Iím lying in bed and bright rays of light shine through the curtains.

Arrgh - it's time to get up.

Then it hits me - I canít get out of bed yet, as help hasnít arrived. What help, you may well ask.

My nurse.

Pushing the white buzzer I ask to get up. A disembodied metallic voice tells me that they will be there shortly but they have to finish doing breakfast first.

Ah, yes - breakfast. I remember that vividly. Eggs, bacon, cereal - but now its just another sad memory because I have a permanent trachea tube (a tube which is inserted into my neck to help me breathe). I have a liquid meal given to me through another tube (gastrostomy tube) which is inserted into my stomach.

The Nurses come in - two, as a matter of fact and they prepare me for my shower. Talking to me the whole time, sometimes chatting between themselves, asking me how my night was... and I respond with a slight nod, or 1 blink for "yes", 2 blinks for "no".

They ask if I need any pain relief before my shower and I blink "yes" as I know that it is a long and arduous task. I donít really want it as I hate needles but it helps. ďWiggle your toesĒ they say. I canít bloody move them, let alone wiggle them but I try anyway. Frustration burns me like a red hot poker.

They pick me up in a hoist and transfer me on to a shower trolley and it's cold but eventually warms up as Iím whisked off into the shower.

They try and keep my dignity but itís hard when you donít have control over your bladder and bowels. They clean me up and shower me without fuss while still talking to me all the time about whatís going on in the world.

Once showered I am placed in a pad, just like a big nappy before being dressed and placed into my wheel chair, a special one designed for me.

I attend therapies during the day - many different types that are arduous, gruelling and tiresome.

I need to be re-taught how to do everything again.

Speech therapy to talk. Physio for walking and to prevent contractures in the muscles. A multitude of other ones as well.

By the time the day ends, I feel dog tired, have been visited by mum and dad, family and friends and now its the night routine to go to bed. I wonít take you through that or the countless times I have been hoisted in and out of my chair, up and down, cleaned up and pad changed but let's just say I am glad to get my head down on my pillow and let the kindness of sleep take my troubles away.

This isnít the story of one person in particular; this is the story of many riders who have had head and spinal injuries due to accidents.

I know this story and know it only too well.
I was one of those Nurses.
I used to work in a head and spinal injury unit.

These people, if they do rehab can go back to leading some kind of quality life. Many donít however and the reason I tell you this common story is that today I went to a funeral of a fellow rider.

One of the unlucky and unfortunate victims of a road accident.

The trauma, stress and grief that you, your family and friends go through is just not worth that extra few minutes you gain by sitting in a blind spot, doing 5 kmh over the limit, lane splitting moving traffic, drinking or just being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Motorcycling is fun and a way of life and it is meant to be enjoyed, so enjoy it and keep safe at the same time.

Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.

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