I must have been seven years of age when I first experienced deep shame. A group of us were playing soldiers in the woods, and it was great fun despite the wet and cold. I’d only started hanging around with these kids a few weeks before, most of them were older, so I still felt like a bit of an outsider. One of the gang was called Mark. He was the same age as me, but he got on my nerves because of his loud and aggressive nature.
Mark decided to wrestle me to the ground. It was autumn, so I ended up face-down in heap of wet leaves. This was typical shit for him, and he expected his victims to just take it as a joke. I was a puny kid, but I felt angry, and I started throwing punches at him. I didn’t even know how to form a fist, but my anger scared him. The other guys stepped in to break up the fight.