My name is Lillian Pierce. I love doing gymnastics, sewing and theater. My family means the world to me. I used to live far away but we moved closer due to my Grammpy’s accident.
In 2013 my grandpa got into a freak accident. He was riding his motorcycle on the highway. Thankfully he was with a group and was a very safe rider. None of us were there when it happened but some of the bikers told us he knew something was up so he signaled he needed to get off the highway.But time did not want to cooperate. He was trying to get off the ramp when he fainted and hit the guard rail. The doctors had to amputate his arms. I lived in Pennsylvania when it happened. I was only three and didn’t understand much but it was scary. We moved up to Massachusetts to be closer to family.
At first I didn’t see him at all when he was in the hospital but when he went to rehab we visited him all the time. It was called Spaulding and was like my brother and my home away from home. We knew all the nurses and they knew us. He was at Spaulding for awhile and when we were there it was like I had become the caregiver. He used to take care of me and all of a sudden I was taking care of him. It felt just like instinct. I was feeding him and helping him learn to walk.We would sit in his room and watch the cars go by on Toben bridge and duck boats gliding through the water.When he came home from Spaulding it was different but it also felt normal.I help him with everything i can because it makes me feel good that I get to help him in that way. I help him go through doors and sometimes I help feed him.
Fairly soon after my grandpa went into rehab they got him prosthetics. He ever only wore one in the beginning–it was made so it looked like a hand, but that hand was hard. It had to use a special fork and knife. He didn’t use spoons. Then he got a new prosthetic shaped like a hook. It was much easier for him because then he could use any utensil and it was easier for him to turn on and off the lights and open doors. Now he has two prosthetics and he is more capable than ever.
I love hanging out with him and helping him. Sometimes people stare but some people are just interested and I love showing people his differences. When I was little I loved to help my Grammy take off his arms by turning them on and off and pulling the liners off that protect that protect what was left of his arm when he had the prosthetics on.
I like to tell people about him because he is different and other people are that way too. He was a normal guy with normal arms. I am not ashamed to be related to him. I am more proud than ever and I feel so grateful that he is the way he is instead of not being here at all.