Spine Issues

I thought I was done crying over my spine, I guess not. Today has not been a great day in terms of my spine, what started as just sadness and anger turned into almost being quickly taken into hospital to be hooked up to pain relief. I honestly thought that with the physio, gym sessions and other things I was on the mend, although I was still in pain I thought the excruciating part of it was gone but it’s very much alive in muscle spasms. While I’m on a lot of painkillers, I’m on nothing for my muscle spasms and currently my back and all around my hip is rock hard because of it.

I’ve had to pull out of a show again tonight which I hate, I hate letting anyone down and I hate not being able to perform, possibly the worst part of recovery. I’m miserable with not being able to easily play shows. I thought this part was over, I hoped this was a thing of the past. I was getting ready, about to go load up the car when simply walking around the flat I felt a sharp pain and that was it I was out. The pain was awful, Ali and I tried to wait it out, resting and then trying to walk again but I couldn’t. I was in agony, limping heavily and sobbing. I wasn’t going anywhere tonight. That started about 4 and a half hours ago, I’m still in pain but it feels more manageable now.

On Monday, I finally made the decision to leave the Horse Riding society after talking to my mental health mentor. I really wasn’t coping mentally or physically very well and the society was what was stressing me out most, I had to let the members know today and I am not ashamed to say I cried after posting:

Hello Everyone,

I’m writing this with deep sadness. As most of you will know I was in an accident earlier in the year, breaking my spine. I’ve still got nearly 2 years of recovery time and will probably never ride again. While I’ve loved being a part of the society and your president lately my mental health has deteriorated along with more struggles and nerve damage due to my injury. It is because of this my medical team have said that it would be best for me to step down as soon as possible. Thank you to everyone who rode with me, made me smile and was a friend. I will always love this society and hope that I can still be a friend. I have handed in my notice meaning we are looking for a new president asap and I leave you in the capable hands of Daniela and Amy, while Amanda will be back from leave when she can (please contact them in relation to any questions, queries, rides).

Thank you so much for everything.

Chloe

A lot of people commented saying they were sad to see me go, to say thank you and a lot of people to say that I was brave. I still don’t think I fully understand why I’m brave? Because I was honest about the reasons? Because I stepped down to look after myself? I certainly don’t feel brave. I worry I’m letting everyone down, that if anything happens to the society it will be my fault. I worry I’ll lose friends. Now it’s done though and I really need to focus on my studies and try to remember my time with happiness, not tears.

 

10407210_10153613102758206_918236493107446324_nHappier times at the society

I still have a long way to go with my spine and tonight’s reminded me of that. I’m so lucky to have so many amazing people around me caring for me and helping me carry on going forward when times are hard. I don’t know what the future holds in terms of recovery, I’ve been told around 2 years for successful recovery but I’m not holding on to that as a solid date, after all when it first happened I was told I had a 6 week recovery, laughable now. Almost 7 months down and who knows how many to go but I will keep going, I’ll just need a little help along the way.

Running my First Ride

Today I finally ran my first ride as President of the Horse Riding Society. I’ll be honest I’ve been dreading this day, I’ve really struggled with the idea of running the society since my accident. I just kept thinking, how was I going to enjoy something that I couldn’t do any more? Was I going to feel as down as I did at Fresher’s Fayre? I’ve been stressed, upset and just not feeling ok about it all. So I decided that I’d have one attempt at running the society, if I hated it then I’d consider resigning.

I was pleasantly surprised, the riders all enjoyed themselves and it actually felt good to be around the horses again. I got to see Jemima, the horse I learnt on and Dublin the last horse I rode on. Laura told me that it was worth seeing people enjoy their rides and it is, it also helped to talk to the riders and staff. I’ve felt a little like I’m stupid or something because I get so down but they all completely understood. Jules, the lady who works there was really kind to me, she said if I wanted to go back when I was fully healed and that I could go back then to take my time, that it’s a huge thing to happen not to mention to impact on my body.
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Me last year during my first ride

I’m definitely going to stay as President, it also helps that I have my amazing dream team with me, the three of us got through the session with success and I finally feel hopeful about this part of my life again, after all who doesn’t love cuddling up to some lovely horses…especially when they cuddle back 🙂

A bit of a tumble

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The plan for yesterday was meeting Daniela for a Starbucks in the morning, go for a ride with Laura, come home and relax while playing with the hamsters…things ended up a little differently than I’d planned.

I loved getting back to riding and finally getting on Rose. She’s only 5 and still quite a baby but she seemed to listen and be an absolute angel. Walking and trotting I was more than happy and so was she, that was until I started to lose my balance. I managed to pull myself up the first time and try and get her to calm down but she could sense I was panicked so continued to run and I had no option than to let myself fall.

The only way I can explain the fall to someone who’s never fallen off a horse before is that it’s slow motion until you’re heading for the floor and it’s like you’re watching a go pro camera. It did hurt, I won’t lie. It’s more likely than not that because I went into shock my body seized up once I’d hit the ground  and I’m pretty sure I winded myself too. After a bit of wriggling around on the floor and being in a lot of pain, I got myself up. I was in a lot of pain but didn’t want to seem like a drama queen so I managed to get up and walk to a chair while everyone at the yard was being so lovely.

Plus points were I’d stayed conscious, I could walk and move my neck. It was only because I was in a lot of pain we called 111 who sent a paramedic..then an ambulance where I got immobilized and loaded up into an ambulance….I was so embarrassed it was unreal. Laura was an absolute angel, holding my hand and not judging when I cried because they were talking about needles and thought I was going to be sick after laying down in the ambulance and feeling panicked by the bead blocks (super uncomfortable, especially when your hairband is digging in).

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Laughing with embarrassment while I was being loaded in, I tried to bargain with them but they said they needed to strap me up! 

I’ve gone 6 months without a fall, so of course my first one had to be done with style. After X Rays and some strong pain medication they decided I was fine just bruised and sore. They’d taken us all the way to Epsom and St Helens University hospital, luckily Laura’s house mate agreed to pick us up to get us back to pick up our stuff. Then something amazing happened, while Laura was gathering the stuff from the stable I went to the field to try and find Rose (who came to check I was ok after I fell off, being the beauty that she is), typically she was nowhere to be found. Instead two other horses came to the gate and it was like they knew, they knew I was shaken but their love and affection cheered me up so much that if I hadn’t been all achy and bruised I would have gotten on there and then.

I’m in a fair bit of pain today but I’m being well looked after and I’m on the mend, plus I have really adorable company 🙂

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