My Brothera blessing, a miracle, a loving sibling. My brother was diagnosed with Down syndrome at birth. I was four years old at the time. I didnt know what this meant. I knew my brother was different: the constant hospital visits, special masks and gloves we used to handle him, and extra time and care that he needed implied that my brother had special needs; but to me this was no different than the trips we made to the store, the medicine we took when we were sick, and the time we put into my other sibling's agendas. I thought nothing different of my brother and the special care he needed. It wasn't until high school that I realized my brother was "special"unique, fantastic. It wasn't the fact that he had a colostomy bag at birth or his delayed development of speech; I knew my brother was special because of his smile. He was extraordinary! People responded to his laugh, people responded to his smile, and people loved him instantly and unconditionally. Growing up with a brother with Down syndrome was the greatest blessing I could have asked for. Although he has many challenges as all of us do, his talent and gift is the joy he passes on to others. No other person I know can illuminate the room in happiness as quickly as my brother. A hug or smile is the greatest gift when you feel the warmth of true love surrounding you. I want this story to be a thank you to my brother. I learned so much from him over the years and I am grateful to say that I have the pleasure of having a sibling with Down syndrome.