The Pictures I Carry

October 10, 2017
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Running through the hills of Sauk as the sun peeks over the horizon, I’m ready to give up and stop where I am. Then, as I slowly keep going, I remember why I am at Sauk. I remember that I'm trying to be a great role model for my little cousins Jace and Toby. I try to think about what my older brothers would do if they were me. I think about what Kyle did when he went to Sauk and ran the four mile run. The farther and farther I go the harder and harder it gets to keep going. As I try to push myself to go farther the urge to quit gets bigger and bigger. All I can do is try think back seventeen hours to before I leave for school.

     

 I’m sitting on my bed before I leave for Sauk Valley, I get a unexpected phone call from my brother Kyle. He tells me what to expect and to have a lot of fun. Even though his phone call calmed some of my nerves, he did not calm them all. As I sit there, my stomach rumbles with all the nerves I still have, I look at the pictures of my three older brothers and my two little cousins. Trying to remind myself of who I’m doing it for and who I’m trying to impress. When I finally stand up and grab my duffel bag that is stuffed to the brim with food and clothes for the next three days.  I know who I’m trying to be a role model for and who I'm trying to impress. I finally walk out of my room, I am determined to have a lot of fun and to be a great role model for my cousins.

   

When I finally arrived at Sauk Valley I was nervous because I had no clue what we were doing. The night ended up being a lot of fun, with arm wrestling as our main event. Yet little did I know that I would get little sleep that night and five-thirty would come quick. At five-thirty the next morning my whole cabin is awoken to one of the dad’s alarm going off. The whole cabin got out of bed and headed out to the dirt road where we warm up. Then, As Coach Wood blows the whistle to signal the start of the four mile for the linemen, the sun starts to peak up over the horizon. The horizon starts to lighten up as we start to jog away from the gate to the camp. We run past the small lake that holds many kinds of green seaweed. As we keep going further and further the sun comes completely up on the horizon, turning the sky a beautiful shade of orange.  As we run past fields filled with hay bails and fog, I start wanting to give up, then I remember who I wanna be a good role model for. 
  

I run on the dirt roads around the camp, wearing my trusty Nike tennis shoes I wear for every workout. The soles of those shoes all worn in and broke down to fit my feet just right. The farther I run the more tired I get, and the tighter my calves get. As my calves tighten and the more it hurts, I try to picture my little cousins Toby and Jace. I picture them when their my age doing something very difficult like this run, and I try to imagine what he would do if I gave up right then and there? Would they even try to do the difficult thing? I start to speed up, knowing that I could be the reason they never give up at something difficult. 

   

I soon edge closer and closer to the finish line. The sun starts to rise up on the horizon showing its yellowish orange face. That yellowish orange sun was the most beautiful I have ever seen it. It shines through the trees at me and my teammates as we come around the final curve and down the hill. We let the hill guide us down toward the finish line. Our momentum pulls over that final hundred yard stretch. As we finally cross that line with our other teammates cheering us on our legs start to get very heavy. When I finally stop I think back to the pictures of my three brother and two little cousins, knowing I made them proud and that I will be a good role model.






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