Goodbye 2013: Live With Fire in ’14

FitFluential LLC compensated me for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

My 2013 literally ended with a “BANG“! On Friday December 13, 2013, I was standing in my office at Max fitness when I heard the most violent and sharp “POP”.  I was a 12B (combat engineer) in the army, and immediately my training from Ft Leonardwood was recalled in the split seconds that followed the sound of an explosion.  The room was instantly filled with powder residue and my ears were ringing as I walked around the small office disoriented and confused.  I remember thinking that I must have set off a small device designed as a prank.  A few seconds later, still confused, I realized if it were a prank, something had gone horribly wrong.

gunshot woundMy legs were aching and bleeding badly, like someone took a baseball bat to my knees, yet still I stood. I never thought to call out for help, as I was still dazed in my office with the door shut and the light off.  I’m not sure how long I would have stood there bleeding trying to make sense out of this if one of my employees hadn’t thought to check on me. He entered the office and immediately says “oh Steve, you’ve been shot”.  As much as I was totally confused about having been shot when I was by myself in my office, I was relieved to know why I had holes in both legs.

Gunshot wound

He laid me down and we began working on getting the bleeding stopped, and my staff called paramedics for help. As I started making sense out of the gun shot, realizing it wasn’t a small bomb, I was able to calm my mind a little in the bloody smoke filled office.  With the confusion subsiding, my legs began to start hurting. And hurt they did…  The 40 caliber hollow point round had come from an adjacent office through my legs and continued into another office finally stopping in a metal cabinet. The powder residue that seemed like an explosion was merely the powder from the bullet going through drywall. With everything coming together in my head, this is the point where I was finally calming down, except for the pain… I picked up my phone and started taking “selfies”.

Steve PfiesterHaving a degree in physical therapy I know the damage and destruction that an accident like this can have on arteries, bone and nerves. My legs felt paralyzed and I was bleeding from both thighs.  At the time I was thinking the worse. Did it hit my femoral artery? My leg hurt with an intensity I’ve never felt. Surely both femurs were broken in pieces.  Hitting nerves never entered my mind until the bleeding slowed. Oh, the relief that overwhelmed me as I sat up and could move both feet. Praise God! I’m not paralyzed, just wounded.  The bleeding began to slow, which confirmed no arterial damage, and I was able to bare weight as the paramedics put me onto the gurney for transport.

gunshot hole

The 40 caliber bullet went through 3 offices, 2 legs and and a filing cabinet.

Super long story short, I spent the rest of the night in the ER learning how blessed I truly was that both legs were just soft tissue damage. How could a 40 caliber hollowpoint round from about 5 feet away go through both legs and not cause any permanent damage? I will tell you how – but that’s another blog for another time.

I wanted to tell you this story for a few reasons.  One, first and foremost, how can any of us ever deny that our maker is merciful and full of grace to watch over us, even in the times we let our guard down the most. Second, no matter what circumstances we deal with throughout our lives, we HAVE to believe we are allowed to endure them to make us stronger – emotionally, physically, mentally, and yes… spiritually!  There is not one single thing you’ve ever experienced in your life that could not be used to make you a more loving husband, a better father, a better friend, or even a better athlete.  Reebok has a slogan that me and other bloggers use when we use social media, and never has it meant more to me than these last 2 weeks.  #LIVEWITHFIRE

steve and bonnie pfiester

Reebok livewithfireThis my friends, is my plea to you. LIVE WITH FIRE! In everything you do, resolve to yourself that everything you experience can make you better. Yes, even the messes we make ourselves. Those are especially the best in making us better. I no longer believe in coincidence, or luck (good or bad). I believe in “providence”  that all things can work together for good. But that is completely up to us and what we believe about our situation!

NO whining, no unforgiveness. Be patient and think about your circumstances and how they can soon (not right now, but on the on the end of whatever it is) grow you into who you are supposed to become!  Live with fire, take those lemons, and make lemonade!!!!

Reebok NanosagePS: A very special thanks to Reebok for the timely delivery of these super comfy shoes that I would highly recommend the next time you are shot in both legs and can’t put on regular shoes. lol These are the Reebok Crossfit Nanossage. They are designed to help you decompress post workout (or post shootout!). They are even machine washable, just in case you get blood, I mean sweat, on them. 😉 They are so soft you will want to purrrrr.

Inspired by the foam roller, this shoe is built on a natural last and features a 4mm drop with ultra soft cushioned foam. Dual web pull entry allows for easy on, easy off – thank goodness for me, they were indeed easy on, easy off! The perfect recovery shoe!!

Reebok Nanossage

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About Steve Pfiester

Certified CrossFit, TRX, Kettlebell Athletics Trainer with a B.S. in Physical Therapy. Owner of Longevity Max Fitness and BCx Boot Camp.

Posted on December 30, 2013, in IN MY HEAD, Product Review, Reality Check and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. Thank you for sharing your story. God is good!

  2. Great article. So thankful everything turned out ok.

  3. Hope your on the mend soon and chasing Marley down the beach.

  4. Wishing you a speedy recovery. Love the message towards the end of your post.

  5. Oh my gosh!!!! That’s crazy. I’m curious about the details but I’m glad that you lived to tell your story. I’m a strong believer in God and Angels. You have been truly blessed in so many ways. Thanks for sharing your faith. Happy New Year to both you and Bonnie. I wish you much and many blessings in 2014.

  6. That’s an amazing story. Here’s toa speedy recovery. Any idea where the bullet came from?

  7. you rock Steve!

  1. Pingback: 2013 Ends with a BANG (literally!) | PFITblog

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