Monday, April 18, 2011

The big fall

By now, many of you have read about my mishap at Laughing Orca Ranch's blog. Thanks Lisa, for being such a  good friend and coming for me. Ortherwise, I might still be walking home. lol.

So, to recap, I took Scout out for an afternoon ride. I let him much hay while I groomed him. He's shedding really bad so I decided to just put on a bareback pad and go for a quick trip or two around the 'back forty'.
I put on a curb bit instead of his usual snaffle-side pull bridle and threw a halter and lead rope on top because I knew he wouldn't be comfortable with the new bit. I grabbed my helmet because I had this little niggling feeling that something bad was going to happen. I kind of worried about using the bareback pad because I thought that I could easily fall off. But then I rationalized that I haven't fallen off in years and he's going to be good anyway, so why worry?

Scout did really well. Of course, he wanted to go back to the barn but he didn't fight me much when we'd turn the corner and the barn was in sight, and he NEVER neighed at the girls even though Yalla! was hollering and running, I imagine. Scout calmly walked around and trotted whenever I asked. If I gave any pressure to the bit he threw his head up so I kept that loose and used the halter rope instead. He is so light on the bit, I hardly even used the halter rope at all. About the third time around, I decided to go just one more time around, we saw the neighbor ladies in the distance with their pack of big dogs. I could feel Scout tensing and as the four or five BIG dogs circled around us, he freaked. We were on the gravel road and he reared slightly. Then he reared again, stepping back, I believe, which sent him off the road, onto the incline. He lost his balance and fell over backwards. The ladies thought he fell on me. I really don't know.

It was a terrible feeling when I realized we were going over and there was nothing I could do except hang on. He quickly got up and wandered about 60 feet away- out of range of the dogs. I just lay flat on my back assessing the damage. That's not like me. I'm usually so embarrased with something like this that I would get up, shake off, and go after Scout. Not this time. I also thought it was the ladies' fault for letting the dogs run loose and maybe they should worry a little about whether I was still alive.

Finally, I sat up a little and said loudly, "so much for keeping dogs on leashes!" The one lady responded with, "well, this is my land!". Well, maybe it was, however, I was on the roadway when it happened. She had given me permission to ride back there too. If only she could have collected the dogs up before they came running up to us.

 Two of the three ladies came over to see how I was. Yes, I was still alive. By this time I was sitting up and looking at my swelling ankle. The dogs were worrying all over me which made me even more resentful of them. The owners couldn't even them off. My glasses were bent terribly and I had a cut on my head where they hit, but thankfully, the glass wasn't broken. I bent them back as best as I could and felt lucky that I hadn't gone to the eye doctor for a new pair yet, as I have been intending to do. My ring finger hurt terribly, but I couldn't see any swelling or bruising, and I thought- "good thing I don't wear a wedding ring anymore".

The one lady offered to drive me back to my house but, toughie that I am, I refused. "I can walk", I said. I was two fields away from my barn and by now, Scout had wandered back to the barn. I wanted to go check on him on my way back to the house. She asked me if it was a new horse and I said "no, he's just afraid of dogs".

Soooo, I began my trek back. I couldn't put any pressure on my ankle so I was taking little baby steps. The ground was uneven and every step made me wince. I felt popping in the left side of my ankle and the right side was swollen too, weird. I finally got to some trees and found a couple of walking sticks to help me. It didn't work very well. Then I saw Lisa calling to my son and they both came out to meet me.

I had made it one short field and was at another roadway so my son brought the car. He also brought an ankle brace and a pair of crutches. When I got in the car, we took off my shoe and sock and put on the brace. He also made me take two extra strength tylenol right away. I agreed that I should go to the emergency room, which is very unusual for me, and we picked up my mom and went. Unfortunately, it was 7:30 by the time we got to the hospital, so urgent care was already closed and I had to go full emergency. Fortunately, there was a lull in the emergencies, so I got seen within an hour, which is great time for ER.

The doctor checked my spine up and down and said that there wasn't much that could be done for the seatbones. They hurt really bad whenever I try to sit down. The X ray on my ankle came back with a fracture on the talus bone. Interesting thing about Talus bone injuries- they are often caused in falls, especially snowboarding, car accidents, and lower back injuries. They put me in a huge temporary cast up over the knee, called a bulky Jones (there's a Bowie reference there- Jones is his real name) and said I need to call the orthopedics on Monday for an appointment. I am not allowed to put any weight on my foot at all. I'm wearing my coat because I couldn't quit shaking.

They never X rayed my finger and it still hurts terribly but I have figured out that it's actually my hand that got injured. The last two knuckle joints are now slightly swollen and I have a cute little triangle bruise on my palm spanning out towards my finger. Strange! I'll have to ask the Ortho doctor about it today.

Anyway, I need to go to work and the doctor's (fingers crossed that I get an appointment) so more to follow.


Jennifer MacNeill-Traylor said...

OUCHIE! You poor thing. Hope you are on the mend soon:(

Ed said...

Yikes, hope you are feeling better, and Scout is O.K. Take it easy, have some tea and crank some Bowie..:-))

Kate said...

Very scary! Loose dogs are the worst - luckily we don't have many around here. Very sorry that you were damaged - but glad it wasn't worse - having a horse fall with you is one of the worst things that can happen. Sending wishes for a speedy recovery.

Michelle said...

Oh my gosh. I'm so glad that you are ok-ish. Could have been a LOT worse. How is Scout? Lisa mentioned he seemed a little stunned and stiff. Hope he's ok too....and that those women learned a lesson about dogs. Their land or not, there is the issue of respect and responsible dog ownership. Sounds like the dogs weren't on HER land when they circled you, anyway....Best wishes and hope you get well soon!

Mikey said...

Oh wow. That is the biggest cast!! What a story, and don't you wish people would keep their dogs up? If you can't call them off, don't have them loose. I ride with 10 dogs (yesterday) and I can call them back, except for one, who got a lesson on that... I go after them horseback and run them down if they refuse to listen. If they run up on a rattlesnake, they HAVE to back off, same with cattle.
Glad you are going to be ok, horses going over backward is one of the most scary things that can ever happen. Glad you didn't have a saddle too, that's where people get hung up or break their pelvis.
Will be praying for a quick recovery for you. You're tough, girl!!

Mrs Mom said...

Take care Val- sure hope you heal fast. Glad that you are mostly OK though!!!

fernvalley01 said...

Sounds like a bad one. Surprised that the women said anything other than "I AM SORRY "
Glad you have good observant firned who are there and your son!!! BTW looking pretty good for a gal in the emerg!

Shirley said...

I hate it when those little niggling feelings are right. Hope you heal well and aren't in too much pain.

Dan and Betty Cooksey said...

Bummer. Take care of yourself.


Laura said...

Oh no! Sorry to hear about your fall and your broken ankle...! hopefully the ortho folks can double-check everything and you can recover quickly...

juliette said...

That is just horrible! I hope you feel better soon!

juliette said...

That is just horrible! I hope you feel better soon!

C-ingspots said...

Sorry you got hurt Val...but I'm glad it's just one of those "coulda been worse" deals and nothing too serious. Hope Scout is ok too - I'll bet he was upset. I know my horses get very traumatized when we have incidents...I think horses are a lot more concerned with our safety than we realize. Take care and hope you get better real soon!

Breathe said...

So glad you had your helmet on! Scout is such a solid horse, I can't believe this happened on him.

That cast is going to be a fashion challenge, that's for sure. I hope you have very few stairs to deal with!

Reddunappy said...

OH man!!! girl, ouch!!!! I hope you mend quickly!!!

I firmly believe that " NO one loves your children or your dogs as much as you do!!!" Keep both under control!!! I always try to keep mine away from people if they dont solicit the attention!!! They seen you they should have been getting the dogs under control!!!

Paint Girl said...

I am so sorry to hear this!! I sure hope you are feeling better soon!!
I know what it is like being surrounded by dogs while on horses, that happened to me and my sister a couple years ago, 2 woman with 9 dogs on our trails, loose dogs that kept coming at our horses. I have never been so pissed off. People seriously need to figure it out!!

RiverBend Farm said...

It's been forever since I posted a comment but had to on this post. I'm glad you're okay!!! That is one huge cast. I hope Scout is okay too. I'm still in love with him.

achieve1dream said...

Wow that sucks. That woman was totally rude about her stupid, out of control dogs. If someone went by on a horse I would immediately grab my dogs if they were off leash. That is bull. They could get someone killed! That makes me so angry.

I'm sorry you're hurt, but relieved it wasn't worse. I hope you heal up quickly and are doing better now. Please give us an update on Scout as soon as you have time and don't work too hard at your job.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Wow! Your Jones looks like it has swallowed your entire leg. That thing is like a separate entity. It deserves a name. Maybe Mr. Jones? lol!

Figures there'd be a Bowie reference. *wink*

You really did look great in the ER. The drugs must have been working well. :)

Let me know if you need anything,

Grey Horse Matters said...

That's awful.Loose dogs cause a lot of problems and I think it's really irresponsible of the owners to either not have them on leases or have them properly trained. Your injury sounds painful and I'd be mad too if I were you. This was an unnecessary injury that you'll have to cope with for weeks and just when the weather is turning nice. Feel better.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

Thanks for the well wishes. Hopefully recovery will be fast and there won't be any lasting bad memories which I'm more concerned about on Scout's part.

aurora said...

How scary! Take it easy, hope things heals up sooner then later.

allhorsestuff said...

I was very angry when I read this about the dogs...who freakin care if it was HER land..what Negligence! I afree with GHM..trina your naimals not to pack up and go for could have- and PRAISE GOD- you were not hurt worse!
So happy Liss saw you out there!

I know you are a wonderful optomist and al will be good..mee too..but I would consider not riding that land again if this could occur..that is so dangerous!
My mare would have done the same thihng..deathly afraid of One DOG with malicous actions..a would have been curtains for me! And I have been riding bareback pad since last August!

So happy you had the helmet and you will recover..poor Scout, bet he felt badly about getting primal and saving himslef dumping you..