My name is Kimberly and I have a five-year-old brother named Gabriel who has Down syndrome. I was eleven years old when my mother, Tami, told me that she was pregnant with yet another child, and to be honest I was pretty upset. My biological father passed away when I was eight, and I already had ten siblings so I wasn't sure if there was room in my heart for one more. My stepfather, Louis, was probably the most surprised out of all of us when we heard the news. You see, he had tried time after time to have children, but was never able to because he was told that he was sterile.
The day that Gabriel was born was a very emotional one. He was born with an infection, his white blood count was four times over the acceptable limit and he was not maintaining his core body temperature so he was transferred to the NICU unit. My little brother was born in Lincoln County on January 1st 2008. He was the city's New Year’s baby and he was featured in the newspaper.
As the years have passed, little Gabriel has grown a lot. He is not potty trained yet, does not eat solid foods, and still drinks from a bottle. He tries to communicate but it is very difficult. My little brother is my little angel. I remember one day I came home from school after finding out that my best friend had committed suicide, and even though Gabriel didn't understand why I was crying, he was still there to comfort me. I sat down on our living room floor and just cried and cried, then all of a sudden, there was Gabriel, sitting in my lap with his hand on top of mine, looking up into my face. I kid you not when I tell you that as a single tear ran down my face, Gabriel wiped it away.
Gabriel has been going to preschool for two years now, and has improved quite a bit. He is still lower on the learning spectrum in some areas, but is unique. As Gabriel has grown, so have I. Over time, I realized that he takes up the biggest part of my heart, and will always be my biggest inspiration. He is the reason why I want to attend The Juilliard School of Music to pursue my violin career. He is the reason why I want to become a music therapist. I will continue to protect this little guy long after I am dead and gone. He saved me. He taught me. He accepts me. His initials G.L.M. stand for "God's Little Man" because that is exactly who he is. He is our miracle.