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This is my brother, Michael… handsome guy huh?
I wanted to write about my brother because he is an awesome guy. We are pretty close and can usually talk about anything. But there was one time when God almost took him from our family…
It was a hot summer day, my brother was 4 years old and and I was about 8. A friend of mine invited me over to swim in her apartment complex’s pool, and I was very excited. Her mom asked if my brother wanted to come too. My parents weren’t too crazy about it because he was so young, but they figured why not? They told him he had to keep his life jacket on the entire time he was at the pool and never take it off. I don’t remember what he said, but I am sure he agreed so he could go swimming!
When we got there I went off with my friend. We had a great time swimming and playing in the pool. My brother was only 4 so at that time he was kind of annoying to me. I wanted to play with my friend and not have to have him bothering me. So he played by himself and was doing his own thing, while my friend’s mom watched him.
Sometime during the afternoon my friend and I decided to lay out in the sun. We went over to some pool chairs and laid facing the ground so the sun was hitting our backs. After awhile, I noticed it got really quiet. I was getting bored so I told my friend I was going to go ask her mom if we could go back to their apartment. I got up and looked around for my brother. I didn’t see him. I don’t remember if I called for him or not, but I started walking faster looking around to see where he could be. As I walked around the pool I got this sick feeling in my stomach. I was walking past the part of the pool that was 8 feet deep, and there at the bottom of the pool was my brother.
He was laying flat on the bottom and not moving at all. I started screaming for help and trying to get my friend’s mom’s attention. She jumped in to try to get him, and tried several times, but I guess it was too deep for her and she could not reach him. Thankfully, that day there had been a few teenagers playing around at the pool as well. One of them saw what had happened and jumped in and got him out. When the got him out they laid him on the pavement by the pool, but he wasn’t breathing. By this time 911 had been called and was on the way. My friend’s mom did CPR on him and got him breathing just as the paramedics arrived.
I was told I needed to call my parents and tell them, but I was crying so hard I could barely get the words out. My parents hurried down as fast as they could when they heard, and then went to the hospital to be with my brother. He ended up staying overnight in the hospital and had pneumonia from all the water in his lungs, but he was otherwise fine. The doctors said it was a miracle that he survived because no one knows how long he was under the water, and you can only survive a few minutes without oxygen. My brother learned a very important lesson in obedience that day as well: never take your life jacket off!
I will never forget that day. I know at that age you think of all little brothers as a pain and a pest. But for me, while that was happening, all I could think of was how much I loved him, and how much of a pain and pest he wasn’t. I was so scared for him, and I knew that for awhile at least I would never consider him a pain or pest again. Of course since then, I may have changed my mind about that a time or two, but I still love him just the same!
I know God has some amazing plans for my amazing and funny brother. Growing up with a crazy brother who was always out to get his “big sister” was not easy! I mean look at this boy!! Now that he is almost 20 years old I can hardly believe it! We have been through a lot as siblings and a family, but I am so glad that God gave me him to get through these things.
My brother is now going through some pretty rough things again in his life. He has been having seizures on and off again for about a year now. I worry about him, but he is completely calm and peaceful in God. He is a great example to me, and has a wonderful relationship with God. He is going to college right now and plans on becoming a missionary some day. I know that God is not done with him yet, and that he will do some wonderful things.
No matter what happens, no matter what stress or health problems come into your life, know that I am always here for you. Thank you for being an example to me and to our family. God is not done with you yet, and I know he will use you in a wonderful way. I can’t wait to see it! I am so glad you do not let these issues hinder you from doing God’s will. I will always be here if you need to talk or you need anything.
Love your big sister!
Me holding my little brother!