The beach was always a place l loved to go. The warm white sand tickled my feet, and the cool crisp water continually felt good under the heat of the sun. I remember it well, the first time I decided to go in the ocean and ride the waves with my father. Too bad it was also my last.
I was so excited. My dad and I ran out into the water. There were many people around waiting to conquer the next wave. As I saw the next wave approach, I gripped my dad's hand tighter and tighter. The wave came and I jumped up. The wave picked me up and I gracefully floated to the ocean floor. I felt as if I were flying. It was incredible. This is great, I thought. Then, someone in the distance yelled, "Hey, look at that one!" I turned around and it was coming right toward me. This wave was HUGE! I had never seen anything like it before. "Here it comes," my dad screamed. SPLASH! The gargantuan wave broke too early. The wave crashed on top of me and everyone else in its path. Unfortunately, I didn't weigh much and the wave swept me up and pulled me away, far from my father's hands, dragging me out so I could barely breathe. My lungs filled with water. I grabbed hold of a rock near by, holding on for life. The wave kept splashing up behind me, hitting my back. The ocean didn't seem so much fun anymore. I couldn't tell whether I was tasting the salt of my tears or the ocean.
Then, in the distance I saw a figure. The glare from the sun and water made it hard to make out who it was. It was my father. He was on a lifeguard boat screaming out to me, "We're going to get you out of here!" I couldn't. I was too scared to let go of the rock. What if another wave grabbed me before my father was able to? I'd be pushed farther and farther out into the ocean.
"Trust me," my father said. All at once, everything around me seemed to freeze. That comforting voice let me reach out and touch his hand. My father scooped me out of the ocean and placed me in the boat. It took me a minute to catch my breath and see straight. After I calmed down, I hugged my father tight.
"Dad, I don't like riding waves that much anymore. The ocean might tackle me again."
"Don't worry," He said in his soothing vioce, "I won't let it." c
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.