Dear Ryan,

Little man, you did it. I can't believe that tonight will be the night I get to watch you get your diploma. It's been a long twelve years, I know it has. I am beyond proud of you. You have made leaps and bounds that have amazed all of us. You have developed into a young man.

I am so honored to call you my little brother. It was always so hard to go to a different school than you did growing up. My school didn't have the right accommodations for you, so they sent you to other districts that did. I'm sorry I wasn't there to look out for you like I should have been. You're my little man and I love you more then I could ever put in words.

I remember when you were born. My parents were so worried about you. I never understood why I was too young to understand. To me, you were just my little brother and I was excited to be your big sister. Although as I got older I soon understood why my parents were so worried about you from the start.

I remember as a kid spending countless days after school and over the summer in stuffy hospital rooms. Being very worried as nurses and doctors came in at all hours. I remember watching movies with you from the limited hospital VHS library.

Four years ago we spent every afternoon together for almost two months while you watched Elmo. We didn't know that your pump was giving you too much medication. They were testing you for every little thing they could think of while the answer was literally right under their noses.

I now understand why my parents were so worried when you were born. They were afraid of losing their son. I was afraid of losing my brother. I know we don't have a relationship like most siblings do, our relationship is unique.

Those days I was worried I would never see this day for you. I am thrilled that not only are you graduating high school but that I'm able to call you my little brother. We're never going to stop pushing for more.