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An ear-piercing scream tore through my dry mouth as my heart began palpitating. The overwhelming feeling of euphoria rushed through my body so quickly that I felt like I was going to pass out. My eyes sparkled with elation as an enormous smile pasted itself onto my face. My small palms turned clammy as I tried calming the spirited butterflies in my stomach. I began flailing my little arms and legs everywhere, accidentally dropping my mother’s homemade steam bun onto the spotless carpet of her silver CRV. On any other day, I would quiet down and wait for a scolding for wasting such a delicious pastry. But on that particular day, the threat of a scolding did not interfere with the excitement burning up within me. I was headed towards my first swimming lesson! I could not wait to conquer some of the basic swimming techniques.
“Wendy, I know you are excited, but please save some of your energy for the lesson,” my mother murmured, trying to quell my state of pure ecstasy.
After hearing my mother let out a long sigh indicating her surrender to my enthusiasm, I finally quieted down to relieve her of my annoyance. However, being the energetic and playful six-year-old I was at the time, I found different ways to amuse myself while waiting for my mom to finish driving the remaining two miles. I picked up my little blue doodle pad and began drawing terrible stick-figures. I have never been good at drawing, but the one thing I could draw was a wolf. As I flipped through the pages of my drawings, I could not help but wonder what it would be like to be a wolf. Living in clans, these mammals are always there for each other, never leaving a single member behind due to their extreme loyalty and trust within one another.
After the long journey to the pool, my mother announced, “Alright, we are here, remember what I previously told you and please stay out of trouble.”
I let out a cheerful smile as I closed my drawing pad and hopped out of the car like a little bunny. Once I arrived inside, I watched as the kids went to their instructors one by one. After my name was finally called out, I walked over to my instructor. My instructor quickly introduced herself before leading my group towards the smallest and most shallow pool. Within a few seconds, we were all submerged beneath the hot summer air. Instead of following the instructor’s directions, I remembered that we were all just splashing each other with the cold pool water until I bobbed underneath. My lungs soon began begging for air. Luckily, my tiny feet hit the ground, allowing my head to appear back up to the surface. I opened my mouth to take a deep, long breath of air. It felt so good to breathe.
Once the lesson part of the day was over, we were allowed to have five minutes of play time before we had to leave. Being the mischievous little girl I was, I headed towards the diving pool even though I only knew a few basic swimming techniques. There are plenty of lifeguards and my coach will be watching me. I will be fine. I trust them. I slowly climbed onto the diving board and pranced along to the tip. I felt as if I was watching over the whole planet! At that moment, I had all the power in the world! That same power gave me the courage to bounce up and fly into the air. Just moments later, the smell of bleach and chlorine filled my senses as I entered into the underworld.
I was surrounded by oceans of blue. Only when I opened my eyes did I realize what was happening. My mind went into a blur. My salty tears turned into bright, shiny pearls as they slowly mixed with the shimmering water. I wanted to scream, but my throat burned as if a million needles were slowly forcing their way in. The icy ripples began numbing my frozen, cracked lips, hoping to completely take over my body. I did not want to be controlled. I could see the shimmering sun from up above, almost as if it were mocking me. Seconds felt like hours, I did not know how long Poseidon was going to keep torturing me before finally giving me freedom. I began kicking my weak little legs, but no matter how hard I tried, I continued sinking into the depths of blue. My body started going numb as the pressure of a thousand weights pushed me further and further away from my home. My limbs have never felt heavier in my life as I continued sinking, deeper and deeper into my watery grave. As I took one last look at the depths of blue that surrounded me, my eyelids collapsed. For a moment, everything went still. The scenery was so beautiful. Beautiful as in my dreams. Beautiful as if I were almost tucked into an endless forever sleep. I was not going to make it. I was gone.
Everything was so peaceful and magnificent, almost unreal. Soft, delicate pink rose petals from Heaven floated elegantly past me; one of them accidentally landed on my bloodshot eyes as they gently sealed themselves.
I suddenly opened my eyes as I felt a wave of nauseousness. I let out a weak cough as I floated lifelessly on the surface of the rippling waters. I must have floated back to the top when I passed out. I was abruptly lifted out of my tomb and placed onto the hard concrete ground as bone-cracking sounds were heard as intense CPR was given to me. My head was tilted back as my nostrils were pinched shut, forcing my dazed mouth open as rapid mouth-to-mouth was applied. As I was continuously thrown all over the ground from lifeguard to lifeguard, I felt like even if I were to mentally survive, I physically would not.
After a few minutes passed, I was finally able to slightly breathe better. I saw the lifeguards slowly get up as one of them distantly voiced, “She is going to make it, everything will be okay.”
I weakly opened my eyes to roughly ten faces; within those faces, I was able to make out my coach. Salty tears painfully slid down my face as I stared into her guilty, grey eyes. I did not have to say anything, because my emotionless expression said it all. Instead of watching her student, she spent that time flirting with her boyfriend. As I was slowly helped up by the distressed lifeguards, I frantically began searching for my mother. After opening my eyes from a near-death experience and seeing myself surrounded by strangers, I wanted to both cry and find some comfort. As I continued searching for my mother, the one person who could comfort me at that moment, I realized that I was on my own. I put all my trust and faith in the lifeguards and my coach to save me if anything went wrong; in the end, it backfired terribly. I merely believed that life was too generous sometimes; I did not know that it could be taken away so quickly. As I gloomily walked towards the silver CRV where my mom waited, a moment of epiphany struck me. No wolves were surrounding me as I looked around the gray, vacant parking lot. I was the lone wolf.

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