Winning is not everything

Essay by pete_zahutJunior High, 9th gradeB, March 2007

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"Typical, t-i-p-y-c-a-l, typical." Ding! "We're sorry. You have misspelled the word. You will have to step down from the stage." This sentence was the end of my world. I had lost the Spelling Bee. I lowered my head in shame, walked carefully down the never-ending steps, and discreetly wiped my watery eyes. The walls of the auditorium collapsed on me. The glossy white and navy blue balloons decorating the enormous auditorium accompanied me on my walk of shame. Three hundred disappointed faces stared at me for ten everlasting seconds. Inch by inch, foot by foot, I crept my way through the row of spectators towards the loneliest seat in the room. I sat down and choked on my tears. The great Roxana Cortes had finally lost a competition.

I was so sure that I had this competition in my pocket. It had taken me one look at the list of words to know that I was going to win.

Failure was nowhere to be found on my list. Up to the day of the Spelling Bee, I had been the best at everything. My winning streak was not going to stop at the Spelling Bee. I was not going to lose. While my sister nervously reviewed the list of words, I unsuccessfully tried convincing her that there was no need to submit herself to this kind of torture.

"Why are you studying for this competition if you know that I am going to win?" I asked her.

"It does not hurt to try," she answered.

"Well, suit yourself. I am going to sleep." That night, I peacefully settled in my bed and dreamed of pink elephants.

During the morning of the Spelling Bee, my classmates wished me the best of luck. "I don't need their...