Sunday, July 6, 2008

I Don't Remember What Happened

Sometime on the morning of July 4, while riding about 10 – 12 miles southeast of Dubois, I flipped off my bike. I don’t remember it at all. I remember thinking that I was looking forward to several days of long rides on rolling hills. I was looking forward to returning to the Midwest. The next thing I remember is regaining consciousness in an ambulance. My left shoulder hurt and the back of my neck hurt due to the tape being used to stabilize my neck. I had no idea of the extent or seriousness of my injuries. I have four fractures/broken ribs on my left side just below the clavicle. My left clavicle is broken with a jagged edge. The worst is a pneumothorax. This is a small puncture of the lining of my lung by the broken clavicle. Air has seeped into the base of sack below my lung. This can cause pneumonia, but that danger is passed. I’m waiting for the doctor to make rounds today. I may be released.

I have no memory of what happened. I’ve hit rumble strips before. They’re jarring but not dangerous. Whatever happened, happened so fast that I didn’t put my hands out to catch myself. My wrists aren’t broken and there is no cutting or bruising on the palms of my hands. I hit and broke my helmet first (bruising my right ear, which is purple) and then hit with my left shoulder. I also scraped the back of my left hand and my right knee. Someone called 911. Mary visited with the Sheriff who responded. The next thing I remember is being strapped into the ambulance. Other than when I’m on morphine, I’ve been lucid ever since.

Although I have yet to see it, Mary reports the bike is fine. The two layers of handle bar tape and the seat are scraped and gouged. I’m guessing this happened after I flipped off.

What’s next? After the doctor releases me, we’re taking a couple days to get home. Will I ever complete the ride? It’s too soon to know. I successfully made it through the most challenging third. I know I can bike the rest. It takes quite a bit of work to achieve this level of fitness and to plan for the ride itself.

Thank you everyone for your prayers and words of encouragement. I wish I knew what happened, but I don’t and I probably never will.

5 comments:

UP said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jkottley said...

Wow, Cal. Reading about your crash was such a shock. I'm glad your injuries weren't worse. Maybe you'll be able to continue the ride later. Grace & peace...

Virg and Deb said...

When we read of your accident on Saturday, we sensed the pain of an adventure lost. . .or at least reconfigured. Our hearts and prayers are with you!

Me said...

My heart aches for you and I keep reminding myself that no matter how sad this is for you - God must have a purpose in it.

Heidi Q said...

Cal,
We are praying for you here at the Des Moines Clinic! Blessings to you as you recover, Brother! We are glad you were not injured more seriously.
Heidi