I’ll admit it, I’ve had better days.
I crashed and flipped my motorcycle two days ago while riding with some friends on the west side of Monarch Summit. We were up near Gunnison, Colorado enjoying the trip when my world turned upsidedown—literally. In the process, I shattered and dislocated my left ankle and tore several ligaments.
Friday morning, the day after the spill, Jean and the boys asked me how I felt. “Like I just played in a game of tackle football,” I told them.
There’s a saying that when you ride a motorcycle, you should never go faster than your guardian angel can fly. Fortunately, I was riding way under the speed limit and was wearing a full-face helmet, and leather gear. It might sound like a cliché to say that it could have been a lot worse—but, it could have been a lot worse.
What does a person think about when they’re in the midst of crashing a motorcycle?
As the bike drifted off the shoulder, I remember thinking, “This is not going to be good.” Tumbling head over heels, the bike in one direction and me in the other, I was shocked by how long it took my body to finally slow down and settle into a crumpled heap. There was a seemingly endless cycle of my eyes seeing sky, then dirt, dirt then sky.
I was brought to a nearby hospital by ambulance. Wouldn’t you know, the orthopedic surgeon for the United States Olympic team just “happened” to be in Gunnison. After an evaluation and the initial treatment, I was ushered into surgery where a metal plate was inserted to help put the ankle back together and hold it in place. I’m told that it’ll be eight weeks before I can put any weight on the foot. Another surgery might be necessary, depending upon how things heal.
Accidents have a way of shaking you from your routine, knocking you off schedule and giving you extra time to think and reflect. I’ve been struck by several things these last 24 hours. First and foremost I’m thankful to the Lord for sparing me. As bad and beaten up as I feel, I’m keenly aware how fortunate I was to escape without more serious injuries. Despite the fact that I was several hours away, Jean and the boys dropped everything back home and made their way to my hospital bed. To be sure, their beautiful smiles were a sight for sore eyes! I am a blessed man.
Looking back on the accident scene, I’m also touched by how many total strangers stopped to help. It was incredible! There were more than a dozen people immediately by my side in a matter of seconds.
A registered nurse seemed to appear from nowhere—an angel of the highway. Another couple stopped to help direct traffic until a Colorado State trooper arrived. One fellow offered some moral and perhaps even comic relief to the stressful scene. As I sat awaiting the arrival of the ambulance he peered down at my exposed ankle and said rather matter-of-factly, “Dude! Your ankle looks pretty bad!” He was right—but if he ever decided to go into the medical profession, he might want to work on his bedside manner.
Somebody once said that four wheels move the body, but two wheels move the soul. Thankfully, although I love riding a bike, my soul is moved by a God who loves me and has chosen to show favor and surround me with the company of wonderful family and friends. He also provided a number of “good Samaritans”—strangers of the highway who came to my aid.
If I might, I’d like to offer a hearty thanks to the wonderful men and women in blue as well as the ambulance driver, paramedics, nurses, doctors and other medical personnel up in Gunnison, CO. Each and every one of them is a real-life hero.
I would appreciate your prayers in the days and weeks to come. The work of Focus moves forward, although I might have to do some of my share from the home office. One thing is certain: Trent and Troy are delighted by the prospect. And truth be told, I am as well.
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