This past summer my extended family and I took a trip to the Gatlinburg, Tennessee area. It was expected to be a very memorable trip for all of us to remember forever, and it would be. The first excursion we took part in was white water rafting. I have a very big family so the raft was loaded with as many family members as we could fit. Halfway down the Pigeon River, my dad was launched out of his seat and into the rapids. He, then, was swept underneath another raft. He quickly was brought back safely into our raft. Showing no major signs of physical pain, my dad finished the raft trip as any other person would. As we were leaving the river, he let us know how much the fall had really gotten to him. eHe was taken to a local hospital and then transferred to the University of Tennessee’s Medical Center. There, we learned that the fall had broken three ribs and those broken ribs caused fluid to stay in his lungs.
Through all this, my parents and I have learned many important lessons. One of them is that family and friends will always stay by your side, no matter what. After my dad was put into the hospital, my mom stayed with him to take care of any of his needs. During this time, my grandparents and uncles all pitched in to help me through this rough time. The day after white water rafting, we had planned to all go to Dollywood. At first, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. Were we still going? Would I go visit my ill dad in the hospital? That next morning, I was given a choice to whether I would go with the rest of the family to Dollywood or go with my grandparents to visit my dad. I chose to go to Dollywood. The whole time we were there, my family didn’t really bring up the whole accident. They might have thought it would have upset me. I was glad to have a break from the reality. Through the day, I really felt grateful for everyone in my family. At the end of the day, I obtained my cell phone. Completely astonished, I came upon multiple texts that told me that they were sorry about my dad and that they were praying for me. It really lifted my spirits to know I had a great support system through it all.
We also learned of nature’s unpredictability. None of us knew something this horrific would happen to anybody that day. The way the rapids moved and sped by were always changing. The rocks easily slip and move throughout the water.
Though this bad accident happened, it caused my family to get closer. Sometimes, a little too close! JBut since it was during the summer, I got to enjoy my father’s company for weeks. This allowed us to use this time to bond. We talked, cried, and laughed (but not too much, because he started hurting if he laughed!). I really appreciated that unifying. I will always cherish that week.