First and foremost I want to thank everyone for their well wishes, notes, texts, cards and everything else.  It really helps to know that lots of people care about me and my inability to keep my wheels down.  Five days post bike wreck and I’m going a little stir crazy.  My day consists of moving from the bed to the big comfy chair with an ottoman and back again.  The biggest excitement is taking a shower, although its strange to need supervision to make sure I don’t fall over (Shaun is convinced that if he leaves me unattended I’ll do something stupid and hurt myself even more) and going to doctor’s appointments (car rides are excruciatingly painful).  Because of the number and depth of the stitches across my knee my leg needs to remain completely immobilized until July 11th, when the stitches finally (hopefully) come out, so I have another week of not being able to move.  To make matters worse, after my crash I landed in poison ivy so I am now covered with it, including all around the laceration on my knee.  Poison ivy under a knee immobilizer is not fun.  While I have a prescription for prednisone, it isn’t working fast enough for my taste.


While I have lots to complain about (I always have lots to complain about), there has also been some good news this week.  I got the results of my shoulder arthrogram and MRI and I have a partially torn rotator cuff in my right shoulder.  While that isn’t great, its probably the best possible diagnosis.  It looks like I can avoid shoulder surgery, although I will need a few months of shoulder physical therapy (I’ll need physical therapy for my right knee and quad so I’ll be spending lots of time with the physical therapist).  I also have good news on the bike front.  Argon 18 and Sinclair Imports have been AWESOME working with Shaun to fix the bike.  It looks like I’ll need a new fork and headset (the fork pictured above lost several layers of carbon fiber and the headset is now floppy) but the frame seems to be ok.  I love my quick little E-118 so I’m hoping it will be ready to ride once the stitches come out.  Generally speaking the bike seems to be doing better than Shaun who is having a hard time dealing with my crash (the picture below is of him working the finish line at Challenge Atlantic City after my parents picked me up — you can see the tears in his eyes, it makes me sad to see him so upset).  Shaun and I both know that considering how fast I was going and the fact that I vaulted head first over a guard rail my injuries could have been much, much worse.


While I am physically healing (if you want to see what the knee looks like today scroll down for the picture — the entire leg is still very swollen and bruised, the stitches are nasty and then there are the awesome patches of poison ivy all around), I’m not so sure if I’m healing mentally.  When I crashed the first though that went through my head was “can I finish?”  I then looked at my knee and given that I could see fat and bone I figured that wasn’t going to happen.  The second thought that went through my head was “Oh, shit I’m going to miss running camp in August.”  It looks like I should be healed up enough to head to Bend, Oregon in August although I’m not sure how far I’ll be able to run.  Over the past few days I’ve dealt with conflicting thoughts of wanting to get back out and race as soon as possible (I have my eye on the Cranberry Tri Fest in late August, its a flat course that I know well so it would make for a good come back and really want to be able to have a solid race at Ironman Florida) and then dealing with flash backs of the accident itself.  The worst part of staying conscious through the entire episode is that I have a really clear memory of the crash.  I can’t help but think of it every time  I look at my knee and I’m not sure how I’m going to feel getting back on my bike.  The first step will be starting physical therapy on Monday.  From there I just need to take it day by day until I reach the starting line (whatever starting line that may be).



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Kelly Burns Gallagher

mccarter english employment litigator / oiselle team runner / coeur sports triathlete / sonic endurance coach & race director / writer / dartmouth '02 / emorylaw '05


Mary Ann · July 4, 2014 at 11:42 am

Hi Kelly,
Needless to say we have thought of you often the past week…and happy to hear your positive thoughts…and yes, Shaun was on that phone while volunteering the finish. I think he texted the whole state of Conn!!!!! Definitely a multi tasker!!

Continue your speedy recovery!

bmom and bdad

donna furse · July 4, 2014 at 1:32 pm

I hit a tree while driving a snow mobile in Vermont and I still have strong memories of the crash. I flipped over the handle bars and missed the tree with my body by inches and a big stick that was sticking out of the ground. I feel very blessed even now that more didn’t happen. I am so happy that your healing and that your going to be okay but I fully understand the mental as well it was hard. I am so glad you have Shaun for your support. Heal well my friend. Lots of hugs right now. I can chat anytime.

David Raimist · July 4, 2014 at 3:44 pm

Kelly – take it day by day! Little steps as they will turn into big steps over time. Don’t rush it or you will set yourself back. Better to get fully well than to keep regressing. Best wishes and hope to see you out on the rode.

Mer @ ScootaDoot · July 4, 2014 at 6:20 pm

Poison ivy on top of everything else? UCH!

I like what David said – take things day by day. Little by little. We can’t expect to completely recover from such a shock to the system (physically and mentally) in a fast manner. You’ll get there, you’ll find what works for you.

And for the record, my husband would TOTALLY be supervising me in the shower.

pen · July 4, 2014 at 7:30 pm

The flashbacks are the worst, but they slowly go away. I’ll be honest, I am still getting over the fear from my crash in february, but (fortunately?), I lost consciousness and only remember snipets of what happened. Speedy healing, Kelly! You’ll be up and back at it in no time!

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