We are still on the road to recovery from the crash but are improving each day. My nerves are still bad when driving, especially near junctions, but the more I do it, the more I hope I will get back to normal. I managed to get a new car, not quite a 4x4 but it does have the four-wheel-drive assistance, so that should help in the winter weather – now just to make sure I keep it clean. Well, at least for the first few months!

Brown Horse

I’ve got back in the saddle a bit more, which has really pleased me. I think Bob realised initially I wasn’t 100% myself, as the majority of the time he was foot perfect, although in one of the more recent sessions he did have a few tantrums to test my sticking ability (luckily, it’s still there). We had a lesson at the weekend and my instructor was very kind and didn’t push me too hard, knowing I was a bit wary and still sore (for some reason my confidence in general has been knocked, not just when driving). We worked Bob and got him doing some lovely balanced trotting and pole work. I did point out he felt stiffer on one rein, which was evident from the ground too, so straight onto the physio I went and have booked him in for a session next week.

Horse in field

I noticed Autumn has been a bit off and stiff when working on the lunge, so I’ve added her to the session for a check over and a massage, as she feels quite tight across her hips/hind quarters. With Autumn being an older horse (almost 26), I want her to have an enjoyable time, so I do keep her in a bit of work to keep her mind active and give her a job. But I have started to see the old age issues creeping in, sadly, so anything I can do, be it physio/supplements to make her more comfortable, I will. One tip here I have found: if she needs bute or a strong-tasting supplement, I use the “dust crumbs” from bags of treats to help disguise the taste! Each time I finish a small or big bag, I put the dust crumbs into a container and use it as an addition to the feed bowl to get them to eat. I’m hoping Autumn will still get out to a few showing events, or even a fun ride this year, as I know she really enjoys the atmosphere. But if she can’t, so be it – she will be a happy grass muncher.

Horse food

Unfortunately, the riding club meeting had to be delayed due to members being ill. I was disappointed, but also knew I wasn’t at full health to attend either, so welcomed the rearrangement. I’m looking forward to being more involved this year, as I do like organising things – plus it’s horse-related, so who could complain? I’ve started to jot down dates for other events I want to aim to get to, which should hopefully get me more focused for the year ahead, and my instructor is keen to get us out for some arena hires, so I am going to have to suck it up and get on with it. I’m a bit wary of driving the horsebox, again from the crash, but I’m hoping that, if I can get to a couple of local outings, it will build my confidence back up.

One thing I have noted from the after-effects of the crash is: don’t be afraid to ask for help! I’m a very independent (and stubborn) person, but my experience has shown me that I do need help sometimes, whether it be family, friends, a listening ear or even doctor. If you feel overwhelmed, stressed or like you are struggling, please always speak up, no matter how hard it is – there is always someone to help.

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