Heeeyho Readers! Coming by with not so great news.
The day was pristine on March 17. I spent the day doing God knows what. I recall the celebration for finishing another chapter in my book, which inspired me to go exercising. It also comes to mind a leg pain I was having from cycling. Hah. Leg pain? Only if I knew.
In anyway. I had adjusted the cleats on the cycling shoes, so I decided to give it a go—lightly—, to warm up before weight lifting. I called mom at around 0500 PM.
“I’m out cycling. Do you wanna come?” I said over the phone. She said the next morning would be better suited; I dressed, and off I went.
The cycling lane was crowded with anything but bicycles: walkers, joggers, couples holding hands, kids scampering. I’m not the type to shout at people, but patience has a limit, and mine was about to blow up. I reached the end of the bicycle lane on Atlântica Avenue and sipped some water. I realize just now: “If I’d spent five more seconds.”
Some say it's destiny.
I hopped on the bike and headed to the next section of my warm-up. The wind was pushing me this time. I didn’t want to risk running someone over, so I jumped to the street. Twenty kilometers an hour. Twenty-five. Thirty? It might have been. I saw a car half a block away; he seemed ready to cross the avenue. Time slowed down. “Is he going to cross?” I thought. He moved a little more. “Yup. He’s gonna cross.” I pulled on the brakes and turned right to avoid a T-bone collision. Everything went slowmo. This flashback comes to mind from time to time.
I hit the front bumper on the right side. I saw the hood, and remember sliding over it. I remember taking the hands off the handlebar to roll over the hood, but my feet were clipped into the pedals; I don’t know what happened down there. I flew over the hood to the other side and heard my helmed scratching the ground over my right eyebrow. Shhhhhk. I don’t know where the bicycle was. I rolled on the ground once, to then lay on my back. I felt nothing apart from a sharp pain on my left leg; I could not move the leg. People gathered around me, driver included.
“I’m fine”, I said. “My leg hurts, but that’s all.”
“Don’t move,” someone said.
“Come on. Sit on the sidewalk,” said the driver. I sat. I told him numerous times I was fine, to not worry. "I'm fine, I'm fine. I can't lift my leg. It hurts"
"There's no blood," someone noted, "you look ok. Just do not move."
"I won't move. Goddamnit, my leg hurts."
Ambulance came and carried me to the emergency. I could hear the bone moving, but I was more afraid of getting the Coronavirus than messing up my leg—the biggest fear I’ve had during the first days. The amount of adrenaline wouldn't let me faint and helped with the pain. In the end I felt no pain at all.
The result? A broken tibia and the news of an upcoming surgery two days later.
Even though the surgery is ordinary in terms of traumas, I felt terrified as a little shit. I was scared of Coronavirus. I cried. I reevaluated my concepts of faith. Mom and Dad were amazing to help me going to a Corona-free hospital; Doc also thought it was the best decision. I again cried going to the surgery room. I was sweating.
“Are you ok?” asked the anesthetist.
“No,” I said, “No, no, and no. I can’t stand the noises during the surgery. Noises make me overthink the surgery and that terrifies me.”
“No worries,” she calmed me down, “you are going to sleep the whole time.”
The situation feels laughable looking back to three weeks ago. Funny, isn’t it? How I can go halfway around the world and still be frightened of hospitals.
Life is improving fast after learning the wonders of meditation. I’ve learned to be more faithful, grateful, and courageous when dealing with health issues. It’s a small-step (literally) process for the next months. Patience and perceverance.
My most gratitude goes to the first responders (doctors and nurses) of the public health care, who treated me with love. Mom and Dad for being absolute legends and making sure to provide me with the best doctor and hospital we could find—Covid-19 forced me to go private. To all the nurses, nutritionists, and everyone who treated me at the hospital. To my doctor, who's been putting up with my messages. To God, who guided me when I felt most deteriorated mentally. To all the readers.
Bicycle advantures are on hold for a while folks.
Note: I'm feeling great. They've inserted a steel rod inside my bone, which allows me to recover without a cast, and also speeds up the recovery phase by a lot. I'm hopping to start stepping on the ground again in a month. In 3-6 months I'm able to cycle again. I guess I'll have plenty of time to write Hive posts, hah!
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~Love ya all,
Disclaimer: *The author of this post is a convict broke backpacker, who has travelled more than 10.000 km hitchhiking and more than 5.000 km cycling. Following him may cause severe problems of wanderlust and inquietud.