Editor’s Note: Back in November, we introduced you to Joe Cowan, J&P Cycles Network Administrator. At the time of the blog being published, Joe was in transition from our Iowa headquarters to Daytona Superstore. Unfortunately, shortly after arriving in Florida, Joe was involved in an accident. He shared his story with readers. What follows is an update on how he’s been.
Since my motorcycle accident, back on November 20, 2013, I have come a long way. After wrist and shoulder surgeries, and the cable holding my clavicle slipping a week after surgery, my arm was strapped to my side for almost nine weeks. Now my clavicle looks like a bump on my shoulder, but the doctor says my shoulder is fully functional despite the slip. When asked if I wanted him to go back in and adjust it, I said no thanks. It’s purely cosmetic at this point.
With my shoulder immobilized for an extended period of time, the joints and ligaments were tight and short. My muscles were so weak, I could not hold a glass of water or raise my hand to my face, so I started therapy. I was only able to go therapy four times because I had to pay for two therapist each time I went: one for my wrist and one for the shoulder. The cost was too much to continue. They did give me all the exercises on paper I needed to do, so now I do all the ongoing exercises at home. My wrist is tight sometimes, but is fully functional. My shoulder has recovered, also. Now I can almost lift my arm all the way up over my head.
Some days are better than others when it comes to the pain. I seem to take one step forward and two steps back. It’s difficult because I find myself saying, “It was better yesterday.” I will say, having my wife there with me through the many sleepless weeks (not nights) in ongoing pain has been more than I could have ever asked for. I was mentally weak from the pain and sleeplessness, but she carried me though it all and has been my left hand for a long time. A special thank you goes out to her.
I did finally get the bike all fixed up. There were just a few broken accessories, such as the headlamp, break lever, and throttle twist. I waited until I could fix it myself. When it came time to ride it, I found myself a little weak to pull the manual clutch in. I worked on it for another week until I felt confident enough to go riding. As I went around curves it was strange, I could remember the feeling of going down on the bike. After riding the bike a few more times and still having the feeling I had when crashing, I knew it was time to sell the bike even though the thrill of riding was still there. I’ve ridden other bikes since the crash and not had the same feeling.
I easily found a buyer for my bike. In fact, the guy came to the door and handed me cash without looking close at it and not even hearing it run. I watched as he loaded up the bike onto his truck, latch it down, and drive all the way out of sight before I went back inside. It was a good bike, and now it’s not mine anymore. Needless to say, I was a bit grumpy for the rest of the night.
I do want to get another bike and plan on doing so – maybe a ’93-’98 Dyna Super Glide. When I do get a chance to ride, I always wear full gear. I haven’t changed the way I ride, but I don’t ride on wet days. I can’t do a dead press over my head yet, but who needs to do that to go riding?