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Sweat droplets streamed down my cheeks. It was an odd, balmy April day and my friend Grant and I had just finished an amiable game of street hockey when boredom began to claw at our minds. As the sun started to sink below the horizon, I focused my sight on an abandoned pogo stick in the corner of my garage. I dashed to the pogo stick, carried it to the driveway, and strode up the steps onto my porch. I began jumping toward the end of the porch and without hesitation I leaped off and executed a perfect 360-degree spin.
As soon as I struck the ground, the pogo stick skidded out from underneath me and my face smacked the driveway. Blackness clouded my vision and blood poured from my mouth. I could not feel my face and my head throbbed with pain. My tongue wandered around my mouth until I discovered a couple of gaping holes where my teeth should have been. Grant darted inside to get my mom’s help and I heard her rush onto the driveway. “Holy cow!” My mom shrieked. “Jacob, what happened?”She proceeded to call the hospital and while she was on the phone, I looked in the mirror to see the damage that had been done. Both my front teeth were missing and I could feel the empty sockets with my tongue.
When my mom hung up the phone, she announced she was taking me to the hospital. The next thing I knew, I was lying in a hospital room bed watching The Tooth Fairy on a portable DVD player. “What’s going on?” I asked my mom in confusion. “There’s an oral surgeon on his way to put your teeth back,” my mom responded. “He should be here soon.” About fifteen minutes later, the door handle rotated and three people entered the room. “Hi there Jacob, my name is Dr. Sager. I’m the oral surgeon,” one of the men greeted me. “Let’s get those teeth in your mouth before the roots die.” I closed the DVD player and set it on the table beside me. He put his equipment down and took out a few tools to begin the procedure. “This might hurt a little,” he warned in a cliche dentist tone. The assistants held my mouth open and the surgeon took my right tooth and jammed it into the empty hole in my mouth. I screamed in agony as blood shot from my gums. I clenched the sheets of the bed as adrenaline surged through my bloodstream. After a few moments, the surgeon snatched my left tooth and stuck it in its socket as pain filled me for the second time.
Eventually, the surgeon told me I could open my eyes and he placed a mirror in front of my face as I grinned wide. My smile quickly turned to a frown when I caught sight of my teeth, both were sharp and jagged. Nevertheless, I thanked the oral surgeon and his assistants. We made our way out the door, departed the hospital, and drove home into the dark, inclement night. Sleep pressed my mind, but I did not let it overcome me until I thought about how that day could have been so much different.
I wish I could take it all back. I wish I told myself during the moment it was a foolish idea.
Sadly, this an unfortunate fact of life; nobody gets the chance to take back what has already been done. What truly matters is how we move on from events like these. As humans, we can continue to make mindless decisions, or we can learn from our mistakes and make clever choices. All in all, we need to be conscious of our actions and the consequences these actions can have on the rest of our lives.
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