So soon thanks to the support of my family I will be getting a hand bike, the Freedom Ryder FRH-1.
My legs will be straight out in front of me in slings by the wheels. I will crank it it using the handles provided, which also contain the breaks and gear shifts.
For those of you who don't know I was a huge biker before my accident. This started because of necessity, since I didn't own a car. I had classes to go to, friends to visit, and a job to go to. I also worked at a bird rehab facility that was at the other end of town, which I visited at least twice a week. So I spent countless hours peddling back and forth across Colorado, usually with music blaring in my ears from my mp3 player.
One of the therapeutic tools I've used is an electric stim unit, which provides the electric stimulus that the muscles need to contract. The first time the stim unit was places on my calf and I felt the muscle contract I had a flood of memories come back to me. Suddenly I was back in Fort Collins racing through old town (which has a dismount zone fyi) dodging pedestrians who muttered curses at me. I was back heading toward CSU, trying desperately trying not to be late to class again. I was speeding in the bike lane heading to dinner surrounded by my friends. That first time tears welled up in my eyes.
Well I now have the chance to get a bike that would allow to do that for real again. The handbike would allow me a sense of motion and speed that I haven't had in over a year. It's not only the speed I'm looking forward to but the freedom. It's now possible for me speed along the miles of empty road between here and town. I expect to use this on a daily basis, so much that my parents will say "will you get off that bike and get home already!" I'll get back a piece of who I was. Though I'm not the same person I was before the accident it'll be nice to integrate that piece of who I was back in.