My Dream: This

February 7, 2008
By Angela Evans, Shoreline, WA

Chills ricochet up my spine
Hurdlers gather along the starting line
Racehorses pawing the ground before a race
I hear my friends cheering for me in the stands
I grin and wave back
Hiding the nervousness that churns in my stomach

Over the speaker they announce my race
Take a deep breath, a shallow one, and set up the blocks
Right foot back, left forward
My flanks bunched like a horse ready to bolt

That’s when I notice the girls beside me
Tall and lean
I weigh my chances of actually beating them
I shake my head heatedly
No, I can do this
My dream: this

Everyone take your mark…
I hold my breath
Get set…
Every muscle in my body tightening
I shoot forward before I’m able to blink
So close to the ground my nose almost skims the track
Looking up
I see the first hurdle
Faster and faster, it becomes taller and taller
I leap, and then I fly
With wings on my feet I soar over the bar
Three straining steps, then another hurdle
A rhythm

My senses transform to new heights
Out of the corner of my eye
The crowd cheers in slow motion
My skin is numb to any feeling
But inside I feel a storm of emotions
Tornadoes twisting and twirling
Whirlwinds of whishing whiplash
Perseverance glows like the eye of the storm

I am tied for the lead
Sprinting to the same rhythm
We grope through the air
Trying to pull ahead

My heart starts to sink
I’m losing
I realize how tired I’ve become
Breath coming in ragged gasps
My contender inches ahead

That’s when I hear it
The voice of my mom
Of my coaches
Of my friends
Screaming their lungs out

I explode
Adrenaline burning in my veins
Time passes, but the clock doesn’t tick
I pass my rival
Soaring over the last stretch
The finish line ribbon snaps against my stomach
I throw my hands over my head
My dream: this.

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