This isn't how I imagined my first blog post to go. I thought I would be sitting on a beach somewhere in Bali, feeling excited about my next adventure. I was scheduled to be there at the end of March. I'd be listening to the waves, my toes in the hot sand, shielding my fair skin from the blazing sun with a raggedy beach umbrella, and sipping on some beautifully colored frozen concoction. But alas, I'm listening to a different set of waves off in the distance, from the comfort of my home. I know, life is tough.
One of my dearest friends sent me this quote a few days after my accident: "God will wreck your plans when He sees that your plans are about to wreck you." I have to believe that everything happens for a reason, and, for now, I'm still trying to understand what that reason is. I would have been okay with a less aggressive divine intervention, but here we are, so let's make the best of it.
In early January, a couple of my best friends and I decided that we needed a weekend in the snow together. I was already planning to visit Adam, whom I was dating at the time and happened to live in Tahoe, so it made perfect sense for us to all meet there. My friend Suriya was coming from the Bay Area, and our other friend Ariel, was flying up from LA to meet with her and drive to Tahoe. On Saturday morning, I text the girls bright and early at 7:00 am and asked if they had any good drugs on them. I had been fighting a cold for almost two weeks, and was feeling the absolute worst! Of course, this is the day we are supposed to be playing in the fresh pow. I was doing my best to rally, but Suriya, being the caring nurse that she is, made the call that I needed to go to urgent care for some heavy hitters and that we would move our lift tickets and rental reservations to the following day. I couldn't argue, I felt awful. So, I sat at Syd's (which has amazing coffee btw) next door to the rental shop and waited for them to arrive. Ariel took care of making all the changes, while Suriya drove the sexy Subaru down from her parents' house in Reno. I was so relieved to see them when they finally walked in the door. I was needing friends and TLC by this point, and was looking forward to a nice heavy round of antibiotics to kill the germs. Off to urgent care we go.
After seeing the doctor, and getting prescribed three different things to shake this cold, we headed back to Adam's to relax for the day. I felt so bad that my friends had to give up their fresh powder day to take me to urgent care, but at the same time was incredibly thankful that they did. It was so beautiful outside, that I mustered up the energy I had left and went outside with them to build a snowman. Tahoe had received something like 120" of snow in three weeks, so there was PLENTY to play with. We went to the end of Adam's driveway to start building our Olaf. We wanted him at the end of the driveway so that he could welcome people home and wave to passersby. I had to admit, he was a pretty damn good looking Olaf complete with a silver, glittery smile. (Yes, I did pack glitter for the sole purpose of building a snowman and making him sparkle!) It turned out to be a really great day, with really great people. We spent the night in playing games, imbibed in perfectly crafted hot toddies, and enjoyed a delicious dinner that Adam made for us.
Finally, it's ski day!! The girls stayed at Adam's on Saturday night so we were able to wake up bright and early and start our trek to Squaw. I wasn't 100%, but was feeling exceptionally better than I was the day before. It was going to be a good day. We hit a little bit of traffic coming into Squaw, just before you turn off to head to Alpine Meadows. We had a quick discussion about potential crowds, and made a last minute decision to go to Alpine, hoping for a less busy day on the slopes. It was all the way the right choice. It wasn't very crowded, parking was easy, energy was great, and it was a sunny, beautiful, bluebird day. Everything was perfect. We put all of our gear on in the parking lot, while getting our dance on, and were so excited to get on the mountain. After we grabbed our lift tickets, we stopped in the lodge to make final adjustments, grabbed some coffee and water, put our earbuds in and turned our playlists on. Off we went!
Now, I still consider myself a beginner skier, but this was my second time out this season already. I had gone a few times last season, and consider myself to be a pretty good athlete, quick learner, strong and agile person. We headed up on the lift, starting with Alpine Bowl, a blue run, and it was a GORGEOUS ride up. We got off the lift, the girls strapped into their boards, I skied over to the top of the bowl, and off we went. Suriya dropped in first, followed by Ariel and then myself. "Wooooooo!!! It's so beautiful!", I thought, as the warm sun and crisp air hit my face. I was traversing down the mountain and on my third turn, I started to slide ever so slightly, then a little more, and then I was falling. I thought to myself, "Ok, no big deal, I'm perpendicular to the slope, put your left hand down and lay into it. I'll land and then start over." Nope. Somehow, in the most uneventful fall of my life, I end up facing the other direction and as I'm flipping over, I feel the back of my right ski catch. I think, "Oh shit. Get your ski up, get your ski up, GET YOUR SKI UP!!". Pop, POP! I am down, and I am down for the count. I knew immediately what had happened. I had only slid about five feet, at most, but knew the damage I had done was not minimal. My right knee blew up instantly, it was fire hot, and I was in extreme pain. I couldn't even move, let alone attempt to stand up.
I was done for the day, the weekend, the year, and on my first run down. I couldn't believe it. So many things raced through my mind in a matter of seconds. I knew that this had drastically changed the trajectory of my year ahead. I had put many plans into motion, but in a split second, those plans came to a screeching halt and I learned a very valuable lesson that day. You can't plan life. Things will always happen that will be out of your control, things that you never imagined. You can't choose what obstacles or misfortunes will be thrown at you, but you can choose how you will react.
As I lay there, waiting for ski patrol to come by, I knew I wouldn't be seeing this view again. It was too beautiful to not capture, so I grabbed my GoPro and snapped a picture. Until next time, Alpine.
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