A moment of fear and disappointment.

“I can’t make it!” A little boy screamed this as he thrashed through the water. He continued to fight the pool as it swallowed him into its chlorine-filled stomach. From across the pool deck the boy’s teacher saw his struggle. The teacher grabbed an innertube as he ran towards the boy. He then jumped into the pool and carried the boy back to the safety of shallow waters. Though the event was horrible but took a turn into something positive, there was still something that bothered me. The worst thing about this situation was that I stood only four feet from the drowning boy; I was supposed to be the one saving him.

At that point in my life, I was a trained lifeguard for three years and I had saved other children younger than the drowning boy before. But this time I was oblivious to a situation that I should have been more than prepared for. I neither heard the boy screaming, nor saw his struggle. I cannot even blame this on being absentminded or preoccupied. I was standing in front of the boy, ironically holding the “LIFEGUARD” life preserver and readying myself for any emergency.

I was in a position where I was striving for the image of perfection. I was just as terrified as the boy. I suffocated in fear of having more than 50 young lives depend on me for their safety. Because of the pressure being placed upon me, I drowned with the struggling boy.

After that situation, I learned my lesson and no longer will I allow my fears to hold me back from what I can do. When an opportunity is present, I just let go and jump in after it.

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