Bike and Bleed

My cousin Apple was two years younger than me, but she was the first one who learned how to ride the bike. She taunted me, riding the bike around me saying, “I know how to bike; you don’t. Belat!”

I asked my grandma to buy me a bike. It was a big mountain bike with no training wheels. My mom, my grandma, and I went to the province. I did not have anyone to teach me how to ride the bike, and it didn’t cross my mind to ask for help. I just took the bike, got on, fell down, bled, got on again, fell down, bled, and I kept going until my legs had deep gashes.

But I didn’t feel any pain. I was so determined that there wasn’t enough space in my mind to recognize pain. All I could think about was Apple’s smug face, and how much I wanted to tell her “Ha! Marunong na rin ako mag bike! Belat!”

Note: names were changed to protect their identity.

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