Believe in Miracles



Thanks to my great friend, Heidi, for the idea for this story.



I was only a child back then, eight years old, full of innocence.  But that experience matured me beyond my years.  It was something no child should have to go through.  But I did. 


The year was 1980.  I had just finished second grade and gotten out of school for the summer.  I enjoyed school, but like most children, summer was my favorite time of year.  It was the time where I could play outside all day, stay up late at night, and maybe even go on a vacation.  It was the time for swimming, picnics, and fun.  But that summer was different from any other summer.  It was the worst summer of my life.  And it was one that, in all the years since then, I have never forgotten, and I know I never will. 




“Come on, Bri, race ya!” I shouted to my five year old brother, Brian.  He sat on his Big Wheels while I rode in circles around him on my bike, taunting him, for I had a bike, and he didn’t yet. 


“No,” Brian said, sticking his lower lip out.  “You always beat me, Harry.” 


“Aw, come on,” I chided him.  “What are you, a wimp?  Huh?  Are you too chicken to race me?”  He glared up at me with his big blue eyes. 


“No,” he said again.  I grinned gleefully and hopped off my bike.   I danced around him, bawking like a chicken and flapping my arms, teasing him.  Finally, he screamed, “Stop!”  I stopped and looked at him.  He sighed.  “Fine, I’ll race,” he said.  I grinned and hopped back onto my bike, happy that the chicken scheme had worked again.  It always worked on Brian.  He was a tough little kid and hated to be called “chicken”.  


“Okay, ready, set, go!” I shouted and pedaled off down the sidewalk.  I looked back and saw Brian pedaling furiously, but still lagging behind me.  I knew the race wasn’t at all fair.  Not only was I three years older than my brother, but anyone knew that a bike was faster than a Big Wheels.  So, being the nice brother that I am, I slowed down and let him catch up to me.  He pedaled hard, and I pedaled harder, making sure I was still in the lead.  When we neared the crack that we had always used as the finish line, I increased my speed and soared over the crack.  I expected Brian to be not far behind me.  But when I turned around, I saw him on the ground, the Big Wheels on top of him.  As I ran over to him, he began to cry loudly. 


“Hey, B, what happened?” I asked, pulling the Big Wheels off of him. 


“I flipped over the curb!” he wailed.   Just then, Mommy came running out to see what had happened.


“Oh, Babyduck, are you okay?” she asked.  Babyduck’ was Mommy’s nickname for Brian.  I looked at Brian and gasped when I saw blood running down his knee.  He had skinned it badly.  Mommy picked him up and carried him into the house.  I followed behind.  Once inside, she took Brian into the kitchen and sat him on the counter, next to the sink.  She wet a washcloth and washed his knee.  Then she placed a big Band-aid over it.  “There you go, sweetie,” she said, giving Brian a kiss on the forehead.  He was still sniffling, so she reached into the cookie jar and handed him a cookie.  He grinned through his tears.  She smiled back and lifted him off of the counter, setting him down on the floor. 


“Where’s my cookie?” I asked.  She smiled down at me and got out another cookie.


“There you go, honey,” she said. 


“Thanks, Mommy,” I said, biting into the cookie.  “You wanna go place some more, Bri?” I asked.  He nodded, and we ran outside to play together once again.




A couple weeks later, our family was at Grandma and Grandpa’s house.  Mommy and Daddy were inside talking to Grandma and Grandpa, and Brian and I were outside in the front yard, playing tag.  I had offered to be It first because I knew it was the only way I could get Brian to play.  He hated being It because he could never catch me.  I didn’t mind because I could always catch him.  I chased him around for awhile, letting him escape me.  Soon, I got bored of being It, so I ran to tag him.  He backed away from me, so I ran after him and tagged him hard from the front.  I think I must of tagged a little too hard, because he stumbled back and fell onto the sidewalk, bumping his head hard.   He immediately began to cry.


Oh great, now I’m gonna be in trouble, I thought.  I went over to Brian and knelt beside him.  “Shhh,” I said, trying to calm him down.  I hoped Mommy and Daddy hadn’t heard him crying, but just then, Mommy came running outside. 


“What happened?” she asked me when she saw Brian lying on the ground. 


“He fell,” I said simply, not wanting to get in trouble for pushing Brian. 


“Honey, are you okay?” Mommy asked Brian. 


“My head hurts,” he cried.  Just then, Daddy came outside.


“What’s wrong?” he asked.


“Harold, I think Brian might have a concussion or something,” Mommy said, sounding worried.  “Harry said he fell, and Brian says his head hurts.”


“Well, maybe we better take him to the hospital, just to be sure,” Daddy replied.


“Okay,” Mommy said.  “Brian, baby, we’re going to take you to the hospital now to make sure your head’s ok.”  Brian nodded, looking terrified. 


Daddy ran inside.  He returned in a few minutes with Grandma and Grandpa.  “Harry, we’re taking your brother to the hospital.   Do you want to stay here with Grandma and Grandpa?”


I shook my head.  “I want to come with you,” I replied.  I loved staying with Grandpa and Grandma, but I was worried about Brian, even though I refused to admit it, and I felt responsible for what had happened to him.   Plus, the only time I had been in a hospital before was when Brian was born, and I was only three then.  I was curious. 


Mommy and Daddy exchanged glances.  “Well, okay, honey,” Mommy said finally.  “Get in the car.”  I started to climb into the backseat as usual, but Mommy stopped me.  “Get in the front, Harry,” she said.  “I’m going to ride in back with Brian.” 


“Okay,” I said happily and crawled into the front seat.  I didn’t get to ride up front very often, so this was a nice treat.  Mommy and Daddy quickly said good-bye to Grandma and Grandpa and got in the car.  Mommy climbed in the back and lay Brian across the backseat, his head resting in her lap.  His loud crying had stopped, but he was still sniffling.  “Bye, Grandma and Grandpa!” I shouted through the window as Daddy started the car. 


“Bye!” they called and waved as the car pulled away.  After that, we headed to St. Joseph’s Hospital, which is where both Brian and I were born. 


When we got to the big hospital, we dropped off Mommy and Brian at the entrance, which said ‘Emergency Room Entrance’ in big red letters.  Then Daddy and I went to park the car.  Once it was parked, we got out and went inside the hospital.  We found Mommy sitting in a chair in a large waiting room, filling out some papers.  Brian was sitting beside her.  Daddy led me over to them, and we both sat down. 


Soon, a nurse came into the room and called Brian’s name.  Daddy stood up and picked up Brian.  Mommy took my hand and led me after him.  We all followed the nurse down a hall to a small room.  Daddy lay Brian down on the bed that was in the room. 


“A doctor will be in shortly,” the nurse said.  “In the meantime, you can get him changed into this.”  She handed Mommy something and left.  When Mommy unfolded it, I saw it was some kind of ugly dress thing. 


“What’s that for?” I asked Daddy as Mommy took Brian’s shirt off and helped him into the ugly piece of clothing.


“It’s a hospital gown,” Daddy replied.  “Every patient in the hospital has to wear one.”


“Oh,” I said.  Once Mommy had gotten Brian changed into the hospital gown, she lay him back down on the bed.  Then we waited for a doctor to come in. 


Finally, one did.  “Hello, my name is Dr. Green,” he said.


“I’m Harold Littrell, and this is my wife, Jackie,” Daddy said.  He and Mommy both shook Dr. Green’s hand.  “And this is my son, Brian,” he said, motioning to Brian.  “And my son, Harry,” he said, motioning to me.


“Nice to meet you two,” Dr. Green said, smiling at us. Then he turned to Brian.  “So, what happened today?” he asked.  Brian looked up at Mommy, too shy to answer himself.  


“We had a little accident,” she said.  “Brian fell down on the sidewalk and hit his head pretty hard.  We think he might have a concussion.”


“Did he lose consciousness at all?” Dr. Green asked.


“No,” Mommy said.  “He’s been alert all the way here.”


“Okay, well then, most likely, he doesn’t have a concussion, and if he does, it’s only mild,” Dr. Green said.


“Oh good,” Mommy said, sighing with relief.  She smoothed Brian’s hair off his forehead.  Suddenly, she frowned and pressed her hand against his forehead.


“Is something wrong?” asked Dr. Green.


“Brian’s got a fever,” she said, frowning again.  “Why, he’s burning up.  Is that normal with a concussion?”


Dr. Green looked puzzled.  “No, it’s not,” he said.  He placed his hand on Brian’s forehead as well.  Brian looked scared again.  “You’re right, he does have a fever,” Dr. Green said.  He stood up and went across the room.  He opened a cabinet and pulled something out.  When he came back over to us, I saw it was a thermometer.  “Say aahh,” Dr. Green said to Brian.


  Brian opened his mouth and said “Ahh”.  Dr. Green stuck the thermometer in his mouth.  It beeped after a few minutes, and Dr. Green pulled it out.  When he looked at the numbers on it, his eyes widened.


“What’s wrong?” asked Daddy.


“He has a fever of 105°,” Dr. Green replied.  “That’s very high.”


“What’s wrong with him?” Mommy asked, sounding scared. 


“I’m not sure.  He doesn’t have the flu or a cold or anything, does he?” Dr. Green asked.


“No,” said Mommy.  “He was fine this morning.”


“Well, I’m going to need to run some tests to figure out why his temperature is this high,” Dr. Green said.  “I need to take some blood first.”  I watched in awe as he poked a needle into Brian’s arm and drew out some blood. 


I felt bad for Brian, who was trying to be so brave.  His eyes were filled with tears, and his lower lip was quivering, but he didn’t scream or kick or anything.  I admired my little brother for that.  “Ok,” Dr. Green said once he had finished taking Brian’s blood.  “I’m going to take this down to the lab, and I’ll be right back to examine him further.”  He left the room.


A few minutes later he came back.  He sat on a stool next to Brian’s bed and took his stethoscope from around his neck.  He put one end in his ears and slipped the other end under Brian’s hospital gown.  He listened for a few seconds, then frowned.  He took the stethoscope out of his ears and turned to Mommy and Daddy.


“Did anyone ever tell you that Brian has a heart murmur?” he asked.  Their eyes widened. 


“No,” Mommy gasped.  I stared at the doctor in shock.  I had no idea what a heart murmur was, but it sounded horrible. 


“Oh, don’t worry,” Dr. Green said.  “Heart murmurs are fairly common and aren’t something to worry about.  All it is is just an irregular heartbeat.”   That still sounded bad to me, even if Dr. Green had said it was nothing to worry about.  “What I would like to know is what is causing the murmur,” Dr. Green continued.


“What could be causing it?” Daddy asked uncertainly. 


“Well, usually, it has to do with the formation of the heart.  I’d like to run a chest x-ray on Brian to make sure it isn’t caused by anything serious.”


“Ok,” Mommy said, looking worried.  Dr. Green went into the hall for a minute and returned wheeling a wheelchair.  He helped Brian into it. 


“You might as well stay here,” he said to us.  “You can’t come into the x-ray room with him.”


“Ok,” said Mommy.  She kissed the top of Brian’s head.  “Honey, Dr. Green is going to take you for a test real quick.  Mommy and Daddy will be waiting here for you when you’re done, ok?”


“Can’t you come, Mommy?” Brian asked, his voice small and scared sounding. 


“No, sweetheart,” she said sadly.  “We’ll see you soon, ok?” 


“Ok,” Brian said, his voice wavering.   With that, Dr. Green pushed him away down the hall.  Daddy sighed and sat down, resting his head in his hands. 


“Daddy?” I asked.


“What Harry?” he replied. 


“Is Brian gonna be okay?”


Daddy sighed again.  “I don’t know, son,” he said.  I sighed myself and sat down.  My curiosity of the hospital had turned to fear, for I felt there was something seriously wrong with my baby brother, and that thought frightened my eight year old mind very much.




Awhile later, Dr. Green came back, pushing Brian in the wheelchair.  He helped Brian into bed and asked Mommy and Daddy to come into the hall with him.


“Harry, you stay here with Brian, ok?” Daddy said.  I nodded solemnly as they walked into the hall, shutting the door behind them.


“What did they do to you?” I asked Brian.


“I dunno,” Brian murmured.  “I had to lie real still though.”


“Did it hurt?” I asked.


 He shook his head weakly.  He closed his eyes for a moment and then opened them again.


“Harry, I don’t feel good,” he said, sounding ready to cry.  I didn’t blame him, for I was scared to death myself.  Brian just didn’t look right to me.  His skin was flushed and sweaty looking, even though I thought the air conditioning in the hospital was way too cold.  


I went to the side of Brian’s bed and smoothed his light brown hair off his sweaty forehead, just as I had seen Mommy do so many times.  As I did, my hand touched his forehead, and I drew it back in alarm.


“Bri, you’re burning up!” I cried. 


“I’m freezing,” he said.  I noticed his body was shivering.  I pulled the covers up around him. 


“There, is that better?” I asked.  He nodded.  Just then, Mommy and Daddy and Dr. Green came back in.  “Mommy, Brian’s forehead feels really hot!” I cried.  Dr. Green looked at me in alarm and grabbed a thermometer.  He put it in Brian’s mouth and waited for the beep.  When he saw the numbers, his mouth dropped open, and he ran out of the room.  A few minute later, he came back in, along with some nurses.  The nurses all surrounded Brian, taking his hospital gown off and putting wet cloths on his forehead. 


Then, some other people came in carrying a big tub.  When I saw what was in it, my eyes widened.  It was filled with water and ice cubes. 


“Mommy, what’s that for?” I asked in awe.  She didn’t answer me, just watched in shock as the nurses lifted Brian out of bed and put him in the tub. 


Dr. Green came over to us.  “His temperature has gone up to 107°,” he said.  “That’s high enough to cause brain damage.  Right now, we’re putting him in the ice to try and cool off his body temperature.”


Mommy began to cry softly.  “What’s wrong with him?” she asked tearfully. 


“I’m not sure yet.  I’m going to go see if the results of the blood work are in from the lab yet.  I’ll be right back,” the doctor said and hurried out of the room.  


“Mommy?” Brian called.   His voice was weak and shaky sounding.  Mommy hurried over to the tub of ice that Brian was laying in in just his underwear. 


“I’m here, Babyduck,” she said soothingly, taking his little hand and giving it a tender squeeze. 


A few minutes later, Dr. Green came back.  He looked at Mommy and Daddy and said, “I need to talk to you again.”


“Ok,” Daddy said.  “Harry, you-“


“He can come.  This is something the whole family should hear,” Dr. Green interrupted. 


“Ok, Harry, come on with us,” Daddy said.  He took my hand, and we followed Dr. Green down a hall to a small empty room with some couches in it.  We all sat down. 


“I’m sorry, but I have some bad news to give you,” said Dr. Green slowly.  None of us said anything, just waited for the bad news to come.  “Brian has what’s called a staph infection.  It’s called bacterial endocarditis.”  I had no idea what that meant, but it sounded bad.


“How did he get that?” Daddy asked, his eyes wide. 


“Has he gotten any bad cuts or anything lately?” Dr. Green asked slowly.


Mommy and Daddy looked at each other, thinking.   I thought too.  Then I remembered something.  “Yeah, he did,” I said.  “He fell of his Big Wheels a couple weeks ago and skinned his knee real bad.”  Mommy nodded.


“Yes, he did.  Do you think that is where he got it?” she asked.


“Probably so,” Dr. Green replied gravely.  “Bacterial endocarditis is an infection of the bloodstream.  Normally, it can be treated by antibiotics.  But in Brian’s case, the infection has worsened over the past two weeks.  It has gone through his bloodstream and to his heart.”


“Oh my God,” breathed Mommy, looking white as a sheet. 


“There’s something else too,” Dr. Green said.  “Brian has a small hole in his heart, which is making it even weaker.”


“What?!?!” cried Daddy. 


“Don’t be too alarmed, it is fairly common in children and usually shrinks as they grow up.  But in this case, along with the infection, it’s just weakening his heart.”


“What are you going to do about it?” Daddy asked.


Dr. Green took a deep breath.  “Mr. Littrell,” he began, “I’m sorry, but there isn’t anything we can do.  The infection has gotten too bad and has spread too far.  Antibiotics won’t help.  I’m sorry, but I’m afraid this disease is 100% fatal.”  Mommy gasped, and Daddy wrapped an arm around her.  I didn’t know exactly what Dr. Green was talking about, but I knew something was horribly wrong with my little brother.  “I suggest you start making funeral plans because your son is going to pass on,” Dr. Green finished sadly. 


It hit me just then.  My baby brother was dying!  Tears filled my eyes.  I tried to brush them away, thinking that real men never cry.  But then I looked up at my Daddy to see his own eyes were filled with tears.  I was shocked.  In my eight years, I had never seen my father or any other man cry.  It made me even more upset, for I realized how horrible this situation was.   I finally let it all out and began to cry.  In a second, my father’s arm was around me.  He pulled me up against his body and hugged me tight, hugging me against him as if he was sheltering me from the terrible fate that was awaiting his baby.  I sobbed against his chest, soaking his shirt with my salty tears.  He had his other arm around my mother, who had her tearstained face buried into his shoulder. 


“I’ll let you be alone for awhile.  You can come back to be with Brian whenever you’re ready,” I heard Dr. Green tell us.  When I looked up, he had left the room. 


“Daddy?” I asked, hiccupping. 


“What, son?” Daddy asked, his voice full of grief. 


“Is Brian really going to die?” I asked, my tears threatening to fall once more.  When I said that, Mommy just cried harder.


“I don’t know, Harry.  We will pray that he won’t, but we have to be prepared.  Maybe God wants Brian to be with him,” Daddy said, trying to shelter me from the hard reality of it, yet not lying to me either. 


I nodded sadly.  I knew from going to Sunday school each week that if Brian died, he would go to Heaven to be with God.  Heaven was supposed to be a beautiful, wonderful place.  But still, I didn’t want my baby brother to go to Heaven.  I wanted him to stay on Earth.  Even though I was mean to my little brother sometimes, I loved him, and I didn’t want him to die. 


Suddenly, floods of mean things I had done to him filled my mind, and I felt like a horrible person.  I recalled taking his toys, not letting him play “Star Wars” with my cousin, Kevin, and I, and teasing him.  Then I remembered what had happened earlier that day, only a few hours ago, when I had tagged him too hard, and he had fallen.  That’s the reason he had been taken to the hospital in the first place.  I suddenly felt even worse than before.  Was this all my fault.  Was Brian going to die because of me?


I began to sob again.  Daddy put his arm around me again, but I pushed away.  Daddy didn’t deserve to have a horrible son like me, a son that was responsible for his own brother’s death. 


Suddenly, I felt another arm wrap around me.  It was Mommy. 


“Shhh, sweetie,” she soother, pulling me into a hug and stroking my hair.  It felt so good in her arms, I didn’t want to push away anymore.  But I still felt horrible. 


“It’s all my fault,” I began to sob.


“What is?” Mommy asked, sounding shocked.


“That Brian’s going to die.  I was the one that pushed him today.  I tagged him too hard, and he fell down.  Now he’s dying, and it’s all my fault!” I wailed.


“Oh no, Harry, no,” Mommy said, her own voice shaking with tears.  She pulled me back and cupped my chin with her hands, forcing me to look into her eyes.  “Harry, Brian was sick before today.  What happened today has nothing to do with it.  Actually, it’s a miracle that he did get hurt today, and we brought him to the hospital so we could find out he was sick.”


I nodded, relieved.  But then I remembered how Brian had gotten the infection in the first place. “But Mommy, it still is my fault,” I insisted.  “I was the one who made him race me on his Big Wheels.  If I hadn’t have made him, he wouldn’t have skinned his knee.”


“Baby, it isn’t your fault,” Mommy insisted firmly.  “It was an accident.  If this is what God has planned to happen, then there’s nothing we can do about it.”


I nodded again.  “Can we go see Brian again?” I asked.   Mommy nodded.  Then the three of us headed back down the hall to Brian’s room.  Right before we headed into the room, Mommy stopped me. 


“Now, Harry, you have to be brave in front of Brian, ok?  He’s already scared enough as it is, don’t let him see you crying or anything, ok?” she said.


I nodded.  “Don’t worry, Mommy,” I said bravely.  She gave me a weak smile.  Then Daddy opened the door, and we walked in.  Brian was lying back on the bed, in just his underwear, with only a sheet covering his body.   His eyes were closed.  I felt a tremor of fear run through me as I saw he was hooked up to some kind of beeping machine.  I knew from watching “Emergency” on TV that it was keeping track of his heartbeat.  I watched, curiously, as the green line on the monitor rose and fell like waves.   It scared me though, for I knew only very sick people were hooked up to those. 


“Brian?” Mommy asked softly, grabbing his hand again.  Brian slowly opened his eyes and looked around the room. 


“Hi, Mommy,” he said, his voice so weak I could barely here it.  It was horrible seeing him so frail looking.  Brian had always been hyper and active.  I had never seen his skin look so pale before.  I knew that he was very sick just by looking at him. 


“Hey, son,” Daddy said, stepping up to the other side of Brian’s bed. 


“Hi, Daddy,” Brian whispered, managing a weak smile.  I stood at the foot of his bed, almost afraid to come any closer.  I didn’t like the hospital smell in that room, and beeping of the heart machine scared me.  I knew how terrified he must be.  I knew I would be if I was in his situation.  Just thinking of myself lying in that bed gave me chills.  But Brian didn’t complain at all.  He remained calm and brave.  But maybe that was just because he didn’t realize how sick he was.  He probably had no idea that he was dying.  But I knew it was better that way. 


I watched as Mommy talked softly and soothingly to Brian, rubbing his hand as she did so.  Suddenly, Brian’s blue eyes rolled back into his head until I could only see the white part of them.  Then the heart machine stopped making short beeps and made a long, continuous one.  The line, which had been moving up and down only seconds before, had gone flat.  I knew what that meant, and it terrified me.  Mommy began to sob, her tears falling onto Brian’s arm.  Daddy ran out into the hall, shouting for help, his eyes wide with terror.  I stood stock still, frozen with my own fear.


Only seconds later, a stampede of doctors and nurses, including Dr. Green, stormed into the room.  A nurse took me by the shoulders and led me out to some chairs in the hall, where Daddy was sitting.  I sat down next to him, buried my face in his shoulder, and sobbed.  Another nurse dragged Mommy out a moment later.  She was also sobbing.  The nurse left her by the chairs with us and hurried back into the room.  I could see into the room through the doorway, and I watched as Dr. Green pressed two metal paddles against Brian’s chest.  His whole body shook.  I knew they were trying to get his heart to beat again.  They waited and saw that the line on the monitor was still flat.  Then they did it again.  This time, the line rose up and went down again.  The beeps were slow at first, but then they began speeding up. 


Daddy sighed and held me tighter.   Mommy’s crying slowed down again.  I saw her bow her head and whisper a quick prayer.  I said a prayer in my head, begging God to keep my baby brother alive.  It wasn’t fair for him to die now, he was only five years old.  He was supposed to start kindergarten that fall.  He couldn’t go to Heaven now. 


Just then, Dr. Green came out into the hall.  “We got him back,” he said tiredly.  “His heart stopped, but we got it beating again.”


“How long will it be until he…. passes?” asked Daddy. 


“I don’t know.  It could take days or maybe weeks.  We’re giving him our most powerful antibiotics, but I doubt it will do any good.  We just have to wait and pray,” Dr. Green answered. 




Well, we did wait and pray, the whole family, as well as all of our relatives and people from our church.  Days passed, and Dr. Green told us Brian was in a coma, and that he could die at anytime.  Mommy and Daddy spent a lot of time talking to me about what would happen when Brian died.  But that still didn’t help me prepare for the worst. 


But then one day, something happened.   Mommy was in Brian’s room with him, and Daddy and I had gone down to the cafeteria to get some breakfast.  It was early in the morning, and I was not fully awake.  Neither was Daddy, I guess, because he bought a huge cup of coffee.   We ate in silence, depressed and miserable.  But suddenly, Mommy came racing into the cafeteria.  At first, it scared me.  I thought that Brian had died while we were eating breakfast.  But when Mommy came closer, I saw she was smiling.  She was also crying, but still, she was smiling.  My heart began beating faster as I wondered what she could possibly be smiling about.  She hadn’t smiled in days, not a real smile at least.


“He’s awake!” she cried when she reached our table.


“What?” cried Daddy, knocking over his chair as he leapt up. 


“He just woke up, and he knew who I was!” she shouted joyfully.  I jumped up too and hurled myself into Mommy’s arms.  She hugged me tightly. 


“Let’s go see him!” I cried.  We left our breakfast and hurried up to Brian’s room.  Sure enough, when we got there, he was awake.   He was still very pale, and he was lying still, but his blue eyes were wide open.


“Harry!” he cried softly when he saw me.  He smiled widely at me. 


“Oh, Bri!” I cried, running over to him.  I threw my arms around him and hugged his tiny body.  Daddy hugged Brian too and kissed the top of his head. 


Just then, Dr. Green hurried in.  “I just heard what happened,” he said, smiling at all of us.  I smiled back, genuinely happy for the first time in days.  Dr. Green turned to Brian.  “How do you feel, buddy?” he asked him. 


“Sleepy,” Brian said, yawning.


“I’m going to take his temperature,” Dr. Green told us, grabbing a thermometer.  He put it in Brian’s mouth until it beeped.  When he read the numbers, he smiled.  “It looks as if his fever is gone,” he told us happily. 


“So he’s going to be okay?” I asked.  It seemed to good to be true.


“It looks like it,” Dr. Green said.  “I tell you, I don’t know how to explain this.  What happened Brian is what I’d call a miracle.  The antibiotics might have helped a little, but that is not what kept him on this Earth.  It’s all your prayers that did.  He’s one special little guy.”


“Yes, he is,” Mommy said, smiling tenderly at Brian.  He had already fallen asleep again. 


“Well, I need to see other patients.   Call me if you need anything.  Brian will be very tired and weak for awhile, but if this keeps up, he should make a full recovery eventually,” Dr. Green told us.  And he did.




Two months later, we brought Brian home from the hospital.  Even though he had spent two months there, he was still quite weak.  But I figured he would be feeling good enough to use the present we had gotten for him, a new bike.  I had helped pick it out.  It was red and yellow, with a banana seat.  It was all set up on the front porch, training wheels and all, with a big red bow on the handle bars. 


When Brian saw it, his blue eyes lit up with excitement.  “Is that for me?!?!” he cried. 


“Yup,” I said, grinning at him.  “Your very own bike.  I helped pick it out.”


“Wow, thanks!” Brian cried.  He leapt out of the car as soon as it had stopped in the driveway.


“Slow down, Brian,” Mommy called as he ran up to the front porch. 


“You wanna ride bikes with me now?” I asked.


“Yeah!” Brian shouted.  “But no racing.”


I chuckled.  “No, that’s ok, Bri.  I don’t want to race anyway.”  He smiled.  I carried the bike off of the front porch and set it in the driveway.  Brian climbed on and peddled down the driveway, slow at first, then faster. 


“Wow, this is neat!” he exclaimed.  Mommy and Daddy smiled from the front porch as I got my bike and rode along side of Brian.  We rode together down the sidewalk, side by side, and I once again thanked God for my little brother.  I had never appreciated him before, but now that I had almost lost him, I knew I would never take him for granted again.   And I would always believe in miracles. 



The End



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Believe in Miracles Ó 2000 by Julie