Almost Over the Hill Hikers
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  • Almost Over the Hill Hikers

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    #134903 - 06/09/10 01:14 PM I hope I can get it back!
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1726
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    I was riding my bicycle on Sunday, starting a thirty miler, and was hit from behind by a hit-and-run driver. I was doing about 12 mph; the H & R guy was doing 65-70 according to a woman he passed. According to her, I was knocked about 12 feet into the air and about 20 feet down the road where I hit flat on my back then rolled. The guy stopped for a second then took off. The woman he passed called 911 and stayed with me. I spent all day Sunday in the University of Arizona Medical Center Trauma unit in Tucson; I am home now. I am lucky I have only one broken bone but I also do have a lot of soft-tissue injury; my entire left leg is black and going green. There isn't a portion of my body below the ears that doesn't hurt. I have sixty stitches and they are still picking gravel out of me. I am eating vicodin as if it were salted peanuts.

    Incidentally, there is a 4' to 5' wide bicycle lane along that stretch of the road and I was on the right side of that lane according to my guardian angel.

    They caught the guy who hit me when he was trying to sneak past the accident site to get home; he doesn't live too far from me. The woman who was my guardian angel recognized the car as he tried to slink past and the Pima County Sheriff ran him down. He was under the influence of something, I was told. He has been charged with ADW as well as leaving the scene of an accident. My beloved road bike is now elegant junk.

    I am mainly writing this note as a request for encouragement. I'm not depressed but am feeling a bit sorry for myself just now. I am in my mid-70's and I worry that I will not recover from this. I suspect that I will be nearly immobile for a month and will loose more of my physical conditioning than I will ever be able to recover. I would just love to hear some cherry stories of old guys who have recovered from stuff like this and went on to greater things. Anything you can come up with will be welcome.

    This summer I was not going to be able to get out at all anyway. My wife is on the UMC transplant list for a double lung transplant so we are on a very short leash; I am her full time care giver. But so far, I have been able to get out enough for basic conditioning. Now, I can't do that nor can I care for her; she is helping with my care as much as possible. My son and his wife have been coming over every day to help out and I should be ambulatory in a week or so.

    So, please, some encouraging words from my friends here. Thanks.


    Edited by Pika (06/09/10 01:14 PM)
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

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    #134905 - 06/09/10 02:10 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    hikerduane Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/23/03
    Posts: 2123
    Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
    I "crashed and burned" as we would say back in High School about 8 years ago. I was in my mid 40's so that wasn't too bad. Had a collapsed lung and three broken bones from going down on my mountain bike, taking a turn too fast on a FS road. Rode home, then went to get some abrasions checked at the ER. They called me back the next day and needed another X-Ray, turns out my damage showed up then. Anyway, I somewhat recovered but I have lost some full extension of one arm when trying to scratch my back on the opposite side. Not a big loss. I hope you do better as I am in my mid 50's now and worry about getting older and continuing with bping.

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    #134906 - 06/09/10 03:26 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Glenn Offline
    member

    Registered: 03/08/06
    Posts: 2617
    Loc: Ohio
    I can't remember all the details, but something similar happened to Colin Fletcher in his 70's or so - he made it a good deal of the way back, and his injuries included head trauma. There should be some news stories or Backpacker magazine stories about it, as I recall.

    I'd bet there's a good chance that you'll come most, if not quite all, the way back and be able to enjoy everything you did before the accident.

    Good luck, take care, and keep us posted.

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    #134909 - 06/09/10 03:49 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    aimless Offline
    Moderator

    Registered: 02/05/03
    Posts: 2835
    Loc: Portland, OR
    Pika,

    I'm tremendously sad to hear about your misfortune. That they caught the guy will scant satisfaction, but at least it is better than thinking he got off free as a bird.

    The fact that you are starting from a very high level of fitness should partly offset the fact that you are in your mid-70s. This is a big setback, but you WILL COME BACK from it. Do everything the therapists tell you to do. Do it religiously. They will be your angels and they know a lot about comeing back from injury.

    This summer, you may be on a very short leash, but keep your goals clearly in mind and don't lose heart. Things will improve. If you need a pep talk, or a place to spill out your discouragement, come here. We'll do our best to buck you up.

    Good luck to you and your wife. Keep us informed. Have a balloon: happy

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    #134910 - 06/09/10 04:26 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: aimless]
    hikerduane Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/23/03
    Posts: 2123
    Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
    I had to take it easy thru the Fall, luckily I had my firewood cut and shed filled, but did not do a normal bp trip in Oct. No big deal, took it easy. Come snow shoveling, I did ok, kinda tough at work stocking coolers, I just used my other arm for a bit until my injured side was better. If I would of exercised it more, I am sure I would have more movement, but I used it to stock some.

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    #134911 - 06/09/10 05:27 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    ringtail Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/22/02
    Posts: 2296
    Loc: Colorado Rockies
    Pika,

    I know you are a better nurse than patient. It is your caregiver that needs encouragement. lame

    I share your concern. The sooner you can get back in the saddle the better. The aerobic and strength training is important, but do not neglect core, balance and mental conditioning. Play challenging games and laugh everyday - even when it hurts.

    I had an accident at age 59 and came back within weeks. My hiking buddy is 78 this year and still can carry a pack. The years go by faster - recovery is slower, but still realistic.

    My sympathy to your son and DIL. lol



    _________________________
    "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
    Yogi Berra

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    #134912 - 06/09/10 06:34 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    I'm sorry to hear of your accident but am thankful you survived it. Also thankful that someone was nearby to help. Sometimes adversity seems to come from all sides, as it seems to be happening in your life right now. You will be in my prayers for a speedy recovery and quick return to the trails! --Pat

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    #134916 - 06/09/10 08:10 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: mockturtle]
    OregonMouse Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/03/06
    Posts: 6368
    Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
    Prayers and good thoughts are going to both you and your wife!

    As others have mentioned, you're starting from a high level of fitness and are determined to get better, both of which will definitely aid your recovery!

    I hope that driver has the book thrown at him!
    _________________________
    May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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    #134917 - 06/09/10 08:22 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Dryer Offline
    Moderator

    Registered: 12/05/02
    Posts: 3569
    Loc: Texas
    My goodness! You survived the nightmare I always feared when I was an avid rider....You had more than a 'guardian angel' watching out for you! I pray you have a speedy recovery and it sounds like you are the type to recover quickly and get back on your horse.

    Pika, I rode/raced bicycles for almost 30 years when I came to the conclusion (and after losing a number of friends to accidents with cars) that I was pushing my luck. I gave up bikes for kayaks 3 years ago and have not had once close call with a car since! grin
    _________________________
    paul, texas KD5IVP

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    #134921 - 06/09/10 09:55 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Kent W Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/15/09
    Posts: 607
    Loc: IL.
    Pika , I know you and I did not get off on the friend list with our knife discusion from the begining. However, my friend I wish you well and will pray for you dayly. I wish I had more words of encouragement, but prayer is best. God bless you and your wife I pray for your speady recovery.

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    #134924 - 06/09/10 10:01 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Kent W]
    balzaccom Offline
    member

    Registered: 04/06/09
    Posts: 1717
    Loc: Napa, CA
    Hey Pika

    I ride 6000 miles a year, and you just survived my worst nightmare. I am so sorry that you've been hurt---but I promise to post lots of photos of our adventures this summer, and hope that you'll take some pleasure in those trips, if only vicariously.

    And if there's anything we can do--give us a shout. people on these boards would be happy to help.

    _________________________
    balzaccom

    check out our website and blog: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/home

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    #134933 - 06/10/10 12:03 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Tango61 Offline
    member

    Registered: 12/27/05
    Posts: 931
    Loc: East Texas Piney Woods
    Hey Pika,
    I am so sorry to hear this and am glad you are alive!
    Here's a freakish story for you, to divert your attention from the pain.
    My step-father was out at his storage barn a couple of weeks ago (in San Angelo)and a big storm blew in with high winds.

    He went to shut the big, barn door and his hand got stuck in the chain and it slung him around like a rag doll and finally threw him on the ground and ended up bustin his nose.

    Fortunately, no major broken bones but plenty of bruises and scrapes.

    My mom says that he comes from an athletic background and has dealt with injuries before and knows what it takes to get through them (he's in his upper 70's). It just takes longer.

    Make sure your doctor prescribes you physical therapy. I know it helped me when I broke my shoulder blade. With the therapy, I was able to get 99% of my range of motion back.

    Get a lawyer if you need to and make sure you get everything you can out of the low-life.

    Prayers sent up for you and your wife.

    BTW, a friend of a friend has a double lung transplant going on 10 years. He's doing fine.


    Edited by Tango61 (06/10/10 12:04 AM)
    _________________________
    If you think you can, you can. If you think you can't, you can't. Either way, you're right.

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    #134935 - 06/10/10 12:57 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    Pika,

    Bummer. This too will pass, however.

    About a year and a half ago I made a similar post as you. I had herniated a lumbar disc and was looking for encouragement. It helped to hear other people's stories about recovering. Here's mine.

    I was in so much pain I couldn't sleep, walk or even easily roll over in bed. I couldn't even easily talk on the phone because I was almost frantic with the pain. I went on to herniate the disc a second time during recovery and then to sprain a knee as I was stuggling to get up one morning. This too did pass, however.

    Physical therapy was the key for me. I did and do about 40 minutes of stretching and strength exercises each day in addition to aerobic work. I'm happy to say that at 65+ I'm now backpacking and gardening again without pain.

    Looking back I see the injuries as a good thing. It forced me to slow down, move more deliberately and relax. My blood pressure is now lower than it was prior to the injuries. I also have a new philosophy "any day without pain is a good day".

    Hang in there and you will be writing an e-mail like this to the next person who is injured and looking for encouragement.


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    #134984 - 06/10/10 11:48 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: DJ2]
    thecook Offline


    Registered: 10/03/08
    Posts: 541
    Loc: Minnesota
    Pika, my prayers are with you and your wife. I know a number of people who have come back from injury in their 60's to be active again. All of them, like you, were active before the injury. Keep the goal in mind and get well!
    _________________________
    If I wouldn't eat it at home, why would I want to eat it on the trail?

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    #135009 - 06/11/10 12:06 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: thecook]
    wandering_daisy Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/11/06
    Posts: 2742
    Loc: California
    Hang in there. My Dad fell off a 16-foot ladder when he was 80, broke all ribs, punctured a lung, got a concusion and was in the hospital for a week. Everyone said he would never be the same. A year later he was up and running like new, except for a drooped shoulder that looked funny but did not seem to affect him. Yes, it takes more time to heal when older, but you do heal. Good luck.

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    #135024 - 06/11/10 04:43 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: wandering_daisy]
    moondust Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/17/03
    Posts: 22
    Loc: California
    I will echo the usefulness of physical therapy. Show the therapists that you are willing to work very hard, and they will work extra hard with you. You can gain strength and fitness in your 70's and beyond. Each day try to discover what you can do and do not dwell on what you can't do. Be patient, but do ALL that you can. Exercise the muscles that will bear it, let the others heal. Make sure your diet is very healthy to encourage your body to heal itself quickly.

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    #135037 - 06/11/10 09:44 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: moondust]
    kbennett Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/27/03
    Posts: 820
    Loc: north carolina
    Pika,

    So sorry to hear about this -- my thoughts are with you and your family. I'm so glad that it wasn't worse (and given the speed that driver was going, it so easily could have been.)

    Good luck in recovery. As the others have said, do everything the therapists tell you and then some.

    --Ken
    _________________________
    --Ken B

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    #135056 - 06/12/10 03:41 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    billk Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/20/03
    Posts: 1196
    Loc: Portland, Oregon
    I've been meaning to email you to see how your wife's doing...and now this.

    I think you can come back OK. Being in pretty good condition to begin with probably gives you some advantage there. I have no medical knowledge beyond applying a band-aid, but I would guess that "pacing" your recovery might be important. That is, doing enough but not too much too soon. Typing is probably enough for now smile I'm sure the physical therapy folks will help there.

    It's scary to think how much worse this could have been. We're glad you're still around. Keep us up to date.


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    #135059 - 06/12/10 10:44 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: billk]
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1726
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    Quote:
    Typing is probably enough for now smile I'm sure the physical therapy folks will help there.
    thanks

    Actually, typing is more than enough aerobic exercise for me just now. I have an appointment with a physical therapist this coming Wednesday. I will follow her guidance.
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

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    #135062 - 06/12/10 11:41 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    oldranger Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/23/07
    Posts: 1735
    Loc: California (southern)
    Pika, this really hits home. I lived more than thirty years in Tucson, doing a lot of bike riding when I wasn't out climbing or bike riding. My impression of Tucson drivers is that a distinct minority are very reckless and dangerous, like the one who hit you. I hope they put him away for a long time, and that your physical terrorist fixes you up for a long time.

    Anyway, when you get better (not if) I think we should climb Babo - how about sometime in November?

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    #135079 - 06/13/10 01:02 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Jimshaw Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/22/03
    Posts: 3938
    Loc: Bend, Oregon
    Pika,
    Sorry to hear about this. I've been wondering when this would happen considering where you ride. As they told me when I shattered my knee - ignore the pain, rehabilitate every day and in a year you will be better. Doesn't sound like you have any really serious injuries though. Soft tissue damage hurts, but heals quickly. You may be doing much better in just a month or two. You're so fit it will heal fast. Stitches are nothing. If they can sew ya back up its better than internal injuries. physical therapy is for people who can't motivate themselves to work through the pain. My doctor refused to send me to pysical therapy. He told me I was an animal and he wanted me to take it a little easier on the training. You're likely in the same category. smile
    Jim
    _________________________
    These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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    #135095 - 06/13/10 03:15 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Jimshaw]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    Jim, I totally disagree about PT. With the advent of ultrasound therapy and electronic muscle stimulation, the healing progress can be greatly accelerated.

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    #135098 - 06/13/10 04:21 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: mockturtle]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    Mockturtle,

    I agree with you and forgot to mention the ultrasound and electronic muscle stimulation in my earlier post. I found the latter to be particularly helpful with my sprained knee.

    A good physical therapist also knows what muscles to work, rest and stretch and when. She/he can test for imbalances and help one correct them to facilitate healing and prevent future injury.

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    #135200 - 06/16/10 12:56 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: oldranger]
    MarkNM Offline
    member

    Registered: 05/03/10
    Posts: 141
    Loc: Pompton Lakes, NJ
    Pika,
    I'm still very new here but have gotten some very useful advice from your posts, and am very taken back by your news. I've also loved this community for the kindness and respect/honor the true backpackers posess and you certainly seem to hold these qualites...i can only wish the best and quickest recovery.

    I don't know you personally but i can say is the mental aspect of healing is a huge aspect, and based on your OP i have to say I think you'll be just fine. There are also countless stories of people achieving great adventures after serious injuries as well, of all ages, and their motivation to continue living and enjoying life...and i'm betting you'll be added to the list


    You and your family as long as everyone else on here who ventures will be in my thoughts and prayers...but i'll double them up for you...

    _________________________
    I do it because I can...it also helps that you are not there...

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    #135230 - 06/16/10 08:58 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: mockturtle]
    Jimshaw Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/22/03
    Posts: 3938
    Loc: Bend, Oregon
    Mockturtle
    believe what ever you want about PT, my doctor said it was for wimps who didn't want to take the pain of rehabilitating. Its not my comment, I have no opinion, I've never been to physical therapy, but I did recover from a shattered knee on my own. The human body can recover from great injury as long as the individual struggles to heal. Also a quote from my doctor, "Many people restricted to wheel chairs are only there because rehabilitation hurts." I think someone as tough as PIKA will be mostly recovered within a year, maybe less since there are no major broken bones. Even tendons can heal.
    Jim YMMV smile
    _________________________
    These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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    #135233 - 06/16/10 11:13 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Jimshaw]
    Tango61 Offline
    member

    Registered: 12/27/05
    Posts: 931
    Loc: East Texas Piney Woods

    My PT showed me what exercises to do to rehab my shoulder.
    It was up to me to do them.
    Did it hurt? Heck yes!
    Did I do them? Heck yes!
    Once I got through the first ones, I went back for more to continue strengthening my muscles.

    I found the e-stem to be very helpful.
    _________________________
    If you think you can, you can. If you think you can't, you can't. Either way, you're right.

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    #135244 - 06/17/10 03:02 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Jimshaw]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    Your doctor obviously believes PT is still all about exercises. Perhaps he needs to get some current information. If electronic stimulation after a badly sprained ankle can get you on your feet tomorrow vs. on crutches for two weeks, it's not for wimps. It's for those who need fast results.

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    #135296 - 06/19/10 12:05 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    300winmag Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/28/06
    Posts: 1342
    Loc: Nevada, USA
    HAng in there Buddy. You CAN get virtually all of your conditioning back if you follow through with your Physical Therapy. Find the best PT guy you can and stick with him.

    I was a cyclist & bike racer in the '80s and knwo the idiots are out there. Had several near misses. I hope thay throw the book at that guy and he serves at least 5 years.

    When he is sentenced post the story and newspaper account of the verdict everywhere. Courtesy Copy the entire Western World.

    Best, Eric
    _________________________
    "There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

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    #135743 - 07/01/10 02:23 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: mockturtle]
    Trailrunner Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/05/02
    Posts: 1835
    Loc: Los Angeles
    I worked in physical thereapy for 5 years. It can benefit everyone, wimp or tough guy. Some of the toughtest athletes in the world have used PT to recover faster. There are still some old school doctors out there who don't believe in it, and some who won't prescribe it for insurance/financial reasons.

    Anyway, I hope that you are well on the mend by now Pika. Getting hit from behind has always been my worst nightmare. In my experience the folks who recovered the fastest were the ones who were motivated and I'm sure you have no problem in that department.
    _________________________
    If you only travel on sunny days you will never reach your destination.*

    * May not apply at certain latitudes in Canada and elsewhere.

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    #135818 - 07/04/10 01:07 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1726
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    I want to thank all of you for your encouragement and best wishes. I am getting better. The first two weeks after the accident I really felt lousy. Lots of the by-products of tissue damage in my blood, plus drugs, plus an infection in my left foot made me head-achy and nauseous. But after the first two weeks and after the infection was handled, I started physical therapy and also started feeling better. It helps to drink a lot of water.

    It has now been almost exactly four weeks since I was hurt. This morning I walked a bit over a mile with my dogs and then went for an easy 5-mile mountain bike ride. I still tire easily and if I push too hard things start hurting. The broken bone in my left ankle is healing slowly and causes some exquisite pain if I am not careful. I have not yet gotten back to my weight workouts but I plan to ease into them next week. I tried to do 20 push-ups this morning; got to 12 and decided that I need to work my way back. I am hopeful that within a couple of months I will be back to where I started.

    The guy who hit me has been charged with one class-two felony (leaving the scene of an accident in which you caused injury or death) , two class-three felonies (aggravated assault and assault with a deadly weapon) and three class one misdemeanors involving DUI and damages. An example of a class-one felony is premeditated murder. I get the impression that the prosecuting attorney is taking this incident seriously.

    My wife is doing reasonably well while we wait for donor lungs. At least I can take care of her again which makes both of us feel better.

    Again, thanks to all of you for your encouragement; it has meant more to me than I can say. thanks

    Pika
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

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    #135827 - 07/04/10 08:41 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    aimless Offline
    Moderator

    Registered: 02/05/03
    Posts: 2835
    Loc: Portland, OR
    At least I can take care of her again which makes both of us feel better.

    Love is amazing stuff. I am very glad to hear the positive report, as I am sure everyone else will be telling you as soon as they reappear after the holiday. goodjob

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    #135840 - 07/05/10 10:04 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    So glad to hear you are on your way to recovery! I'll have you and your wife in my prayers in the coming weeks! --Pat

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    #135856 - 07/05/10 04:51 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    Great progress report! Sounds like you are doing wonderfully, given the seriousness of the accident.

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    #135942 - 07/07/10 04:24 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    billstephenson Offline
    Moderator

    Registered: 02/07/07
    Posts: 3865
    Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
    Holy Moly!

    I missed your first post about the accident and was stunned when I read it just now.

    Since it doesn't hurt any extra for you to read I'll prattle on for a few...

    From my experience working with quads and paraplegics that were injured in accidents I can tell you that you'll keep recovering as long as you keep working at it. Even serious spinal cord injuries keep healing and mobility increases if you keep up your rehab routines. (as a side note, I always thought that Physical Therapy was a part of rehab, so I don't quite understand what Jim's doctor was thinking.)

    The worst sprain I ever had I cured by walking 2 miles to get home. There was no way I was going to call my mother to come get me, that would have been way worse than the walk home. I was amazed that my ankle stopped hurting by the time I got there and I've done the same thing for sprains ever since. I walk them off. So, I do agree with Jim's doctor as far as that goes.

    As you pointed out, you're already doing better so I expect you'll recover nearly all your losses from the accident.

    Pika, I've said this before here, but I'll go ahead and say it again; Take a tablespoon of raw honey everyday. I take mine in the morning. I suspect I broke an index finger a little over a month ago and if I forget the honey I can feel the difference that day. Whatever is in that stuff, it has some amazing healing properties.

    And hey, I'm a big fan of pain pills too when I'm in pain. Opiates are the best. For me, they don't do a thing except relive pain. I don't get a buzz off of them at all so I have no desire to take them unless I have a pain causing injury, and I don't take them for that unless it's pretty serious, but you certainly qualify now so I say take them as needed and be thankful God provided those wondrous Poppies wink

    I don't ride my bike anymore. I never road a "Road Bike" on the streets as an adult because of stupid car drivers and I quit mountain biking when I moved here because of the razor sharp Chert that paves the trails.

    I do consider you a friend, and so I will ask that you consider giving up riding on the streets. It's not because of your age, I have no doubt that you'd smoke me on a ride, but because I've seen the results of too many automobile accidents.

    I hardly even drive anymore, and when I do I drive like everyone on the road is trying to smack into me. I don't trust any of them, or their cars, and I don't completely trust myself either, or my car.

    And I love your mention of your "Guardian Angels". I am certain that we all have them, and are sometimes used by them. Yours are certainly watching over you. I'm sure there is good reason for that.

    My love and prayers to you and yours...

    Bill

    _________________________
    --

    "You want to go where?"



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    #135990 - 07/09/10 12:48 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: billstephenson]
    Jimshaw Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/22/03
    Posts: 3938
    Loc: Bend, Oregon
    Heck my doctor didn't say PT was a waste for most people. What he said was that I was too much of an animal already to send me to PT, instead I was ordered to rehabiltate LESS. I was told that the body has amazing healiong powers for those who can overcome the pain and the associated laziness that comes with it. I didn't need PT.

    For example, my achilles tendon contracted while my leg was in the Alazarove device and he wanted to take me into surgery to straighten it out under general, instead I took 2 vicodins, stood on my toe, bounced, and felt the tendon suddenly stretch half an inch - exactly back into position. My knee was locked at 40 derees from straight. 2 vicodin, a long hot bath, full weight on knee, and in one minute - straight leg. Most people would require months of PT or surgery. The point he was making was that if you work consistently on rehab, you don't need a PT. If pain stops you, then go to a PT so he or she can hurt you.
    Jim YMMV but I know you PIKA, yer tough as a boiled spotted owl, so just take it esy, it will take time, but if you keep at it, it will heal.
    _________________________
    These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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    #136012 - 07/09/10 10:13 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    midnightsun03 Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/06/03
    Posts: 2936
    Loc: Alaska
    Pika...

    I've been too wrapped up in my own little world to visit the board and read posts, so I'm just now coming into the loop and reading your original post. I am so very glad that you came away from a potentially lethal accident with such (relatively) minor injuries. I am glad the physical injuries are improving as quickly as they are. I hope that the emotional trauma is on the mend as well. Don't forget to work through all of the emotions that I'm sure this has evoked in yourself, your wife and your son. I think sometimes that we work so hard to heal physically, but forget to heal emotionally, and then we start to pull away from the things we loved for fear of it (or something else) happening again. My thoughts are with you and your wife... I didn't know she was so ill. Someone was certainly looking out for you during your accident, I'm sure there was a reason for that.

    Peace,
    Andrea
    _________________________
    YMMV. Viewer discretion is advised.

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    #136026 - 07/10/10 02:49 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: midnightsun03]
    aimless Offline
    Moderator

    Registered: 02/05/03
    Posts: 2835
    Loc: Portland, OR
    Emotional healing is an excellent point, mns. Although I am not a licensed therapist, I think I can give a few useful pointers on this.

    In the midst of traumas or crises we are confronted with heavy, but conflicting, demands. Such events not only arrouse a massive emotional response, but they generally require us to suppress those emotions in order to deal with the situation as calmly, crisply and effectively as we know how.

    Later, when the need for direct, immediate action has subsided, we still carry those suppressed emotions, but now there's no obvious time, place or way to express them. The event they are connected to appears to be over. We desperately hope it is behind us forever. No one in their right mind will happily dredge up those buried emotions and consequently relive the trauma that caused them.

    But, to heal from them, that is exactly what you need to do.

    In my experience, if you are really going to do that, you need a few elements in place. You need to set aside a time (an hour or two) when you are free of immediate responsibilities. You need to be with someone you trust, who is willing to watch you crumble with grief or explode with rage, and understand this is not a problem, but a solution. Lastly, you need the courage to revisit your trauma as completely as you can and to allow your facade of being "OK" to drop.

    At the end of your allotted time, you need to reconnect with ordinary life, recall that what you have been undergoing really is in the past, and reemerge into the normal events of the day as fully as possible.

    You may need to do this many times to get through it, especially for very old traumas, or very big ones.

    Pika, as someone who is also a long term caregiver (just entering my 25th year of it!), I recognize this is going to be extremely difficult to pull off, but it's a lot better and more effective than just letting a mountain of suppressed feelings pile up. You are no doubt strong enough to put this off for years, if need be, but I swear to you, you'll be a happier man if you do some ongoing maintenance, even in the midst of your many duties.

    Hang in there!


    Edited by aimless (07/10/10 03:17 PM)
    Edit Reason: added an important detail

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    #136037 - 07/10/10 11:34 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: aimless]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    I'm impressed. Good advice from a wise person. Rare.

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    #136073 - 07/11/10 08:07 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: aimless]
    midnightsun03 Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/06/03
    Posts: 2936
    Loc: Alaska
    Well put, Aimless... thanks for your contribution!
    _________________________
    YMMV. Viewer discretion is advised.

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    #143844 - 12/23/10 02:24 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    intrek38 Offline
    member

    Registered: 11/29/03
    Posts: 430
    Loc: Hesperia, Calif
    Hello Pika,
    I just came across this post and send my reguards. Hoping all is well you and yours. Not easy to care for others but it's something a persons gotta do, especially when it's someone you love. Although every situation is different, I think the best thing any caretaker can do, would be to take care of themselves as well. Tough to do in certain situations. My wife and I had to go through it a few years back with her parents and it was the toughest hike of our lives, mostly her's. I was able to find an out in my job and of course this site. Best wishes

    Bruce

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    #166194 - 05/26/12 11:52 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    Pika,

    It has been a couple of years since your injury.

    How's your recovery coming? Any wisdom/observations/advice you can offer from the experience thus far?

    Daryl

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    #166196 - 05/26/12 01:16 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: DJ2]
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1726
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    Daryl, thanks for your interest. I don't really have too much to offer in the way of wisdom gained from the experience other than the next time something like this comes up I think I'll delegate. I was able to "get it back", or at least most of it--eventually. It was a lot more work than I expected.

    What surprised me was how long it took to recoup even though I felt that I was working hard at recovery. For the first few months after the hit-and-run, I was mostly healing and doing physical therapy. That and getting over a lingering MRSA infection that I picked up in the emergency room. Then, I found that riding my bike was a lot scarier than it had been before the incident; I paid more attention to my rear view mirror than to things ahead of me. So I wasn't riding as long or as hard as I had. I am still kind of paranoid while riding but am either getting over it or getting used to the paranoia.

    About 2 1/2 months after my accident, my wife was called for her double lung transplant. The surgery went extremely well and her donor lungs were an excellent match but, even then, she was in and out of the hospital for the next 2 1/2 months. A lung transplant is not simple surgery. She is doing exceptionally well with her donor lungs though. She was in her early 70's when she had the surgery and has recovered better than do most of the younger recipients. Usually the surgeons won't do a transplant on someone over 65 but she was unusually healthy for her age and for someone needing a transplant. During her recovery, I didn't have much opportunity to work out and wound up in fairly poor shape for the 2011 season.

    This past winter I was able to develop and stick with a relatively aggressive aerobic/weight workout routine. It has helped a lot. I just finished a 4 day, 40 mile trip in the Rincon Mountains near Tucson and felt pretty strong. So, I guess I'm back about as far as I am going to get. I am planning on hiking the JMT next summer and have a fairly ambitious hiking schedule for this summer in the Sierra, Grand Canyon and Scotland.
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

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    #166202 - 05/26/12 07:37 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    Pika,

    I think that's a pretty good report and I find it encouraging.

    Thanks,

    Daryl

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    #166203 - 05/26/12 08:13 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    OregonMouse Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/03/06
    Posts: 6368
    Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
    So glad to hear that you and your wife are both doing well!
    _________________________
    May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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    #166207 - 05/27/12 12:39 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    oldranger Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/23/07
    Posts: 1735
    Loc: California (southern)
    Glad to hear that you are both doing well adn bouncing back.

    Mention of the Rincons brings on a nostalgia attack. Where did you go?

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    #166210 - 05/27/12 09:01 AM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: oldranger]
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1726
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    Old Ranger, The first day, I hiked Tanque Verde Ridge to Juniper Basin; a long hot slog. The next day I hiked to Manning Camp and the day after that from Manning Camp to Happy Valley Saddle. BTW, the campsite at HV has been relocated and now has a composting toilet. Then from Happy Valley Saddle I retraced Heartbreak Ridge and then on the Devils Bathtub/Grass Shack trail to Grass Shack for the night. The last day I hiked to Cow Head Saddle and down Tanque Verde Ridge to the car, this was a long last day. In fact, I was out five days; I meant 4 nights, actually, in my other post. I had to haul water because I wasn't sure whether the springs and tanks were still wet; in the event I was able to find water at all of the camps, some of it pretty green and lively. On the last day, I saw the granddaddy of all Mojave Rattlesnakes; I would estimate him (or her) to have been nearly 5' long and as thick as my wrist. It was claiming the trail as personal property so I had to detour around the critter through a patch of shin dagger. My trail runners were not enough to prevent punctures. Ouch!


    Edited by Pika (05/27/12 09:03 AM)
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

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    #166473 - 06/05/12 12:21 PM Re: I hope I can get it back! [Re: Pika]
    skcreidc Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/16/10
    Posts: 1590
    Loc: San Diego CA
    To be honest, I had to go back to the beginning of the thread to remember what had transpired. Very inspiring! Good job! Sounds like you got it back all right. The hoof up to Manning couldn't have been too easy. You were able to refill your water supply at Manning Camp, right?

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