An Event that Happened During my Childhood that Changed my Life The summer holidays have always been filled with great adventure for our family. As always, my mother picked me up from school at the crack of dawn since she knew how excited we were to get home…
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On arrival, we found mum had prepared the most delicious roasted chicken I had eaten in a long time. Over dinner, the usual question regarding plans for the holiday popped up. My father had planned for us to visit our grandma all the way in Spain. Grandma Louis was our favourite grandparent and our visits there were always filled with much exhilaration. Not only this but also my father planned for us to travel by road!! The joy I felt in my heart was immeasurable. We had always begged our father to let us travel to Spain by road since the sights along the way were breath taking. He always refused because the trip was too dangerous especially because his own father had died through a road accident. To date we are yet to know what he had changed his mind. The night before our journey sleep evaded me. I packed and repacked my belongings carefully counterchecking it against my list. As was custom we said pour prayers before setting off for what would be a journey to change my life. As my father drove our brand new Cadillac, we sang songs to keep him company. Story telling happened to be my sister’s favourite past time and in no time we were engrossed in one of her stories. “Watch your language young lady!!” my father repeatedly warned my sister. The pain in my ribs was nerve wrecking, almost as if someone was pushing a dagger into my ribs. I blinked severally before opening my eyes to see my dad’s limp body around me. “Dad! Dad! Wake up!!” My mother and sister were also unconscious in the back seat with blood all over their bodies. It was then that the cold harsh reality hit me. We had fallen in a gorge fifty metres below the road. What am I to do? I wondered. Painfully, I got myself from below the wreckage, and went over to the back. My mother and sister still had a pulse albeit a weak one and showed no signs of regaining consciousness. My knowledge of first aid was sparse owing to the fact that I had slept throughout much of the class sessions. It was then that I realised that without doing something drastic, I would watch their lives slip right through my fingers. I decided to walk to the nearest police station. With broken ribs and a fractured leg I pulled myself together and started the journey. It seemed like hours before I found elderly couple and explained my predicament. They called an ambulance who on arrival pronounced my father dead while my mother, sister and I were rushed to the nearest hospital. I healed quickly and took on the responsibility of nursing my sister and mother back to health. It was very difficult for me to break the sad news of my dad’s demise to them but when I did we found comfort in each others’ sorrow. The harrowing experience particularly the loss of my loving dad changed our lives forever. The most invaluable lesson that I learnt is resilience and that everything happens for a reason. I am much stronger than before and well prepared to face life’s challenges with a smile (Mallenby, 2007: 123). Additionally, I learnt that friendship is one of the best gifts one can have. My best friend was there for me through the whole experience and encouraged me to get my life back and that not all was lost. My religious stand point also changed since I was an atheist before the accident, now I am a staunch Christian who believes in the power of prayer. I have learnt to respect my mother more as she took up the responsibility of taking care of us since our father’s untimely demise. Although the experience of losing
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