I knew this day would come… This thought starts out in a seemingly dramatic way, but realistically (and in the scope of eternity), it’s not. You see, this thought is about my sister, Lia.
For those that know me and my family, you probably know that my 6 year old sister, Lia, has Cerebral Palsy (CP for short). Little Lia is a walking miracle, being born at 27 weeks and having complications that followed, which are why she has CP. My sweet sister was never supposed to walk or talk, yet here she is at 6. Not only does she walk, she runs. (Even if it’s not the “normal” way) She not only talks, she sings (loudly and often). She does have obstacles that she has had to overcome. Her left side was mostly affected by her CP and her muscles are really tight on that side. She can’t walk the way most do, and there are things that she will never be able to do. However, If you were to look at Miss Lia, you would not be able to see her disability (until she walks or you see her wearing her brace).
Since she first got her CP diagnosis, I’ve thought about how growing up and going to school might be for Lia. She has a sweet and caring heart. She loves dancing and singing and her imagination runs freely. I knew that she would eventually begin to understand that she is not quite like the kids in her class at school or church (and how they would see her). I’ve always wondered how growing up would be for my miracle sister. When I was home the last time, I really began to realize just how big she is getting. She chattered on about what she has been learning in school and proudly read me a story. She was acting like a typical first grader.
But then, I knew this day would come. While I was helping Lia get ready for bed one evening she asked me, “When you were my age, did you have problems learning to skate?” (They have a skating day coming up in her gym class and my mother was wary about letting Lia participate as walking is a challenge for her in itself). My sweet, blond hair, blue eyed sister looked at me, her biggest sister, with wide eyes. She was looking for me to affirm in her mind that these things were hard for me too. In that moment, a pang of reality hit me. I was not going to lie to her. I was not going to tell her that we are the same in that way. Instead, I looked at her and told her that I did not have problems with skating. She thought for a moment, then asked me, “Is it going to be harder for me to skate because I was a miracle when I was born?” Another stabbing pain in my heart. With some hesitation I affirmed her statement, but I also looked at her and said, “You were a miracle when you were born, but you are also a miracle now. God loves you, and he made you extra special.” My sweet, sweet sister ran over, jumped into my lap, and wrapped me in an embrace. I squeezed her extra tight. Honestly, I forget most of the time that Lia has a disability. Her way of life is normal to me and my family. This was just a reminder that I have a sister that is extra special. My biggest prayer for Lia is that she will never forget that God has a clear plan for her life, and that she He made her the way she is on purpose. I love little Lia, and I cannot wait to see her continue to grow.