Monday, October 22, 2007

My baby brother Michael died yesterday.

He was profoundly retarded. When he was born, the doctors told us it would be a miracle if he lived to be 16. But he did, and then he went on living another 7 years.

Michael was a baby all his life. He didn't walk. He needed to be fed. He wore diapers. He was mostly blind, but he loved to have the sunshine on his face. He loved to hear people talk to him and loved having people fawn over him. He loved music. He hated to be held, but there was no other way to move him around. He may have been my brother, but he was heavy. He hated loud noises. He hated having to wait for his dinner and would make an awful racket.

Michael was lucky that my parents shouldered the burden of taking care of him. My parents chose to sacrifice everything they could to make Michael happy, and they succeeded. Michael was happy almost every day of his life. What more could anyone ask out of this wicked world?

And I miss him terribly. Even though I knew it was going to happen soon. Even though I've been expecting that call for years. It's hard to realize exactly how much you love someone like that until they're gone, and now he's gone, my sweet baby brother Michael.


Dave 5:35 PM, October 22, 2007  

I'm so sorry to hear this, Hayden. Take care.

Dutcher Stiles 9:28 PM, October 22, 2007  

Losing a brother is hard. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Maggie Osterberg 11:20 AM, October 23, 2007  

I'm sorry for your loss, Hayden. My best wishes to you and your family. Mom and dad send their condolences, too.

Kevin 11:51 AM, October 24, 2007  

I was so sorry to hear of Micheal's passing. My mom just told me she saw it in the Press-Register and I did a search to see if I could find out how to get in touch. Please give my condolences to your parents and Patrick and Jen. When you feel up to it, drop me a line at

Best wishes, Kevin

Andy Axel 6:47 PM, October 25, 2007  

I just caught up with this news after a very busy week.

I feel late in saying so, but I hope you and your family are holding up in the wake of this devastating news.

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