Maggie Rusch

Professional Triathlete

We will all fall.

February was a terrible month for the Rev3 team, myself included. While my misfortune has been far less tragic than what some others have gone through, it definitely makes you think.

I remember laying on my back helpless as I heard the EMS sirens coming closer and closer, getting strapped to the backboard by the paramedics while they cinched me in, feeling the ER team take off my cycling shoes, socks and then finally cutting off my jersey, struggling to make a fist with my hand when first asked. Crying not necessarily from the pain but from the emotion of what I was going through. Like Jamie mentions when reliving his skiing accident, there's nothing as traumatizing as the "feeling of being uncomfortably close to being a quadriplegic".

Thankfully I was able to walk away with nothing more than a fractured collarbone and a few bonus souveniers from the accident (plate and seven screws):

But shaking that off and moving onward. Apropros to my current FNL series binge-watching, this message is mostly for me, but also for others on my team who are dealing with struggles of their own and anyone else who might feel like their luck has taken a turn for the worse:

"Give all of us gathered here tonight the strength to remember that life is so very fragile. We are all vulnerable, and we will all, at some point in our lives... fall. We will all fall. We must carry this in our hearts... that what we have is special. That it can be taken from us, and when it is taken from us, we will be tested. We will be tested to our very souls. We will now all be tested. It is these times, it is this pain, that allows us to look inside ourselves."

Recovering? This is the easy part. I know it's going to be hardest when it's two months down the road and I'm just starting to get back running and in the pool. I'm trying hard to remember this, especially down the road as I start my full comeback.

Until then, I leave you with the photo of my doc's handiwork. When looking for an orthopedic surgeon, I was initially referred to Dr. Elenz, who happened to be Lance Armstrong's surgeon when Lance broke his clavicle in 2009. While I don't plan on getting back riding outdoors in 4-weeks like Lance was able to do, I do feel confident about the surgery itself and next steps for recovery, rehab and return to racing.

(I may also be blogging more often since I currently can't drive so working from home and currently am only allowed to go for walks as far as workouts go).

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