Once Bitten, Twice Shy
Everyone needs a good friend to share in his or her joy and sorrow. As a girl, I felt that friends were very important in life. When you are young, you feel that the only person who gets you is a friend. They are probably going through the same things that you are going through. Therefore, you feel that they will understand better what is going on than anyone else even your parents. My life was great and the fact that I had a best friend in school made it so much easier. I was also popular, and all the kids in school liked me. I was like the queen, and the school was my kingdom. The other students hang on to my every word like it was the only truth. There is no party that I was not invited to, and the ones that I chose not to go to everyone else chose not go. Being the only child, my parents were the best, and they made sure that I remained popular. They bought for me everything that I wanted.
My best friend, Jennifer was turning eighteen in June. It was only natural that we would do our ritual. I would take her to lunch, afterwards go to the salon to be pampered, go clothes shopping and then end the day with a party at my house or hers. Unfortunately, her parents never liked me, and they felt like I was a bad influence on her. They thought that my parents spoiled me, and my negative attributes were rubbing off on their daughter. Considering what had happened the previous year when we messed up the house too much. We knew that the chances of them agreeing to have a party that was thrown by me in their house were exceedingly slim. I sweet-talked my adoring parents into having the party at our place. Naturally, they agreed. We made a list of people we wanted in the party, and we sent the invitations.
In the morning of Jen’s birthday, I woke up early. I did not want anything to go wrong. All the plans were set, and after preparing, I left to go and pick Jen. I met her outside her house just as excited as I was if not more. We had decided to go to the salon first. This was unlike our ritual, but we did not want to be late and rush through the salon as we did every other year because we did not want to be late for the party. We got our hair and nails done as we read magazines. When we were together, there was never a dull moment so we giggled and laughed all through the salon session.
Thereafter we hit the mall. We wanted brand new outfits from head to toe that would make us the envy of the party. Being the hosts, we knew all eyes would be on us the whole night. We did not want to disappoint. It took us three hours to find the outfits that reached our satisfaction. We left the mall tired and hungry and headed straight to rendezvous restaurant, our favorite place to eat.
After a hearty meal, we decided that since it was Jen’s birthday we should celebrate with a little alcohol. Lucky for me I had carried my fake identification card that I had made for an emergency. No other moment had it deemed fit to use it like at this moment. It was first time for us to buy alcohol on our own, though we were not strangers to drinking. Occasionally we would steal a little alcohol from my parents’ liquor cabinet. Jen’s parents were saved so there was no alcohol in their house. The waiter did not even doubt my card he served us with alcohol.
After two hours of drinking, we left the restaurant. I felt I was sober enough to drive us back home to get ready for the party. I did not want to accept that I was incapable of driving. We got into the car hurriedly and we got on the road. When we got to the highway, I do not know what happened. All I could remember was Jen screaming watch out.
I woke up two days later in the hospital. My whole body was in excruciating pain. I had broken my leg in three different places and my neck. My parents were happy to see me awake and they told me I was lucky to be alive. Jen however was not as lucky. She died on reaching the hospital. The doctors said that she had internal bleeding and no one had realized it earlier. Her parents blamed me for her death and they prohibited me from going to her funeral. They said that if it were not for me their daughter would still be alive.
This whole experience taught me a lot. I vowed never to drink again. Losing my friend was the hardest thing that has ever happened to me. I knew people died but I never thought such a tragedy could happen to me. Everyday I mourn the loss of my friend. No one can ever fill the void she left. Her parents eventually forgave me, but in my heart, I know there is nothing I can ever do to bring back their daughter. I have therefore vowed to educate other teenagers about the dangers of drinking and driving.
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