Character Trait: Responsibility

Published 8:02 am Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The most difficult time I’ve experienced in my life has also been the juncture in which I learned the most. It is a common thought that one can only gain or learn from their own mistakes, but nobody should have to experience the same ordeal I did to understand the possibilities and consequences of their actions. My actions have impacted my entire life. Parental scolding and felony are repercussions I can overcome, however if I would have killed one of my best friends I could not simply move on.

July 30, 2009 was the turning point in my life. My entire life I had been reckless, ignorant, and never had any regard of the importance of my decisions and the consequences they could have. It was a Thursday night and I was, as always, driving my friends Cobalt around town with as many people as would fit crammed into the medium sized blue car. We decided to meet some of our other friends at the Bainbridge, Boat Basin. We stayed there for only a few minutes before I was told one of the passenger girls had to be home, in Donalsonville, at seven o’clock. I looked at the dash’s clock in the car; it was seven o’clock. So I hasted to the biggest mistake of my life that changed everything.

I was not thinking very far ahead when I sped around the first turn leaving the Boat Basin. I continued to advance towards the second curve. Distracted by music, friends, and stupidity I was unaware I was still accelerating, I approached the last turn I’ve driven around looking in the rearview mirror at my friend following us. I looked back to the road, that was coming much too quickly, and hit the brakes. We were right on the turn; braking and turning I knew I had made a huge mistake. The road was turning but we were staying on it; then it seemed to become even sharper. All the tires lost traction and the rear end of the front wheel drive car slid out from under us and we were completely perpendicular with the pavement, still heading around the bend. The back tires hit the dirt, still without grip on the surface. I thought we would slide to a stop, get out, thank god, and drive safely back to Donalsonville. We did slide to a stop; the rear right tire dug into the ground and we began to roll. Though I believed it never would, the rolling stopped.

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My friend was ejected and critically injured that day; I thought she had died. I don’t wish that feeling on my worst enemy. Now she has fully recovered, and I’ve never been more thankful. Since then I have become a new person. I learned more that day and the days that followed than any others in my life. My only hope now is that the people around me learned from it to. You can do whatever you want, but remember, it is also you who has to face the consequences of what you have done.