” Well, 10 years later, I’m proud to say that I have reached the Summit of Cole’s Mount Everest, and the view is so beautiful! “
by Cole Schlesner
Today is the 10th anniversary of my injury. Holy moly, ten years? That sounds like a really long time ago, but to me, it feels like it was just yesterday.
To my Mom and Dad, it probably feels the same way. I couldn’t have made it to where I am today without their help and support in the past decade. (Whatttt! A DECADE? It does feel like forever ago!)
Cole Schlesner wrote about his injury in a guest column in July of 2015…
“On Sunday, May 17, 2009, the game of baseball almost took my life. I was pitching for my Cincinnati STIX 14u baseball team, something I loved to do more than anything else in my life. Right after I released a pitch, a hard line-drive rocketed directly back at me and the ball struck me directly in the head. I was originally conscious and coherent, but within minutes my condition dramatically changed for the worse.”
Mom and Dad, thank you for everything you have done to help me on my road to recovery. I love you both more than you will ever know, and I know that I do, in fact, have the greatest parents in the entire world. Mom, thank you for playing and dancing to your 80’s rap music in my hospital room, it provided me with a lot of laughter and it also made me feel like I was at home. Thank you both for sneaking Chipotle burritos and other of my favorite foods into my hospital room. Hospital food was great (I highly recommend the French toast), but I got sick of it pretty fast!
I remember when I woke up from my coma, I asked my Dad, “Dad, do you think I will ever be normal again?” He said, “Cole, yes. Not only can you be normal again, but you can also become an even better person than you were before”. At the time, I didn’t understand what he meant, but ten years later, I completely get it. After that, he took a work folder and drew a mountain and labeled it “Cole’s Mount Everest”. We made ‘basecamps’ on the mountain, and each basecamp was a step in my recovery. For example, getting out of the hospital was basecamp #1, each of my surgeries had basecamps, and achieving a full recovery would mean that I got to the top or the ‘summit’ of Cole’s Mount Everest. Dad said that when I got to the top, I would be able to look out over everything I have been through and smile, knowing that I had overcome an incredibly hard obstacle in my life.
Well, 10 years later, I’m proud to say that I have reached the Summit of Cole’s Mount Everest, and the view is so beautiful!