We get asked often about our kids’ responses from all of the things that Emmie has gone through with neurofibromatosis type 1. I think I understand what they are asking but all we know is this:
Emmie’s siblings absolutely adore her. It amazes me how, from the first time they met her, they have all been tender and caring and loving towards her (truth be told: that is how all of them have been with all their new baby siblings). When we found out Emmie had NF, they never wavered in their devotion and love and support. They understand (with wisdom beyond any I can explain) that we would give them the same kind of attention if they needed it (when she needs that extra medical attention). Any bump, bruise or fall…even now…leads to several siblings running to make sure she is okay. We have been open and honest with them, at their appropriate age level, about each thing she has faced. When they ask questions, we answer them honestly. They are Emmie’s strongest cheerleaders, pushers, supporters. I could not imagine Emmie not having them! In turn, they have taught our kids how to be compassionate to others. I believe the kids are learning to have empathy for others who may not be quite like them. They are learning that people are all created in God’s image even if they have bumps on their skin, visible plexiforms or severe learning issues.
Liam and I were talking one day and he asked me if I could have one wish, what would it be. I said that Emmie and others did not have to born with NF. Liam replied wisely, “But Mama, if Emmie wasn’t born with NF, then you wouldn’t have met all the amazing people you have. Maybe we should just wish there would be a cure for NF!”
So, when people ask me how the kids handle all of Emmie’s “attention” I respond absolutely truthfully, Emmie is the favorite sibling. Not our favorite child (we work not to do that) but she is definitely a favorite in the siblings. And when I say that Emmie has Super Sibling Sidekicks, I am definitely sharing the truth.
Proof is definitely in the pictures too! These are just a few I have managed to capture and don’t even come close to showing all of their love! That’s Emmie behind the book. Ceili Rain is a wonderful book reader for her. And a good napping companion. When Emmie fell asleep, Ceili Rain placed the blanket on her. Siblings make excellent pillows.
Staying warm together.
You have an awesome chance to be a part of Emmie’s sidekicks even if you aren’t a sibling! Donate or join our NF Walk team today! Our walk is less than three weeks away. Donations to our team go towards research to help end NF and get closer to our wish!