Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Sledding Gone Wrong

I spent the long New Years weekend at Green Lake with Karen’s family, including her sister Kate, and her sister Martha, along with Martha’s husband, Brian, and their three young daughters—Megan (8), Emma (5), and Allie (3). Otherwise known as my second family. With an abundance of fresh snow, we enjoyed a fine array of winter activities, such as snowshoeing and sledding. Rosy cheeks were merrily sported all weekend long.

On Saturday afternoon, the entire crew headed to our favorite sledding hill, which sits atop the seventh hole of Lawsonia golf course, just a few blocks from the Mittelstadt family lake house. After several enjoyable runs, Karen and I decided to take a final run together, before heading back to camp for hot chocolate and naps. As true adventurers, we wanted to end things with a bang, and so we ventured onto a run we hand’t yet tried, one with a sizable jump built near the end. Unfortunately, we didn’t head the warnings of little Emma, who had just suffered a crash on the same run.

We took off with a big push from Brian, and gained more and more speed as we cruised over the packed snow. Just as we hit maximum velocity, we also hit the large bump, which immediately catapulted us both off the tube and flying into mid-air, ending with a harsh thump back to reality. Karen laughed uncontrollably as she picked herself up off the ground and dusted snow off her face and clothing. I, however, was not so fortunate. I remained laying on the ground, withering in pain. Something in my back was just not right.

Finally, I was able to get up, but the rest of the vacation I was tormented by a very sharp pain in my lower back. Any form of movement left me withering in pain, and I spent much time overdosing on Aleve and huddled up against a heating pad. Ironically, just after having registered for the Boston Marathon, training has already come to an abrupt standstill. It is way too painful to move, let alone run. Things are feeling a little better today, but movement still proves difficult. I'm bummed, but remain hopeful for a speedy recovery. Please be careful out there. Those seemingly little bumps can be lethal!

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