An open book

February, 21, 2012
02/21/12
3:45
PM ET
DUARTE, Calif. -- Those of you who are keeping up with my career probably wonder how therapy on my left heel is going since I underwent surgery last month. Tuesday is a big day in determining exactly where we are in the process; I get a CAT scan to make sure everything's good, and the doctor will be able to give me more of a date to shoot for as far as a comeback is concerned.

This was the first time they ever did this surgery and sent somebody home right away instead of doing it as inpatient surgery, so it's pretty cool to be on the cutting edge of medicine.

In a perfect world, I'd love to be back when the San Felipe Stakes is run at Santa Anita on March 10. But it all depends on the verdict the doctor gives me today. If the leg looks OK, he'll tell me how fast I can get ready and if I need to just continue what I'm doing or speed it up. He's not worried about the plate and screws in my heel, he's worried about not putting too much pressure too soon on the two screws in my ankle that went into the joint.

This was the first time they ever did this surgery and sent somebody home right away instead of doing it as inpatient surgery, so it's pretty cool to be on the cutting edge of medicine. When I came in for my first checkup they were stoked at the way I was recovering so fast, so hopefully we can keep that up and keep surprising them.

While I've been on the sidelines, I've been taking advantage of the time off to finish up my book project, The Garrett Gomez Story, with Rudy Alvarado. I had a couple of people who were trying to get me to write the story of my life, and I kept telling them no. I feel like I'm still fairly young for me to write some kind of book, or to have somebody write a book about me. I felt like I hadn't done enough to warrant a book. But the more I thought about it, the more it seemed like people kept telling me I would have a good story to tell.

When I talked to Rudy, we hit it off right away, and I felt like he would be a good guy to write the book. I told him, "I don't really want to do this, but a lot of people encouraged me to do it." He said, "Yeah, you absolutely should," and the more we talked, the more I was like, "All right, I'll make you a deal -- I'll do this, but I don't want anything out of it for me. I could care less about making money off the book, but I want to make it an inspiration to other people and not mainly about my career. I understand my career has to be part of my story, but the idea is, I want it to be something somebody can relate to," and he said, "Perfect, that was basically what I wanted to do." We were on the same page right away, and we tried to run with it.

We just sent the final draft off to publication yesterday. It comes out May 30, but you can pre-order it and get it by April 14. We'll be celebrating the release on April 9 with a golfing tournament and dinner to benefit the Winner's Foundation, the nonprofit that really helped me out. It's a good program, and we're hoping to raise a lot of money with the event and with the book to help them keep it running.

It's been about a year and a half to get to this point, and it's been a lot of work. I don't really like reflecting back on a lot of the stuff I did. When you're messed up, it's hard to remember times and dates, it's hard to revisit the stuff.

My wife blocked it out because it was a bad time in her life. I was messed up so I don't remember. We had to piece it together.

There were a couple of parts in the book we had to do so much digging to get the dates right. My wife blocked it out because it was a bad time in her life. I was messed up so I don't remember. We had to piece it together. I kind of had this idea where Rudy was going to write the book and I would tell him stories. I thought it was going to be something fairly simple, but it's not like that. The amount of research he had to do -- maybe 80 phone calls, sitting on the phone for hours at a time, not to mention all the articles he had to look up -- blew me away. Rudy wrote the book, but I went through every single fact with him.

This is how open I was -- anything that happened that had something to do with my family, I told them, "Tell him the truth and he'll use what he wants. Whatever questions he asks, answer." Then with Bob Fletcher from the Winner's Foundation, I said, "Bob, a guy's going to be calling you and you can tell him everything about your interactions with me." He called me back and said, "Is it OK to release your files to him?" I was like, "Yeah." Whatever he had, he released to Rudy.

I can't explain the actual way Rudy wrote the book -- you'll just have to read it to find out -- but I will tell you this: When I first started reading the first couple chapters, it was really different. It's kind of hard when you read a book about yourself, like watching a TV segment done on you -- you can't really judge if it's good or not, you have to get that answer from somebody else.

It's pretty exciting to have this coming out. People have asked me what it's like to know that all the bad stuff from my life is going to be out there for the world to read. Honestly, there's immense freedom in saying, "This is what I did then. This is what I'm doing now. This is my life."

I'm not hiding anything. All my junk is out there. As long as I keep it out there, I don't have to go back to where I was before. And that's a great feeling, let me tell you.

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