The image of seeing my little cousin gasping for air with a bright blue and purple face is something that I can never forget. Hearing my other cousins screaming for help and seeing the panic look on everyone’s faces frantically running around trying to see what has happened and what needed to be done for my cousin to survive. He had choked on a marshmallow and wasn’t breathing and was unresponsive. Seeing my aunt leaning over her child trying everything she could to make him start breathing brought me to tears. All I remember hearing was her repeating “No this can’t be happening” over and over again. That was one of the most tragic things I’ve seen in my life.
Just hours before this nightmare, the day was great. It was my spring recital for dance and practically my whole family was going to come and watch me do what I loved. It was a long day for a little girl, so I was tired by the end of it. My two besties were going out to eat afterwards and I was so upset that I couldn't go because my mom had already said that we were going out to my grandparents for a bonfire. I wasn’t too thrilled to be with my family instead of my friends. I ate and was super crabby so I went into a bedroom to try and sleep and get away from the chaos that was my family. Soon that fun chaos turned into a mission to save my cousins life.
My seven cousins were all downstairs playing while I was upstairs sound asleep.They had been downstairs playing a game and eating the leftover marshmallows from the campfire. I was awoken by a yell and mad rush of footsteps running downstairs. I ran and peeked downstairs seeing all my cousins standing around in silence with the adults rushing around to save my little 2 year old cousin who had choked on a mallow. No longer was anyone sitting around the fire eating and telling jokes. Everyone was in a frenzy to save this little boy’s life. I was thinking that my family was about to change and not for the good. Minutes later, an ambulance came flying down the gravel road and I saw my cousin being loaded in and I wasn't sure if that was going to be the last time I did see him. “He’s in critical condition. The doctors aren’t sure if he’s going to make it, he’s being transferred to Mayo now.” hearing that come from my mom as she just got of the phone talking with grandma who had followed the ambulance. There was a different atmosphere in the house after that call. One that I never want to be in again.
Early into the morning we got the news that he was in stable condition and was going to be okay. He was in the hospital for days after and the first time I went to visit, my heart broke. Seeing him connected to all those machines and nurses always coming to check on him was hard to see. It was especially hard to see my aunt so sad and how heartbroken she was. My whole family came to visit and it was so special to see us all together over bonding over such a sad time. I started to realize that day that I couldn't live without him or any of my family members and I am so grateful that he is here today.
Many days later, I had a track meet. The whole time in the back of my head, I kept thinking of my cousin and when he could come home. When it was all over, I was walking over to see my mom and I saw a little boy sitting on her lap. As I got closer, I began to realize that it was my cousin. I ran over and gave him the biggest hug because a week ago I didn’t know if I’d ever see him again. Remembering that day he choked is hard because it could have changed my whole family's life for the worse. Looking back, it made us all closer as a family and it made me realize how important family is. I’m glad that I was there that day with my family instead of being with my friend. You can’t take for granted seeing your family when you get the chance because they could be gone in a split second without even saying goodbye.