He gave me permission to share the final product on the blog. I've removed most proper nouns.
“He’s Still Alive” -By Ben
My first breaths were on [date] in [hospital]. When I was only one day old, my heart apparently really wanted to see the eternal city because it stopped working for awhile, but it got better. I arrived three weeks early. My mom was a teacher and my dad worked as a medical tech in the operating room. Then I came and my dad needed a new, better paying job to afford my needs. So he became a nurse and he had special help in the form of a very sick infant named Benjamin.
When I was a baby, my favorite stuffed toy was a bear named, Tino. He is a white bear about a foot tall with a red bow tie decorated with red hearts. Tino has always been at my side for hospitals and surgeries.
By the age of one, I learned over 100 words but they were all in sign language because I couldn’t talk because of my trach. When I was three, I got my trach out, along with a bunch of other machines most people don’t need. I still have the scar on my neck. We lived in Florissant but all I remember was the yellow room. I loved trains a lot. I watched Thomas the Tank Engine on television. I had almost the whole collection of wooden and magnetic Thomas the Tank Engine trains, and I went to the train store every other week to play. I also enjoyed the arrival of my brother, Alex. Alex is about three years, three pounds, and three inches behind me. We moved to a nearby town and our dog, Leo became a part of the family.
In my pre-school years sci-fi rockets replaced Thomas as my favorite thing. In preschool I made a plate and decorated it with rockets that had boosters, buttons, lights, levers, grappling hooks, and gizmos I have no name for. I filled the plate with these unidentified colored objects. I still have the plate. Also, Dora replaced Elmo as my favorite character.
In early grade school, I found out about my muscle disease. Sometimes all my broken parts makes me feel like Frankenstein’s monster. My friends Terrel, John, Elliot, Drew, and I started cub scouts. Purple became my favorite color and I went to public school. Later on I liked Harry Potter. I remember playing Harry Potter at recess with straws for wands. The Death Eaters tried to take Hogwarts, which was the tallest point of the playground. The Hogwartians tried to kill all the Death Eaters. I was on the losing side. We lost for two reasons. One, we couldn’t figure out the ever changing passwords and two, we were hopelessly outnumbered.
I was in the third grade when Papa, my grandfather, died from a heart attack on a boat. I also started to like Legos. Gigi was born. Gigi is a cute little girl who likes the color pink, unicorns, dancing, butterflies, and dancing with pink unicorn-butterflies.
In the future, I am looking forward to Confirmation. Also I’m waiting for high school and graduation. My mind is set to go to public high school so I can be with my old friends from elementary school. I also want to play video games on weekends. I’m also going to try to play baseball because it’s the only sport I’m good at.
I want to go to college and hopefully medical school. I want to be a great nurse like my dad. Afterwards, I’ll hopefully get a nice house, get married, and have kids. One thing I’ve learned in my life is there is always somebody more lucky and somebody more unlucky than you. I may not be very lucky, but I’ve had a nice life. I’m sure that when I am dying only one thought will go through my head. It is this, “Finally, my heart gets to go to heaven.”