Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Recuperating......... Sort Of......... Pushing It........

Part 1

I wouldn't have moved from that prone position if it hadn't been for the excruciating pain my body was in. I'd been so focused on riding I'd overlooked taking my meds at the specified time and that had been hours ago. The grin was replaced by this too frequent reminder that my body was still a mess.

Thankfully that location in the living room is still set up like a nurse's station. There was everything I needed right there. I only had to pull myself up to a sitting position long enough to swallow my pills. Then I flopped back down waiting for the drugs to take affect trying to focus on the memory of my ride instead of the painful state of my body.

It was dinnertime by now but I was too exhausted to eat. Dave lectured me about the necessity of meals if I am ever going to get out the other side of this thing and I was too tired to even argue the point. He brought me a plate and I just laid there looking at him. I didn't have the strength to sit up again.

He shook his head in frustration as he walked off with the plate. Then he came back and sat next to me holding my hand until I was finally able to drift off to sleep.

I awoke a couple of hours later and managed to eat my dinner then. Most of the evening I dozed on and off until my usual bedtime rolled around.

I actually considered crawling into bed fully clothed because I was to tired to undress. Dave saw the expression on my face and realized my dilemma so once again stepped in to be my nurse maid. Without his help I probably would have slept in my clothes.

I was pretty much down for the next two days. My pain was unmanaged and I slept most of the time. When I was awake all I could think about was riding.

That first ride happened sometime in February. Despite how difficult it had been, I tried to ride each time the weather was suitable.  Again I tried to rely on getting help to tack my horse up but that wasn't working.  For my second ride I got my horse ready myself except for throwing the saddle on. Dave did that part for me.

The next time I got frustrated waiting for Dave to be available so I decided I could saddle my own horse. Turned out my knees began to quake as I tried to lift my saddle above the horse's head. I ended up bracing the saddle against Legs to prevent dropping it which only worked because my horse obliged my effort and did not move off the pressure.

 Somehow I managed to shimmy the saddle up and over onto his back holding the pad in place with one hand while using the other to shove  the saddle upwards. My horse stood quietly for this whole process. Tied to the horse trailer he could have easily stepped away and left my saddle in the dirt.

I did manage to get the saddle in the right position. Doing so had been so difficult I realized I was far from being ready to saddle my horse alone. While it sure didn't feel like it at the time, this was probably a good thing. Having to wait for help put time between my rides.

The only resistance I got from my horse in any of my rides came in the form of refusals accompanied by a very careful, small buck while he was under saddle. The first time he did this was when I tried to ride with no one around.  The horse shook his head at me and did the smallest of bucks. I pushed him through it but the horse made it clear he thought I was the naughty one.

Then one day I asked him to jog when it was pretty wet. I got the same kind of refusal, complete with head shaking. I had been thinking it might just be too slick to be jogging so when the horse resisted I decided to listne to him and we just walked. Two days later and much drier he jogged immediately on request.

In all since that time I have had a half dozen rides on my horse.   I have not ridden in more than a month.  When I ended up flat on my back,  struggling with pain for over two weeks,  I realized I was overdoing by way more than just a little.

It wasn't just the riding  that got me into trouble, although it was fueled by the riding. I figured if I could ride I should be able to do other things too. Putting out horses which involved taking off blankets and putting on turnouts, the carrying of blankets to and from the house and washing them, grooming horses, sweeping barns, cleaning up storm damage, they were all things I was doing if I rode.  I overdid it in a big way.

The first ride was the most obvious over exertion but not the most damaging. The last time I rode I spent two more hours outside working and I felt pretty good about myself when I came in. I had accomplished a lot and I thought I was doing ok physically.

It took a couple of days for me to realize I wasn't bouncing back. Instead I just got worse and worse. I dropped weight and I was back to sleeping most of the day. I seriously considered going to the doctor to see if I had done something harmful. It was not a good situation.

To be continued......................


  1. ((HUGS!!)) I'm glad you've been able to ride! That's wonderful! Just be careful overdoing it with chores and housework!

  2. Oh I can only imagine how hard this was. When you feel better you want to do so much and then realize later it was too much at once and cant do anything.

  3. You know the old saying "slow and steady wins the race", well I think you should kinda be following that adage. A little at a time and only what you think you can handle comfortably might be the way to build up and get your strength back.

  4. Thats great you have been able to ride more but please don't push too hard! You worry me! I know you want to get out and be with the horses and no one can blame you for that! But nice and slow!!

  5. Like Grey Horse said. You will accomplish more if you allow yourself to recuperate instead of pushing yourself beyond your limits. You can't ride if you are hurting too much- pace yourself. There. Lecture over now. Give Legs a smooch from me, wise horse that he is.

  6. It's good to hear some progress. I was afraid you'd been flat out this whole time.

  7. I can imagine how frustrated you were (are) at your body and its limitations. I know I would be out there breaking all the "rules" too.

    I'm just amazed at your incredible horse, Legs has really been taking care of you!

  8. My husband just had surgery for lung cancer last month and I have to remind him every day that he needs time to heal, he thinks he can do any thing he did before but finds out he sets himself back a few days everytime he over does it. please take it easy and pace yourself with how you feel, don't undo what ever healing you have done.

  9. I'm glad you got to ride but...take your time and heal. The horses will wait for you.