A constant reminder
09 Oct, 2009
It only took one split second, one knuckle of a jump and one knee with all my weight on it when I heard the pop and felt my knee give out upon landing. It was early season 2003, just a couple days into the season and my season had just ended. Within a couple weeks, I had ACL/Meniscus surgery. Looking back on it six years later that split second changed so much for me.
That year was a blur, I couldn’t wait for it to be over as I went through surgery and then physical therapy to get myself back to normal. While it was a bummer I lost the season, the next season was the hardest because I lost some passion I had for snowboarding and it took some time to fully fall in love again. Recovery wasn’t a quick process and the majority of the work was mentally overcoming the fear.
Before surgery I used to hit jumps all the time, I grew up riding Snoqualmie and found that I could clear spines if I charged from the top of the run. I had no fear and loved it. But things changed after surgery, I never went back to jumping and even now though I know my knee is strong I have no interest in hitting jumps. I’ve endured good falls since then and I enjoy riding halfpipe and doing small airs but it’s been a fighting battle with myself to go back off a jump and risk something that I didn’t find worth it the first time around.
First day back on snow – Timberline
I recently went back to the knee surgeon because it was possible that the screw was coming out and needed x-ray’s to make sure. The screw is in perfect positioning and both my ACL’s were looking in great shape for this season. Now with just making sure I keep the muscle strong around my knee, I’m looking forward to another year of overcoming the mental fun that my new ACL had given me. Someday I might not think twice about drops, jumps, but that day hasn’t come yet.
That split second changed a lot for me and it set in stone the events that would lead me to Colorado. I have a screw in my knee that reminds me every day that the happiest place is being on snow and someday I might get over the mental part that came with it.