Another shoulder story here.
I had my right shoulder re-bulit and my left shoulder with a nip and tuck. It takes about 18 months on average for a "full" recovery. Full recovery is a euphemism for as good as it's going to be.
When it was said tears heal on their own: no they don't. Surgery is the only way to repair rotator cuff tears; same as an ACL/MCL/PCL etc.
Also, swimming as a rehab is another no no. The over head motion of your arms when swimming is out. The pain and risk of more and continuing damage to the joint are not worth it. Any overhead type of work or motions will forever more be painful to a degree and risky. However, the good thing is riding does not involve overhead arm motions (not counting crashes
) and the type of muscle work involve with riding is okay and should be a good-to-go once healed up properly.