Out of Commission for a while…

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I haven’t posted anything for a while. Sometimes a day takes an unexpected turn.

July 1st was that day for me. I headed out on my bike around 10:00 AM with the intention of riding a 30-mile loop before lunch. Somewhere just short of 10 miles I hit a section of road that had disintegrated into several chunks of asphalt. At 20 mph that was enough to launch me. I don’t remember the flight or the sudden stop. My helmet broke and I was knocked out for a few minutes regaining consciousness with an EMT and Brunswick Police officer asking questions. When they loaded me onto a stretcher the immediate pain told me I might have a bit more of a problem than I was hoping.

At Mid Coast Hospital they performed a thorough exam, ran a CAT Scan, and several x-rays. The injury inventory was surprising: broken clavicle, broken scapula, 4 broken ribs and two fractures to my pelvis. Thank goodness the Helmet broke and absorbed the shock, and the CAT scan showed no brain injury. The hospital decided to send me off to the trauma center in Portland where I could be monitored for any other bad things that might manifest given time.

Recovery has been much faster than they expected proceeding in steps. For a while I could feel the fractured clavicle move with almost any motion of my right arm, but it finally knitted together and now, although I’m somewhat asymmetrical with a marked lump on the right clavicle it seems stable and causes no pain. The day after the accident I could only take three steps with a cane. By the end of July, I could walk the 3.5-mile circumference of Back Cove in Portland without a cane.

I would like to thank those who cared for me after the accident: the Good Samaritan who saw me on the side of the road and stopped, called 911, called my wife, and stayed with me until the ambulance and police arrived; the doctors and nurses at Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick who did the initial assessment of my injuries and decided to send me to Portland Trauma Center; the trauma center doctors and nurses who safely got me back on my feet; and the doctors and nurses over at the rehab center who helped me get back home. It only took a week to get home but it seemed like forever.

Most of all I want to thank my wife, Susan, who had to pick up and carry an unequal share of the things that keep our home going. She has been a true blessing.

Any cyclists out there… please wear your helmet. I’m sure things would have been much worse if mine hadn’t absorbed the impact.

So now I have a big backlog of posts to write and I’ll be getting back to them shortly.

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