The One Where I Fall Off

This week during lesson I was pumped up, we’ve had some great hacks lately. We warmed up, her canter was awesome, she was jumping from the base of our warm up jumps and she was so soft! After a quick break we headed off on our first course. Awesome spot to the first and second jumps, and a nice quick change. We came around to a diagonal line trotting as we hadn’t seen these jumps in awhile. She jumped in SO CUTE. Cantered quietly down the 4 stride towards the flowers. Great spot at the flowers and I remember internally squealing at how great she felt.

And then she twisted somehow in the air. It was like the horse was suddenly done under me, we landed and instantly she took off, bucking hard. Really hard.

I’m usually pretty sticky…and I tried to whoa her and get her away from the arena wall. But there was no calming or stopping her bucking spree. Several bucks later I let go, there was no coming back from it.

My trainer was running before I hit the ground, as well as a mixed group of riders and parents who ran to catch O who was still madly bucking galloping around the ring.

I don’t think I’ve ever felt pain like that before. Β It was like my right hip and lower back was on fire. My trainer held me down and still while they called the ambulance. I couldn’t straighten my legs or really move my midsection without new pain. The paramedics made the choice to take me to a local hospital with a trauma center in case my pelvis or back were damaged. Off I went, my trainer in the ambulance, and best friend following in her car. Of course my poor husband was out of town in business.

Upon arrival I was x-rated, scanned and poked (a lot-and I freaking hate needles). Hours later they announced that nothing was broken, but told me to not get too excited. I had severe soft tissue damage/trauma to my lower back. They recommended 6 weeks out if the saddle. Everyone’s jaw dropped…then we all started clamoring about how long that was, and managed to talk her down to “whenever I get a doctors approval” to get back on. Note: The horse show is exactly 4 weeks from the day I fell off.

The first night was the worst, as there is no way to be comfortable when your back hurts. The second day I took the heavy duty pain medicine, and thought I could conquer the world….and now am paying for it by being extra sore. I’m working to find a medium between the two. I know that I have to move around, and rehab those injured muscles and tissue….but laying down feels best right now. Walking is pretty difficult as my right side can’t really bear weight yet. Sigh.

The obsessive planning person that I am is already planning a recovery attack! 6 weeks out of the saddle, in the most beautiful time of the year is not going to cut it. Also, sorry for all the wordiness-I was afraid to ask the paramedics to take pictures. πŸ™‚

On O's birthday just 24 hours before.

On O’s birthday just 24 hours before.

35 thoughts on “The One Where I Fall Off

  1. Oof, I’ve had a lower back soft tissue injury (a horse reared and fell on top of me) – SO PAINFUL! I also know how hard it is to take so much time off, but believe me, DON’T PUSH IT! Lower back injuries can mess you up. I didn’t take is as easy as I should have and I’ve had a lot of problems from it. It is so much better to take time to heal than push it and hurt while riding for a long time after!!!!! Hope you recover quickly!

    • I’m definitely going to take it slow for now, although I’m still hoping for a speedy recovery. At this point I’m still very sore and unwilling to do much. Thanks for the well wishes!

  2. Ohhh.. I’m having flashbacks. I landed on the small of my back, like… ten years ago. Maybe nine. Anyways, my doctors told me that I had “bruised” my spine (the actual bone) and the muscles around my spine. If our injuries are comparable: I couldn’t stand upright for the first 24 or so and leaning over from the hip felt the best, and it did take about a month before I was able to ride. And, even now, if I sleep wrong or do too much, I wake up stiff and painful.

    They gave me an injection in the hip and muscle relaxers and pain meds. I remember heat being a comfort, but really, it just took a lot of time. When you’re healed, maybe look into doing bent knee dead lifts to strengthen those muscles. Helps me!

    Hope you heal quickly! Scary stuff!

    • Wow that sound very painful!! I didn’t have to get injections, and hope that I get to avoid that. RIght now the worst part is that the meds don’t help a ton, so it’s hard to find a comfortable spot.

      Thanks for the rehab idea, and well wishes!! πŸ™‚

  3. Boo on this! That is the worst timing. In March 2007 when I broke my collar bone (very badly in two places) and they told me I couldn’t ride for 3 months I cried on and off for days. Basically I know how you feel. Pony will be ready and waiting for you so make sure you get healed properly.

  4. Also super glad nothing was broken but agree that you need to heal properly! Back pain is the worst! It’s totally that time of the year that the horses are feeling grand and running off- we had one do that last night in a lesson. And I did have a small chuckle at the end of the post about asking the paramedics to take pics- ahhh bloggers- always thinking about documenting the moment πŸ™‚

  5. AH! Strangely, when I went to my reading list, the first two at the top were both about falling off… dislike about how that’s a trend! And really sorry you got hurt! Sounds like one of Wizard’s random bucking sprees over fences :\ Sadly it’s usually because he’s enjoying himself, but he needs to learn to enjoy himself… less. When I fell off the other week, I remember having extreme pain when I hit my hip and not moving, thinking “omg it’s broken.” (I have a strange pain tolerance, I register pain but can like just file it away and not really react to it- if that makes sense). But after laying there a second, I rolled up and kind of walked it out and it was okay. Two days later thought I thought was dying and was seriously contemplating that I had internal injuries- my parents thought I needed to go to the hospital because I couldn’t move. I am stubborn though and didn’t, and the next day I felt way better.

    Moral of the story: THAT SOUNDS SUPER PAINFUL I’M SO SORRY THAT YOU GOT INJURED! On the bright side, no internal injuries and at least more quick of a recovery than broken bones! Hopefully it’ll be like me, and you’ll actually recover more quickly than the doctors say! (fingers crossed, anyway)

  6. (haha, just read everyone else’s comments- funny how everyone else is like, oh, take the time to recover, and I’m like: GET BACK ON AND RIDE ASAP! I recall when I got my concussion I wasn’t suppose to ride for like a month but I was back on in a week, I’m terrible at listening to doctors. you can see how my philosophy goes… and probably why my body is literally falling apart at age 25. *sheepish grin* . so, probably listen to their advice…)

    • I actually begged and pleaded to not go to the hospital, but my trainer broke her hip a few years back and was worried I had done the same thing. But in hindsight it was nice to know that everything was in the right place! My trainer kept saying “She’s really tough, if she’s this upset it’s serious” to the paramedics. ha! I usually am pretty good with pain, but it was kind of ridiculous this time.

      I’ve been able to walk on my own this weekend, a few days before they expected, so hopefully that is a good sign for the next few weeks of recovery! I’m always one to push things, but don’t want to get back on, and then be a total mess again because I didn’t wait enough. So many decisions!! I hate waiting.

      • Yeah I did worry for about three days, and that part wasn’t cool. Sometimes it’s nice to get checked out just for the peace of mind! Because you always hear those stories of people brushing it off and it turning out to be something serious. I’m glad you’re doing well though and I hope you continue to recover nicely!

  7. I fell off the very same day and landed on my back, too. It hurts, but it sounds like I was lucky compared to you! Thankfully there was no hospital visit and I seem to have gotten away with a some strained muscles (fairly deep bruise) on my back, and a pretty good scrape/bruise on one elbow.

    I have been taking vitamin C to try and help with the muscle stiffness (along with a healthy dose of Advil every 4 hours exactly). Maybe that could help get you back on your feet faster! And any plain old stiff muscles in your shoulders or neck will love the hot-pack/ice-pack alternating treatment.

    Stay positive! And if you want to read about my fall (the very post that AlchemyEventing mentioned showing up in her reader next to yours!), check it out here: http://stayingcentered.wordpress.com/2014/03/13/oh-hi-dirt-nice-to-see-you/

    Maybe we can chalk all these falls up to it being springtime? You know how that makes horses (and humans) crazy.

    And remember, there will always be another show. Get healthy first. Feel better soon!

    • Vitamin C is a good idea! I’m trying to keep my back loose so it can heal, but man it hurts pretty good still.

      Thank you for the well wishes, I hope you are feeling better too!

    • I know, some research seems to say that it’s a case by case time frame…6 weeks is just the usual recommendation. I”m really hoping it’s more like 2-3 weeks, but we’ll see!

  8. I somehow missed this post in my feed. Sorry to hear about your fall! Glad there are no “serious” injuries but I imagine it is still quite painful. Hope you get better soon and are able to get back in the saddle earlier than expected.

  9. In common with the previous poster this was missing from my feed too, or I would have sent my best wishes sooner. How very horrible. Best of luck finding a balance with the pain relief and with your recovery.

  10. Pingback: The Cost of a Fall | A Gift Horse

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