Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I went to a wedding this past weekend for one of my cousins.  It's always a good time when our extended family celebrates together.  It was fun seeing everyone!  Of course, I was bombarded with questions about the accident followed by "Thank God you are still with us" type comments.  I don't mind talking about it, but it's hard to convey the details amidst short attention spans and music blasting in the background.  Nevertheless, it was great to receive so many well wishes, and I was even able to pull off a few dances with Charlotte.  I received a few complements on the blog and encouragement to keep it up, so here I am...

How do you keep a running, climbing, adventure sport blog going when you are sitting on your butt rehabing your broken body.  What is there to talk about?  I guess the real intent of this blog has not only been to document and share my adventures, but to also serve as a source of inspiration.  So, how to inspire from the couch?  People have been amazed at my progress and say I am an inspiration.  I am humbled as I haven't done anything yet.   OK, I danced a bit on one leg :-)

I go back to the Dr. on Friday.  I expect that the x-rays will show the bone healing properly, and he will tell me to start putting  some weight on the leg.  This would be the best news possible.  Then, I can start moving forward with physical therapy and an evaluation of the knee before Christmas.

The last time I broke a bone in my body was when I was 5 years old.  We were on vacation in Florida.  My cousin decided to practice Judo on me and broke my collar bone.  His sisters were at the wedding and we reminisced about it.

I've set a goal of walking normally by Christmas.  I know that may be a stretch, but...that's me!  Another goal is to run the Reach the Beach Relay with my team, the Red Eye Runners, in September.  This may be a bit of a stretch as well depending on the knee, the hardware inside me, and the heels.  Nevertheless, I'd like to be with my team that weekend.  I watched the DVD from this year's run, and am so happy to have been a part of it for the past 6 years.

I want to climb again in 2011, and would like to rope up for another classic route.

I want to do an ultramarathon in 2012 and eventually run another 100 miler.

Awhile ago I told Goat that I wanted another Top 10 finish at Vermont 100 when I turned 50 which is 3.5 years from now.  It didn't seem like an outlandish goal at the time.  A bit challenging, but not outlandish.  Now, it seems like a bit of a stretch to say the least...

It's nice to have goals and dreams.  I don't know how important any of these are to me.  Frankly, I'm more concerned about my family than anything right now.  I know, though, that I need to be physically healthy and mentally strong to help myself and others, and running and climbing are a means to that end.  Even if I can't meet the goals outlined above, a nice weekend run will be great.  Making fresh tracks on some steep powder will be awesome.  Dancing the tango until dawn or sailing in the tropics would make my day.  Building a playscape for my Grandchildren would be cool too!

Now, there's something to think about...

Have a great week everyone!  Here's to some good news on Friday!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Progress: Man's distinctive mark alone

It's been a month and two days since the accident.  I still have 8 more days until I see the Doc again and anxiously await the x-ray results.  If the bone is healing according to plan, I can start putting weight on the leg.  Wooohooo!  It's the little things in life...or is it the big things I once took for granted?

When I look back over the past month, I'm amazed at my progress.  It's hard to see on a daily basis sometimes, but I've noticed some major steps recently.

You may think of some of these as TMI (too much information), but it's my blog... so read on at your own risk...

When I first came home from the hospital, I was relieved to see the handicapped accessory for the toilet.  There was no way I could consider sitting down without it.  Even with the handrails, it was extremely painful to put any pressure on my left thigh and buttocks.  Over the past couple days, I haven't needed the handicap accessory.  Progress is a beautiful thing!

The first 4 weeks, I slept on a twin bed in my dining room to avoid the stairs to the second floor.  I could barely move around with a walker and often needed a wheelchair.  Now, I boogie around on crutches and can go up and down a full flight of stairs with them.  A couple weeks ago, I was psyched to go up the stairs on my butt...progress is a beautiful thing.

People thought I was crazy to consider driving, but I am doing it routinely now.  My "new" Honda Element has been great, and I look forward to having some fun with it once I can use 2 legs.

Most of the scabs from my scrapes and cuts are gone, and my knee is almost down to normal size.  I can bend my knee a bit past 90 degrees.  It gets better each day...

Sleeping has been a challenge.  At first, I could only sleep on my back with my knee slightly bent.  Now, I can sleep some on my right side, and this morning I even spent a few moments on my left side (still very scary though).  One of these days, I will sleep through the night...

I've gone to the mailbox and ventured to the basement to do laundry.  I've figured out how to carry things from room to room with crutches, and feel more independent each day.

My energy and comfort levels have improved.

My mental state has fluctuated up and down.  The lack of an endorphin fix on a regular basis probably has something to do with it.  In addition, I feel a bit out of the loop in many ways.  I'm starting to phase back into the working world, so this should help some.  With the physical progress, I know the mental will come along as well.

I've had time to contemplate the future and have not experienced an epiphany of any sort.  I've tried to work on a "bucket list", but no major breakthroughs there.  I've been fortunate to experience more than most individuals have in a lifetime, so will be content to share adventures with my family and friends going forward.

I guess I feel less inhibition now.  I say what I want to say regardless of what others think.

At our regular pizza gathering  last night, I read a poem that I wrote for a friend a couple years ago.  He had turned 70 at the time, and he loves poetry.  It was, more or less, a ballad about his life.  It was filled with adventure as well as examples of leading a good life (or should I say leading a good life by example).  As the words were leaving my mouth, I wondered if I have lead a good life.  I've certainly accomplished a lot, but have I lead a life of integrity, love, laughter, and generosity?   Something to think about and always an opportunity for progress.

I guess my "bucket" list isn't really about doing "things" and visiting places, but more about progressing and leaving my mark as part of the community.  These are the things I think about...