This I Believe

Kaitlin - East Amherst, New York
Entered on June 12, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Imagine waking up at 7a.m. just to find your little brother screaming; throwing his glass across the room because he wanted pomegranate juice, not apple juice. First of all, why would we have pomegranate juice? And yeah, he isn’t a baby, he’s nine. I can’t even begin to count how many times I have woken up to this, came home to this, or slept to this. My brother, Adam, has ADHD, and although it seems like an equation nothing other than “ add Ritalin, subtract sugar”, it is far from that. Other than his cliché traits of not paying attention and being super hyper, he doesn’t always know what is wrong to say to people and he is very bad at controlling his anger. Living with Adam can be hectic but it is also one of the greatest things in my life, both at the same time. Therefore I have learned to believe in patience.

Most of the time, my brother is pretty calm and subdued. But he sometimes has random angry outbursts. It is hard for my family to handle, but also it is hard for his teachers and classmates. They always seem fed up, and his “friends” avoid him. Just the other day I took him to a restaurant, where we were seated to some kids from his school, including a little girl who used to come over and play with Adam at our house all of the time. They didn’t say hi to him, they only whispered and giggled at him. I couldn’t believe the amount of courage my brother had to just sit there silently and take this, whereas I wanted just wanted to yell at these kids who were only half my age. If only they knew, like I do, that Adam is a great kid with a huge personality and tons of knowledge, even if it doesn’t show in his schoolwork. Knowing that my brother is so sweet when he’s good definitely extends my patience for him. I really do wish that everyone could develop this amount of patience for him, and other kids with this problem, in the future.

Not only has my ability to remain cool been measured by little brother, but by myself. I have, as well as my parents, always pushed myself hard for success. Sports, academics, as well as anything else from friendships/relationships to the way I look, have made me stressed for long periods of time in my life. With patience I have been able to pull myself out of lots of stress, take a step back and fresh breath. Staying Calm and collected has helped me tremendously in almost every aspect of my life.