I was alone, sitting on my bed, unable to lie on my side or really even move at all. There was a small, blue ice pack stuffed under the covers that was packed tightly against my leg. Pulling back the blanket for what had to be at least the fourth time, I looked down at my injured leg, cringing as I did so. It was covered in a football-sized bruise that bulged out slightly from my skin. When I had woken up that morning, my only plans for the day were to go sledding with my friends. The sledding hill at Keystone Park used to be a simple slant, projecting from the edge of the train tracks. I had gone sledding there several times, but today was different.
The hill had recently undergone renovations, in that it now had a small hump in the top and was horizontally twice as long. The village had decided to install wooden posts along the edges of the hill, connected by ropes. This addition, they had hoped, would make it easier to climb the hill. Glancing again at my purple leg, I thought to myself, “Job well done.” As my friends and I had climbed the hill, I had decided that the place to go down the hill fastest was right at the edge, nearest to the string of posts. I had sat down on the sled, excitedly pushing myself along the snowy ice. I winced, remembering what was soon to come.
When I had pushed off, I didn’t realize that the hill would angle the sled toward the wooden posts. As I had picked up speed, I had desperately tried to turn the sled out of the way. It had been no use, though, and I had slammed the outer half of my right thigh into the sharp edge of the climbing post. I closed my eyes and remembered tumbling the rest of the way down into the snow below. I had been barely able to walk, and it had felt (and still felt) like there was a hot dog under my skin. My mom had said that if I wasn’t wearing both snow pants and sweatpants, I would have broken my leg. As I sat there in pain, remembering this point, I realized that I had actually gotten pretty lucky.