He was born August of 93 and she was born November 95 so a little over 2 years apart. All their lives I have been asked, Are they twins? No. Of course not. But their bond is one that I can’t explain. They have been together in even the most traumatic event like the times when child protective services took them away from me on the spot. I remember that like it was yesterday. They were there for each other when they didn’t understand why they were taken away from me. All over someone’s personal opinion about dating out of your race and interracial relationships resulting in children. He shouldn’t have done that and maybe one day it will affect him in more ways than one and hopefully it will take on a new meaning for him.
Now, every family has their relationships. They have the siblings that have their special relationships. Some that can’t be torn apart. Well I feel like Dusty and Kayla have one of those sibling relationships that are a bit different. He is technically the older brother. But Kayla has always been the sister that it didn’t matter the age difference. She has been one of this biggest fans. One moment in time I remember like no other is June 2013 when he was graduating high school and she hollered out ” YOU DID IT BUBBA!” Where the bubba part came from is beyond me but I am sure she knows. He actually got his high school diploma, not a certificate of completion. All his school life I was under the assumption that he would get a certificate of completion. When I saw that it was an actual diploma I burst into tears. I was beyond excited!. He had to idea what it meant to get that. So we explained to him that those are the same things that everyone else gets when they graduate high school if they work hard and do what they have to do. He was expected the same (with some modifications of course) as the next person. His teachers/aides didn’t let him slack off. He wasn’t babied either. A lot of people tend to think that you should baby people like Dusty. Well they are so wrong. They sure as heck didn’t give him enough credit because they can pull an entire blanket of wool over their eyes and use that to their advantage. Dusty isn’t innocent by any means. Kayla has been there to push Dusty when it was needed and hold him up when he needed it.
There are some people that have question our values or ways of teaching and treating Dusty. Some have even asked why are we so rude to Dusty? Kayla replied, it isn’t about being rude, it is treating them the same as you would the next person and when they see they are being treated the same then they start to think well if they can do it why can’t I? Even if they fail in trying, they tried.
The Special Olympians Athlete Oath, “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.” -http://www.specialolympics.org
She has given so much of her time, energy and herself to the cause, that cause is Dusty. She is one person that I can count on to make sure Dusty is taken care of. Not that my parents or other family wouldn’t help but it is just different. One thing she has said was about her going to college and how she would involve Dusty in so much of her college life. Even to the point of Dusty being closer to her when she goes to college. How she would plan her life after college to include him and at one point him living with her. She give him a since of independence that even I can’t. It is just how the two of them have connected. She has seen my frustration and knows when to step in and help me. There are time when even she is frustrated. The doctors don’t just look at the parents for input and what is going on in his life but they look at her in a huge way.
After Dusty had his oral and maxillofacial surgery at UNC performed by the professor and his team of residents they needed to help at home making sure there were certain things done. They immediately saw how their relationship was and Kayla’s capabilities and knew Kayla knew what to do. It required a steady hand especially in the weeks right after due to risk of infection and the fact that his entire mouth had sutures all the way around, up, down, etc.