Friday, November 9, 2007

Josh, Joshy, or Joshua, whatever you want to call him!

So you want to hear about my brother and why not? I have nothing to write about today so it works well right now. I can't give you the long version because that would have to be broken down into parts. He has gone through a lot in his 21 years of existence and drug us through a lot of it with him. He has 3 sisters and one brother in law, 3 nieces and 1 nephew. Can you blame him for having issues and my poor nephew may have a few of the same. I love him and I'm proud of the improvement he has made.

When my brother was only a couple of days old, my older sister and I were fighting over who got to hold him. Seriously, one of us was pulling him by his feet and the other had him by his arms and my mom yelled, someone better let go NOW! So we both did. And splat on the floor he went. She wasn't happy with us and his crying began...

My brother cried for about the first 3 years of his life. I was the baby for 4 years and 358 days and then he came and all he did was cry! He had colic and then tons of ear infections. I never liked him except after we moved and I was too scared to sleep in my own bed and would beg him to let me sleep with him. I was older, he couldn't say no! So I would, almost every night!

He was always a very different child in a difficult way. Everyone knew he wasn't like most normal kids and when he was around 8 or 9, he was diagnosed bipolar. That brought on a lot of trials and tribulations for our family. He was crazy! He has tried to kill me about 5 times, my little sister a couple of times, but for some reason, it was mostly me. Josh you wanna fill in why here?

I can't even think where to begin to tell you some of the horror stories. His method of killing...choking you. One time we were home alone and he decided he didn't like what I said so the choke fest began. Luckily my older sister and her then husband walked in the house and pulled him off of me or I'm sure he wouldn't have stopped. He has always been an emotional boy too (now man).

At 16, he had scoliosis (?) so bad he had a hunch back. He had to have back surgery and now has a rod in his back to straighten him up. I forget how tall he was when he went into the surgery, maybe 5'8 and came out 6' or close to it. It was very weird to go visit someone you used to look eye to eye to and now you have to look way up. The bipolarness continued on. He threatened to throw a nurse out the window of his 8th floor room and a couple of other rude comments to other staff members.

Today, I am probably the sister that is closest to him. I love him and I am proud of the man he has become. He no longer takes his meds, for about a year, and although he still has good and bad days, he is getting much better at controlling them or saying, leave me alone for a while cuz if you don't, I'll explode. Some people don't believe in not living in the past and can't believe he's changed. I do and although I like to revisit it, I'd never want to live in that dark place again.
***As a side note, no one should ever pick on kids at school. I know most people think that is a myth or an excuse, that school shooters were teased and pushed to the brink. It's not! If my brother wouldn't have had such a good support system and been diagnosed young, that would have been him. You never know what inner demons someone is dealing with. I saw it from the "other" side and I have seen friends of mine pick on other kids. Talk to your kids and tell them to stand up for the underdog even against their own friends, because you never know what the other person will do and what they are going through. My PSA is now over so you can return to your regularly scheduled programming.


Kellan said...

What a really nice tribute to your brother. I think he is lucky to have you and I agree with you about the bullying of kids at school!!!!! Have a great weekend.

Anonymous said...

it was mostly me. Josh you wanna fill in why here? - one word..."Bitch"

The Stevens Family said...

You are not very nice and I tried to be nice in this and not embarass you, but next time, it's no hold's barred!

My Wonderful Men... said...

That's great you have been there for your brother all these years.

He has been through a lot in his life. Bipolar on medication is difficult to live with and he's doing good without medication that is awesome. I pray he continues to have a wonderful and sucessful adult life.

I'm sure this was not easy to share such a personal story, but like you said parents talk to your kids about teasing others it's not right or worth it.

Kathy said...

Your love for Josh shines through! Good job Josh, and I hope your life is rewarding and fullfilling. Sounds like you went through some hard crap. Thank you for letting this story be told. I hope the little Stevens are feeling better today.

Kellan said...

Hey - it's me again! Come by my site, I have an award for you.

Kellan said...

And ... you were nice!!!!!