Stephanie Regener is a naturally active person, who loves getting out with friends. She is most happy at the beach and fishing with her boyfriend. But after her legs were badly broken in a scooter crash this December, she feared she might never walk again.
The 32-year-old Hamburg native was riding a scooter to Onetangi Beach to meet her boyfriend, Elias Revarola, when she was hit head-on by a car.
Stephanie says she’s back on her feet, thanks to intensive physiotherapy, but there’s still a long road ahead.
“Three months after, I started walking with crutches. Now I walk like a penguin, but I can walk on my own.
“I’m super happy I survived, and relieved I’m able to walk again. But it’s going to be a year out of my life just to get back to where I was before the accident.”
Stephaine says it was frustrating having to sit out the summer in recovery and therapy – and she really misses being able to go her favourite fishing spots with Elias. Fisherman’s Point and Church Bay both take more mobility to reach than she has right now.
“I still can’t bend my knees well, or really kneel down.”
Her doctors told her the bones in her right leg, which were fractured in four places, are still “floating” and could take up to two years to fully knit back together. Although she is expected to regain a full range of motion and be able to walk normally within a year: “At the beginning I’d say it was easier because I could see the progress. Now it’s [subtler changes] and I feel impatient.”
And on top of the physical recovery, Stephanie is still dealing with the mental scars.
Police reports suggest the 21-year-old driver took a corner on Ostend Rd too wide. He gave a breath-alcohol reading of 840 micrograms of alcohol per litre, over three times the legal limit of 250mcg.
Stephanie told Gulf News at the time she could clearly recall seeing the his face as he hit roadside bollards and swerved into her.
There was no other warning, it just happened out of nowhere – and every time she’s near a road she feels afraid it could happen again, she says. • Paul Mitchell
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