I took plenty of calcium D3 and multivitamins and did all the exercises I’d learned in physical therapy. Plus I started going to the Y and swimming—well, floating with style the first few times. Several weeks later I advanced myself to a regimen which included the exercise cycle and various weight-bearing machines set at the easiest level. Then I’d go down to the pool. The first time I was wiped out by two laps of the crawl! But what a difference a couple of weeks can make, with the added incentive of the hot tub and sauna afterwards. Ahhhhh! By the time I got myself up to ten laps of varied strokes it was the end of February, time to visit the surgeon for more follow-up x-rays.
“You’re doing as well as you could possibly do,” my doctor told me, encouraged by my progress. The bones had grown enough callus so as to merge with the titanium rod in my femur.
“Well,” I began carefully, pressing the tips of my fingers together, ready to divulge my months-long plan, “I started skiing in 1964, plus I’m a retired ski instructor. Would it be okay if I just… tried the bunny hill at Mt. Ashland?”
He nodded. “All right then. Go ahead and have some fun – and be careful,” he warned.
Monday morning, March 2, we arrived at the mountain. Wayne carried my skis and boots up to the lodge so I could concentrate on maneuvering through the snow with my poles. By the time I finally buckled my heavy ski boots I was ready for a nap! I drank a glass of water, ate a granola bar and revived, reminding myself that the 6,338’ altitude at the base lodge probably had something to do with it.
We went outside and I put on my skis. I checked to make sure I could do the simplest wedge (“snowplow,” to us oldies) in case I got into trouble. It worked, so I hopped on the Sonnet Chair, which services our bunny hill.
The snow was delightfully perfect packed powder – a gift from the gods! I was a little frightened, I admit, so I chose the sweet, soothing Beck song, “Morning” on my iPod. I took three runs and was done. We stopped for pizza on the way home and I went to sleep at 7:00 p.m., with a smile on my face.
Here I go – 5 months, 3 1/2 weeks after my accident! I hope my ski instructor coach from Mt. Shasta doesn't see how close together my feet are in this video. I'll really be in trouble.