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April 3, 2009.
Something happened today. Something that made the word "Granted" mean everything. Or at least make people think twice about taking things for granted.
Today, all the seniors and juniors had to report to the football field for this presentation. Now as a freshman I wasn't invited. But when everyone came back, all I heard them talk about was how sad and touching it was. I think that it was about some incident about drunk driving. They had a real car crash demonstration, a helicopter, and even the actors looked as bloody as if they really got into a car crash. Though I wish I had gone, everybody said how they couldn't help but cry it was so heart warming.
I wanted more info, so in my second hour class, I was finishing up an essay and on my left side, two of my classmates, one a junior and the other a freshman like me, were talking about the assembly. I needed in. These kinds of things excite me so I was anxious. I wrote as fast as I could to finish up. When I was done I turned it in and ran back around the room, grabbed a dull old chair in the corner, pulled it up to them and sat down.
I didn't waste time. I asked the boy, the junior, about what exactly it was about. He started to explain how it was about drunk drivers and all the dangers involved in it.
In my mind I thought, "how did that become so touching? these people here could really care less about that" but I knew there was more.
I let him continue and he went on about how a man spoke about his late daughter. How she was killed in a car crash by a drunk driver. Now this may seem like the typical sad story you all hear and pass off like nothing, but I regret not being there, because clearly everyone was in discontent about it. Something there reached inside of them, something that I wanted to feel too, even though I had sort of got the idea.
My older brother, who is a junior, and in my same 2nd hour, got up when the bell rang, as did the rest of the class. I wasn't really paying attention at the time, still thinking deep within my thoughts, till I heard him call out loud, "I love you Brittany." And thinking it was he did a joke on me or threw something in my hair. I responded saying, "What did you do?" by then him and half the class was already partway out the door, and a girl, my friend also said she loved me. I was puzzled for only a second, then I got it, and asked if it had to do with the assembly. She said, "Yes, because he doesn't want you to ever go in a car with someone drunk." That’s when I realized what the whole thing meant to everyone.
After, all I could mutter was an "Awe." and had a big smile on my face. I called out from the small hallway, stuck between people, and yelled, "I love you too Brandon! Come here and give your sister a hug." Thinking he'd just ignore me and keep walking I went back to just thinking. Then, I saw him put on his sunglasses and turn around to receive my hug. My walking suddenly started to speed up as I went to him. Arms open, he smiled. The moment would have been much better if he hadn't gestured for another girl to join in the hug with me and my brother. But I guess it was alright. The girl's face and mine were touching as they were smashed in my brothers chest. Jokingly I said, "This persons face is touching mine Brandon!" She laughed and tried to get a few words out, but couldn't. A moment after Brandon had let go he kept his arm around my shoulders and explained how he doesn't want me ever going in a car anymore, and that I should walk from now on. I just laughed and told him how that’s not going to happen, knowing he was only kidding.
We both walked to the corner outside before we split our ways, and he said a couple more words to me, "It just makes me think, because I would be the older brother, and you'd be the little sister who dies." Thinking it was some story that man spoke about to them; I just turned to him with a simple smile. Though my expression seemed simple and unphased, my emotions inside were not. I felt touched and I had also felt very scared.
He said more things to that girl as he slowly walked away with her. I had noticed something. His action he took when I looked back at him. He was whipping his eyes under his black glasses, trying to hide his tears. That moment, the feeling. "Hmm." I thought as I hurried to my next class alone, thinking with my heart and mind. Harder than it seems though.
As I entered my 3rd hour class, I couldn't help but speed walk to my seat in the corner of the room where another girl, also an EXPLORE student, sat in the seat that we are always mentally fighting for, but today is Friday, she always gets there before me. I pull up a seat at the table and begin writing everything that came to mind. Only to start writing on the epiphany I had.
My brother had made me feel scared but appreciated and very grateful to have an older brother like him. I'm glad he cared. I am but the only girl out of my three siblings. To know that I’m not being taken for granted makes me feel contented.
So many people had stopped and thought. My junior friend in my 2nd hour. I mean I saw him sit there and gaze into space, just thinking. He told us that his friend turned to him very seriously and said, "If you don't see me after prom, I'm sorry." I can tell he doesn't want his friend to get into a crash and end up like one of the people who died, like the one’s they had all seen today.
In this class I am in. There is another junior who I overheard taking about it, though she had a drinking problem. I heard her say stuff about how she ended up falling down a flight of curly fry stairs, and that she regretted everything that had happened at that place. Now I really had no idea what place or what made her do that, but it sure made me think even harder. My brother, who has never been drunk, but drank before, thought about me. That’s when it hit.
The message wasn't only about not to drink and drive; it was about the lives of others around you. Your actions always will affect someone somewhere in someway. And that taking their life and safety for granted makes it worse, because look what happens; people die. People you care about die. People you thought you knew wouldn't have it as bad as death, die. Yet the world goes on, being taken for granted.