It's been already two weeks today that my life was spared. I believe that the fact that I am breathing, heck, even walking today can be compared to a miracle. I remember only faintly what actually happened in the seconds leading up to the accident but it's scary to even think that I was out, unconscious for probably minutes before waking up. I could have easily laid there for a lot longer, with limp body and likely never open my eyes again. I'm not the person who would over-dramatize the facts. But every day I'm reminded by just how "lucky" I was on September 14.
It's still a mystery to me how on Earth did a truck ended up in my lane, right in front of me, without showing any signs of trying to get back to the side of the road where it was supposed to be. I went out to the crash site today and took some images. Honestly, from the driver's perspective it's almost more difficult NOT to see what's coming up. The turn has no absolutely no trees, shrubs, tall grass. Nothing that would distract a driver's sight at the curve. Speed limit? 35mph. The road has the double solid line painted hundreds of yards in both direction. Although it was past 7pm the sun was still up. It's just unbelievable.
I really hope that the video that KFYR TV's crew put together will reach some drivers out there, local or non-local. The purpose of it was to get the attention of the drivers There's a reason why you see more and more "Share the road" signs along the paved routes. There's an increasing number of people who use the roads on a bike for transportation, training or just for a weekend rides.The roads were created not only for motorized vehicles but for also for the self-propelled ones as well. Yes, I do wish the shoulders were wider although it would not solve the issue. The shoulder is not meant to be used by the moving traffic, including the cyclist. The rumble strips along some highways in my opinion are only an endangerment to the cyclist. It not only narrows the road but some rumble strips are so deep that they damage the bike's wheels or cause accidents if biker lose control over the wheel. It can happen. Not to mention that the right side of the rumble strip, the shoulder is covered with debris, broken glass, wires, nails, rocks. It's nearly impossible to ride safely without puncturing the tires.
My nights are still long and painful. It's been 14 days that I didn't have a good night sleep. I wake multiple times a night. I want to move but my back, my ribs, my broken bones prevent me from turning on my side. I set a timer 4 hours later I go to sleep to remind me about taking the next painkiller. I lay still for hours and not move a bit. My head sometimes fall to the side and I wake for some really bad neck pain, like when you fall asleep on a plane without a head rest. In the morning when I try to get out of the bed I feel my ribs are splitting in half again. All the healing that happens during the night nullifies as I move. I can't breathe for a little while after standing up and for minutes after I can only take shallow ones. I can't lift anything, not even with me left arm. At least nothing heavier than a box of milk. I can't help my wife with the chores around the house. It's really sad to see her trying to do everything but I have to keep my healing in front of me. When I sit I try to sit there for a long time as it's painful getting up from the couch. I must use my legs to push myself up. My right arm as well as my right side of my body feels like I just had a stroke. I'm unable to grip anything and because the broken shoulder I have almost zero range of motion laterally and I can only lift my arm forward about 30%. It's more than nothing at least. When am I going to heal? The bones will take, best case scenario, 8 weeks. Ribs and sternum maybe even longer as the scar tissue can very easily break apart by an accidental cough, sneeze, laugh or a "bad" movement. That means that for at least 8 weeks I'm unable to do what I'm supposed to do, instructing the fitness, bootcamp and spin classes. I will be just a half man at work, likely sitting in my office while some one else does why I'm hired. My cross country team just ran it's first race of the season. I couldn't be there with them to help them as one of the side effect's of the painkiller is the extreme nausea it cause when I'm in a car. Even a short drive is like a hell. I'm likely half a year from the time when I can return to regular training sessions. This is only my prediction and I can only see that time frame go up. My plans for this year may have been crushed but in the long run it just made me stronger. I will come back and now I want to reach my goals even more. No one can tell me I can't and no one will can stop me from getting what I deserve.