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Five Years Old

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Personal Narrative Story: Five

I’m five years old; my slippery fingers are grasping for a struggling tadpole from the murky depths of our backyard pond. Missing- and then resurfacing with bits of algae and a few furry cattail seeds. The green slime from my hand drips onto my white Winnie the Pooh fisherman sandals. I wipe my soiled piggy toes on the dewy grass blades beneath them. The screen door to our backyard rustily squeals open; Mama calls me indoors for lunch, “Ayahhhh!”-- it’s almost my first day of school. I stand, hands on hips, “I don’t wanna come inside yet- I almost caught that ‘lil guy!”, but she shakes her head ‘no’ from a distance. I reply to her gesture, “Mama- just a while longer!”, but I shuffle back to the house in appeasement, dragging my heels and smushing the moist hearth.

I’m already five- practically a big kid- practically a grown-up. The bus pulls in at the front of my concrete driveway. Climbing its steep stairs for the first time, my miniature palms stick to the hand rails, pulling me up high and high until I reach the summit, I promenaded into the deep throat of the steel monster, striding confidently like a heroine straight from a cinema reel. Within it, I watch as the metal creature twisted through Spring Lake subdivision, vacuuming kids of street corners. I sat with my forehead pasted to the window, clutching the straps of my brand new Powerpuff Girls backpack on my shoulders which contained crucial supplies for this adventure. Bravery is rare in the wilderness, but I’m certain I’ll be ready for anything.

Like a typical five-year-old, scorching attitude is my middle name, carefree claptrap is my style, and a fresh mess is my signature. Never thinking twice, never looking back; fast action is the way of the jungle. But I feel clever, even mature. I’m an adult now that school has started- now that I’m granted with responsibility. Mrs. Creech stands at the front of the classroom and proclaims the rules of Kindergarten. I catch onto the key principles: “follow directions”, “take turns”, “be prepared”, and “have fun”, but I’m busied with the thought of the sand-box Sahara being my next destination. I plot out the map and directions in my head to follow, including all the turns and supplies in preparation for my mission. The last part is easy- frivolous fun is the purpose of this expedition. In no time, I’m at the classroom sand-box hurriedly grabbing handfuls of sparkling sand and letting them drizzle over my toes grain


grain... onto the tiles of the floor for my respected teacher to pick up after school.

I’m five. I’m stubborn. Impatient. I’m fidgeting restlessly by the window awaiting my five-minute yellow-card time out to elapse. I look outside to see the soccer field and playground blanketed under crisp, brittle, fall leaves in every shade of orange. The backdrop in dreary at first sight. The sun is concealed by the hazy clouds; its presence is recognized only when they decide that it’s time for it to come out. But when it does, it’s the only thing that stretches across the horizon, maternally embracing the young earth. As. Creech approaches me, I cross my legs anxiously and grab onto the bottom of my seat, still contemplating if the sand incident was really that dreadful, and whether or not “crybaby” is, in fact, a bad word.

Upon returning to my table, I am forced to apologize to Cody, rolling my eyes and smirking in a non-apologetic manner. He accepts with a smile, wipes his faucet-eyes underneath his glasses, and smears off the drool from the corner of his mouth like a hound. Disgusting.

Upon being reseated, I am placed in perfect proximity to the coloring bin containing the last Crayola “lazer lemon” crayon in the assortment of bright colors. This would be the perfect final touch for my sun art piece. The scene was set, framed by the window, a translucent shine above treetops, housetops. But the muted wax colors only held dead light, not this waterflash thinning to silver at this morning’s far edge. First, I decide to draw a large top-right-cornered circle for the sun: egg-yolk solid and a yellow glow, with lazer-lemon strokes leaping outward-- a fire bloom-- an eruption of a volcano on an uncharted island-- the brightness behind a dusty door shouting “Let me out! I was to spread my arms around this land!” and an unwilling “Fine”, echoing in the background.

My masterpiece is complete. The stubby crayons (all twelve of ‘em) are stuffed back bumpily into their box. Feeling like a modern Michelangelo, I rub my hands together in accomplishment, letting the sticky crayon shavings fall to the tabletop.

Upon arriving home, I grab a fruit roll-up from the pantry and place the drawing between the refrigerator and the A, J, and R letter magnets. They clumsily hold up for a few seconds, then come tumbling down. Of course, as soon as my company is revealed, I’m pressured to discuss Mrs. Creech’s phone call home, “Mama, I can’t help it-- I’m only five years old!”

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