Uh, oh - that's a really tough one to answer. I think I was the person (one of them, anyway), who went that one step too far - but, in my defense (I think), I didn't think it was too far before I did it.
For stupid things, after my dad telling me specifically, DO NOT TOUCH THAT AX - I JUST SHARPENED IT. Well, we know what THAT means - that means "I'll just try it on this little tree now that he's gone". Long story short, I cut my big toe off.
(honestly, that was the only time in my life I have seen my mother faint). But, I wasn't planning to do that
Most things I got away with - like the time I was absolutely sure that if I tied my mother's big towel to my shoulders, I could definitely jump off the house and be like Superman - uh, ya can't. I just laid on the ground until I could breath again, and never told my parents.
I DID have to tell them when I went sleigh riding in the neighbors stone quarry. It was that real hard-crusted snow - perfect for sliding. Had one of those flexible pieces of plastic they called sleds. The stone quarry was an old one, all worked out - but, I hit a bump and it turned me around and off to the side, to be stopped by one big stone sticking up that looked like a headstone - I broke 3 vertabrae. (no, my mother did not faint), though I spent 3-1/2 months in the hospital
From two days after Christmas until Easter Sunday in April.
We had a big sand and gravel operation up the road from where we lived, and one of our favorite things to do was to climb to the top, run, and jump off. (hey, sand is soft), and whoever went the furthest got "treated" after school for a week by everyone else. I always lost (I was smaller than all the other kids - I was the only girl - all my neighbors were boys), so I was determined to get it at least once. Well, I backed up even further than every time before, ran as hard as I could to the end and jumped off. And, off I went, all right - my jumping off point gave way just a half a second before I hurled myself off the "cliff", which made me pitch forward, and scrambling on the way down (in the air), to stretch my legs forward, I landed not too gracefully and wrenched my kneecap - the doc had to pop it back in. (he said its not supposed to be on the inside of my leg - he was picky.
Horses were one of my downfalls - I loved them, and my parents bought me one. He was the nastiest SOB - what a way to learn to ride. He reared, he kicked, he bit, he would run away with me - but, put that SOB into a ring, and you would think he was the most perfect horse in the world. I had an entire wall of ribbons - from show to barrel racing - but get him out of that show ring, and I could have made him into dog food. Unfortunately for my parents (and me), after having him, I wasn't afraid to get on anything - and frequently did - which is how I broke my left knee. Horse bucked, then fell, my foot stayed in the stirrup and I went with him - and when he got up, I also went with him. Along with the broken knee, I had a few stitches in my head.
As the song says - These are a few of the things I've done. That is why I say, "if I would have known I would live this long, I would have taken better care of myself"
Really, I guess I made it a habit to go one step too far. My parents hated my favorite statement: "I THINK I HURT MYSELF". It takes some pre-thought and planning to do some of the stuff I've done without getting hurt.
That isn't even 1/2 of my childhood up to 14. It got worse as I got older (though I did manage to stay out of the hospital after 14 - at least for any extended stays
Yep, I really am not sure the Darwin theory works. One of my sons (my youngest, now 38) has had the same passion for getting himself hurt, and I spent years trying to explain to him to think before he acts. Now THAT was the pot calling the kettle black because he knows the things his mother did.
Beth (Mrs. O)