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A Mistake

by Mikaela Goh-Earwaker (P6 2021)
              Glancing around the hospital room, I stared at my bandaged and swollen leg.  Memories of what transpired just a day ago flooded my mind as I recalled the incident that almost caused me to lose my left leg.
              “Tim, when you go out later do not forget to put on your safety gear!” Mum reminded me once again.  Nodding, I reassured her that I would not forget it.  After changing and packing my bag, I looked at the clock and gasped.  It was already 11 in the morning!  I was supposed to meet my friends at the skate park at 11.05am!  “Oh no! I am late!” I thought to myself.  “Keep calm,” I muttered under my breath though sweat was trickling down my forehead.  Putting a dab of sunscreen on my nose, I dashed out of the house and pedalled as fast as I could to the skate park.
              Upon arriving at my destination, I waved to my friends and apologised profusely for being late.  My forgiving friends excused my and we mounted the ramp.  Just as I was about to try a new stunt I had been practising, I raised my hand to my head, wanting to tighten my helmet.  To my greatest horror, I found that it was not there!  Realisation struck me and I suddenly remembered that in my mad rush that morning, I had forgotten to take my helmet!  I was in a dilemma.  My heart was telling me to go for it but my head was telling me that this was dangerous.  What if I fell?  “It’s alright, let’s just wing it,” I decided conclusively.  I did not want to seem like a coward and I really wanted to show everyone what I could do on my new, shiny bicycle.  I volunteered to go first and was hoping to make a grand opening.  Taking in a deep breath, I gathered all my courage and went for it.
              I sped down the ramp as I normally would and when I was at the bottom of the ramp, I removed my hands from the bars and danced with both hands on my head while belting the song ‘Jingle Bells’ at the same time.  Onlookers roared with laughter and that made me even more determined to perform more stunts though that was the most I could do.
              All of a sudden, I lost control of my bicycle and everything seemed to unfold in slow motion.  I shifted my weight to the back wheel and tried to balance on it although that was the first time I had tried something so daring.  As expected, the bicycle toppled over as I had put too much weight on the back wheel.
              “Ah!” I screamed as loudly as I could while flailing my arms wildly in the air trying to break my fall.  I fell to the ground with a loud thud.  The flying bicycle crashed onto my leg and I yelped out in pain as it collapsed onto my left shin.  Gripping my terribly red left shin, I bawled like a little boy.  My leg was twisted at a grotesque angle and dark, red liquid began to pool on the floor.  The last thing I heard was “995” and everything people said after that became muffled.  People were backing away from me and I felt my head spinning before the whole world went black.
              The next thing I knew, I was lying on the hospital bed with doctors talking in hushed voices around me.  My leg was bandaged up and when I tried to move my leg, it felt like it was not even there!  Where was it?  Had I lost my leg?  Looking up, I was astonished but grateful to see my leg suspended from a pole.  “Mom? Mom? Where are you?” I cried out.
              “I’m right here,” the comforting voice of my mom made tears stream down my face.  “Mum, I…” I tried to explain but I could not find the words.  She nodded and seemed to understand what I meant with a concern look in her eyes.
              As a result of my grave mistake, I had to spend the next five days in the hospital feeling terrible.  I vowed to be more careful and less arrogant so as to not make the same mistake again.  I learnt to always be safe and not take my safety for granted because, after all, it is better to be safe than sorry.
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