My name is Iris Greenland, and I’m 13 years old. When I was younger, I watched a movie about a lonesome old man who became extremely ill and passed away. His entire family went to his funeral, and the family, that had once been very isolated from one another, came together and became closer because of what happened. I believed that that’s what happened to all families when someone became ill until one day I realized that that wasn’t true for all families. My family’s story went in a completely different direction. It was March 3, about 2 years ago, when my parents decided to take my older sister, Cassidy, to the hospital after she had been sick and extremely frail for two weeks. Cassidy and I are three years apart, and we are both considered to be small for our grade, but Cassidy would stay home and read rather than play sports like I do, yet I’ve never broken a bone, and she has broken her left arm twice, her right arm once, her left leg, and her right leg. My father despised hospitals because of the number of times he was there as a young boy. He was unsure about taking Cassidy, but my mother was convinced that there was something amiss. When we arrived at the hospital, I followed my parents through the main doors into the waiting room. After waiting for over an hour, a doctor brought my sister into a hospital room, and I was asked to wait outside. I sat to the right of the door trying to piece together what they were saying, but I could only understand a couple of things that they were discussing. The doctor mentioned something about running tests, and he asked about family history. A few minutes later, one of the doctors walked out of the room, pushing Cassidy in a hospital bed. As I peeked my head around the door, I saw my dad standing beside the door. Sitting restlessly in a chair behind my dad, was my mom talking on the phone. I stood up and walked into the room, and asked,    “Where did they take Cassidy?” My voice was quiet and shaky. My father stood staring at me for a moment until finally, he responded,    “They took her to run some tests. Now please go wait outside, and I’ll speak to you in a moment.” I understood that he was scared, so I walked back out of the room and patiently waited. My father shut the door behind me, so I decided to find something to take my mind off of things. I looked around, but the hallway was empty without any pictures or posters on the walls just a light coat of grey paint.    After a couple of hours, Cassidy was brought back from testing; It was now 1:00 a.m., and I was starting to drift away when I heard an argument erupt from inside of the room.    “Osteogenesis Imperfecta? How? But there’s no history. There has to be some kind of mistake. Can you redo the test? She seemed perfectly healthy a couple of months ago. How could this happen? If she’s had it for her entire life, why hasn’t a single doctor realized it?” Her voice was beginning to turn into a cry when the doctor spoke up,    “I understand that what you are going through is arduous, and you must have a million questions. I am happy to answer all of your questions and concerns in the morning, but for now, it is important that the two of you get your rest.” The doctor walked out of the room and saw me resting my head on the chair’s armrest, so he hunted down a blanket and pillow for me to use. As I dozed off, I remembered one of my favorite family moments. It was a cold afternoon in the fall, Cassidy had just gotten her cast off after breaking her left arm for the second time. We played outside for hours, and then we watched a movie together. I didn’t know why it was my favorite memory until then, it was simple, I enjoyed that moment the most because for that afternoon the whole world seemed to fade away, and it was just us playing in the backyard. The next day, consisted of long conversations between the doctor and our parents in a small room down the hall. I sat with my sister in her hospital room. We were talking about school when I finally gained enough courage to say,” Are you okay?” I was staring at the floor, hoping she would answer. There was a long pause until she finally whispered,” To be honest, I’m a little shaken and a bit baffled. It seems like everyone is always talking about me, but never to me. It’s like they’re having a conversation, and I’m just sitting there trying to get a grasp of what they’re saying.” She seemed placid, which surprised me because I’m pretty sure I would’ve gone berserk out.”Last night when you were asleep,  mom was crying because..”” I know” ” But weren’t you asleep?””No, they thought I was, but I was really just listening to their conversation the whole time.” Our conversation ended when our parents returned from meeting with the doctor. They quietly walked to the two chairs opposite me and sat down, not saying a word; I assumed that wasn’t a good sign.

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