Brandon and Logan met in 1st grade and the connection was instant. Logan didn’t see any differences between the two of them and there was no relevance in telling him. At 6 and 7 years old these boys just liked each other. It was just that simple. Logan wasn’t comfortable hugging very many people but eagerly accepted Brandon’s hugs. Logan was very active, talkative, and busy while Brandon was calm, quiet and listened to Logan’s every word. They brought out the best in each other. Without knowing why, Logan was protective of Brandon, making sure he was safe and no one was mean to him. He took on the role of big brother. It was magical when they were together. Brandon stayed in 1st grade another year and Logan moved on to 2nd. They stayed close and their friendship continued. Their activities didn’t stay within school hours and our families bonded as well. We moved away in the middle of 4th grade but continued our friendship with Tim, Teresa and Brandon. Our family bond is just as special as Logan and Brandon’s. We continue to support Brandon with his life endeavors and celebrate his accomplishments.
This subject came up recently: “what are the possibilities of special needs children and children without special needs forming these friendships beyond their younger years like Brandon and Logan.” Why would “possibilities” even be a thought? We as parents should be teaching our children to accept others for who they are, embrace our differences, encourage these friendships, see beyond, and educate ourselves. We all want acceptance and to be included; no one wants to feel different and we are all deserving of friendships no matter what our special need may be.
Last March we attended Brandon’s 18th birthday. When Brandon and Logan saw each other they lit up sharing hugs, handshakes, and pats on the back. It was like they were 6 and 7 again. This has been our most rewarding relationship and we are blessed to know the Gruber family. We have made life-long friends. It is just that simple.
Lynette (Miss Nett Nett)