I can’t tell you how excited I am today. Like, I feel like a kid on Christmas morning to be honest. Do you want to know why?
I get to escape the hospital today!!
That’s right – they’ve deemed me fit to leave, and continue my recovery at home. Can you say hip hip hooray? They just told me that I need to watch things for the next couple of weeks, taking it easy as my body continues to heal from the ordeal. That’s fair – I can do that. But at least, I will have a nice comfy bed and be where I’d prefer to be.
My other piece of excitement – I had convinced my parents that I was okay to not return home with them, but rather back to North Carolina with Jimmie, Chad, Cory, Candiss and the gang. How did I manage that? Let’s just say that I can be very convincing at times.
My mission upon returning home was to go to the shop – it pains me to not be working on those precious racecars. However that didn’t go well as Rick told me that I need to go home and stay home for the whole week, resting, focusing myself. He won’t even allow me to go to Martinsville this weekend. Like, is he crazy? I want to go!
Instead, he and Linda will be “watching the race with me” on Sunday in North Carolina while the boys race. I know what he means by watching the race – babysitting. But whatever, I guess I can handle another week away. At least I’ve busted out of the hospital, right?
I still felt pain everywhere. The spot that they had to insert the tube to drain the contents of my stomach – it hurt and was tender at the slightest touch. My legs were sore from the belt, and that made it a pain to walk long distances. Perhaps there was something to resting for a week. OF course, the worst feeling was my chest. I couldn’t get myself all worked up, or in a laughing fit – huge pain. They told me that was part of the healing from the injections and what they did to me, it sucked. Honestly, if I could get rid of that pain, I’d be feeling pretty much perfect. But – at least it was getting better with each day that went by.
“So what chassis are you taking this weekend?” I ask as I enjoy dinner that night with Chad and Jimmie. Just cause I wasn’t allowed to be at the shop and do work didn’t mean that I couldn’t think about the racecars.
“The same car that we took there earlier this year, and to Richmond and Bristol,” Chad informs me, as I think it over. I wished I had the stats handy to fully discover why he wanted to take that car. However, it seemed to fit. It had been our short track car all year so why change that now?
“Got everything worked out for our driver so he can do what he does best?” Chad smiles and shakes his head yes. It was no secret that Jimmie was good at Martinsville – see the amount of clocks that he has won over the years. That gave me faith that we’d get a win this weekend, especially after how disappointing Talladega was.
“Buddy – you know how this team works. I do the magic set-ups, you and Cody keep things in line and Jimmie drives the hell out of the cars.” I laugh, knowing that’s a fact. Though I couldn’t help but sigh at the comment. I missed working with the boys. I also worried about Cody. He had only been on the team for a couple of years now, and without me there, that meant more responsibility on his shoulders while dealing with Chad’s cranky times. Could he handle that?
“So how has Cody been making out, anyway?” I might as well ask, right?
“He’s done a good job so far. He’s handled whatever I’ve asked of him with ease – no hiccups. It’s been a little difficult not having you there as you know some things quicker, but he’s catching the hang quickly.” I couldn’t help but smile. Good boy, Cody. Glad that you’re training is going well. You can join the rest of the graduates of the Knaus Schooling program. They have turned into some of the most successful crew chiefs.
“We didn’t have any issues at Talladega – just made the wrong decision,” Jimmie chimes in as I glance over his way. Just like it was taking him time to realize me being hurt wasn’t his fault, it was taking him time to let go of how those final laps played out. They honestly sucked but that’s Talladega. Sometimes it just doesn’t go your way.
“Didn’t I tell you to not bring that up again?” Candiss questions and I couldn’t help but giggle. If she was going to be around Jimmie for a long time, she needed to learn something here and today.
“He won’t let it go for the majority of this week till he gets back to the track for another week,” I offer and it was the truth. We all are like that as you can’t shake the disappointment or anger when you put your heart and soul on the line. Perhaps that’s why we look for escapes for a period of time, and perhaps that’s why Jimmie stuck to his guns on street racing.
While it turned out to be something that hurt a lot and the result of my injuries, I couldn’t hold it against him. Let’s face it – I did it myself for years, and I understood the reason behind doing it. I understood the escape that it gave. I understood the thrill of being out on that street, shifting the car through it gears and hearing that engine rev beneath you. I understand why going to the local drag strip isn’t the same type of thrill. I understand why it’s going to take time to let go, and why I still toy with it as well.
They call that inner battles, inner demons – you get the idea. Perhaps Jimmie and I can convene up another hobby that passes as much time, but gives us the escape necessary, and don’t suggest golf. We tried that once and got bored quickly, with Jimmie ending up on the cart. You know what happened there, right?