Images of Mom This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     As I reached for the seat belt, an image of my mom popped into my head, and then with a “click,” she was gone.

This summer I visited my family in Indiana. The grass was green and the corn seemed as tall as the mountain peaks back home in Arizona. While I was there, I quickly grew fond of my cousin Troy, a skinny, frail kid who was always hanging with the wrong crowds. I was scared every time I met one his friends because I knew something was bound to happen. One day we met his so-called best friend, who was heavy-set and had alcohol on his breath. He wanted us to ride with him to a store and my mind quickly filled with images of car crashes.

I was stuck. What was I to do? Leave my cousin and make it seem like I did not like him? I unwillingly got in the car, not speaking a word.

“Are you okay?” Troy asked.

“I’m cool,” I replied softly. As soon as I got in, I buckled my seat belt, remembering my mom’s words that I should always buckle up. Looking around I noticed no one else had done the same. I wanted to tell them so badly to buckle up, but I was speechless. We were off on a drive that felt like it would last forever.

Suddenly my cousin screamed, “Watch out!” I looked out the window and saw that our car was in mid-air and we were headed straight for a corn field. My family, friends and life flashed before my eyes. We came crashing down hard and fast. All the side windows shattered. My cousin and his friend slammed into the dashboard. Unharmed, I opened the back door and ran to help my cousin.

“Get help,” he yelled. I ran as if I were an Olympic sprinter. Although this was no time for joy, the image my of mom popped into my head, and I softly said, “Thanks, Mom.”

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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