I almost Drowned With My Baby Sister In My Arms on Miami Beach
1957, Ten Years Old With Responsibilites
My Responsibility Could Have Cost My Life and My Baby Sisters
I think back years go, and I remember the day I fought to keep my sister alive. My father, my mother, my six month old baby sister, and my father's friend, and myself went to Miami Beach to the swimming area. Mother was on the shore in an area near some picnic tables, where she was resting since she has survived a broken compound fracture of the leg and was in a major body leg cast.I was asked to keep up with my baby sister for a little while. My mother was unable to watch over me, and dad knew I had my baby siste,r but what he did not know is that we were walking around in the edge of the water. I had my baby sister in my arms, and I was only 10 years old Everyone knew I swam like a duck under water all the time. So no one worried about me with the baby. I was her big sister at the age of 10 and I loved her dearly. She was not just my baby sister, but she was my real live baby doll. I remember my toes in the sand, and I could see my dad and his good buddy out in the ocean about 30 feet or more out. I thought he was standing up out in the ocean enjoying the water. I had no idea he was treading water, because for me I only swam under the water or floated on top. At that time I was not trained to swim on top of the water, and I did not know what treading water was. This happened in the year 1957. I could hold my breath for a long time submerged under water as I always swam that way. My mother would often remark that she worried about me, when I would swim at Bay Front Park which was a salt water beach in Homestead, Florida. You could not see anyone, when they were submerged. I was always all right, and would surface, when I ran out of oxygen in my lungs. This day, I walked out into the ocean holding my baby sister. She was happy,because her big sister had her and loved her very dearly. Thinking my dad was standing up in the water, then I should have been all right. Then I felt something happening to me that I had never experienced before. I was being sucked under the ocean. I kept thinking something is happening and I cannot stop it. My sister went under the water one time and I was in mind not worried about me. Then I started to think my parents will be mad at me, if I let anything happen to my baby sister. I cannot for any reason let go of her. Her life more important than mine. I had been a child raised in the church to know God and know that I needed help. I said to myself her life was more important and thinking quickly in mind that there was only one way to save her life, and that was to submerge myself under water until someone could get her off me. So as I screamed help, then my dad saw we were in trouble. His friend and my father got to us within a short time, but in mind it seemed forever. I was submerged pushing her body up out of the water, and not knowing how long it would take for anyone to come to her. My dad's friend grabbed my sister and took her to the shore for safety, and my dad made me mad because I felt like I could have gotten out of that once my sister was removed off me. He pulled me by the back of my hair up out of the water and pulled me to shore to save my life too. I did know all the while I was being pulled on a drop off from 4 feet to 13 feet like a shelf on the ocean floor, and with the current dragging me down, then I could have known that was that way. I was just a child. Mom was in a cast, and dad was with a friend. I expected me to take care of my sister, and I am thankful she is alive and myself as well. There was no sign at that beach of a drop off or an under tow current. Mom was hysterical but thankful we both did not drown that day. She thanked me for putting my sister first. I must have been treading water, because my dad said my sister only went under once,and she was all right, and if I had put myself first and let go, then she would have drowned and washed out to sea before anyone could have done anything. It was not my worrying about me, but putting another soul first that I was always taught to respect life.
That was not the only experience at sea and battling the ocean that I had in my life time. It was certainly one I will never forget. My sister and I are bonded very close as sisters. I am ten years older than her, but through out life I had to take care of her, when my mother was ill. My mother spent two months in a hospital on Miami Beach recovering major surgery on her leg. I had to take care of my baby sister after school, because my dad had to work on a military base. He was not afforded the opportunity to be a baby sitter. Thanks to go neighbors they kept my sister until I could pick up in the afternoon after school. My sister thinks I am her second mom, and to this day I will never forget that fight for both of our lives. My God always loved us both, and may our lives bless everyone we come in contact with. We often call each other and pray for each other, as we deal with life's adversities. God Bless little sisters every where, for I truly treasure having mine. Thanks mom for giving me my baby sister. God watched over us that day