Baby Sister, a Short Story

Baby Sister, a Short Story

By Elizabeth Martins

 

Before you were born, I wanted to meet you. I asked Mom for a baby sister, and she answered my wish by telling me, “A new baby sister is on the way. But,” she said, “She’s not any new baby sister. She’s a special baby sister.” I couldn’t wait to kiss you and hold you, special or not.

 

We used to take bubble baths together, baby sister. When I threw plastic squeaky toys in the air, we watched as they cascaded into the water and splashed us in our faces. It was silly, but it made you crack up. Your laughter sounded like ringing chimes as the lapping water calmed. We called this game Splish Splash. Sometimes you were upset if too much water reached your eyes. But we always had a cloth nearby to wipe the drops from our lashes.

 

Baby sister, when we were both teens on a camping trip, you fell from the red kayak. I think the boys were rocking it. Into the creek water you plunged, but your orange vest kept you afloat. You laughed it off, but I think you were a bit cautious of kayaks after that.

 

I’ve drawn many pictures of you, baby sister, taking note of the way your almond eyes curve and how your cheeks fold roundly beneath your brow. You have drawn pictures of me too. You always draw me as the tall one, appearing brave.

 

Baby sister, I’m not always with you. But each day, I think of you and remember the heart-pounding laughter in the tub where the toys splashed. I pray that you’re happy and not missing me, like I miss you. But even if you do miss me, or even if the bath water gets in your eyes again, or if the creek water is colder this time, it’s okay. Because, baby sister, even though you always draw me as the tall one, the brave one, you are the tallest and bravest of us all.

 

You may be as different as the sun and the moon, but the same blood flows through both your hearts. You need her, as she needs you.

—George R.R. Martin

 

This is an excerpt from the new book Reasons to Smile: Celebrating People Living with Down Syndrome

Date

07 January 2016

Categories

The following is an excerpt from the book Reasons to Smile: Celebrating People Living with Down Syndrome

Reasons to Smile is web and book series consisting of inspiring stories, by and about people living with special needs.

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