Cross Country

I stood there on the starting line. My fists clenched, my heart racing. I was about to run cross county. The past four weeks of valuable training had led to this moment. The moment when the air horn blows. The moment when my legs race across the school. The moment when I listen to my classmates cheer and chant. The moment when my red tutu streams behind me. I was ready. I could feel the adrenaline build up inside me. Then, Mrs Oakley's below broke the silence, "on your marks, get set, GO!" I was off with a stream of Grade 5 girls all nestling into their positions.

It wasn't long before I made it to the top of the steepest hill and was making my way back down to the basketball court where I started. A powerful gust of wind blew my hair out of my face, as I soared down the hill. When I set foot on the basketball courts again, the kitchen and gardening teacher, Kelly, marked my wristband to indicate I had completed my first lap and commented loudly on my bright red costume that I was wearing to represent my house Chisholm. The pride filled me up and I continued on.

I was progressing deeper into my second lap and the cheers of my classmates grew fainter as I speed past the playground. As I drew nearer to the cricket nets, I knew that I was one step closer to my last lap. The cheers of my teachers and friends erupted in my ears. They crowded the basketball courts, the oval, the hill and scattered themselves through the urban forest. I felt encouraged and supported and paced on.

I was nearly there and just as I thought I could taste the end, my ankles suddenly tightened like triple knots. Immediately, I started to lose track of my breathing. My head was pounding, my heart was beating so fast I thought it would fly out of my chest. But I couldn't stop. I couldn't stop now. I knew I was so close. The mantra played over and over inside my head like my favourite song or a teacher's instructions, to just keep going and it wasn't long until I was finally there.

Several minutes later I was crossing the finish line. I could hear my mums obnoxious cheers as I set foot across the finish line. I had made it, I had finished a three kilometre run and now it was over. I walked over to the winning seats and sat in 9th place. I felt pride and relief. A bubbly and proud feeling filled me up inside as I slouched in the chair. I huffed and puffed until there was no more huff and puff left in me.

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