Bubble Wrap | Teen Ink

Bubble Wrap

April 15, 2013
By Einstein SILVER, Monmouth, New Jersey
Einstein SILVER, Monmouth, New Jersey
9 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Laughter is the best medicine."

I don’t remember what was so appealing about bubble wrap. Was it the feeling of destroying something as I pressed my fingers against the thin plastic, creating so much pressure on the bubble that it exploded? Was it the sound that it made as the bubble collapsed? I do remember my face lighting up when packages were delivered to my house. I remember my parents reluctantly giving me the plastic gold, knowing what came next. I also remember parking myself in one spot, pushing out every bubble, feeling impatient at my slow progress, then putting my prize on the floor and stomping on it until couldn't't find any more bubbles to rupture.
I miss those carefree days.
Over time, my parents stopped giving me the bubble wrap, and I stopped asking. They would throw it out without telling me; I would never see it; I would never know. Then just yesterday, a huge package came to the door. I was home, with my parents, watching my mother as she slashed open the large box with a razor blade.
Within the last year, my parents discovered Amazon.com, so the number of packages coming to the door has increased so much that they have usually forgotten what they have ordered by the time it arrives. Most of the items are small, usually in a box within a box. No bubble wrap.
However, as my mother peered into the box, curiously peeling away at the bubble wrap to uncover what lay inside, I felt my eyes bulging with surprise and my face lighting up at the sight of the object that she so carelessly tossed aside. I was six years old again. My parents narrowed their eyes at me, recognizing the face that they had not seen in years. I lifted my eyebrows, gazing longingly at the piece of plastic that held my utmost attention, and tilted my head expectantly toward it.
I felt a déjà vu moment as my mother hesitantly relinquished the bubble wrap, rolling her eyes at me. I went into the other room, smiling greedily at my treasure, and began destroying it at once. Pop, pop, pop, pop! Pop, pop, pop, pop! My fingers moved as quickly as they could, fervently squeezing every bubble until they all burst. Soon enough, my mother yelled at me for making too much noise and told me that I should wait until she was not around to “play” with the bubble wrap. My excitement was doused with ice water for the night.
This morning, I wake up and walk downstairs to find that my parents are not home. It takes me a couple of minutes before I realize what that means. Then it clicks, and I dash up the stairs, not turning around as I hear my dog barking at me. I grab my treasure and run back downstairs, ignoring my expectant, loyal dog who waited for me at the foot of the stairs. I immediately begin loudly popping the bubbles, and my dog’s cries of protest reverberate throughout the empty house. I let her escape to the backyard, but I do not stop popping the bubbles until every single bubble has been popped. Pop, pop, pop, pop! Pop, pop, pop, pop! My fingers frantically search the remnants of my prize, scouring the broken plastic, hoping to find that one last—pop!—bubble.
As I throw away the now useless piece of plastic, I think again about the appeal of bubble wrap. I am sixteen years old, and popping bubble wrap still excites me. I have long since gotten rid of the multitude of stuffed animals; I have painted my room a cool blue in hopes of eradicating the memory of the bear wallpaper that used to reside there. On the surface, I have matured, and though flashes of my youth occasionally resurface, there is nothing like the sight of bubble wrap to trigger the fond memories of my happy and whimsical childhood.

The author's comments:
I wanted to write something to remind us to look back every once in a while because who we were yesterday impacts who we are today.

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