The time has come in the year for the US OPEN. I am nervous, scared and excited I guess. I know I won't win. But I hope I just don't look like a crippled fool. I know a lot of people look up to me and what I have gone through. This is going to be just such a huge milestone to be able to compete in the US Open this year. Being banned last year because I was not even a full year off back surgery from breaking my back. I still can not believe how far I have come from a Dr telling me i was lucky to even be able to walk and amazing that i did not have any numbness in my legs. To come so far from being told I would never live this lifestyle ever, to never be able to do these things again. I remember how in an instant my life was shattered, my back was literally shattered and my emotions were a mess. How much I have changed since then. I am such a different person from a year and 9 months ago. How far I have come and how much farther I still have to go. This is a battle I will have everyday of my life. I get down, angry, upset and loose all hope. But then I remember where I should be and how by some miracle I am not. Why me? why me? why me? Why I am I so lucky to have the gift of my legs, the full usage of them, while others don't. Thinking about the past year and nine months of my life always bring tears to my eyes, sends me to another world in my mind. A place that others who have been severely injured i am sure know about also. I will never be the same person i was. I will never be perfect again, I will have limitations, aches and pains everyday the rest of my life, but man am i glad I can feel those aches and pains, those stubbed toes.
How did I break my back? some of you who are reading this may not know the story. We had a big mountainboarding gathering here in SLC, Utah. Down in Tanner Park there was this gap jump. It is not there anymore. All my teammates would hit this jump. C-roll and Tiffany had hit it and made it. I was feel confident and not all in the same moment about it. But I decided to do it. I hiked with my mt board up the hill, thought the woodsy trail to the dropping spot. It was in this little clearing in the woods. shaded by the canopy of the trees. I was encouraged by my fellow comrades and teammates. I finally decided to go, I was the last person left there, everyone else had already gone. All eyes were on me. the first left curve then the right curve out of the trees, then the left turn onto the big runway to the jump. OH SHIT....I knew something felt so wrong. The runaway spot was covered in people, I had no where to go, but off the jump. Down the roller into the jump I lost all control of my board, whobbling, it felt like i was on the biggest moung of jello. wobbling like crazy i flew off the jump...from there is quite a blur...i got disoriented and then it happened. I hit the wall of the landing, falling into the burm that you jump over. The pain, oh man the pain...all I could do was scream. It was the most horrific pain I had ever felt in my life. I knew, I knew something was wrong. I could not really feel my legs much, my body was in such pain. Pain is all i could feel, screaming felt like the only thing to help, but it did nothing. I knew if I could just get up that everything would be ok. I tried to roll myself over and this pain surged through my body and I was out. I remember hearing everyone, I realized that i was looking down on what was happening. I could hear faintly people screaming my name, screaming so hard to wake up. But the pain was gone...I did not feel anything anymore...the peace...oh the peace of no pain. Little did I know that would be my last moment in life having 100% no pain. But in the swoosh of a wave all that pain surged back through my body. Oh how horrid it was. From there the paramedics came, all i could talk about was wanting to snowboard again. wanting to snowboard, that was all that was on my mind. Luckily with the miracle of surgery and from the big man up in heaven. I was able to take my first steps again on wed. I shattered by back on saturday and was learning to walk on wed! a long recovery from there of horrific pain. My mother had to feed me, bath me, comb my hair, brush my teeth, help me walk, roll me over, I could do pretty much nothing. How far I have come from those moments. how some of those moments haunt my thoughts, my dreams. I am no one special though, people have been through such harder things than that. My story is cake compared to others life stories. But how different my life could be right now. How greatful I am it turned out the way it did. I live everyday with the consequences of my decisions.
To the bottom are some pictures of me mt boarding since the accident. Amazing that I can do this stuff!!!
The time has come to head to the US OPEN, show everyone that i was not conquered by this injury. I am at no means 100% but this will be a mile mark in my life. But I am still on the road...where this road leads me I do not know, but all I know is I am moving foward and not backwards.
So If you have nothing to do this weekend, you can come watch the US OPEN in aspen/snowmass colorado.
Thank you everyone, everyone who has supported me. Everyone who has supported me since my accident. It means the world to me. Sorry this was some emotions I needed to get out. This blog was therapeutic for me.