Sister, Sister

Jordan Dullnigg is a 18-year-old senior at Metea Valley High School. When she isn’t spending time with family and friends, she is attending school events writing stories for her school newspaper, or spending time behind the camera capturing memories.

More than anything, though, Jordan enjoys spending time with her twin sister, and Special Olympics Illinois athlete, Kirsten.

“Kirsten has cerebral palsy and hemiparesis of her right side as well as being blind in her right eye,” explains Jordan.

“She loves her music, mostly Katy Perry, Taylor Swift and she loves the song ‘July’ by Noah Cyrus. She would listen to it all day if you let her! She also likes to put papers in folders and organize things.”

Kirsten has been competing since 2016 in swimming (walk and assisted float), track and field (50m walk), and bowling. Jordan has also participated as a Unified Partner in soccer and basketball.

Kirsten and Jordan are just like your typical sisters. Kirsten loves to jump at the opportunity to drive in Jordan’s car, so whenever they cruise around they listen to – you guessed it – Katy Perry.

“Normally on Friday nights we would go participate at A Special Place, which is a small theatre company for people with disabilities. But since we just had the show, I like to take her on a girls night every now and then!”

Another favorite thing of Kirsten’s? Legos!

“At school in class though she loves her Legos. If she gets them taken away it’s a whole big deal at dinner later that night!”

You may think twins have a “super power” where they can read each other’s minds or know what the other person is thinking. That’s not the case for Jordan and Kirsten, but Jordan does know her sister better than anyone and understands when she needs something. Kirsten’s disability does not slow her, or Jordan’s, life down. They continue to take over the Special Olympics world one competition at a time.

“I wouldn’t say her disability ‘changed’ her life. I would say that is just her life. Kirsten learns to adapt to so many situations and makes her own way of doing things. Yes, it affects her sometimes but that’s just life for her, and she can definitely work her way around it.”

Kirsten and Jordan, a pair of twins who amidst their difference have found so much in common, and help each other live life the fullest…because that’s what sisters are for.