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The First Dose - Wednesday, Apr. 21, 2021
Thursday, Mar. 18, 2021 @ 7:34 pm
Huge stumps jut from the earth. Bark and sawdust piled up on the ground. A single-track path winds through the cut block. We ride together, alternately passing each other to take the lead.
A ramp built over a fallen log, chicken wire tacked onto the boards for traction.
I size it up. Seems reasonable.
I push into my pedals to gain speed. I begin up the ramp.
And then I realize that I haven’t gained enough momentum. The bike slows.
The bike stops and then begins to fall back onto me, and I know that I am falling from a height onto the ragged forest floor.
I am falling, and there is nothing that I can do to stop it from happening.
The sudden whomp of my body hitting the ground. The bike on top of me. All of my breath ejected from my lungs.
And then suddenly I can inhale, a deep gasp of life, like a newborn fresh from the womb. I look at the sky, some blue, some cloud. I breathe rapidly, pulling life into my body. I don’t move. I lay there waiting for the pain to clarify. Is anything broken?
He catches up to me. I feel his hands on either side of my helmet stabilizing my head.
“What do you feel,” he asks.
“I’m not sure yet. I just need to breathe right now. I think there may be a problem on my right arm.”
I begin to move a little at a time. First my fingers, testing each one. My right thumb, something is not quite right there. I move my right hand in a circle and there is a sharpness and heat in my wrist. My left side is all fine, perfect. The right side, my shoulder, my wrist, my thumb, all seem damaged. A sad, limp wing.
I sit up.
“Nothing is broken,” I say, as I compare my two thumbs to see if the angles are the same.
“Can you ride back?”
“Yeah, I think so, so long as it’s not too technical.”
The mud and the logging roads and the dry wasteland of fresh clear cut.
I am cold, and I stop to put on another layer. The agony of trying to put my arm through my sleeve. I have deep regrets.
We cycle past horses and sheep and the ocean whitecaps in the cold, spring breeze. A sea lion surfaces near to shore.
Gulls flock in a group in the straight, plucking the spawning herring from the sea.
I fell, and he was right there for me.
He never fails to be there for me.