That’d be me.
Ten years ago, I almost lost my life. I had a run-in with a Ford F150, while riding my bike to work. I woke up a week later in the Neuro ICU at Harborview, learning just how fortunate I was. The next few months were really difficult, especially for my family. Never once did I lack for love and support. And the most powerful gift someone can give you is the gift of hope.
I deal with some minor reminders of the accident. I lost vision in my left eye, have nerve damage, which hinder movement on the upper left side of my face. I’ve got some minor pain in my ribs and my scalp’s a bit tender where the scars from my surgeries are. None of these things limits me from doing the things I love.
I carry this gift of hope with me every day. In the past ten years, I’ve gotten to see my daughters grow and shine.
Got to see the elder one open a couple of plays singing a-cappela. Saw her graduate from high school, and head off to university. We’ve traveled to Israel and China together. Last year,she taught me how to lay brick while we built a house together in Sichaun. Last week, we celebrated her 21st together.
My younger daughter’s poem was chosen as the theme for a class dance performance a couple of years ago. She’d not told me ahead of time … just imagine my surprise and wonder at seeing the class perform to her words. We’ve traveled abroad to Israel and Europe, creating memories and stories we’ll share for the rest of our lives.
I’ve gotten to celebrate several milestone birthdays with my parents, as well as their 50th anniversary. My brother and I have spent many weekends together with his husband Patrick at their place near the beach in California.
I’ve run about 84 marathon and ultras since then, getting to visit new places, often with friends. I’d never imagined this were possible for me, but this is what the gift of hope brings you.
Life’s definitely brought its challenges too. Our family has dealt with some hard stuff and some transitions. On balance though, I’m possibly the luckiest man on the planet.
Today, I might fit in a short run in a nearby state park. I’ll enjoy a nice lunch with my parents. Then, it’s off to a concert in a park – where it hopefully won’t rain. But – rain or not, I’ll enjoy each of these moment as best I can, for what they are – gifts.