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Swish, swish. My shoes wiped themselves on the doormat as I stepped into the house. I called out “I’m home!”, and waited for a reply. Silence. At once I knew something was terribly wrong.
Walking out of the back entry into the family room, I stopped, surprised by what I saw. My mom was standing by the phone, tears clinging to her eyes. The phone was still in her hand, and I could hear the dial tone echoing in the stillness. My heart turned stone cold as I dared ask the question I knew must be asked.
“What’s wrong mom? What happened?”
My mom put the phone back in its place, and the beeping sound it made sounded like a fog horn. She swallowed slowly, and her lips trembled slightly.
“Your Uncle…” her voice stopped, and she swallowed again. “Your uncle and your aunt were in a car accident.”
My stone heart cracked and began to pound like a hammer as terrible images popped into my mind. My voice was hushed as I moved slowly toward her.
“Well… Are they okay?” My eyes searched hers for any sign of hope. What hope there could have been was blinded by her tears, now falling down her cheeks.
“Your uncle is fine, but your aunt…” She looked down, and took a deep, shaky breath. “She’s in the E.R. with serious injuries. Their truck, your uncle’s truck, was totaled in the accident. She might…” My mom began to cry. “She might not make it.”
My eyes widened, and my vision slurred. I stood and slowly embraced her, trying to comfort her. We stood like that for what seemed like hours, but in reality was only seconds. We let go slowly, and now tears were clinging to my eyes as well. They burned as they slid down my pale cheeks, and dripped off the end of my chin.
Walking over to our kitchen chairs, I planted myself in one, and stared blankly at nothing. I heard my mom breath in and out until her breathing was normal. I heard her yell for my brother to come to the car. I heard him dash for the garage in his Boy Scout uniform. I heard her tell me to call her if one of her siblings called. I heard the garage door close and the car back out. I heard all of it, but none of it registered in my mind. I was in shock.
It seemed like it couldn’t have been that morning that I was wasting time sitting around, not knowing what to do. Stupid, my mind said, and the tears felt like weights of guilt, guilt that stood for a wasted life that could be ended in seconds. I shook my head, vowing that I couldn’t waste something so precious ever again. My luck could change in a moment, and I could end up being dead. From then on I knew I would try my hardest to strive to live life to its fullest, which would be a hard task, but one I could accomplish if I tried.