Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Day #5.....Big Brother's March For Hope

Caleb, Hope's big brother and hero, almost 15 years of age, has asked if he could share his heart with all who are praying for Hope......Caleb's love for Hope is a special thing. They have been buddies since she was just a tiny baby. He has a tenderness toward her that continually touches my heart and all those who see him with her:

Hi, I'm Caleb. I'm scared for Hope. I'm scared that God might take her away to benefit His plan. There are so many things I love about my baby sister, that I would miss like crazy. I love getting up and seeing the bright smile on her face as she's running through the house shouting at everyone. I would definitely miss getting hit by a green bean flying across the table after she has just rocketed one at me, and then the look of innocence following the flying vegetable. I would miss throwing my food back at her to make her laugh. She loves it. The real challenge with Hope is trying to catch her glasses when she gets tired of them and throws them across the room. They have landed in my mashed potatoes and gravy several times. I love carrying Hope on my shoulders....even though she enjoys beating me on my head when she's up there. I tickle her to make her giggle and get a kick out of the way she steals my guitar pick to strum my electric guitar when I'm playing. Most of all, I love staying up late, holding her in my arms, and watching tv with her until she falls asleep. We do this alot. This is what I would miss most.

Alot of people don't understand how such great gifts can come in imperfect packages. You don't have to have a super wrapped up, pretty package to have a great gift. What really matters is what is on the inside. And Hope is beautiful on the inside. I get angry, and sometimes want to tell people off, when they give Hope a strange look and think they are better than her. But Hope doesn't care. She doesn't understand. She's just being Hope.

If I could change anything about Hope, I wouldn't, except I would make sure she had a good heart. I dread the heart surgery so much to where I just can't even comprehend that Hope could die in the surgery and I would never be able to spend another moment with her on earth. I'm just praying that God will work a miracle and that Hope will be fine after surgery. I hope she will be just like she is now. I love the song: "There is hope for me yet.....because God won't forget.....The plans He's made for me.....There is hope for me yet". I can't imagine God's plan for my life wouldn't include Hope being in it. For 4 years, I have dreamed of being Hope's coach in the Special Olympics. I want to teach her how to run a race. When she gets into trouble around the house, she can run quick as lightning. It's shocking how fast she can run. I think she could blow away all of the competition in the Special Olympics some day. We could come home with a gold medal. God knows this is my dream.

I want to share my heart for Hope tonight, but it is so hard. How do you write about someone who comes into your life and flips it all around? Before Hope, I looked at the whole world differently. I looked at every day as a time to go out and have the best time I could without a worry in the world. Now Hope has taught me there is more to life than just having fun. There are people, like Hope, who need our help and prayers. I took my life for granted and I think that is what alot of people do everyday. Hope will never have the chance to do things that most of us do all of the time. I don't take things for granted anymore. I'm thankful for the mind and body I've been given and want to do my very best in everything I do, because I know my sister would love to have the opportunity to do things I do, but she will never have the chance because her body and her mind won't let her. I want my life to matter for her. Everyone always says I'm Hope's hero, but the truth is, she is mine.

I am so proud of Hope and love showing her off to all of my friends. I've even named her the "chick magnet". I guess what I would want everyone to know is kids with Down Syndrome are still kids. Things don't come as easy for them, but they give a 110% in everything they do. If you see a kid with Down Syndrome, don't look away. Say hi. Be their friend. They will adore you.

Please don't forget my sister and all of the joy she has given everyone who has met her. Don't just say you'll pray to say it. Really mean it, because my sister needs a miracle. God still does the unthinkable. It is not too late for Hope. Thank you for praying. Keep on marching with us. We are going to get our miracle.


  1. Truly an exceptional big brother. I love your story.

  2. That is one of the MOST precious things I have EVER read. What a beautiful brother/sister relationship. Caleb, God has given you insight and love that few adults have! Our prayers are will you that Hope will come through the surgery with a stronger heart and be a blessing to you for many, many more years. Thanks for writing that lovely post! Cindy Jenkins

  3. Thanks for writing Caleb <3... I'm unbelieveably moved by your words and your courage to share about the love you have for Hope because I know it just seems like there are no words that could possibly express that love. And I know for a fact, and by my own eyes witnessed, that you are the big brother every little sister needs!! I love you guys insane amounts and so does the lord<3 PRAYING... MARCHING... PRAYING... MARCHING! All for that beautiful baby, who brings more joy to others than I have ever seen! LOVE YOU GUYS!! <3

  4. Wow...Caleb, you are an amazing young man. Thank you so much for having the courage to share your heart. I am so inspired by you and by Hope. I am praying...and I really mean it. I got this link from my dear friend Suzy Waldrip Simpson. And I'm so glad I took the time to read it. ~Lori

  5. Wow! Caleb you probably don't remember me, but your mom and I use to do a lot together when you were a baby. My son Tyler is a few months older than you. We have pictures of you at his 1st birthday! I cried reading your post. You are an amazing young man. Your parents have done a great job training you. I want you to know that my family ( Shane Dee Dee , Tyler, Tara, Tanner, Trent, Tessa, And Tori) will be praying for Hope!! We have been prayng for her for over 4 yrs now. Tori, my 4 year old, wants to come and meet her. I hope we can do that soon!God Bless!

  6. I am boo hooing my eyes out right now. What an amazing little boy and amazing little girl. My whole hearted prayers are with all of you.

  7. Beautiful Caleb, just beautiful!

  8. What a blessed little girl to have a brother like you. I can feel the love you have for your little sister...

    God is so good...his plans are perfect. Trust Him. Praise Him...even in the hard times.

    My prayers are with you and I sent the link to this blog to my SS class as well so many of them will be popping over.

    Thank you for sharing Caleb. You really are an amazing young man. The pictures in this post speak for themselves as well.


  9. Okay, God gave me a Word this morning that was different from any other time I've ever received a verse from Him. It spoke to me in a different spot and I want to share it with you. I feel like you already know this, but I've been clinging to it today.

    1 Peter 5:6-7
    "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you."

    I have read this verse so many times before and know that I should humble myself and that was always the part that I focused on. But today what I heard was that HE CARES!!! He CARES FOR ME!!! He cares for you, He cares that you will miss those glasses in your mashed potatoes! :)

  10. Caleb,

    I have been thinking about your post ever since I read it last week. I was so moved by it then, but even more so as I have had time to reflect on it... Thank you for sharing your heart. Your pictures said a thousand words and your love, understanding and gentleness towards Hope is definitely a "chick magnet" along with her endearing personality :) I know she loves your affection and protection and WOW how glorifying to God! I am praying for your miracle of a perfect surgery and your dream of being a Special Olympics coach for your sweet sister.

  11. Caleb, what a sweet testimony. I was so moved reading your story. Hope is definitley in good hands with a big brother like you. My friend Brooke Mabry told me about Hope, and I want you to know that I will pray for her. God Bless you and your family
    Jill H.