How my other children cope with their baby brother’s disability

13934844_10154357983297567_1470095105814110804_nIt is tough for my girls Sofia (12), Elaina (8) and Olivia (4) whenever their baby brother has seizures and have to be taken by ambulance to the hospital. I remember the very first time that Miguel had a seizure and we called 911,  I saw the girls crying. I didn’t have time to explain to them what was going on because I was in panic too. Miguel was having respiratory distress that time. So off I went to the hospital without even hugging and kissing them goodbye.

Later that day, I learned that after we left, they went to Sofia’s room and prayed together. It was Elaina who led the prayer because, as Sofia told me, she was too distraught to speak. I felt bad that day and vowed that I won’t leave them that way again.

And so from that moment on, whenever Miguel has to be rushed to hospital, I take the time to explain to them as briefly as I can what is happening and to hug and kiss them before I go.

13937779_10154374104352567_4007009093843289680_oOur girls have been fairly good at coping although I can say it is not easy for them. It is particularly tough for Sofia because she is the eldest and she knows she has to care for her sisters while me and Miguel are in the hospital. And I can say she’s been doing it really well. I am so proud of her! Elaina and Olivia are also good helpers to their older sister and this makes my job a lot easier.

I guess what makes it easy for them to cope is the knowledge that they are part of the team. Knowing everything that’s happening erases all unfounded fears and anxieties. When they know what’s happening to their brother, they won’t be imagining things which is usually worse than what they really are.

In between episodes of hospitalizations when things are relatively normal, we try to go back to our usual family routine which involves family bible study on Monday nights, movie night on Fridays and spiritual activities on weekends. We also strive to pray together as often as we can. This keeps all of us positive and sane.

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