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A Broken Night

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I never got to attend the back-to-school dance when I was in third grade. I wanted to go, but the universe had other plans for me.


After school that day, my mom brought my cousin and me to my grandma’s house to see her before she left for her trip. I asked my cousin “Wanna come over before the dance and go together?”


“Sure, just let me ask my parents,” she said.


We stayed for a little bit longer at grandma's, said our goodbyes, and headed for home. When we got home, we were wild. Bouncing off the walls, being loud, and annoying, just how little third graders are. Mom got fed up with us, so she loses her head and snap at us “Go outside!” and outside we went. We didn’t have too much to do at my house, but we did have a trampoline to bounce on. We hopped up there happy as ever, but I got off feeling the opposite.


We were jumping for a while, then my mom opens the sliding door and calls out “ dinner” so I looked at my cousin and said “ race you inside!” I went and tried to jump off the edge to get a head start on her, but it did not go as planned. As I jumped, my footing got away from me. I remember seeing my feet pointing straight up towards the sky, then I *heard the worst sound I've ever heard to this day. I didn't even look where the sound came from, I just knew it was bad. When I got up and noticed my arm looked like a track for hot wheels cars. It was so bent. I freaked out. I ran as fast as a bullet shot out of a gun right to the house screaming for my mom. I couldn't tell you what my mom's face was like, but I can bet it was the same disgusting, scared, gross face my brother had when he saw it. She started getting the car ready, making calls frantically, looking for her purse, all the meanwhile I was bawling on the couch in pain. I do remember my brother going to the kitchen, and my mom said to help me with the pain, and he said “ do I fix it with heat, or ice?” looking back at it now funny. What seemed like an eternity was only 5 or 10 minutes, but we finally got on our way to the hospital.


Upon arrival to our fine establishment here in town, I remember my dad waiting for us there. He had taken off work to come and meet us there. We walked in, show them my arm, and how much pain I'm in. We sit in the waiting room for 45 minutes before they come get us. They finally came and got me for my x rays. X rays went fine, not too bad, but then they came and told us the news. My arm had broken clean in two spots on the forearm. They broke clean, but not only that, the bone fragments twisted and started scissoring each other. The break was so bad they told us they couldn't help us in Park Rapids, they had to send us to Detroit Lakes to see a more trained professional. They did decide to try and help me out though, bad idea i still think to this day. First they took this huge needle out and filled it with some sort of pain reliever. I hate needles still even to this day. I was going to try and tough it out, but then they told me I needed to get it in my butt. Worst shot I have ever had in my life, It hurt more than I thought it would, after the shot was over  I thought it was all done and I could get ready to leave, but it was not like that. The nurse takes my broken arm, and holds it up at what felt like a 90 degree angle. My arm was popping and crackling, and I was screaming. We finally get out of the hospital after 3 hours, and head for Detroit Lakes.


I slept on the way there, so it felt like a quick trip. We arrived to the hospital to a small Canadian doctor. I called him Dr. B, only because his last name was hard to pronounce. He was a nice guy, and took good care of me. He brought me into a room they had already prepped for me, and even brought me some apple juice. That apple juice tasted like gold. Then all the doctors and nurses came in at once. The anesthesiologist came in, and this man looked like he belonged in a western. Big cowboy hat, longer silver hair, with a mustache to match the hair, a cactus button up shirt, jeans and boots to go with it. He smelled  like a cigar mixed with a musky cologne, and he was taller than cacti it seemed like. He was my favorite.  They said I was going to need some surgery, but me being the little third grade kid I was, I was scared. I tried to stay calm, but then that needle came out to put me under. I went down with a fight. They held me down, I kicked, I twisted, but then it went dark.


The next few days I stayed home just to try to get used to the cast before going to school with it. Only one person came over to see me after, and it was my cousin. She came with  balloons and candy just for me. She told me all about the dance, all the lights, bounce houses, music, I was immensely jealous. I was very angry at my cast after that moment, and just wanted to saw it off. I didn’t realize how bad I broke my arm until I went back to the doctor.


I got my first new cast on after two weeks, and they told me I was going to need a few more after that. For the next six months I went through four other different casts, and a brace. I was the angriest little kid during this time. I would snap at people, not do my work, or anything. The biggest reason I was upset was because I had to sit out of my first year of basketball. All I wanted to do most was dribble that basketball. I look back on it now and wish I didn't act that way, but I can't control the past, or the future, just have to control what I do in the present. Thats how I should live life, that's how everyone in my opinion should live, in the present, in the moment.


It took breaking my arm, missing a school dance, missing basketball season, and all that anger to realize we can't control events in our lives. We should  look at every situation with a positive outlook; not a negative one. When I realized that, my attitude has been nothing less of positive. Anywhere I am, anywhere I go, I'm going to be positive.




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