By Mayra, age 17, California
Sweet Designs Featured Writer
The night of January 29, 2007 was different than any other night my cousin, my best friend, and I had experienced. What seemed like an ordinary party turned out to be one of the key events of that year, and not a good one either. The three of us were invited to attend a "Sweet 15" a couple blocks down from where we lived. The birthday girl wasn't related to us in any way. However, she was the cousin of my friend.
Innocently we got dressed and rushed to the party hoping to have a good night, one filled with dancing and fun. When we arrived at the hall we met up with my friend and his family. As we all enjoyed the party, we were driven to fall into the pressures of drinking. My friend's brother brought out a bottle of tequila and served a cup filled with the drink. My cousin, 15 at the time, didn't hesitate to be the first one to gobble it up. My best friend Julie was next to take her sip, and then I was last. The tequila was strong and I felt like the substance was rapidly burning the walls of my throat. I was used to drinking hard liquor. I had done it many times in the past. But that night I decided to have my fun without it.
So there I was refusing to continue drinking. Too bad I was the only one. Julie stopped after a while, but my cousin kept it going. My immediate reaction was to let her know that she had to stop. I knew she didn't know what she was doing. But by the time I decided to tell her anything it was too late. She had no control whatsoever over the alcohol.
After about 15 minutes my cousin started to fall asleep. When I saw her eyes half open and half closed I knew something was wrong. I walked toward her and called her name. I shook her and called her name numerous times. My cousin was, as we say, faded. "Oh my God!" That's all I could of think of. I didn't know what to do. I mean, here I was with my drunken cousin with my mom on the way to pick us up. At that exact moment I felt as if the walls of the hall were crushing me together, pushing my every sense and blocking any sort of rational thought from my mind.
I had to act fast, but my cousin acted faster. She began to throw up, and I quickly ran to the girl's rest room to get paper towels. Everyone cooperated. Some of our guy friends picked her up and took her to a nearby sofa were we all cleaned her and tried to wake her up. Fortunately my mom was not close to the party, and my friend's mom offered us to take us home. I called my mom and told her we were already on our way.
On the way home I continuously tried to tell my cousin to wake up, act normally, and not to say a word. In the end it was all useless. When we arrived at my house my cousin couldn't even stand on her own two feet. She needed the support of two people just to walk. I was screwed. We were all screwed. When we opened the door, everyone was confused, scared, and angry.
To make a long story short, the problems that resulted from that night led to battles between the families. From that point forward I have realized that in life you have to learn how to make good decisions because some of the consequences of your actions have a very strong impact on your future.