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This is what happend to me:

This is what happend to me

A pic of me in sub-coma

On Friday 18/08/1972 at 15h30, I was driving on my motorcycle (50cc) to do some groceries. At about 1 km from my parent's home, I came to a crossroads. On the other side, coming from the opposite direction, there was a truck, signalling a left turn. He was waiting for me to cross the road. At that moment a car from the RTT-company (now known as Belgacom (the phone-compagny)) approached the crossroads. Given the fact that the truck and I had right of way, the car should have stopped. In my opinion, the driver of the Belgacom car must have thought that the truck was actually waiting for him. He did not see me coming and bumped into me at full speed. I landed on the hood of the car and smashed the windshield with my right arm. This made it impossible for the driver to see and he lost control of his car. It then hit a tree while I was still on the hood. The shock threw me off the car, into a ditch, where I laid down with my arms and legs spread. The driver did not even care for me. He immediately took the necessary precautions so as to be OK with his insurance.

The truck driver pulled me out of the ditch and gave me "the kiss of life". The police and medics were notified, and they came very quickly. The medics then put me on a stretcher and took me to the nearest hospital. After 3 days in hospital, my condition began to deteriorate and I was transferred to neurosurgery. I was unconscious from the very first moment. For 6 weeks I remained in a deep coma.

After that I was awake and just laid there 2 weeks with open but motionless eyes, until a priest, a friend of my parents, came to visit me. He saw that I was hungry and thirsty, but gave me nothing. He showed me a bottle of water and asked: "What is this?" Very slowly, I answered: "Thirst". Then he showed me an orange and again he asked: "What is this?" As slowly as the first time, I answered: "Hunger". For the second time in my life I then learned to speak. The first night I had regained my ability to speak, I shouted "Bread" all night, because I was that hungry. The last days of my stay in the hospital, I continuously asked to be discharged and sent to home, because I thought I was dreaming. Being handicapped, I wanted to make people realise that it still is possible to achieve a goal, despite of the handicap. This I try to do by cycling.