Danny’s Adventure… What if…?

January 25th, 2011 by Conor

We are all very comfortable with the idea that Danny is going to get through this. He will get out of this hospital. He will resume a normal life at some point in the future. Down the road he might even begin to remember what happened, although it is likely that he won’t.

The one part of this whole process that I have a hard time getting my head around is imagining that you woke up in absolute physical chaos. Why is there a tube going into my stomach and why won’t I be able to take it out for 4 more weeks. How come my skull looks like a set of railroad ties in the form of staples. Why have I been delt this hand? I would have happily folded this part of life if I had known it was coming.

No one knows why this happened to Danny or any of us for that matter. This might have physically happened to him but it happened to hundreds of people mentally. Everyone that has followed this story has had an understanding of what has happened, while it happened. Danny is the only one that has woken up and had to deal with this nightmare. On a daily basis I ask him how long he thinks he has been here. Guesses are just that. Guesses. Each time I tell him “nope try 22 days!” he looks very very surprised. Each time I know he wonders… What? How is that possible?

I can’t imagine having such a life changing moment that you have no knowledge of. Not a single person in the world will ever know what EXACTLY put Danny into this situation. Try to imagine another situation where that is possible. I sure as heck haven’t been able to figure one out. Sure people know how happy they were when they got engaged or had their first child. They know when their house burned down or when a loved one passed. But what if you had no memory of the worst thing that ever happened to you.


6 Responses to “Danny’s Adventure… What if…?”

  1. David Cole Says:

    Conor, you’re making this process so transparent for so many people. Thanks for all you’re doing and giving to Danny and to all the people around him. I hope you’re able to get back some of the energy and clarity and community you’re creating with this site and what it says, what it shares. Danny’s lucky to have you as his brother. Best to you, to Danny and to all of your family.

  2. Kris Says:

    You guys are amazing….Your right I cant imagine any of this but the way you guys write helps bring Danny’s life as it is right now into perspective….I have five kids, and everyday I count my blessings that they are all ok…..and along with it I pray for people all over the world who have been challenged in life….Something amazing will come out of this….we cant see it right now…but its gods plan…Stay strong you guys! Stay strong Danny!!

  3. Suzie (Hughes) Tawney Says:

    From my experience, there were 7 days that passed between an accident that broke my neck and totally jacked up my left (dominant) shoulder till the time I “woke” up ( I say that because I was awake and communicating but had so many drugs on board that I don’t remember it). The accident was in Montana, but I woke up in Seattle because there were no doc’s at Benefis that would fix my shoulder while trying to not complicate the 2 fractured vertebrae in my neck. When I “woke” it was very crazy and very confusing. Like Danny, my last memory was way before the accident. I swear I just walked out of a restaurant in Missoula. It took a little while to believe I didn’t just have the worst case of food poisoning ever “) To this day, I believe a couple of things. 1: the worst part of my accident is what my parents and family had to go through. I was blissfully unable to remember most of the worst of it. 2: i believe our minds have a way of protecting our soul and if blocking out the heinousness of what happened, makes it easier to “get back on the horse” for lack of a better saying, thats what it will do. Personally, I’m grateful for that, I was worried that the first time I drove a car after that would be terrifying, but I was completely ok with it. Hopefully this may help Danny get back on his snowboard.
    The only thing I wish I had were pictures of the different events from while I was in the hospital, because it’s hard for me to believe all the crappy things I had to go through with out any memory of the events. This is where it sucks for you the family. You are exposed to every terrible little thing. You will never forget the memories you have now, but he may never remember. No-one really knows, but the biggest thing I walked away with(and I can’t believe how lucky I was to walk away with a broken neck) was the tacky saying of always tell people how you feel, you just might not get a second chance. I still feel and act that way. 12 years later, I tell everyone how much I appreciate and love them. I’m so proud of the steps Danny is making, it truly is a mixture of amazing support and probably a little miracle, but I’m equally amazed with how well you guys are coping. This accident happened to all of you. Each person experienced it differently, but experienced it none the less. I wish I could buy you all a round of shots to take the edge off for a moment.

  4. Carol Says:

    Wow, Suzie…thank you for that post. That was awesome…and so true!
    Glad to hear you made it through!

  5. Wadeo Says:

    When I read many of the entries I get chills because I have asked a lot of the same questions having suffered a spinal cord injury. I don’t and will never know what exactly happened in the seconds that would ultimately change my way of life since, I have an idea but no witnesses and I only remember the feel of driving on gravel then I woke in the ICU. My last memory of walking includes talking to Danny in the driveway before I headed “home” which ended up being in a hospital/rehab ctr for 2 months. With that being said, I will never know exactly how he feels but in many ways I can relate. Rehab was a big step forward, as you are now witnessing. It’s when you get some control of the situation as the progress you make is ultimately on you. I remember my first time sitting on the edge of the bed I passed out after 45 seconds… a few weeks before I was able to run almost a 1/4 mile in that time. It is more than humbling to start over relearning things you learned before you could cross the street without holding a hand. Within a month of rehab I was able to get back to “independence”. I busted my ass cause a hospital is not a place I wanted to stay. I know how big the little things are.
    Danny keep your head up, stay strong and I am here for you and your family. We all have good and bad days, think of all the good times had and those yet to come and the bad will pass.

  6. Nate Perley Says:

    Mike… My brother from another mother. Not to side track the thread away from Danny, but YOU, Sir, are someone that I TRULY believe to be one of the strongest people I have had the pleasure to refer to as “family”. If there is an example for Danny to follow, then I say you are IT brotha man. Your resiliency, determined and straight up “I CAN and WILL do this” attitude, combined with the actions to back it up, should be published and given to people in this situation (not to say there aren’t other amazing people; I just don’t know any). Like you say, NOBODY ever expects to go through things like this and the upcoming journey for Danny will probably be the most difficult experience of his life. I just hope he takes some notes out of your playbook. The memories of what happened may be fuzzy for you, but your heart, strength and just downright DOPENESS is as clear as crystal to me. Love you as a brother would. Danny… I have no doubt that you are going to be the same kind of extraordinary example for people that REFUSE to say “I can’t”. Much much love.

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