My worst Experience

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It shot through my body like lightning, accompanied by a cringing crack and a piercingly loud scream. I didn’t feel myself scream, but I felt my leg twist, bend and break like a plastic pole. Three clean breaks, a fracture and a leg the size of an elephant’s is what I got for my holidays that year and you can bet your bottom dollar that I wouldn’t be doing it again. Let me explain. I was with my friends, it was the start of the summer holidays and we were looking for something to do.

Indeed, for the next six weeks each day would have started with us looking for something to do, only after that day I wasn’t going to be too active for the remainder of the holidays. We had narrowed it down to two suggestions-either going to see a film or going to the woods. As it was a nice day and there was nothing on at the cinema that we hadn’t viewed at least twice, we decided on the woods. There was four of us-myself, Mike, Ian and James. As they were all now at senior school and I was still a junior, I was the baby of the group and the first to do anything or try anything new.

I admit it; I tried to impress them. I idolised them as they had always looked out for me, helped me when I was in trouble and I indulged in practices way beyond my years. While others my age were into action figures and computer games, I was out at parties and meeting new people. These things I will always be grateful for, because although not everything they did was legal, it certainly wasn’t anything outrageous. No drugs, stealing or acts of stupidity. Well, there was one act of stupidity. We took our bikes down to the woods and were on the lookout for any places that offered a natural ramp or jump.

Eventually, after a lot of up and downhill racing, we found a great place. There was a clearing, with three or four large mounds of dirt arranged in such a way that it offered a chance for large and spectacular jumps. Naturally, we all started to mess around, seeing who could jump the furthest, highest and do the most radical things whilst in flight. We called it ‘in flight entertainment’ and I was never under the impression that it could end in tears. Mike found a large branch of a tree, which we all attempted to jump.

Then we hunted for more and more objects that we could attempt to clear until we had quite a collection. We lined them up and they must have stretched over at least ten metres. So, first to attempt the jump, was myself. As always. I started the long run up, built up lots of speed and flew off the jump and through the air, clearing the logs with ease and I started to get an adrenaline rush, as it must have been the best jump I have ever tried. It was one of those feelings you get when I left the ground and my instincts told me that it was a great jump, I knew straight away.

So I started to get above myself and tried a fancy flick here and there the next time, getting more and more extravagant, until I went for a trick that I doubt I could even do now. A no-hands back flip, still trying to clear the masses of logs beneath me. I went for an extra-long run up and started pedalling like I was possessed; I was really travelling along. I reached the peak of the mound we were taking off from and swung my body weight backwards, clutching the bike with my knees and feet-only mid-flight and mid-somersault my leg got trapped next to the pedal and I lost balance.

My weight took me to one side and I panicked, trying to fling the bike away and land on my feet. It was a futile attempt, as I simply twisted my tangled leg further. I landed in a crippled heap, with the bike landing first, causing my leg to snap on impact. The rest of my body came down with a thud, although I seemed to not notice this as the sudden rush and flow of pain through my body left me almost paralysed in pain. I couldn’t move, although I wanted to. I wanted to roll, or clutch my leg, but it was still caught and my body was stuck in an array of branches, leaves and brambles.

I remember starting to yell and then realising that I already was. That was frightening, as I didn’t remember when I had started to scream until later. My friends rushed over and tried in vain to remove some of the surrounding branches. Ian went to get help and it seemed like forever before the paramedics came to me. They had to cycle down to me on my friends’ bikes because it was such a long way and motorised access was restricted because of the trees and narrow paths.

It had only been half an hour but it seemed like half a day before I was in hospital. They were pumping me with painkillers and trying to keep my leg clean, as the bone had come right out of the skin. They didn’t want me to get infected with dirt and end up with gangrene and neither did I. I passed out a few times because of the pain, but I’m not sure how many. It was like my leg was on fire and remained that way for the rest of the day. Trying to sleep was a nightmare in itself as the pain was still there, constantly pumping and throbbing.

Whenever I did fall asleep, I kept re-enacting the scene again, in first and third person. It was horrible, as I knew that it would be committed to memory and if I close my eyes now and concentrate, I can recall everything exactly as it happened. It is like a movie, with you being the director. I can slow it down, freeze the frame and rewind the tape but no matter what I do, it still brings back memories of the pain and sheer agony that I was in. I hope I never experience such an event again, and hope that you never have to.

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