Both of these are true stories from my childhood.

I went sledding with my family one winter, and my sister and I went down the hill at the same time on our flying saucer sleds. We were spinning around, and we both his a huge bump that sent us flying at the same time. I must have been about 10 years old, so she would have been 7. We wiped out horribly, and my sis snow-washed herself pretty badly, and started crying as a result. My father ran down the hill after witnessing our epic wipeout, picked her up and started to console her.

I was older, and I didn’t cry, but when I stood up and tried to talk, blood came gushing from my mouth; I had bitten through my tongue. I clearly remember my father turning to look at me, seeing the blood freezing in the snow at my feet, and straight up dropping my still-crying sister to run over to me.

For the record, the tongue bite didn’t hurt so much, and it was a super cool wound to play with in front of the mirror. It healed up pretty well in a day or two.

My parents are divorced, so I had to double all the terror a child could inflict on them, so no one would feel left out.

I was playing in the courtyard with a friend from across the way. His name was David, and he had a beach ball, so we played the classic game of “Keep it Up”, swatting at the ball so that it wouldn’t hit the ground. This was Canada Day, 1986, and it was sunny and nice out. We took turns bopping this ball up into the air, until the ball started to fall somewhere in the middle ground, and we both ran to make the save, slamming face first into each other.

I remember getting conked in the head, and stumbling to my front door ( which was off the courtyard, about 20 yards away). I knew I hurt myself, but I just wanted to get home. My mother opened the door for me, and screamed. I was covered in blood. A red mask with white eyes and teeth. She grabbed me and took me to the washroom to try and clean me up, but sat me on the counter in front of the big mirror there, where I saw the living nightmare I had become. I screamed. Everyone screamed. It was crazy.

I got four stitches in the forehead. I still have the scar. David got it a bit worse. He snapped his two front teeth on my skull. His adult front teeth. They found part of a tooth in my head when I was getting the stitches.

This sort of thing happened to me all the time until I was about 21. Seriously.

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