Gymnast’s Honor

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As the afternoon sun shined on my balance beam, I mounted with a tuck jump.

I was practicing my beam routine for an upcoming gymnastics meet.

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I did a half turn, and then launched into a cartwheel.

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When I landed, I leaned into a back-walkover.

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Then I slid down into a split, raising my hands up in the air. I was breathing hard from the effort to pull off this run-through flawlessly.

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I stood up an took a deep breath to calm myself. This was it. The grand finale. The dismount.

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I took a step forward and stopped.

My music got louder. Dun, duh duh dun, duh duh dun, duh duh dun, dun!

And then it paused for four seconds.

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I sprang into the air in that moment of silence, giving it all I had. I twirled around in a backflip.

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The instant I hit the ground I started a series of three back-handsprings that would take me to the end of the beam.

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I came out of the last back-handspring inches away from the end of the beam. I took two running steps . . .

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and leaped into an aerial.

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But I didn’t have enough height! I crashed down on the mats at the end of the beam, landing on my arm.

I let out a piercing scream. My wrist felt like it was on fire.

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Seconds later, Tracy, Saige and Savannah, the only girls at home, dashed out to where I was.

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Saige exclaimed, “We heard you scream! Are you –“

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She stopped short. I was definitely not OK. I clutched my right wrist to my chest, tears streaming down my cheeks.

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Tracy ran over to me. “Can you move your fingers?” she asked.

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I grimaced as I tried. I could move my fingers — just a little bit, and it hurt like crazy when I did.

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Tracy helped me up, and then she took me off to the hospital.

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Saige and Ana waited anxiously for us to come home. They hardly talked — they were too scared for me.

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Finally, just when they were about to burst from impatience, we came through the door.

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Savannah and Saige jumped off the couch as soon as we came in.

“You broke your arm?” Savannah yelped.

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“Yeah,” I replied as I sat down.

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Tracy put a pillow under my cast to elevate my arm — doctor’s orders.

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I lifted my hand up to show them my rainbow cast. “Anyone want to sign it?” I asked.

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Tracy grabbed a Sharpie pen, and my sisters crowded around to sign the cast.

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“So, when does the cast come off?” Ana asked as she wrote her name.

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“February 21st,” I replied. “The day of our party.”

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Saige grabbed a pen and ran over to the calendar. She flipped the page to February and circled the 21st. “Ivy’s cast off,” she said as she wrote.

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It was cool how much I got pampered just because I broke my wrist!

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It was like I had my own personal servants —  they brought my hot chocolate and magazines.

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I even got to turn my brain to mush and watch movies all day!

But that didn’t change the fact that I was going to have to miss my gymnastics meet.

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I called my coach to tell her. “Hey, Coach,” I said when she picked up. “Guess what — I broke my wrist. I won’t be able to be in the meet.”

“I’m so sorry, Ivy!” she replied. “I know you were super pumped for it. The girls will be disappointed; they all know how good you are at beam and floor. Hopefully Pine Valley Ridge Gymnastics will still stand a chance without you!”

“Thanks, Coach. Tell them I said good luck! So . . . bye.”

“Wait, one more thing, Ivy. Just remember — when you get that cast off, we’ll put it in the case of Gymnast’s Honor, if you want.”

Bonding with Sisters — I Become a Gymnast

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I was walking outside in a tank-top and leggings (Now I know you’re looking at me like “What? You’re gonna freeze, girl!”, but I’m not the only one; check out my sis.) one afternoon when I spotted Ivy doing gymnastics in the yard.

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(See, I told you!) She was in the middle of a series of front handsprings.

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“Hey, Ivy!” I called.

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She lost her concentration when I greeted her and landed on the ground with a thump. “Ow,” she moaned.

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“Oh, sorry!” I said as I speed-walked over to her.

“No, it’s OK. It happens all the time.” Ivy stood up.

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Then she launched into a round-off.

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I clapped as she stuck her landing without wobbling.

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“Woah, that was great!” I praised. “You’re really good, Ivy.”

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She smiled and flipped a sleek black ponytail over her shoulder. “Thanks! I love gymnastics,” she replied.

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Suddenly, I had an idea. I blurted out, “Hey, um, do you think you could teach me some gymnastics? When you have time?”

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“Does a bear poop in the woods?!” she exclaimed. “It’ll be groovy! Oh, oh, let’s start right now!”

I giggled at her 70’s phrases.

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We started with straddles. Ivy was the real deal; her legs were practically horizontal!

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And then there’s me . . . um, yeah.

Enjoy (or laugh at) these other comparisons:

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Ivy reach down and flattened herself out on the ground, still in a straddle!

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And then there’s my pathetic attempt. “Ow, ow, ow . . .”

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Cartwheels . . .

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“OOF!” I tumbled onto the ground and grunted.

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“Pretty good for a newbie,” Ivy said. “I bet you’ll get really good if you just get practicing!”

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Don’t stop, believin’ . . .,” I sang from my position on the ground.

That was pretty much all the gymnastics we did that day xD So we walked around the yard a bit, talking about our hometowns and stuff like that, until . . .

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I walked right into a big pole!

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We looked up and saw that it was attached to this awesome treehouse!

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“Sweet!” Ivy ran over to the rope-ladder and scrambled up it.

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Once at the top, she took a quick look around the treehouse and then came back to where I could see her. “It’s far out! Come take a look, Savannah,” she called down.

I tried to climb up the ladder after her, but it didn’t exactly work. I think that Ivy’s gymnastics skills got her up.

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I walked around the base of the treehouse, looking for a way up, while Ivy did the same up above.

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“See anything?” I hollered.

“Nope,” she replied.

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I went around another corner and found the solution — a bucket, big enough for me to sit in!

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I peered inside. No creepy crawlies in there. “Ivy! Take a look at this . . . “

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After I’d told her my plan, I stepped into the bucket and sat down, bracing myself against the sides.

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Then Ivy tugged on a rope attached to the bucket and I soared up in the air!

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When I finally got to the top, I tumbled out of the bucket and sighed. Ground, oh, sweet ground, I thought.

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Ivy ran over to me, covered in rope. “Great! You’re alive! I thought for a moment there that I’d lost you . . .”

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I grinned at her. “Yeah, I’m alive, but I really don’t want to get back in that bucket any time soon.”

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Then we looked around the treehouse. It was really cool!

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Ivy ran over to the lowest branch and pulled herself up, thanks to her awesome gymnast/ninja skills.

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I climbed up after her, but I had to use a rope to get up. (Torture! So not fun.)

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Once I got onto the branch, we sat and talked for a while.

I really like Ivy. Maybe it’s got to do with the fact that we both remember our parents.

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  I had to face that evil bucket again! Ivy was letting it down, and then, at the very last possible second, she let go of the rope and jumped in to my lap! We free-fell for seven feet 😮 We’re fine now, thanks for your concern.

THE END =)

Molly Does Gymnastics

Hello all! Molly here! I am a dedicated gymnast, and like practicing  in the yard.

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Cartwheels! Notice that I am looking where I want my feet to go; this will help me land cartwheels on the balance beam.

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Handstands! I am squeezing my legs together, thus enabling me to hold my handstand longer.

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Front walkover.

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Hi, grass!

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Front flip. Can I make it? Let me touch the SKY!!!

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Remember, NEVER try this at home. I am an expert. NEVER do it. EVER.

Bye!

~Molly 🙂