My life has been very unique. Lots of people have siblings, but mine is really special. When my sister Jordan was born, I was kind of caught off guard. Don’t get me wrong, I was excited about having a sibling, but Jordan was born with only one hand, Which to me, a three-year-old was very confusing. Despite this, I was so excited to have a sibling (and a copy of Toy Story 2 as a gift!) that I didn’t really care about her differences.
Jordan was a welcome addition to our family. Even after we brought her home, Life was pretty normal for us. Mom was busy learning as much as she could about limb differences and how to handle them. She also started a blog called ‘Born Just Right’ where she chronicled raising Jordan and also gave tips for other parents raising limb different kids. When Jordan would go out in public I noticed the looks she got. At that time, I couldn’t really understand why. I saw Jordan as my sister and they looked at her as if she were some sort of circus freak. As I got older, I understood why the other kids were so freaked out. They didn’t live with this sort of thing on a daily basis, so seeing someone without their arm would be scary to them.
As Jordan and I got older we started our sibling rivalry. Most of the time we did not get along at all. It was all very trivial. We would fight over who had the privilege to sleep on the cupholder in the middle of the seat on long road trips (Something that we still bicker about to this day). We drove Mom and Dad crazy with our constant arguing.
Every two years or so we would trek up to Chicago to bring Jordan to try out her prosthetics. It was usually a long day that I spent watching Jumanji on my portable DVD player while I waited in the hospital room. Jordan hated prosthetics. She despised wearing them and having to keep up with the parts. On the other hand, I thought it was really cool and would tell all my friends that “My sister has a robot arm!”
A couple of years ago my sister went to a workshop where they asked other limb different kids to create a superhero prosthetic. The workshop was run by the 3d printing software company Autodesk. Jordan took Autodesk’s challenge and made a very cute prosthetic that was supposed to squirt out glitter. It didn’t work very well but she made it. After the camp, Jordan wanted to continue working on her prosthetic sol she teamed up with an employee at Autodesk. Together they made what is now known today as project unicorn. Project unicorn eventually became so successful it changed our lives forever. Jordan has become quite the activist after having had been on talk shows and given multiple TEDx talks. She also has a book coming out this summer and has collaborated with Barbie to create a limb different doll. My mom has a second job, in a way, to make sure Jordan can do as much as possible while still balancing school. I have had multiple people come up to me and talk about my sister. Despite the changes that these successes have brought to our lives, it’s all been very exciting.
These days Jordan is surviving 7th grade and I’m spending my days finishing up my Junior year of High School. Jordan and I spend our time together bonding over music and video games. Being Jordan’s brother has been one of the best parts of my life. It’s so amazing to be around someone who is so influential and inspiring. It’s almost as cool as getting that DVD of Toy Story 2 the day she was born.
This “Siblings Flaunt” has been published in partnership with the fabulously flaunting organization, “Siblings with a Mission.”