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Mother Judy Franchak This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


   I stretched as I was woken by the warm air seeping in from outside. Anotherglorious morning in Punta Canal. As I put my feet to the floor and walked towardthe mirror, I looked around and noticed my family had all gone to the poolalready. I combed my hair, put on my suit, strapped on my sandals, and, armedwith a towel, made my way down to the pool.

As I approached the spot wheremy family had stationed themselves previously, I found nothing but my mom'sextremely bright purple and red handbag. Knowing they were somewhere around thepool, I began to search. All of a sudden a woman with a very worried look ran byme and hurdled toward a bunch of people standing as if they were watching Tysonknock out Holyfield; everyone was frantic and excited. Since I was too far to seewhat they were looking at, I jogged over and found my mother in her DayGlobathing suit, her short hair slicked back, straddling a very large woman andpushing breaths into her mouth.

"What's going on?" Iasked.

"That's my mother. I found her laying there and I called forhelp. That lady is trying to save her," a woman answered in broken Englishwith a very upset voice, pointing at my mother.

It was not until thatmoment that I noticed my uncle pumping the woman's chest as my mom breathed airinto her lungs. My mom, a registered nurse, and my uncle, a police officer,seemed to have a good handle on giving this woman CPR.

I stood theresilent, watching something that was all too surreal to understand. My hands werein praying position and I said a silent, Come on, Mom! routing for her to makethis woman get up and walk again.

Looking at the palm trees and villasthat surrounded the pool, I kept thinking, Where is the doctor, the ambulance? Ihad been standing there for at least five minutes; God only knew how long mymother had been working on this woman.

I looked at the woman. This wasthe first time I had seen her up close. She was heavyset and wore a black bathingsuit. She was turning a shade of purple. I looked away, believing she was alreadygone.

Finally, after what seemed like a decade, a small man on a trolleyarrived. They loaded her on the stretcher, my mom holding her head, my uncle herlegs, and the man with the trolley her middle, all with extremedifficulty.

When the man drove away, my mother came over and squeezed myhand. I looked up at her and smiled, one of those smiles that says Wow, I'mreally proud of you. I walked up to the room with this lady, not just my mother,but a hero.




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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