Lots of people have asked how my recovery is going. It’s been six months since the accident (kind of hard to believe) and three months since I first got back on a horse.
These days I’m walking without a cane — in fact, not even limping. I can walk up the slight ramp in the barn, step over the threshold, and carry half a bale of hay while walking. I know I’m getting stronger because the owner of the property where I keep my horses no longer has to watch out the window to make sure that I’m still on my feet after I ride (a much appreciated kindness because in those early days, I certainly was wobbly).
I’m riding both horses now, mostly at a walk or trot. I’m working on posting trot and I can make it almost twice around the ring now before my ankle gets tired. It’s both a great step forward and humbling. I’m infinitely stronger than I was just a few weeks ago but I still have a lot more to do. This past week, Zelda and I started to canter. I’m grateful that she didn’t throw a few bucks in, as she is want to do. I even let Freedom canter a bit — he’s still a handful but at least I feel like I can stay on.
I still go to Physical Therapy twice a week and I still spend almost two hours on those exercises. My knee doesn’t bother me at all. My ankle only bothers me if I walk too much, sit too much or if it’s too hot out!
Most of the time it doesn’t hurt. I’ve even been walking a couple of miles a day (I’m fine on flat ground, not so stable on uneven terrain). But it does swell. Quite a bit. To me it doesn’t look too bad but when people haven’t seen me for awhile, they often give a little gasp. Mostly I just want to be able to wear my regular shoes. Right now, I’m grateful that it’s summer and I can wear sandals.
My shoulder is getting better. There’s only one direction where I haven’t restored my range of motion, although I can feel it when lifting a saddle onto a horse’s back. Of course, my immediate thought is to get a lighter saddle. No, that’s the wrong answer. I’m trying to downsize my saddle collection. I just need to keep doing the exercises. The good news is that I’m able to swim pain free so I think I’m moving in the right direction.
My goal? I want to be ready to hunt in the fall. Maybe just hilltop, but I want to be out there following the hounds. And every week I’m working toward it.