July 21, 2010. I suppose that I will never forget that date or ride. A simple ride. A fun ride. Down Lair o the Bear. All of a sudden my fork gives way and I’m counter-correcting, braking, and I’m down. No biggie…..right? Those who ride with me know that I can be a bit accident prone, but never really get hurt. It’s a part of mountain biking – falling, scraping your skin, getting a bit of an “owie”, getting back up on the bike and going on. But, wow! My left front side sure did take a hit and it felt rather deep. No worries. Shake it off and get the girls down the trail. And I’m running on adrenaline.
Fast forward to now – 6 months later. I am recovering from a double lacerated kidney that the emergency room doctor swore I would lose. And I had complications. For some reason, my eyesight wasn’t quite right and seemed to be getting steadily foggier and dimmer. Actually, it was almost nothing but fuzz even with glasses. What was happening to me? Diagnosis: Optic nerve damage exacerbated by cataracts induced by physical trauma. As one doctor explained it -- too long of a period of time without enough blood and oxygen in the system and the body goes into a highly protective mode to save key aspects of bodily function. In other words, it was saving my brain and my heart by removing whatever blood was left in the body and rerouting it to the two key organs needed for survival. This is the simple explanation.
But……….it was just a simple fall…………on the only friggin rock on the whole trail in that particular section. Sigh.
Although the Optic Nerve damage cannot be reversed, the eyes have had surgery and have survived – thanks to the wonderful ladies of the Dirt Divas and from the equally wonderful folks in our mountain bike community. I can see. The kidney has healed, although I have been advised by the kidney specialist that a kidney takes a full year to fully recover from the serious type of injury mine had been dealt. Wear a kidney belt for a full year. Try not to fall. Build yourself back up slowly.
I’ve gained 10 lbs in 6 months. Geesh! So, I have finally been given doctor permission to get back on a bike and back on a trainer (wasn’t even allowed on a trainer during this time!) There is snow on the ground and so I’ve finally gotten my trainer out and am starting a regimen of building up my trainer endurance. When the weather permits and it’s not too cold out (I’m a cold weather weenie), I’ll be out on the road bike. When the trails are rideable, I’ll be out on the mountain bike. It will take time to build up any type of endurance. It will be worth it! Afterall, I’ve got 10 lbs to loose and my endurance to attain in 3 shorts months. Moab and Fruita is in April/May and then our season truly starts here on the Front Range.
There is much that needs to be done to get the Dirt Divas up and active and going again. I am so thankful to all you ladies who have called and/or have come by to visit me and to encourage me – to all of you who let me know how important the Divas are to each and every one of you. So, we have much to do to get going for this wonderful new year!
Ø Jersey Party/Social Gathering – date TBD, but sometime around the end of February and/or 1st part of March
Ø Dirt Divas Membership renewal letters to go out soon
Ø Dirt Divas Race Team – tentatively, a Boulder Race Team ride leader and a Denver/Golden Race Team ride leader have volunteered
Ø Many of the original sponsors and supporters of the Divas will be returning this year. There will also be some new supporters coming on board!
Ø We have several ladies who are on the Advisory Committee. We need a few more and will be requesting that those who are interested in taking part in some of the Divas functions to volunteer.
Ø We will be requesting a group of ladies to take turns with our Wednesday ride leads during the year.
Ø Kaylie Hall, designer extraordinaire, will make a few updates for our Jersey/shorts kit this year.
Ø We are discussing having opportunities to explore our Downhill side of mountain biking
Ø We have two ladies this year who will be helping with our “cross-training” road rides. I am sure that there will be ample opportunity to train for rides such as the E-Rock, Triple By-Pass, or any one of a number of organized road rides out there.
Ø We will continue to have our Destination Rides
Ø Plus, many others things going on!
Dirt Divas, I am so excited to be able to continue to offer the special discounts and opportunities that have been negotiated for you, our paid membership. And for those of you who are not paid members, by becoming a Dirt Diva member you have access to great discounts that help with bike acquisition, bike accessory purchases and clothing discounts. However, as always, our Wednesday evening mountain bike rides and our road rides will remain available to all at NO EXTRA CHARGE.
I look forward to a new year of mountain biking with you!