Ten years ago, on Halloween night, something dreadfully happened and most of it was my fault. On Halloween night, all of my friends were going trick or treating and afterwards, as usual, they were going to a party at my friend's home. My parents have always allowed me to go trick or treating and afterwards they would usually pick me up from Jenny's, home. This year though we were not going to do any Halloween activities.
From the time that I knew myself my parents were always sending me to Sunday School, but my parents did not attended church. So, when my church was having a two weeks outreach, I pleaded with them to attend. They did and both of them accepted the Lord as their personal Lord and Saviour that night.
This took place about three months before Halloween and when they told me that we were not going to celebrate it, I was really upset,
"I don't understand," I'd stated, "Halloween has to do with Saints, it's the eve of All Saints' Day, and we are Christians shouldn't we be celebrating it?"
At that my father said,
"I don't know honey, I have to do some more praying and studying about this, but for this year, let's just skip it, okay?"
I said, okay, but deep within me I was really upset with my parents and I grumbled to myself,
"Next they'll be saying that we can't celebrate Christmas…, they were a lot more fun before…"
As Halloween day approached and my friends grew excited about what they were going to wear and do and about the party afterwards, I became angrier with my parents.
So, when my parents had gone to bed, I dressed in last year's costume and snuck out of the house!
My parents had an extra key to my bedroom, so earlier that day I removed it and locked my bedroom door from the inside, as I snuck out.
Trick or treating was better than I've ever remembered and the party was exceptional. I even ended up sleeping over at Jenny's. The following morning I was awoken by Jenny's Mom,
Fire, house, Dad and hospital. Was all that I heard.
You see, what had happened, was that a group of kids thought that it was funny to throw eggs and fire crackers through my half opened bedroom window. I usually sleep with the window closed, but that night I'd forgotten to do so.
Sparks from the fire cracker caught onto my blanket, developed into a large flame and soon my bedroom was engulfed with fire and smoke.
My father had been a volunteer fire-fighter for over three years and he has always said to me,
"Never enter a burning building and if you are inside of one, keep your head down and quickly, but calmly leave through the nearest and safest exit."
Awoken by the smoke alarm, my parents were faced with smoke coming from my bedroom. My Mom rushed to the phone down stairs and my father banged and shouted on my bedroom door. I didn't answer and as the smoke and fire escape from my room, my Dad thought the worst. He rushed into his bedroom in search of my spare key, but it wasn't among the rest of keys. My Mom rejoined him but he made her leave the house.
He soaked the blanked from their bed in the bath tub, threw it over his body and made his way back to my bedroom door. At this time fire was all over the hallway, but the fire extinguisher that was in their bedroom assisted him.
My dad managed to breakdown the door and discovered that my bed was empty. Seconds after his discovery the fire department was there.
My Dad sustained minor burns on his hands and feet, burns that scars reflect to this day. My Dad could have died that night trying to rescue me. If only I'd remember to close the window…, if only I didn't sneak out…, if only....
To help me deal with my recurring guilt, my Dad has suggested that I look at the situation as a fire-fighter doing his job and not as a Dad doing his. This his helped, but nevertheless, as I've said before something dreadful happened ten years ago and most of it was my fault.
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