. I am still very guilty of that.

I never wanted to push her outside of her comfort zone because I knew she could meltdown. Meltdowns are exhausting for all involved and  while you need to change-up routine with people on the spectrum, seeing Rachel meltdown kills me. It physically hurts my heart.

I am not an only child by any means but my mama raised two very different children, two very different ways in one household by herself. That is something to brag about. She had to make sure Rachel was very well taken care of while taking care of me too.

Many people always talk about how wonderful my mama and I are but it really has nothing to do with being wonderful. It has to do with loving this person so much that we would do anything to keep her smiling and make sure she is taken care of. My mama has said I had to step back and let Rachel have everything before me, but I don’t look at it like that. I knew from a young age that this little person needed help and as her big sister that meant that i needed to help out with mom and school and social activities. She is my best friend and being able to see her grow into the fierce woman she has become has been so worth it!

This is her giving her Maid of Honor speech at my wedding.

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