By Sara Dixon

At the age of fourteen he’s overcame adversity and has continued to remain hopeful, more so than anyone I’ve ever met in my life. He’s moved mountains and he’s moved people. His demeanor is synonymous to a sunflower in the Winter days; although the weather doesn’t adjust to his needs, he remains patient in order for him to acquire the necessary Summer days. He’s my soil and he’s my sun. I need him for my sustenance and I need him to brighten my days. 

He is my fourteen-year-old brother named Ramzi. He was born with Down Syndrome, but he is the most intelligent person I know. Intelligence isn’t measured by knowing how to derive a complicated equation in Calculus, or how to measure the acceleration of a ball in Physics, or the literary techniques Flaubert uses when describing Emma Bovary’s infidelity. Intelligence is measured by simply having the power to understand others and forgive the mistakes people around you make. By helping my mother raise Ramzi I’ve learned how to nurture and understand children, especially those with special needs. I’ve learned how to appreciate all that I’m given because Ramzi appreciates everything he is given; I have never see him sulk about the way he was born.

Without a brother with special needs I wouldn’t have matured quickly and I wouldn’t have had experiences that have shaped my personality and aspirations. I was blessed by God to have been given a brother who continues to have innocence in his teenage years. Who else has a fourteen-year-old brother who still believes in “piggy” promises and sleeps with his “bakey”?