Sept 17, 2022 The Recovery
Dave stood in the doorway and greeted his friends. They smiled and shook hands and he embraced them with relief and joy.
“Happy Birthday Dave, nice to see you, and thanks for having us here.” Barrman slipped off his shoes and put down his cooler. Eighteen months ago no one would have thought Dave would be here shaking hands, let alone standing.
It was a testament to the human spirit.
“Glad you could make it,” Dave grinned wide at his friends.
“Sixty plus one spins around the sun eh? Last year we weren’t sure you were going to make sixty.” Barrman looked to his left and saw Katy smiling.
“Ya, Dave so good you are upright and smiling. I got some PTSD after that day at Big White.” Katy said.
“It was quite the crash alright. Nothing like coming back from the dead to appreciate your birthday’s all that much more,” Dave shrugged and looked upward.
“The doctors did a good job, putting you back together,” Barrman smiled at his friend. “They didn’t know if you would walk again. But here you are, tough as nails.”
“It was a day I will never remember yet want to forget. It is kind of surreal thinking back to that moment when the tree hit the skier, or was it the other way around.” Dave shrugged again.
It was becoming obvious to Barrman that Dave didn’t want to think about the day at Big White when he went into the trees at a very high rate of speed. Katy was there too as she waited for her friend to come down to the chairlift. He couldn’t imagine how it must have been for the ski buddies to be tossed into turmoil so suddenly.
It all happened so fast.
Now here they all were a year and a half after The Crash and Dave was almost fully recovered.
“Dave it’s great to see you again! We’re all so happy your recovery is going so well. Look at all the friends here to share your big day.
Food and laughter filled the house on the hill and Dave looked around and smiled. “Ya it’s been awesome having such great support from all my friends. I don’t think I could have done it without them and especially without Deb, she is my rock.”
“Indeed buddy she has been amazing. Well, here’s to whole bunch more birthdays for you man.” Barrman raised his glass and toasted his friend. “To your health.”
Such a simple wish, for a person’s health. But life can be like that, it can change in a flash. Dave was lucky as well as unlucky. When the snowboarder crossed his path he made a choice to miss him and hit the trees instead. What if he’d hit the snowboarder? Would it have been a different result or would he have seriously injured someone else? We will never know, but Dave is the guy that would sacrifice himself to protect another, so really there were no other options.
Now he was walking on his own steam. He was forced into early retirement but at least he had the ability to do that. Life has a way of forcing things on people when they least expect it.
The evening went on and there was laughter and celebration. It was good to gather and enjoy the connection on a fall Friday evening. It was good to see Dave smile…