And I sat there, my knee oozing a red, flowing liquid.
Ok, let's backtrack a little bit. Here I was at the ripe old age of five and a half. I grew up in a neighborhood of boys, so I had to learn to be tough. And the only way to be tough was to learn to play with the big boys.
In this case, it was playing hide and seek, an old favorite pastime of mine. I was playing with the two brothers that lived next door. To protect their identities, let's call them "Billy" and "Bob."
Billy was the older brother of the two, and my first true love. (In fact, apparently, at age three I had informed my parents that I was going to marry him.) Bob was the younger brother. I was always chasing them around, whether it was playing street hockey or sitting on the tire swing in their backyard, waiting for them to come out and play.
Well on this particular day, Billy and Bob were in my backyard and we were playing hide and seek. Being the only girl in the group, I was automatically elected as the "counter." Again. So, starting in our gravel driveway, I leaned against my mom's shiny red car, covered my eyes with my hands and started to shout at the top of my lungs, "1,2,3..." When I finally reached the crucial shouting of "READY OR NOT HERE I COME," I was ready. I just had to catch them before they reached my mom's car, a.k.a. "base." Bob, the younger brother, definitely had to be caught first. After all, if I couldn't catch someone who was a year younger than me, I was a sissy! And I had to catch Billy too, well, because that's how you impress six-year-old boys.
So I turned around and I saw a flash of red in the other neighbor's backyard. Billy! (Well, Billy's shirt.) As he neared the car, I broke into a sprint and as I quickly turned in the gravel I slipped -- and flew through the air. I landed on my knee. At first I started to get up, but then I saw it, a rock from the gravel driveway implanted slightly off-center on my left knee. I pulled it out, and I sat there, my knee oozing a red, flowing liquid.
Seeing it shocked me. But I think that what really made me burst into tears was seeing Billy reach the car and then moments later, Bob joining him. Bob then menacingly jumped up and down, one hand on the car and taunting, "you're counter aga-iiiin, you're counter aga-iiiin!"
Then, the waterworks erupted. I screeched and bawled aloud, until I heard the backdoor to my house open. Billy and Bob heard it too, and scurried from my backyard to theirs, where they watched from behind the good ol' tire swing. My mother, much like Superwoman, rushed to me and scooped me up, where we proceeded to the bathroom. I sat on the toilet seat lid as she did her thing, cleaning and wrapping my battle wound.
I recall limping back to the outdoors a few minutes later, dragging my left leg behind me like a warrior, with my mother shooing me back outside. I looked all over for Billy and Bob, but they were gone. My little fit must have scared them away. Oh well. My head drooped for a moment, but then I retreated, left leg behind me, and headed back inside. There, I plopped down on the couch and spent the remainder of the afternoon with my eyes glued to the glowing television screen.
Now, looking at my scar, I realize I learned two important life lessons that day. One was that I was definitely not cut out for any form of physical activity. And the one that stuck with me: little boys will break your heart.
Photos Via (We Heart It)