One cup hot chocolate, two cups marshmallow

Eric - Park City, Kansas
Entered on February 29, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

One day in the middle of December, my older brother and I were testing our new sleds that our mother bought us because of the blizzard that occurred the night before. The next morning, we awoke to find our backyard covered in a white blanket of snow.

That day, my brother and I rode our new sleds from dawn until dusk. The cold air was filled with excitement. As the day progressed, the sky grew dark. The pure and fluffy snow on the streets blackened from the daily commute. My face was numb from the frigid wind, stinging my cheek. However my youthful spirit told me to make one more attempt down the hill before coming home.

From the top of the hill, I could barely see the silhouette of my mom in the kitchen, preparing hot chocolate for when we came home that evening. With my last gasp of fresh air before making the plunge, I remember my brother yelling from the distance, “One last time! You can do it! You’ll never know what you are capable of unless you try!” Without a moments thought, I was racing down the hill at incredible speed. I was laughing so hard from all of the excitement that my throat burned from the rush of winter air entering my lungs.

I almost made it to the bottom, when my laughter came to an abrupt stop. My sled had dug into a few inches of snow and I was hurled ten feet ahead of my sled, face-first. Immediately my mouth and nostrils were filled with snow; a memory so painful that I vividly remember it even today. At the time, I had not known that my life was at stake.

I was afraid, very afraid. The air and excitement that had filled my lungs all but left almost quickly as it came. The ground acted as a leech to my body, draining the warmth of my blood and the substance from my speech. Life itself drifted away from me, everything except for my older brother who came running to my aid.

I awoke the next morning in my bed with a headache and a cup of hot chocolate by my bedside, which was made with one cup of hot chocolate and two cups of marshmallows. I stood up from my bed and made my way to the kitchen. My brother and mother were sitting at the table sipping their cups of cocoa and reading the paper. I glanced over at the front door where I saw my wet clothes stripped from me the night before, along with a busted sled poorly patched with electrical tape. I then turned to my brother, who put down his mug, and said, “Get dressed, we’re going sledding!”

I believe in taking risks and overcoming the obstacles that cross my path. By living my life to its fullest, I hope to never regret, to never look back, and to always expect great things to come.