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Just a Guy Overcoming His Fear

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Last ski season, I had a pretty bad accident. I like to go in the half-pipe, and on my 13th time, on Memorial Day, I dropped in and the next thing I remember is waking up in the ski sled/gurney with a ski patrolman putting fingers in front of my face and asking "how many?"

bruce sallan skiing

Bruce Sallan: My memory slowly returned, but I never remembered the accident itself. I had dislocated my shoulder, downward, breaking two bones, and I'd gotten a concussion, with bleeding on the brain, according to the CT scan and a later MRI.

I was lucky, as I recovered quickly and well.

But, it did scare me. I don't like being scared, and I don't like it when my boys show undue fear. So, for me, it became a lesson in overcoming my fear and getting "back on the horse" and going back in the pipe (in spite of my wife's desire I stay on the bunny slopes hereafter).

We must teach our kids when it is right to push our limits and when it is not. I'm not sure going back in the half-pipe is the best example, but I needed to do this "for me." So, this winter break, the day they opened the pipe, I approached it. To my surprise, I was hesitant. I wanted to do it 15 times, two more than the 13th in which I'd had the original accident.

I was nervous on the first couple, got it, and relaxed and enjoyed doing them until number 13. Then, it took a big internal push. I did it and two more. Will this lesson impact my boys? I doubt it. I only succeeded in pissing off my wife (probably). But, what do I know? I'm just a guy.


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