My thoughts about riding again when I was down like Raffy....
Since starting to ride seriously again in the summer of '01 at age 50, I was without a bike for 7 months in '04 for my first accident. And I was without a bike for 21 months after my second accident in June of '07. Although a much lesser hurt, that last time I was without a bike mostly because of slow business and personal finances. I had other priorities that needed to be addressed first before riding again. That and living in ME.
Thinking about riding or what I had lost seemed trivial to me in the first days/weeks after the incidents. Riding was not on my mind. My hurt took precedent.
Then when a little time passed, I was without a bike and it started to haunt me. Just a little at a time. Incremental mental dings.
I would go to dinners (HDDC) with my riding friends and still have an equally good time but when it was time to leave is when it hit me the most. And reading about all the annual rides in NorCal including CCR too.
I decided to ride again because I haven't got it out of my system yet. Raffy and all are responsible for this. You guys did this to me. Shame on you.
I find that there is really nothing quite like motorcycling or just having one in the garage at the ready. I started riding again last April on an old Honda. I managed to put 4k miles on it in 10 weeks of riding around here. I was driving a car and pickup back and forth to CA for half the summer. My brother's buying it from me in the spring (so I'll have someone to ride with) and I'll look for a later model touring bike then to ride next spring around here and to CCR, etc
I have responsibilities too just like everyone else. I can't afford to be down and out. But yet I have managed to buy a snowmobile (dangerous equipment), an old vintage bike (dangerous equipment) and ride an atv (brothers) (dangerous equipment) like it was meant to be ridden. Not carelessly but spirited. Just like the sled but not so much the old bike. It scrapes in any hard turns. I'm very careful and know my limits and the bikes limits. Sledding has a whole new range of potential disasters waiting around every turn. Probably more dangerous than motorcycling. Don't know the stats but a lot of people get hurt of killed on them every year in this part of the country.
It sucks being human and not being able to see into the future.
Don't let anyone tell you to reconsider your one true passion in life second to your family. Shit happens. You were probably well protected and wear a helmet for yourself and especially for your family. You didn't see the curb in time is all. You're not losing your mind and are always careful like the rest of us. It just happens quick sometimes. I went out on a 150 mile ride yesterday and thought of you. I'm on an old, non abs, scraping on any big turn, bulky barrel on wheels that is probably not the safest bike around. Good thing I have all that experience riding so many different bikes over the years, like you. And I know that at any second I could be a passenger on my own bike and sliding in a prone position due to myself, mechanical problems or just other bad drivers. Good motorcyclistss habits, well maintained bikes and anticipation of other drivers inattention make the three threats minimal.
I guess my point here is that it is a personal decision how to spend a life. Motorcycling is a passion to some which should always be second to family. But a family with a member whose passion is broken or demoralized may be not the answer ether. So don't despair about riding again until riding again is possible. Just enjoy all the other dozens of things that interest you until the fever hits you down the road. No worry's mate.