Hi, my name is Elvin. I am 15 years old and have the experience of looking after my brother of 8 with ADHD and my sister of 3 with Global Development Delay.
I first started looking after my brother at the age of 9, then there was only my brother and me. Me being only 9 and having grown up as an only child traveling around the world, made the whole experience amazingly fun. I would chase my brother around the house, his arms flailing around and laughing, he had been a little cheeky ball of joy.
Three years ago, my sister was born and she was sent down to Perth for two weeks in the neonatal ward at Princess Margaret hospital because of an acute inflammation to the brain and seizures. That was the start of the stress for the whole family.
My brother went wild with his ADHD, yelling and screaming as soon as he doesn’t get what he wants. My sister is now 3 and still can’t walk and talk. She needs help with most everyday tasks, which is very time consuming for me, as I have to give my parents a break from looking after her.
I also have to look after her double time because she adores me and will flip out straight away when I try to give her to someone else. She will throw her head back screaming and hitting around if I do give her to someone else. My sister uses hand signs instead of speaking and is a very fast learner, copying things that we are doing like waving, kissing goodbye and dancing.
My siblings give me a hard time but I love them all the time, even though I can’t wake up and make myself breakfast without hearing a smart ass comment from my brother or have my sister clawing at my leg.
We have only just moved to Perth from Geraldton which isn’t easy with my two siblings. They are always in need of attention and there is only three of us to look after two, which only leaves one person to pack and move things. Moving to Perth was a good move because in Geraldton it wasn’t easy finding support for them.
My father, Grandparents and cousins all live in Switzerland and finally we are all going back there for the snow and a reunion after six years. My sister is the only one in the family that was born in Australia making her even more ‘special’. Even though my siblings are a more than a handful, I don’t need them to be gone to know what I have with them and how many great moments we have experienced together. They are both amazing in their own right.