January 29, 2009
By Bumjoon Kim BRONZE, Saltsburg, Pennsylvania
Bumjoon Kim BRONZE, Saltsburg, Pennsylvania
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

'Lane four Josh from Kiski?' said the referee of the meet. 'Brian, what are you doing in here? The ref just called Josh!' 'Oh! Did he really?' 'Yes, just stretch your arms and legs. Your event will start in a minute. Good luck!'

Josh and I are identical twins. We are even more similar than Olsen sisters. We both have marks on our noses, apple-shaped face, similar height and identical hair style. Even our friends become confused when they try to call one of us. These similarities have made our relationship very tight and each of us was Santa Clause to the other. However, there was one difference: while Josh enjoyed playing sports as he became a swimmer, I enjoyed reading books. Josh spent four hours a day in swimming pool and finally became a famous, fast swimmer, winning numerous medals and trophies; I became a captain of school reading team.
Unfortunately, however, three months before the state championship, Josh got into a car accident and injured his legs. It was a disaster for him since he would not be able to move his legs for more than half a year and it was not even sure that he would be able to swim after that. Hoping to be the Michael Phelps of Pennsylvania and participate in national competition, and ultimately the Olympics, Josh, of course, became very depressed.

I was reading a book in library so quietly and peacefully that when I heard the disaster from my crying mother, I felt like I became a main character of Usual Suspect. I immediately ran to the hospital and saw tears in his eyes. He was not crying due to his injury; he was crying because he couldn't participate in the state championship. Later that day, I decided to swim for him to make him smile again.
The only thing I worried about was disagreement from my parents who hated Josh being a swimmer while they liked me studying hard and having a perfect GPA. So, I had to secretly meet Josh's coach and tell him that I would like to join the swimming team, practice hard, and participate in the state championship.
'No, you cannot join the swim team.' 'Why? I will do my best. Please accept me as a member. I have to participate in the state championship. Please.' 'Are you making fun of me? You think that swimming is easy? Hey, little kid, I have tons of work to do right now, so just get your body out of here!' 'Wait! Please give me a chance. I'll try my best! See! My body shape is exactly same as Josh who is one of the best swimmers in the state!' 'Shut up! You know nothing about swimming. There is no way to participate in state championship after practicing just three months!' 'I don't care how I will do in the state championship!' 'You don't care! Huh, you really need a punch, don't you?' 'Please listen to me carefully! Yeah it's true that it will be even better if I do well and get a trophy, but what I really want to do is to make my brother smile by showing how hard I prepared.' 'Hmm'' He watched my eyes for a few seconds and finally opened his mouth. 'Okay, I'll accept you swim team. But, as I said before, you'll not be awarded. I'm not saying that you are a bad swimmer. There is no one who has never swum before to be awarded in state championship after just three months of practice!'
From the next morning, I went to the swimming pool and practiced eight hours a day, twice as much as Josh did. For the first month, I, who had never swum before, suffered extremely bad body aches. My legs always had cramps, my skin became a desert due to chlorine in water, and my arms didn't move the way I wanted them to. The most difficult obstacle to overcome was trying to stay awake during the school day. I couldn't concentrate on teachers and my grades fell rapidly. Finally, I decided to meet the coach and tell him that I would give up swimming.

Next morning, I went to the coach's office, told him how bad I was feeling, and finally said 'I want to quit the team.' At first, I thought he would laugh at me since he had always made fun of me because I would be the last in state championship. However, he seemed very angry. He stared at my eyes for a minute. Then, he opened his drawer under the desk and gave me a letter. 'What is this?' He told me to read it.
'Brian, my bro! This is Josh. So, wassup! I heard everything from the coach, man. When I first heard, of course, I couldn't believe my year. I was like 'is this guy trying to make fun of me?' since you've always said that I would never become successful swimmer. You've always said that swimming is a fool's sport in which one can be only healthy. LOL! How you feel now? Great, huh? The coach said that you are getting better and better. He said he was so surprised that your swimming skill increased very quickly in a month and sometimes confused you with me, ha! Well, it seems like you have some talent here, bro! I know you have worked hard for me. That's enough. From now on, do not bind yourself for me. Swim for yourself! I'll cheer for you. Good luck Brian! Always remember that Josh is right behind you!'

After reading this, I felt my eyes fill with tears. 'Your brother is watching. Do you still want to give up?' said the coach.

Finally, I am now in the competition and I will start in a minute. Right next to me are Jason and David who each made Josh cry in last summer and winter state championship by beating within one and half seconds, respectively. I'm watching Jason's eyes. They look so calm and full of self-confidence. I'm now watching David's body. It is entirely covered by muscle. Now, I'm watching inside of my mind. Yes, it is full of passion given by my brother, Josh. With this passion, I can do everything. Finally, the referee counts down. 'Swimmers, get on the block! Set, Beep!' I dive into water and the entire world is behind me.

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