RECIPE | PITAYA TROPICAL SMOOTHIE (VEGAN)
It's been awhile since I last posted a recipe here and I have good reason for that. I badly injured my knee while gravel cycling. Last Friday, my husband surprised me with a new e-bike as a gift. It was so sweet of him to do this and he did it so that we could build upon a common passion together. He was really stoked about giving it to me. Out of excitement, we decided to take it out for a spin and ride to a nearby lake about an hour away. In order to get there, it took many neighbourhood streets and a long gravel path. We've ridden down this path before when I was test riding another bike. As we left the house and crossed the busy street, I had a strange feeling that I should be extra cautious not to wreck my brand new Rosie (yes, I named my bike okay...she's a rose gold colour so it was the first name I thought of) . Quickly I erased that odd thought from my mind and carried on.
We made it past the neighbourhood into the gravel path. It was such a gorgeous day, the perfect weather - not too hot, just warm enough to wear a tank top and cycling shorts. We rode down the path and I felt so happy to be able to experience summer in the best way possible. My husband was far up ahead and I wanted to catch up to him so I turned up the speed a couple levels up. Suddenly the path took a slight turn down. Thinking I could take the slope at the speed I was going at, my front wheel hit a groove. It sporadically turned left and it was too late to grab the breaks. I fell forward and my knee took all the impact. The weight of my bike in addition the speed dragged my knee down and the gravel broke through the flesh of skin and tore it apart while losing some on the path. There sat a 2-inch crater in my knee. I was in shock of what happened. Feelings of anger, regret, disappointment, sadness and shock flew through my heart. I wish I was more careful. Why didn't I break? Why did I go so fast?
My husband came rushing over reassuring me it’s going to be okay but when I saw the look on his face I knew this wasn't just your average skinned knee. It was deep wound and traumatizing to even look at. We were in the middle of nowhere with no one to help. I was bleeding uncontrollably and I had to keep my hand pressured on the wound to prevent further bleeding. We had to quickly find help so I carefully rode my bike down further to get off the path. Thankfully we found a soccer game going on. My husband rushed to the soccer team to ask for first aid materials. They were gracious enough to give us some. We tried to clean out the wound with water, sanitary wipes and wrapped my knee in gauze.
The next challenge was getting home as I couldn't cycle, let alone move. So for speed, my husband rode my e-bike back home and I waited alone in the park as people walked by giving me looks that said I don't know if she's hurt, should I help her? One gentleman was kind enough to ask if I was okay or needed any help. But it was probably the most alone I've ever felt. I only had my work phone with me, not my personal. So I had no memory of phone numbers except for my parents but I didn't want to worry them. So I messaged my siblings and closest friends through Instagram but the notifications didn't go through. I ended up calling my parents as they would want to know. Reliably they picked up and I just broke down in tears explaining what happened.
Finally my husband arrives with the car, we load up his bike in the trunk and rush to the emergency. The hospital was fantastic. I was in and out of emergency within an hour. Four stitches later and a bandaged up knee, I was home again. That night I couldn't sleep at all. Images of my wound kept reappearing in my mind. I literally had to shake the images out of my head. I kept worrying how is my knee going to look? Is it going to look deformed? Will there be a permanent crater in my knee?
Prior to this accident, I was really stuck in a go-go-go mindset. There were days when I'd walk home with my work phone in one hand and my personal phone in the other. Swapping between the phones to answer work emails or social media comments while trying to walk to the subway station. Or I would be half listening to someone speak and my mind was elsewhere thinking of what I needed to accomplish next. It was no way to be. I was rushing through every passing moment and I’d ask myself, “Why is time passing by so fast?” Well that’s because you aren’t focusing in the current moment, Christie. These were precious moments with my husband, Bear, my friends or family. I look back at these moments and I truly regret not savouring them more. I wish could re-live them without distraction.
I hate to say it but it was almost necessary for a serious injury to slow me down and appreciate what was happening in my life. I've been on bed rest for the past 6 days and I have been enjoying every single moment even though I’m working from home. I’ve been re-watching old episodes of The Office to keep my spirits up and man, that show has the ability to make me laugh so hard my stitches want to burst. This has made me appreciate the ability to stand, walk, bend my knee so much more even though I'm currently limited in doing so things. It also taught me to take my time and focus on the present task. Today I was able to stand without too much throbbing pain so I managed to quickly blend up this smoothie, slice up some Vitamin C rich fruit (for collagen production and scar prevention) and shoot a couple pictures of it. Come on, I can't be bedridden the whole day - I'm sorry but I'd go nuts! Recipe is listed below.
So if you were anything like old Christie, I hope this post speaks to you. Take the time to slow down. Stop to breathe and recognize that time only goes by quickly if you allow it to. Appreciate and savour each special moment while you’re in it and not in hindsight. After all, this life is short enough so why rush through it?
PITAYA TROPICAL SMOOTHIE RECIPE
(VEGAN, DAIRY FREE)
SERVES 2 | PREP TIME 5 MINS | TOTAL TIME 7 MINS
- 1 whole pitaya or dragon fruit
- 2 frozen bananas, sliced
- 1/2 orange, peeled
- 1/4 cup frozen peaches and pineapples
- 1 tbsp flax seeds
- 1 tbsp hemp hearts
- 1/4 cup rolled oats
- 1 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk
Required: high powered blender
Blend all ingredients until smooth. Top off with your favourite toppings, like orange, raspberries or pitaya.