My Sister the Superhero

February 3, 2008
By Brittany Braswell, Cleburne, TX

We all know that ol’ familiar tune from our teenage influences Danny and Sandy, “…summer dreams ripped at the seam…”Yeah well that’s exactly what happened to my summer dreams the moment he said “I double dog dare you!” What was suppose to be a nice afternoon with friends at the local lake suddenly turned for the worse as my sister nodded her determined little head and… jumped!

Lake Whitney, Texas has always been associated with “the cliffs”. Only the older, more mature kids go there. So, when my sister and I were asked to carpool with the local (older) kids from our job, there was not an anticipated answer. As “yes” leaped from our lips, we had no idea that our fate had been made.

Going through the events that occurred that day, I still can’t recognize the person that was suppose to be my sister. The sister whom, in the seventeen years I’ve known her, hasn’t always been the little daredevil she was that day. That day, a mid June, scorching hot day, had been nothing but fun. Fun in that, we only started out jumping the “baby” cliffs, the ones that were only ten or so feet from the surface. However, since we were with the older more “mature” crowd, we had eventually made our way to the twenty and even thirty feet cliffs.

It seemed that I was faking the courage everyone appeared to exude. They were jumping off like it was no big deal. It pained me every time I looked over the edge right before I would jump, and know that I would be airborne for at least a few seconds and that my sister would be already down there waiting on me. Somehow, I managed to make it through each jump. We had all completed jumping off every cliff except for one. The one that in my memory now, seemed to have been so high that I could see angels flying around us.

The last cliff was approximately forty or so feet. This time the kids approached the cliff with more trepidations. Finally, the time had come for my turn. I surprisingly just jumped without any thought or caution. So as I waited in the water, extremely proud of what I had just concurred, I noticed my sister talking to a guy we had never met. She walked to the edge and stood there staring at the surface for what seemed like an eternity. She was there so long that we eventually got out of the water and waited at the top for her to jump.

I finally gave in to my impatience and yelled, “hurry up”, followed by a selfish, “I’m hungry, lets go!” As she turned to look at me I saw the fear that completely engulfed her face. She turned and jumped. But for some reason, she jumped with her head and hands facing out, like superman. Running to the edge to see what she was doing, my eyes caught the last motion of what appeared to be a flip…and a half. Her face finally broke the surface and her voice broke the silence with a low moan. She was bleeding and was motionless. One of our friends had to jump in and swim her to shore. Running through the crowd of hysteria, I finally saw my sister laid out on a floaty. She was alive and desperately seeking the nearest hospital. To this day, out of all that chaos that surrounded us, the only words that recollect in my mind were those that belonged to a woman who said to my sister, “l like your flip flops!” My sister practically died and the only thing on that strange woman’s mind was fashion.

My sister is not a superhero in that she wasn’t invincible that day and I believe there truly were angels watching us that day. Out of this whole ordeal, there is a bright side and lesson to be learned. Don’t give into peer pressure, wear cute shoes, and ordinary heroes are not secretly among us. Superheroes are…at least for a few split seconds! Oh yeah and my summer dreams were actually ripped at the seam because I ended up tearing my shorts in the rescue of my thunderstruck sister.

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