“The Bumps, Mounds, Hills, Mountains, and Storms of Life” “Time to wake up and grab your blankets and pillows It Is time to go” my dad was telling us I slowly open my eyes and see that It Is still dark outside. I was wondering what was going on as I slowly roll out of bed and get dressed as my brother and I grabbed our pillows and blankets and went downstairs, and went and went outside into the cool, crisp air got into my dad’s green station wagon. I can’t even remember what the make was since my dad only bought green station wagons while I was growing up.

I was Just happy hat the car was warmed up before we got in the car. I was still waking up and wondering where we were going so early in the morning as I look at the clock on the dashboard of the car and it was one kickoff in the morning. All I remember is that I dozed off in the car on the drive to where ever we were going. When we got to our destination my dad woke me up and I look around to see where we were and my dad tells us to unpack the car and get comfortable. We get out and look around and notice that we were on a street.

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We unpacked all the stuff from the car and put It on o the grass near the curb. My dad then tells us that he will be back he Is going to get my mom and some other stuff that we will need. He then tells us that we should not leave Just stay here and save our spot. My brother and I got as comfortable as we could. We affably fell asleep and the next thing I remember was waking up too lot of noise. I wake up and all I was hearing was popping noises and a lot of people sitting and standing around just waiting and talking.

I started hearing faint sirens in the background along with all the chattering of people talking around me and popping sounds of poppers being thrown on the ground. Parents telling their kids to stay out of the street, so they don’t get hurt. The sirens were getting closer. I look towards where the sirens were coming from and all I see Is all these police cars and fire trucks coming down the road and then I realize where we were It was the Fourth of July parade. We got up early and came down to this vacant street early In the morning to start the celebration of our country.

It was the first time I was part of the tradition that our family did for years. It was the first year that I reached the age of double digits I was finally ten years old. We always got down to the parade site so we didn’t have to hunt and search for a spot to sit to watch the celebration parade of the signing of the “Declaration of Independence”. Every year we did this tradition until they made the law that we cannot go down to the parade site till five in the morning. I thought it was a stupid law when I found out it was because some people kept on making too much noise and the residence of Main SST. Amplified many mimes of the people causing a disturbance that woke them up several times. The Cummings Family tradition ended that year and we no longer got woken up In the middle of the night to go down to the parade. All because some idiots could not follow the law and showed disrespect for the people that were lived In the houses on I then started my own tradition for the Fourth of July celebration Main Street. Some time and annoying my mom about going to the parade riding my bike. She finally gave in to the idea as long as I would meet up with the family before the parade started.

Well that night I was so excited that I was able start the tradition. It was so hard for me to fall asleep. I kept waking up Just to look at my alarm clock to find out that it was only twenty minutes since the last time I looked at the clock. Then all off sudden I woke up looking outside and see that it was very bright outside. I jumped out of my bed and hurry and get dressed and get down the stairs and notice that everyone had already left to go to the parade. I then grabbed my back pack that I packed with snacks and drinks that I would need for the parade.

I went into the sickroom of my house which I felt weird till I realized that our house was moved to the location that it sat on. I grabbed my back and brought outside and went back into the house and made sure that nothing was on and locked the door and headed and hopped on the bike and started my first ride to the parade. Riding my bike down the hill towards Main Street was the easy part of my trip the length of the ride was the part that I realized what was I thinking the ride in the car was a lot easier and less tiring then the bike ride.

I finally got to the parade site and when I turned onto Main Street I got stopped by a police officer and got told that I had to get off the bike and walk. I said to myself “was the tradition I started worth all the troubles that I was running into riding my bike to the parade”. Of course I realized that it was the first year that I was able to ride my bike off of the block I lived on, and the first time that I rode this long of a distance. Yes the ride that made me realize that being a kid that was very sheltered by my parents.

The rules that I had growing up were starting to deplete. Growing up from that ride made me realize that the sun light was over roaring the shelter that kept me from growing up. Who would have thought that a long bike ride down to the parade on July 4th 1988 would be the year and the time that I became a young adult? That was the same year I had my first girlfriend that to this day I wish I would have tried to give her a kiss. Wondering what would have happened if I would have.

The day she left for Milwaukee was one of the saddest days in my life. I cried for days after she left. I finally got over her leaving and continued on with my life and had other girlfriends throughout the years. Realizing hat there will be times in my life that will be sad and there will be times in my life that will be happy like when my first wife had my first child, Serene Lynn Cummings a girl born on March 28th 1996 weighing six pounds three ounces, that was the time I realized Wow I have become a father.

That was a time in my life that I looked back to all the sad times in my life, and realized the ride was worth it. I will always look upon all the bumps and hills that I would have to face in my life that there will always be a time that will come that will make all those times that I felt like that I was being haltered by the storm will always be overpowered by the Sun and that life does have its ups and downs. The good times and the bad times in my life reminded me of the bicycle ride that brought me to the Fourth of July parade back in 1988.

Now I have to watch my two sons two and three, go to school, do all my homework, and doing all my contract work all being done in my life at the same time. It is like riding a bicycle up a mountain in the rain. What brings me through it would be that there is going to be a time that it will be easier to pedal and that the storm will end and the sun which test me the salary that is going to put the food on the table that fills my beautiful wife and sons.

Getting through all of the bumps, hills, and the rain storms in my life will always be hard, but I will always say to myself that the sunny, warm weather that puts the vitamins and the smiles on my family face will always be worth it. I look forward to the future knowing that when I get to the top of the mountain, knowing that the reward that is at the top. All the bumps, mounds, hills, mountains, and storms that were thrown in the path to the reward of knowing that I will make it to he top and life will get easier and better.

All my rewards growing up I will always think back to the time my dad yelled to my brother and me “Time to wake up and grab your blankets and pillows it is time to go. ” The time he said it would be the time; I started the life that brought me to where I am now. I am a student looking forward to the challenges that the all mighty throws in front of me. I know that I am on a map that has obstacles that I have to get through, under, or over. I will wake up my life and make it a successful one.