On a Monday morning, something unusual happened. I woke up to my aunt standing in a corner holding her belly. At first, I was waking up so I didn’t know what was going on. But once I really woke up, her belly got so small and I was so confused. She kept asking me for towels and once I looked around the floor, it was wet. HER WATER BROKE. I immediately called my father and he came in less than 10 minutes, thank God he works close. My dad took her to the hospital but on the way to the hospital, an ambulance was right beside them at a street light. She went away in the ambulance and my father followed them. Unfortunately, I had to go to school and my aunt giving birth was the only thought on my mind. Hours later, around 10am, my phone starts to blow up with messages from her best friend and my father. Brandon was born around 10am. I gave her the name “Brandon” and she came up with “Ismael” to be the middle name. I was so happy. Months later, I watched Brandon grow and how he grew upon me. We’ve gone through so much, to where I babysit him and suddenly the house would bounce because he’s fallen so many times on me. He was like my child when I’d babysit him, right there I knew being a mother is such a huge responsibility, that I was definitely not ready for. He’s brought me to free rides where I would take him to the carnivals and the people from the carnival would let me ride for free because “I was his mother” or we just looked cute together. I’m serious, they were so nice and strangers took pictures of us because we would look “cute together.” It seemed unbelievable but when I look back, it brings back lovely memories.
One thing I can tell you, he was the fastest crawler. Everything was better when he couldn’t touch things, but once he started to touch things, he was a devil child. Not that he was bad, but he knew what he was doing and he loved seeing us get pissed off. When he learned how to walk, the world was over. I recorded his first steps and he use to run from the couch to the bed, just practicing until he finally followed me to the kitchen. God, I miss those days. Pure happiness was surrounding us. As he was growing, he learned how to talk to the point where he couldn’t shut up. But I loved that.
Although he was still a “baby,” I had someone to talk to. The best feeling in the world was when he called me his sister. That touched my heart because finally someone looks up to me. I have an older brother that lives in the same area as me and a sister in Ecuador that I haven’t met yet. My sister has two nieces that I can’t wait to meet. But Brandon, he’s like a brother I never had. I actually had the experience to be someone’s “older sister.” I always wanted to mean so much to someone and I quite mean a lot to him, just like he means a lot to me. We have lots of memories to the point where I flipped him over and I think I made him double-jointed because of that. He’s fallen off of the bed on my watch because he’s so clumsy. He really loves to watch me play softball, he’s my number one fan and cheers for me at my games. Even when he watched me practice, I accidentally hit his face with a softball. I can still see the bruise, but it faded away. That day had to be the funniest but it felt so wrong. But, he stayed strong.
There was a time where I lost him at Wal-Mart and my dad got so mad at me, and we started to look for him. We literally looked for him everywhere until one of the workers saw us looking for a kid and he brought us to him, and he was sitting in the middle of the floor, crying and once he saw us, his face just shined up. The worker told us that he didn’t let anybody touch him until his “sister” found him. That’s when I knew our bond was unbreakable. Watching him grow up, he wants to become a baseball player because I inspired him. He always say, “I want to grow up and be like you, taller than you, and faster than you.” I am so thankful for him. I am really blessed that my aunt gave him birth. My work would be completely different if he wasn’t in the picture. The day he moved out of our house was the saddest. I tried not to cry but once they moved to their new house, he said “Okay Jenni, let’s go home” and right there, I cried and told him that this was new home. He slowly started to tear up and we just hugged each other for a long time. He honestly didn’t get used to his new home until it hit three weeks. My aunt told me. He would always call me at night to say good night and coming from a four year old boy, that’s big. Now that he’s four years old, about to graduate from pre-school, made me realize that time really goes by fast. That there isn’t time, so you do as much things as you can when you get the chance to. Since I am growing up too, I am definitely keeping an eye on him, even through College. I will be there for him, because the bond we have, I can’t let that go, I can’t let my little “brother”think that I won’t be there. I will be there to watch him fall, grow, change and love. He’s my horizon and clearly my happiness. When he’s around, there’s always a smile on my face.