A Perfect Storm – The Motorcycle Accident

A “perfect storm” is an expression that describes an event where a rare combination of circumstances will aggravate a situation drastically.
– Wikipedia –

damaged bike HarleyHe remembers getting on his motorcycle on a Friday morning and heading east for a short ride on a quiet country highway. He doesn’t remember the ambulance trip, nor much about the day he spent in Emergency. His next 4 days in Trauma were also a bit of a blur, but that was to be expected with a brain injury. There were lots of other injuries too – the  human body isn’t designed for unexpected flight off a motorcycle.

It was the Perfect Storm. In a split second, everything that could go wrong  that morning – did. And, after that, everything that could go right – did too.

Someday, our family will say, “We wish this had never happened. We hope it never happens again. But – we are a stronger family for it.”  Each member of the family will take a different lesson away from the experience. It has been that life altering.

It has been three weeks since the accident. The stitches are out, the wounds are healing, the bones are knitting.  The brain is probably working the hardest, though. It has no problem retrieving the memories of everything that happened before it got bumped, but holding onto everything that has happened since the accident is like trying to capture a stream of water in your hands.

The Harley Davidson motorcycle waits patiently in the garage. Like the owner, it is scratched and dented, but with the touch of the key it still roars to life. With time, and patience, both will be well again some day.

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56 comments

  1. Margie,
    I have not been in touch with computer much this summer and so did not realize that you had a serious accident in the family. I am so sorry, but happy that it was not worse. What a very tough and exhausting time. I will be praying for a great recovery. My middle son who is now 24 was in a very serious car accident when he was 16. A fence board came thru the windshield and shattered the left side of his face. 16 surgeries and years later he is doing very well. He still can’t remember the day of the accident, but is doing well. I think some of the most difficult things in a case with traumatic injury is having the patience and stamina to keep on keeping on. It sounds like you are blessed with a great support system. Sending hugs your way!

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    • Thanks so much! It is nice to hear such positive endings.
      I think it is just as well that the patient doesn’t remember the accident, don’t you! We haven’t been out to see the accident site, and I don’t know if we want to.

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      • I agree that some memories are better left alone. I was able to get to the site of my son’s accident within minutes of his accident. Those images are still strong with me even 8 years later. I hope your life is starting to include some normalcy.

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        • Margie,
          Thinking about you and sending positive thoughts your way. I hope you see improvemnt with each day. I love how you find the pearls in every situation, and hoping each day adds to the strand for you.

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  2. I’ve been checking on your blog and wondering where you were. I knew I should’ve e-mailed you. It’s not like you to be gone so long, so I thought something had to be wrong.
    I’m so sorry. I’m glad you can see light at the end of the tunnel of tragedy. You, your husband, and your family are in my prayers. Be very tender with yourself. Hugs Barb

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    • Thanks Barb. It is nice to hear that someone is watching out for me in the blogging world! Life certainly gets pared down to the essentials in a situation like this and right now, eating and sleeping are of the most importance for both of us.

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  3. So sorry to hear of the accident, but glad to know the rider survived. It sounds as if you have a strong family that is pulling together through this difficult time. My prayers and thoughts are with you.

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  4. First, wonderful that healing is moving in a good direction. Feel free to tell me to MYOB, but what is the future of motorcycle riding in your family? I realize that we can all be run over crossing the street, but motorcycle riding seems inherently dangerous even for skilled riders because there are so many unskilled drivers. I’m fairly new to this blog, so if this has been asked and answered before—sorry.

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    • It is a very valid question, and one I can’t answer yet for my husband. As for the rest of the family, most of them have ridden their motorcycles again since the accident. But the group ride we had planned for the middle of this month has been cancelled. I guess no one feels like a road trip when one of the group is out of action.
      You are right about the inherent dangers of motorcycles. Aren’t we fortunate to live in a society where we are free to choose which risks we are willing to take!

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  5. You are living through every rider’s (and every rider’s family’s) worst nightmare. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your husband. Have faith and know that he will be well soon and undoubtedly be back riding in no time.

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  6. Hi, Margie. I’m sitting here a bit stunned. Got behind in reading posts, and am late getting to your news. I’m so very sorry. Please do give The Car Guy my best. I shall keep you all in my prayers.

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  7. Oh, I’m so sorry Margie. And I hope he is mending to good as new. Summer is slipping by and I apologize for not commenting sooner. I read it earlier but was dismayed since two of our closest friends had similar experiences, and I still don’t know what to say that isn’t negative about motorcycles. Your post is so beautifully written, it says it all.

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  8. I’ve been out of touch for a few weeks, Margie, and just read this. My heart was in my throat as I read the opening. How frightening! I am so happy for you and your family that it wasn’t worse than it was and that he is healing. I know he has a ways to go, and you all are in my thoughts.

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  9. Hello, My name is Lori and I’ve found you via my friend Dor at Virginia Views. I am so glad to meet you. Don’t get discouraged. It may be a long road to recovery, but never give up hope! Two years ago, my mother was in an auto accident and suffered a traumatic brain injury. After the first week of being in a coma, (she was awake but could not communicate or show any signs of mental clarity other than to moan and thrash about) the Dr. put in a GI tube and told us to prepare for 24 hour care for the rest of her life. She was sent to a long term rehab facility and our lives were the darkest they have ever been. My father and I took turns at her bedside, because they would restrain her if we were not there. It was a struggle, but we had so much love, support and continual prayers from our family and friends, we some how made it day by day. About a week later, as my father and I sat watch at her bedside, she opened her eyes and began to speak! Many happy tears were shed and shouts of rejoicing could be heard coming from her room. Even the Dr.s and nurses were crying! She slowly began to eat and the GI tube was removed. After a few more weeks in rehab she was able to come home! Today she still has some short term memory issues, but she came back to us!

    Nothing is impossible. Stay strong! You will be in my prayers.

    Lori

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  10. I haven’t been by in a long time and am sorry to hear you’ve had this traumatic experience in your family. I almost lost a son in a serious car accident when he was 17. He and 4 others were lifeflighted to trauma centers in the region. All survived. Most thrived. It was a nightmarish blur and one of the most difficult times I remember, as a mother, to keep my feet planted and my head and heart still working. Time helps. Love binds. Experience teaches. And faith sustains. Blessings to you and yours.

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    • Thanks for sharing your story. I understand a mother’s nightmare all too well – we had a daughter with Leukemia. I’m glad to hear your story ended as well as ours did!

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  11. Oh, Margie – I did not know there had been an accident. I was in the hospital myself. I was a Neuro Intensive Care Nurse for a while – I am amazed a the brain’s remarkable capacaties. Your family will come out stronger, no doubt, and as you said, in many different ways Good luck to all of you. I will keep you in my prayers.

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    • I’m glad to hear you are on the road to recovery too.
      Apparently the brain injury is not at the top of the list of concerns for the doctors. Since The Car Guy was discharged from the hospital, we have seen specialists for everything but the brain injury. That appointment is in October.

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    • Thanks for your best wishes. I know you had a lot on your platter this summer too, and I can appreciate how busy you were!
      I’m sure you cringe a bit when you hear about a motorcycle accident.

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    • We’re learning a lot about the effects of a blow to the head and recovery from brain injury. Making memories, and keeping them, is such a valuable gift, but we don’t really appreciate it until it is in jeopardy.

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