Minnesota Mishap…

I left Ryan’s place on a beautiful sunshiny Wednesday around 10:30AM. We had a blast Ryan and I but as always it was time for me to move on. I was bound for my first Sturgis bike rally and gave myself nearly two weeks to get there. I was meeting my friend Connie and her family in St. Pierre to do some site-seeing and general tom-foolery. When I plotted my route I decided to take the river on the Minnesota side because it seemed there were many more place to access and see the river rather than from the Wisconsin side. A couple hours into my trip I stopped at a grocery store to get something for lunch. I sat outside the grocery to eat in the shade and although I had on sunscreen I could already see the pink showing up on my sun-kissed skin.

Now I had this rattle on the ride that was driving me nuts and I couldn’t figure it out. But when I was putting on more sunscreen I dropped the top and it rolled under the bike near the front tire. As I bent to pick it up, I put my hand on the Harley highway peg and guess what? The rattling stopped. As it turned out the Harley emblem inlay was loose and it was metal vibrating on metal. This is why it only happened sometimes because I have my feet up sometimes. Go figure. I sent this quick video to Ryan because we had pondered and wondered what the heck it was since it had just come back from the shop in fine shape. We got a little chuckle via text and then I was off again.

I fueled up and continued my journey on Route 8 west. Only a few miles down the road did I hit the signs for Route 95 south. I was so excited when I crossed the river; I had entered yet a new state on The BROAD journey. I was excited to see this piece of God’s country once again. (My first husband is from Minnesota so I have been there before but only seen certain parts and wasn’t really a tourist; add to that it was a blizzard when I was there.)

I took 95 south and within a short distance I saw the sign shaped like the state that says, “Minnesota Welcomes You”. I stopped to take a picture but of course, I had forgotten to delete my older photos and my camera was too full – no picture. So I simply put on Facebook, “Hello Minnesota”. Now typically I would have sat there and dilly-dallied with my camera to delete some pictures and make room and perhaps even have a cigarette. However, there really wasn’t a proper place to pull off. It was only about a 3 foot width of gravel on the roadside and I felt as if this was no place to dilly-dally, so I quickly moved on. I now wish I had dilly-dallied just a little longer.

The speed limit on 95 south where I was is 55 mph and typically I don’t push too much over the limit due to my load, my safety, and of course to take care of My Girl. I’m in no real hurry and don’t want to miss any sites. Just about 2 miles from the welcome sign headed south, I saw that which would change my life forever.

It was only one lane each direction and ahead of me a semi-truck was in the on-coming traffic. The curve ahead was no different than a million others I have taken and my lane was clear for as far as I could tell. As I headed into the curve and approached the semi-truck closer, that’s when I saw it… a car coming at me in my lane. He was trying to pass the semi-truck. The young man driving and I make eye contact and we knew instantly that this was not going to be good. It almost seemed as if we both had the same idea: you stay in the lane and I’ll head for the ditch… I remember keeping my eyes on that young man and we were screaming, “NO, NO, NO, NO…”

As we both headed towards the side of the road / ditch area, the car struck me hard on the left side. I remember the sound of the crash; metal on metal and the screech of tires on the pavement. Suddenly the entire of my surrounds were tossed in circles and spirals and it all ran together. Only it wasn’t my surroundings; it was me flying through the air. It happened so fast that I didn’t see how the bike moved or how my body moved, but it only took a few seconds and then I was on the ground, leaning against my luggage in a partially sitting position with both knees bent and head upright. If not for the incident you might say that it appeared I was simply relaxing leaning against a tree, or a boyfriend, or even sitting on the living room floor leaning against the couch. But no such luck; I was damaged and I was in shock.

It took me a few moments to realize what had just happened and as I looked down at my legs I saw my femur bone jutting out of my left leg and staring me in the face. My left leg was split open from the goody bits all the way to the knee and the meat and muscle inside my leg was now exposed and baking in the heat of this beautiful sunshiny day. I didn’t see any blood spewing but then again with everything exposed, the blood was just flowing through the meat. I couldn’t see my leg from the knee to the ankle and I later learned that the reason for that is because it was mostly gone. I could see my ankle and my Harley boot where my skin was perfectly torn around the top edge of my boot. The boot was covered in blood and unfortunately I could feel the whole thing. I screamed, “Somebody help me! Please somebody come to me. Please help me.”

In the distance I heard a woman’s voice say that she had called 911 and just that quickly the young man that hit me came to my side. He was in a freaked out panic mode and kept repeating, “Oh my God, Oh my God, I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry. I was just trying to pass the truck.” I had to make the young man calm down because I needed his help. I asked the kid his name and he replied, “Anthony”.

“Anthony, shut up and listen to me. I need you to go find my phone; it was on my handlebars in a holder.” He took off and returned with the phone in his hand. I told him to go to my favorites on my contact and dial Larry. He did this and spoke to Larry for a moment telling him who he was and that his friend Ursula was just in an accident. He then put the phone on speaker and laid the phone on my chest. I told Larry that if I lived I was sure I was going to lose my leg and that I needed him to call my son; I told him how much I love him and told him to tell me son I love him too. There’s no way I could have called my son in that condition; he would have freaked out completely and I didn’t have the time for calming him down. Anthony held my hand while I was on the phone and after the call had ended I sent Anthony to find my water bottle. He called out from the distance that it was empty; I can only assume the lid had come off because I had just refilled it not 10-15 miles ago when I got gas. Still calling from the distance Anthony said he had water in his car and he’d be right back. I screamed, “Hurry Anthony, hurry, I need you.” The kid returned and gave me small sips of water and poured some of it on my chest because I was burning up in the sunshine. “Anthony, reach in my riding purse on my hip and light me me a cigarette.” He did as I told him, he lit the cigarette and held it to my mouth. I took a few puffs and then I was done. I grabbed the kid’s hand and just wanted somebody to hold me while I died.

In no way did this boy physically remind me of my son, but he was my son’s age and I just pretended that it was Nathan holding my hand. I thought of my son and my granddaughter and how I would never see them again. All the things that rushed through my mind were events in their lives that I would miss. Behind me I heard the voices of men asking questions of others as to what happened. Anthony tried to get up but I told him, “No, don’t leave me yet.” He stayed right there until the first responders descending the ditch and came to my side, they kicked Anthony away and were quickly taking action to apply pressure and a tourniquet. They introduced themselves as they arrived but don’t ask me their names now. They asked me questions such as my name, birth date, where was I coming from and all sorts of other things. In part they needed my information and in part they were trying to keep me conscience. A county cop appeared at my right side and asked if that was my purse as he reached for the bag on my hip. I acknowledged and he pulled out my identification. I wanted to fall asleep but the first responders wouldn’t let me. One of them told me not to look at the leg; look at his face. I told him I was looking at the cows. (These cows were in the pasture not 15 feet from the ditch in which I lay.)

A long eternity seemed to have passed, and then in the distance I heard sirens. Sirens are good and I wasn’t dead yet. I don’t think I really freaked out until I heard one of the first responders giving his assessment to the paramedics. Apparently I was in extreme critical condition and bleeding through the femur and tibia. One of them said we need an airlift immediately. Airlift; that’s not a good sign. I pretty much figured I wasn’t going to ever see my son again so I tried to replay some of the fun times we had together. I wanted to see my son’s face before I died. I wanted to tell him I love him. I wanted to tell him to make the most of his life and to live his dreams as I had tried to do. Even if I died right there, I was at peace knowing I had raised a beautiful young man that would struggle and battle but would be strong like his mother. I replayed a few of the sites I had seen on my tour of the country and I repeated what was once a joke; “If I die out there, at least I’ll die happy.” And you know what?  I was dying happy; regret for all that I would miss, but happy for all that I had once had and done.

While my brain replayed memories and while I accepted my death the paramedics were working on me and made me pay attention to them. The memories faded and now they were giving me instructions. They were going to do this and do that and a helicopter was on the way. I was forced to stay awake, and within what seemed like a matter of seconds they had me in a neck brace, on a hard board with straps to hold me down, and were lifting me up and out of the ditch. I screamed in pain as they put me on a gurney and inserted me into the rear of an ambulance. I could hear it coming; the helicopter was approaching. I kept repeating that I wanted them to put me out so I could not feel the pain. I wanted to go to sleep; I wanted not to feel the pain any longer. I don’t know what they did to me in the ambulance, but I wasn’t there long.

I was whisked out of the ambulance and onto a helicopter. I couldn’t help but think about how weird the guy looked with that pure black helmet on his head; I couldn’t see his eyes and he looked like a character from an action movie. They got me positioned in the helicopter and when the door had closed I couldn’t find a comfortable place for my right arm. It wasn’t bleeding, I didn’t see any abrasions, but it hurt very badly and I could only move it certain ways. I wanted it upwards towards the sky. I reached up and held onto the window that I couldn’t see out of. I was continued to yell that I wanted to be put to sleep. The guy in the funny helmet leaned in to hear me over the loud bird. He told me they had no medicine on the plane and that my blood pressure was too low to do anything yet. He assured me that as soon as we landed at the hospital they would do something immediately for the pain. He was my tour guide; telling me every so often, “8 minutes, 5 minutes, 2 minutes, we are about to land and there could be bumps, just breath, we’re almost there and the doctors will take care of you.” No sooner had he said it, I felt the bumps and they weren’t that bad, and didn’t cause any more pain than I already had. I have no idea what they did to me when we landed, but that’s all I remember… we landed and the rest went blank. As I was told, I died just a few minutes after landing.

The right side; not all that bad but the bag is gone.

The right side; not all that bad but the bag is gone.

The left side took all the hit.

The left side took all the hit.

Crash bar bent all the way back to motor; my leg was in there.

Crash bar bent all the way back to motor; my leg was in there.

My Larry (middle) collection my bike.

My Larry (middle) collecting my bike.

My son watch them load the bike onto Larry's truck.

My son watches them load the bike onto Larry’s truck.

GoFundMe by Larry Maas

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93 Responses to Minnesota Mishap…

  1. Yvette says:

    Oh my goodness…..oh my goodness!!!! When I told Kiara, she replied, “Our Ursula?” Yes, our Ursula. I’m so happy you are still with us. And like so many have said, you are the bravest woman I know. So full of life and energy. As one writer said, you are still here for a reason. And knowing you like I do, this is not going to stop you. Greater things are ahead for you. You are strong, you are beautiful, you are loved!!!! The God of mercy, the God of grace be forever with you. Love Kiara and Yvette

    • The BROAD says:

      My dear sweet girls… I’ve known you what like 10-12 years I guess. Kiara was a toddler at the first scrapbook meeting you came to. I let her use my scrap paper and stamps to keep her happy. Now she’s a young lady kicking butt at volleyball. I’ve always enjoyed your calm, thoughtful approach to things (though you can get riled up in a most polite way – hehehehe). I’m blessed to have you in my life and blessed to have life so you can be in it. I love you both!! Your Ursula Always!!

  2. Terry Rheuark says:

    Good afternoon Miss Ursula , I hope today found you stronger and even more determined than yesterday. I say a prayer for you, and I look forward to seeing you progress and am anxiously awaiting the day you walk again. Yes, what an incredible day that will be. Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise I hope to someday give you a high five in person. Cheers from Memphis!!!! Hugs, Terry

    • The BROAD says:

      Yep Terry – Most days I do feel a bit stronger or at least a little less pain. Both are a win either way. Some days I don’t want to feel anything and I break, but that is only once in a while (well, I should say I had a two day stretch of it since I left the hospital), I think those are pretty good odds all things considered. Memphis isn’t really all THAT far… if you find yourself cruising south for any reason, give me a shout. I’m just about 45 minutes SE of Atlanta. High Five Waitin’, Ursula

  3. Jim Cowan says:

    Hello Ursula, I haven’t seen any post the last couple of days. I hope and pray you are doing okay. My concern is the fact I haven’t received anything and not sure if it is due to just not getting here, or you not doing well enough to write. I have been thinking about your situation every day since I found out about it, and praying for you as well. Just a very short note about my bike accident… happened in ’82 while stopped at a light on 65th street in Little Rock. Both cars that struck me from behind, one hit me, and the other struck the one that hit me. I was very lucky as all I got out of the deal was a very bruised left thigh and sore back and neck. No broken bones or lacerations. I was in the right tire track in my lane, but couldn’t get out of the way in time. That stuff happens so fast you don’t really have time to react as you think you should be able to. You have people in all walks of life reading your story and I, for one, will truly miss reading your progress reports. Any news, if nothing more than to say you are still breathing, will suffice. God still has plans for you girl… so don’t let the devil take a tole on your mind. I have no idea what you are going through right now Ursula, but please stay positive. And write something to let us know how you are doing… please. May I place you name on our Church Prayer list?
    Wishing you God’s Grace and Mercy…
    Jim

    • The BROAD says:

      WOW Jim, I am overwhelmed by your concern. I am still breathing and doing rather well all things considered. It takes me a while to write a story because it simply takes a while; plus I am back to working for my clients, going to the doctors, napping, doing paperwork related to the crash and yes, actually enjoying a little bit of peace time with my Dad in the mornings. Indeed, I would to be added to the prayer list. I am far from finished with this battle so prayers are still much needed. I kind of figure since you are missing me that you do not follow my on Facebook. I post little things there somewhat frequently so if you aren’t on FB I understand but you can certainly check on me via email if you wish: hd_broad@yahoo.com

      I have actually finished the 2nd installment of the hospital portion of the journey. It is written and in draft form, but now I need to collect the photos that I will include; that too takes some time.

      I cannot thank you enough for following my journey and sticking with me during this new leg of the journey (haha – that pun was totally intended).

      I look forward to hearing from your more.

      Hugs, U

      • Jim Cowan says:

        Greetings Ursula,

        Maybe I shouldn’t have made it sound as if there would not be another post from you. I didn’t mean to sound that negative… I am usually more positive, but I am concerned and do want to see you back out there again when you can.

        You have a fantastic sense of humor with all that has happened to you… please don’t lose that, it can be helpful as I know you are well aware. I will add your name and short story to our prayer list… our preacher is a true gift from God.

        I will give you a little more time before expecting news when I think you should provide same. Just don’t get so worn out you aren’t writing “up to snuff”. I do enjoy reading your story, and would very much like to, some day, meet you in person. As many as have said that it would probably take two or three lifetimes for you to get it accomplished.

        As concerns the “pun” comment… I hope the new one looks as good as the original.

        You have “sweet dreams”, not the scarey ones, you hear?

        Goodnight…

        Jim

      • The BROAD says:

        No worries Jim… You should be my personal trainer, maybe you’d move me along a little quicker (hehehehe). I appreciate the prayer list and who knows, perhaps our paths will cross someday. If you ever find my writing isn’t Up To Snuff, you let me know. Sometimes I do get rather tired and I push myself too hard a lot. For some things that’s great, for others that could wait, maybe not so good. That’s just me. I’m glad to have you out their rooting for me and please do pass along my story. I love to hear inspiration and encouragement from others; it really helps!!!

        Good Morning and Make it a Successful Day!
        Ursula

  4. Laurie Westberg-Martin says:

    My dear friend, you have certainly been through the proverbial “ringer”. I know, having seen accidents such as this, that God was shining his light upon you during all of this. It is of my faith, that God has very special plans for you, my friend. As devastating as this was, and knowing what you are going through right now, that in the future, enduring this will become your calling. There is no one one that will survive the aftermath of this and continue to make the world a better place for it. As I have said so many times, you and I may not have more than a bit over a year under our belts in this friendship, however I feel as if we have been friends for a lifetime and I NEVER plan on leaving your side. Almost as marriage vows, I am your friend during good times and bad, richer or poorer and in sickness as well as health. I am here for you always as you, as my friend, have made an indelible mark on me (and my family) as YOU are family. May God take away your pain and guide you through this part of your journey. You are forever in our thoughts and prayers and I hope to see you very soon with Tracy! Sending you HUGE hugs! And remember, no matter what time, or where, I am but a phone call away! Love you always!

    Laurie

    • The BROAD says:

      Laurie my dear sister from another mister; I can’t say much else other than thank you and I love you. I DO!!! Now I have two wives, is that legal??

      I really look forward to your visit with Tracy. It would be great to see some faces from back home and to catch up. And of course, to just relax and be silly together.

      Big Hugs, U

  5. bellsride says:

    Hello,
    I am new to following you and what a humdinger. So very beautifully written, I was hanging onto every word. By the momeant you were speaking of your son, it was as if I was there in your shoes, as if it were me wanting to see my son. Your incredible strength is inspiring to say the least and you are are truely tallented writer. I look forward to your future stories and updates on your recovery.
    My thoughts and prayers are with you, stay strong,,
    Bell

    • The BROAD says:

      Beautiful Bell,

      Thanks for joining The BROAD journey. You should read back a while and see all the cool and fun things I did while trying to be homeless and build a business while touring on my Harley. You may find a lot of smiles in those stories. I thank you for your kind words and support. The next installment will be out tomorrow so not too long before another post comes your way.

      Peace, U

  6. Carla says:

    Ursula,
    Your story is full of passion and love of life despite the horror of the accident. You are the bravest woman I have not yet met. Looking forward to meeting you some day.
    Continued prayers for your recovery.
    Carla

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Carla. I’m not so sure I’d call myself brave but rather determined to watch my son and granddaughter continue to grow. Bravery is for those that save lives like my first responders and the folks that put their lives on the line for us and our country, etc so on. I am just a girl with a passion and I thank you for following along and sharing that passion with me. Perhaps someday the road will lead us to meet. Until then, I send my hugs and thank you for your encouragement. Peace, U

  7. U-turn says:

    I read your incredible story from 2 points of view: 1) as a fellow lady rider who may someday face what you encountered and 2) as a first responder who cared for a lady in an accident who had a near amputation and had to be taken via helicopter. So much has come to mind thanks to your writing that made me feel like I was watching it right in front of me. I only hope that if my time comes in this manner, I can handle it well as you. I will now definitely strive to make every moment of my life count so that whenever my time comes however it arrives, I can also look back and be happy as you were able to look back.
    It was also so intriguing to practically be in your mind thru your writing during the time of your rescue by first responders. For all the training we go thru, we never really get to understand the patient’s experience. Often our time with the patient is quite fleeting and then don’t get to hear any outcome afterwards. As a responder, I can only try to do the right thing and try to comfort them while they are in my care. I hope they remember that in that way afterwards, as you seem to from your writing.
    It’s so amazing the interactions you’ve described with Anthony. I don’t think I can comprehend not hating someone who would cause so much pain, damage and destruction – even unintentionally. As you’ve said, you’re both changed and damaged-it’s just unfathomable to me how you are able to look past that to see the positives in life and persevere on. I like to think of myself as a forgiving person, but I struggle with this one. You are very inspiring for living this message. It makes me hopeful that if I ever face a situation where my life is altered due to something on this scale that I can look to your example in order to find peace once again
    I wish you continued strength and healing in your journey. Maybe we will meet one day somewhere on the road
    Peace and love,
    U-turn

    • The BROAD says:

      Hey U – thank you so much for continuing to follow along on my journey. My first responders made me stay awake and while they said their names I would never have remembered them when I woke up; however 3 of them have reached me via Facebook. Not only have I given them my love and gratitude but those that love me have reached out to them as well with notes of thanks. In the hospital I told several caregivers that I was thankful they chose the profession they did and that they were there to care for me, because there’s no way I could what they do for a living. As for young Anthony, I have held hatred in my heart in my younger years and I found that it really ate me away; not the other person. I suppose if he had been intoxicated or on drugs, perhaps it would have been harder to forgive; not sure – glad he wasn’t. Even if he had been, I would have probably wanted to help him recover just by my nature. Go figure.

      And I am glad that you were able to have a few take-aways from my story and the manner in which I wrote it. I do have a few regrets in life, but overall the good far outweigh those lessons learned. Today I am here because for some reason I was saved. Not sure the reason, but I will certainly continue to live life to the fullest I possibly can. Hopefully part of that living will bring me back to the northwoods for some fishing and riding. In which case, you better be ready.

      May you forever remember that to the world you are one person, to one person you are the world. Cherish your life, love deeply, and forgive those for whom we don’t know their story.

      Big Huge Hugs, U

  8. 13 Holmes says:

    Heart wrenching Ursula! You survived and your incredible strength and love for life and family continues to shine!! Obviously there are many more souls with which you were meant to touch & inspire. Keep on keepin’ on, beautiful! Respect and smiles to you today and always!

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Holmes. I love people from all walks of life. They all have something to teach us be it good, bad, or indifferent; each person has a story that makes them unique. I appreciate you following along on this detour in the journey. Peace, U

  9. Kim says:

    Ursula,
    Our Facebook acquaintance has been about both of us inspiring each other as women, mutual riders, freedom seekers and peace givers. Scotty introduced us because he thought we could encourage one another. I sold my bike a few days before your accident because I realized I needed to follow some new dreams and persue some other goals. It was a scary prospect since I had bought my bike off the show room floor in 1988 and was so attached to it. Your accident completely removed any doubts and reminded me that life can change in a second and how important it is to live every moment. I think we are kindred spirits and I am blessed to have someone so strong to follow. I will be settling down in Colorado by September and would love to find a long weekend to come share with you. Our strength together is stronger than our strength alone. Lean on me anytime. Love Kim

    • The BROAD says:

      Your words are very powerful Kim. I would love to have you visit. My folks have a room for you and my Ma will force you to eat. New dreams are often a product of misaligned old dreams. Come on down my spirit sister. Peace and hugs, U

  10. Wendy Strong says:

    Thanks for sharing your story with us Ursula. When I saw the Facebook post I started crying. I don’t know you but I think you’re amazing. I don’t think I would ever be able to do what you’ve done.

    I hope when you recover that you’ll be able to continue your journey. Don’t ever stop being you!

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you for following along Wendy. There are days that I don’t want to do it anymore, but what choice so I have. I can’t turn it off and my heart keeps beating… So I make the best of it most days a s cry a few days. Followers like you help me get through by encouraging and communicating. Hugs, U

  11. Toby says:

    Ursula…wow! I read the blog post yesterday and cannot put you out of my mind today. Even with everything that has happened, you’ve continued to write and share your story…even when you had every right to focus only on yourself and your healing. You are a very unique individual, and while we’ve never met, I’m confident life has many blessings yet in store for you. Your journey will have it’s challenges, but from what I’ve read you’ve already faced many challenges in your life. We all have the choice to deal with what life throws at us, or to give up. You don’t strike me as the “giving up” type. I feel lucky to have stumbled across your site and blog a few months back. I will be quietly cheering you on in the months ahead as you heal emotionally and physically, and one day hope I will meet you face-to-face and tell you in person what an inspiration you are.

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Toby. My writing and sharing is sort of selfish actually… I get great followers like you and they encourage me and lift me up. I couldn’t do it without family, friends, and amazing followers. Many hugs for your support. Ursula.

  12. casper says:

    Hey you don’t know me, someone posted this on facebook and i had to read it. I am on my 3rd tour and having seen guys, my friends, in that shape I can only wish you the best of luck on the road to recovery. I am not good with inspirational words or quick witty remarks but i can say this,as a soldier and a person you have my up most respect for the best attitude and not giving up spirit I, my self, have ever seen. As a father of 4 kids, I know the feeling of wanting to see them one more time when the world dims and you ask “Is it my time?” so cherish each moment till the last and if you ever need anything I am a trained mechanic and I also paint and great with carpentry, let me know I am stationed in Fort Stewart GA and will be stateside soon don’t be shy just ask I will do.

  13. Cheryl Robish says:

    WOW!!!!!!! I know, no more tears…..but WOW!!!!!!! What a powerful post !!!! I believe that Nathan was truly your ANGEL that was there with you that day, not physically but in spirit from hundreds of miles away …although I know the outcome of your accident, hearing you speak of the love for your son and grand daughter filled me with such great emotion, I couldn’t help but cry…..Happy tears, now that I think of it. You did raise a GREAT boy, who is polite and helpful and full of life just like his mother.
    You will see him grow to be the wonderful young man that you raised and see your grand daughter grow up as well and that….. is MOST AWESOME!!!!!
    While I know you have much physical healing and a tremendous amount of mental healing I know you will get thru all of this and all the while inspiring so many others along the way.
    See, I told you 2yrs ago that you were an inspiration…..and you said “wow, nobody ever told me I inspired them before”….now look what you’ve gone and done 🙂
    Love you chickie, and I’m glad ur here to tell your story with such powerful words and emotions.
    Stay strong and God Bless
    Xoxo ~ Tank

    • The BROAD says:

      All I can say Cheryl is that you helped me be an inspiration from the moment you said it 2 years ago. Hard to accept that obligation sometimes, but if I can help others through my survival of challenges then perhaps I have a purpose.

      And yes, my Nathan has been my angel for over 22 years. Plus I think my baby brother and my uncle were up there saying, we love ya but aren’t ready for you. Perhaps they were still painting my room in Harley colors. Hehehe.

      I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!!

  14. Connie says:

    I’m so sorry you were in such a horrendous accident. My thoughts an prayers are with you. You’re an incredibly strong woman and I admire you for that. Your positive outlook is certainly an inspiration to anyone who has a struggle in their life. I wish you nothing but the best.

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words Connie. I am grateful to have folks like you following along on my journey. I hope you stay tuned because it isn’t over yet. Peace, U

  15. Staci says:

    Even though I heard this story once before from your lips to my ears, People like you inspire me to be a better person. I only hope that my friends or people that know me look at me with at least half of the admiration I have for you. Rough times are ahead I am sure, but you are not alone. Prayers and hugs

    • Staci says:

      Half of the first sentence is missing…
      Even though I heard this story once before from your lips to my ears, it still made me tear up. People like you inspire me to be a better person. I only hope that my friends or people that know me look at me with at least half of the admiration I have for you. Rough times are ahead I am sure, but you are not alone. Prayers and hugs

      • The BROAD says:

        You’re awesome Staci. Your long trip to visit me in the hospital for only a few hours says a great deal about your character and the caring you have for others. I will forever cherish my 3-legged pig. He sits upon my dresser so I think of you every day. And I am very glad my girl Cheryl has you near her as a riding buddy. With people like you in my corner there’s no way I can lose. Love ya, Ursula

  16. Kelly Leckbee says:

    Miss Unique,
    You are an incredible woman of strength and courage. Your journey and your words show the amazing heart that you have. God bless you Ursula…and God bless all who were there with you holding your hand …on the phone…and the responders who took such good care of you. This world is a much better place with you in it…and we are all so happy that you made it through. Please keep writing. You have such a gift…many gifts to share. I pray for you every day and cannot wait to see your smiling face again someday. Wherever this journey takes you next…we are all by your side. Much love, Kelly

    • The BROAD says:

      Hey there Kelly! Yes, I hope to see you again as well. From what I’ve learned the roads between IL and GA go both ways – hehehe. If ya come south in the next year I hope you will call on me. I’m sure at some point I’ll be back to IL but it will be quite some time consider all I have ahead of me. Thanks for being in my corner and thanks for your caring and kind words. Huge Hugs to you beautiful.

  17. John McKiel says:

    Thanks Ursula for sharing, I have been fallowing your ride and journey way way back, BEFORE BACK TO ‘OUR’ FUTURE as to say! You are so strong and may I say so sound in mind:-) . All our prayers are with you. We have never met altho my soul and heart knows you. You are inspiring and I thank you for sharing the STRENGTH THAT YOU HAVE GIVEN me and others, We Thank You! I I I I also was taken out in a bad bike wreck but here in the west cost of Canada last September of 2012 returning back to Calgary Alberta (home) after a great 5 week ride by myself on a great journey on my Harley in BC Canada but I have no memory of the accident and some of my journey, I do remember some of the last 4 month out of 5 months that i was in the hospital. I am still receiving therapy.. They did save my right leg and just last week the doc was telling me they were at the time just before they went into my leg to try and save it that they where discussing to (in my words) cut it off, they did save the leg and ‘yes’ I was lucky. I am still taking rehab. I will never be able to ride a motorcycle again! I will someday find my new journey, soon I hope! I sure do miss my harley as you do, she was also my baby and I thank her for the Journeys she gave into my life as you do also with your girl.. I have been puting you’re posting on my face book (John Mckiel) if you are up to it and have the time, take a look at my face book, Im also on your friends list Ursula and the BROAD…. Thank You So Much for sharing you’re your strength that you have given me, “Yes You’re helping me”, Thank You! And yes I will stay tuned to the BROAD …. Miles Of Smiles with Hugz and Prayers To Ya Ursula, My soul loves ya girl

    • The BROAD says:

      Wow John. Such a wonderful note. Thank you first for following along for such a long time. I’m glad they were able to save your leg. I was given the option of trying to save mine but it would have been tons more surgeries, I would have a floppy foot, and due to so much nerve damage I was subject to infections if I were cut and didn’t notice it right away. The doctors say I took the easy way out but be damned; it doesn’t seem easy to me. Hahahaha. I can’t imagine being in the hospital 5 months. God love ya for beating that. I’d have gone crazy. They didn’t want to release me only one week after the amputation (they’ve never released anybody sooner than 3 weeks after), but I was determined to get the hell out of there. I am so glad you made it. My social worker says that its not usually good for most patients when they remember the whole accident. It makes for nightmares, flash backs, and general depression. So far I really only try to recall the accident when I’m telling somebody about it. The only part that really haunts me and pops into my mind often is the very beginning when the car was coming at me and we were both yelling NO over and over. I suppose perhaps you may be lucky not to remember. But to be out as long as you were and in the joint as long as you were; I can only imagine your crash and injuries were way worse than mine. I will check out your FB soon. I have little time to stalk people anymore because I’m always checking messages and replying, on top of paperwork for the crash, attempting to do client work, napping, and well… Every move I make takes much longer than it uses to so my day drags out. I am thankful to have you following me and I wonder about your injuries when you say you will never ride again. Are you that damages or is the fear to great? At this time I cannot say one way or the other if I will ride again. Physically at some point I will be able. We shall see if mentally I get to that point. Perhaps you’ll be with me long enough to find out that answer. And if my story has helped (as others have also said), then perhaps it was my purpose or destiny. I don’t much like having only one leg, but we do not choose our destiny. God be with you as you continue your journey and I’ll hopefully here more from you soon. Hugs, Ursula

      • Terry Rheuark says:

        Things really will get easier. It will take time and I’m sure there will many days when it seems a sense if normalcy is so far away. After my accident all I could think of was how much I hurt. It seemed like it would never end. But, it did. I have many scars as a reminder that life really is so very fragile. You never know what is waiting just around the bend. I gained a new appreciation of life and thank My God for it. We may not always understand the why if it but we don’t have to. We are pretty resilient and can adapt. Another gift he so generously awarded us. Do, I’m just over here cheering you on. You’re doing great, cheers from Memphis 🙂

      • The BROAD says:

        Thank you so much Terry and yes life is very fragile. We can’t always know what’s around the bend but when it’s Toyota coming right at you, you suddenly can have your life changed in an instant. I am getting along fairly well so far all things considered. Yes, there are good days and bad days in both pain and emotion; but I still wake up every morning with a chance to keep fighting. For that I am blessed.

        Thank you for sticking with me through this portion of the journey and I hope you’ll stay with me until I am I walking again. What an exciting day that will be!!

        Hugs, U

  18. Kathie says:

    Hi Ursula! I have thought of you often over the past few days. Read the initial story on FB; I had a crash in April that totaled my bike but I was lucky enough to survive with no injuries (I had full gear on). This past week one of the women from one of my female riding clubs died on the way to Stugis (freak accident — she was a passenger on her boyfriends bike and he crashed into the back of a parked squad car on the expressway — the trooper was out of the car and re-directing traffic to an off-ramp.) I was sorry to hear your story but impressed with your spirit and attitude. Prayers and best wishes headed your way! XOXO Kathie

    • The BROAD says:

      I am very sorry to hear about your friend Kathie. What a terrible tragedy. I lost a GF last year and she was only doing 35 mph, but even at that speed when you hit a tree just right the internal damage can be deadly. I wonder after tour accident; will you or do you still ride? I have to thank you for your kind words and for following along.

  19. Pam Pappas Lawrence says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. You sound like an amazing woman and someone that I would be friends with had we ever met. I am happy to read of your positive attitude and peaceful spirit. I have always told my two amazing daughters not to hate anyone as it takes up too much space in your heart. We can’t change the past but we can hope for a better future. Keep livin’ the dream. Peace.

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you so much Pam. What you’re reaching your daughters is right on. I’ve tried to instill the same in my son. Thank you so much for following along and thank you for your kind words.

  20. Lynn says:

    For once or maybe twice in my life I am ALMOST speechless. I can hear your voice telling your story. I am crying but smiling. Your courage and love of family and life is just amazing. you may say Blessing I still say miracle. Love you so much and hope to see you again soon. Stay strong my friend. God Bless and keep you strong and pain free. xoxoxo

    • The BROAD says:

      My dear Lynn,
      The love and friendship of people like you and Nick are what get me through this challenge. I couldn’t do it without all of you out there rooting me on. I am pretty sure you know just how much y’all mean to me and I know what I mean to you as well. Now THAT is a blessing as well. Thank you for visiting me; it made the first week in my new home a little more casual and your practical presents were all so thoughtful and the not so practical, yet soft and cuddly Harley puppy named “Journey” sits on my night table so I think you both every evening before closing my eyes and every morning when God allows them to open again.
      My True Friendship and Love Always, Ursula

      • Lynn says:

        Stop making my eyes leak, I have enough crows feet. love you:) Wore your spider head band with love and pride Sat. and it DIDN’T blow off. We love and respect you and will continue to root you on. BFF did I just type BFF? hahaha xoxoxox

      • The BROAD says:

        You should get those leaky eyes fixed – hehehe. Glad the headband worked for you. It stayed on me but the elastic bothered me. I got it at the Angel City Rally in GA this spring. BFF…. Oh how gay….. But oh how true. Love ya woman!!!

  21. Ann says:

    Thank you for continuing to share your Journey. What an inspiration you have become. One day at a time. Take care Lady. God Speed.

  22. Tony curtis says:

    Wow is the only thing I can say. You are one tough cookie. I would love to meet you one day, such an inspiration to a lot of people out there. I hope one day you can realize your dreams. God speed on your long journey.

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you very much Tony and perhaps one day we shall meet. This is a very small world ya know? And let me just clarify this; I did realize my dream. It may not have gone as planned or as long as I had hoped, but I committed to it and I did it. That is a lot more than most folks can say about their dreams. And who knows, perhaps the dream will continue one day when I have the strength, the courage, and the other leg to see me on my way – one never knows about these things. I hope you will continue to follow as the rest of the story unfolds.

  23. bob tellefsen says:

    :> great to have you here my Dear!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. Sandy Sherman-Williams says:

    As a long standing member of the biker community, I’ve seen plenty of friends go through accidents (and unfortunately, too many fatalities). What I have NEVER seen is someone with your level of optimism and forgiveness! There is NO doubt that your journey is far from over! Godspeed on ALL your future journey’s – two wheeled or not! 🙂

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Sandy. I lived with a lot of hate and resentment when I was younger and it ate me alive. As I grew older and wiser I realized you only hurt yourself when you harbor hatred. The kid may have made a poor judgement call but from what I’m told he wasn’t under the influence of anything, so it could’ve been anyone of folks in that car and on that bike. This day, it was he and I. Only the two of us have to live with it FOREVER. How we each choose to do that will be our own crosses to carry. I thank you for your kind words and encouragement. I hope you’ll keep following.

  25. Bonny Varela-Cosentino says:

    We haven’t met yet, but I have no doubt that we will. I have followed you for about a year now and cried along with everyone else when I heard the terrible news of your crash. I cried again today, reliving your pain with you. I wanted to be there with you in the hospital and on your journey to the folks house. You strength and determination are amazing and I can only imagine how hard this road has now become. One of these days, I will show up on your doorstep…and consider myself lucky to call you my friend!

    • The BROAD says:

      Wow Bonny, so cool you’ve followed me so long. Just a warning: if you show up on my doorstep my Ma will force you to eat something … Hehehehe. Yes, this part of the journey was unexpected and will be the roughest road yet. I have no choice but to overcome the battle. Failure is not an option!! Sending my hugs and thanks for all your support. Peace, U

  26. Tina Doyle-Byd says:

    Good God lady. You are one tough cookie! You are amazing and an inspiration to many of us. It just blows my mind how far you have come since the dreadful day. Still sending prayers for more recovery and getting better. Love you my friend

    • The BROAD says:

      Hey Tina. I guess I didn’t make it around to see you yet. I never set out to be anybody’s inspiration but I’ve heard that hundreds of times since I left IL in February to start the journey. I am just being me and if somehow that helps others then God bless us all. Thanks for keeping up with me and I still hope to see you somewhere along the way. Hugs, U

  27. Dana says:

    I don’t know you personally, only thru your blog and Facebook, and a couple short comments here and there but when I heard of your accident I wanted to rush to your side as if you were my closest friend. Tears flowed as I voiced a prayer for you to my Father above. I continue to pray for you on this new journey you faced with and I know you are strong enough to get thru this. I saw your video from your hospital room and. am in awe of your determination.
    Stay strong Ms Ursala and I hope to see you in the wind

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you so much Dana for your kind words and for continuing to follow the story. I can appreciate that you wanted to rush to my side; that is ever so caring of you. I did have several visitors that were ‘strangers’ (at least they were when they walked in; they were not when they walked out). Keep up the prayers because I’m a long way from done fighting. Hugs, U

  28. Debbi says:

    Omg Ursula, I am sobbing reading your story. I can’t imagine what you went thru. The thoughts of your son and your life flashing before your eyes. You held it together in a way I don’t know many could. I think I would have been blinded by terror. You are such a special person. So strong…no not strong, ferocious. I am so thankful you are still with us, and I have no doubt you will rise from this horrific accident. Thank you for sharing your stories with all of us. You are a true angel of strength….

    • The BROAD says:

      Dry your eyes Debbi; what’s done is done. And it is true for me what they say about your life flashing before your eyes, but it’s not how I thought it would be. It was pieces, it was memories, and it was regret for all that I thought I’d miss. Looks like I won’t be missing it now thank the Lord. Thank you for following along; stay tuned for more.

  29. Jim Cowan says:

    Ursula, so sorry to hear of your bike “mishap”, and praying that your healing is complete. Lacking common sense while driving does not excuse the young man of this “mishap”. All drivers should know you shouldn’t be passing in a construction area. And we should also know that God will be the final judge. I look forward to reading your posts “from the road” for a long time yet. God bless you and keep you as pain-free as possible. Will miss you until you return.
    Jim

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you so much Jim. The young man has battled this in his mind and heart quite considerably since the accident. He even came to visit me in the hospital but I was not conscience to see or speak to him. I’m quite certain we have all misjudged or miscalculated or simply done something dumb while operating a motor vehicle. That could have been any automobile, any person driving, any motorcyclist and again any driver; but this time it was me and Anthony and we two have to live with what has happened. We shall both be damaged for it and we shall both learn from it. Stay tuned for the rest of the story coming soon. Thank you so much for following along. Peace, U

      • Carol Wille says:

        Amen, “There but for the Grace of God, go I”…. Your words have great wisdom.
        I too have been blessed by your journey and will continue to keep you in prayer!

      • The BROAD says:

        Thank you Carol. I appreciate you following along and I hope to hear more from you as I recover. I will need all the strength and encouragement I can gather as this will not be an easy road to travel.

  30. Don’t ever stop writing. You’re great!!!

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Skip. I love to write; I wish it was more about the journey and not about this accident. Writing is therapy for me and I write all sorts of things which you do not see here (poetry, short stories, blogs for businesses, etc). I’m glad to have you along and thanks for following me.

  31. John. Bolton says:

    DAMM that is really something. Hard to believe thru all that you came out alive , and even tho I know that you don’t know me I am soo glad that you did!
    I always wanted to meet up with you guys cause I followed you and everywhere you went you made sure that fun came along . I never got a chance to because mostly I spend my weekends with my 12 year old son, cause I know as he approaches teenage years my chances to spend time with him will lessen
    All I can say is thank God that someone up there was looking out for you…
    And I realize that some of your injuries will no doubt change your life~ but thank god that u are alive
    The world needs more people like you in it

    • The BROAD says:

      What a shame you didn’t get a chance to catch up to me; would’ve been nice to meet another follower in person. And yes, I am lucky to have come through it alive. Having a 12 year old will be rather challenging (been there – survived that). Thank you so much for following along and hope you’ll stay tuned for the next piece of the story.

  32. I’m nearly speechless Ursula. As if your strength, courage and positive outlook on life to embark on your journey were not enough to aspire to, I am in awe that you find it within you to bring them along to this next chapter in your life. Thank you for insipiring us and thank you for continuing to share.
    Mark Boberick
    Fairbanks, AK

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Mary. I cannot stop sharing just because of a set back. The journey is all about the good and the bad. I wish it wasn’t this bad but hey… I’m still here to tell the story and that’s really all that counts. Thank you for following along and there is more to come soon.

  33. Carole Nowicki says:

    This is a heart felt story, you are one brave lady; Cheryl is lucky to have you for a friend. Prayers will continue to be with you

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank you Carole. It is I whom is lucky to Cheryl. She is such a beautiful spirit and I feel like I’ve known her forever though it has only been about 5 years or so. We both share a kindness towards our fellow humans and a desire to see the good and not the bad. We have many things in common that draw us together as friends and enough differences to still learn from each other. I appreciate the prayers because the battle is far from over. Hugs, U

  34. Art says:

    I can hear your voice as I read the details. What hit me the most is your love for Nathan and your Granddaughter and how that overcame the moment(s). How you knew to turn to your love…..Larry. And most importantly, that you listened to your Paramedics and remained “awake” with them.
    Thank you for allowing me to “hear” the details of that day.
    I love you Sister and long to see you.
    Art Aldaco

    • The BROAD says:

      I miss you so much Art. I got my hug at the wedding but not enough time to catch up with you. You have been an amazing source of support since the moment I met you. I love your drive and determination. If you can hear my voice so well, how about his… “BITE ME.” Do you miss that??? HaHaHaHa – The crew that saved my life was really unbelievable and I have received 3 messages from 1 first responder and 2 from the wives of first responders. As part of keeping me awake, I had to tell them who I was and why I was out there on a motorcycle all alone – so they learned of my story. I miss you my brother and can’t wait to hug you again. Always, Ursula

  35. Terry Rheuark says:

    I understand the pain you went through to some degree. I was in a serious car accident years ago, in a small car and hit a tree doing about 75 mph. Motor broke through the firewall and mangled my right leg. I was blessed because I didn’t lose it. It was the most excruciating pain I have ever endured, I had a lot if damage but God brought me through it. As bad as it is, it can always be worse. You are strong! You have a huge network of support and you are inspiring so many along the way. You survived for a reason and many are blessed that you did. I find strength from reading if yours. God Bless you sister 🙂

    • The BROAD says:

      So you have some idea what it’s like; scary shiznit to say the least. Guess we are both lucky to be here today. I’m so glad you got to keep your leg. So many little things are simply a chore now with only one leg. Things you never thought could be difficult… I thank you for sharing your story and also for following along. More to follow soon! Peace, U

      • Terry Rheuark says:

        Yes ma’am, woke up in ICU didn’t have a clue what happened, but I fooled em all! Bounced back live and in living color:-) I think you are rockin it. You are beautiful inside and it shines through:-) looking forward to watching your progress, thank you Miss Ursula

      • The BROAD says:

        Very happy for you; apparently you rocked it too. I’m gonna give it my best shot. Glad to have you along for the ride and thanks for the encouragement.

  36. Kelly Nichols says:

    Thank God you are alive.

    • The BROAD says:

      Thank God indeed. I just wanted to see my son again… His face was constant in my mind! More to follow; I hope you’ll keep following along. Peace, U

      • Carol Latronica says:

        Your story is very impactful Ursula, I feel like I know what it would be like to be waiting to die. It takes some of the fear away, especially fear we may have for a loved one that passed perhaps in war or other. You were the bravest woman I knew before the accident, just selling it all and hitting the road, living your dream. A move all of us fathom but dont have the courage to do. But now, after all this, I don’t know what to say! You are an icon, role model and the ultimate example of courage. I want to grow up and be like Ursula

      • The BROAD says:

        Oh dear God Carol, please don’t grow up. Growing up is boring! Hehehehe. But seriously I do thank you for your kind words, your encouragement, and the thought that perhaps my story could help others. Wishing you Peace, Ursula

      • ronsteen says:

        A very good read U, This is probably the best therapy that you can have, Stay strong and keep movin on sister. looking forward to the next one….

      • The BROAD says:

        Thanks Ron. It helps “get it out” of me and keeps me busy. I love writing.

    • ronsteen says:

      JUST REMEMBER Ursula, Do not keep the stuff in, live it and address it so it will not consume you, this is advice from a soldier that is being medically retired from the Army after 2 tours and has severe PTSD among other issues. If you feel it , let it out and then let it go, This is my advice to you my friend. MUCH LOVE FROM NJ

      • The BROAD says:

        Great advice Ron. I try to do that when it really hits me. Sometimes it’s not easy to be positive and inspirational. Wishing you the best on your struggles as well. We shall survive… Right!!

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