You Suck: An Eventer’s Ode to My Crappy Ankles and the Coronavirus -
You Suck: An Eventer’s Ode to My Crappy Ankles and the Coronavirus  You Suck: An Eventer’s Ode to My Crappy Ankles and the Coronavirus Screen Shot 2020 04 08 at 1

You Suck: An Eventer’s Ode to My Crappy Ankles and the Coronavirus

Bear in his new dwelling, Le Cheval de Boskydell, the place he’s below the immacualte care and coaching of our new coach, Jill O’Donoghue. Photograph courtesy of Meagan DeLisle.
In early February, I sat down at my pc and mapped out my whole competitors schedule for the spring/early summer time season, and I’m positive I’m not the one eventer who did so. All of us had huge goals and large plans for the 12 months. Mine included finalizing my {qualifications} for the 2020 American Eventing Championships early on by placing in two extra clear cross nation rounds, after which simply engaged on health till August rolled round. My candy horse Bear is nearing 23 now (and that’s to our greatest guess, haha, there may be some discrepancy as to his age), and whereas he appears to be like as match as might be, persevering with at novice or going previous it’s out of his consolation zone. The aim? Kill it on the AECs and let my tailless surprise retire on our farm, all whereas searching for a brand new competitors horse to step in and take his place when the time got here. 
I had no clue that only a week later the coronavirus would make its method into the USA, or that two weeks later I might put myself out of competitors for a while by tearing not one, however two of the ligaments in my left ankle after taking a small tumble at HITS Ocala (lesson realized girls and gents, don’t try to land in your ft — particularly in case your ankles suck at being ankles). 
I gave myself 10 minutes to freak out, after which I met with my orthopedic to make a plan. “My year-end championships are in August,” was the very first thing I mentioned when he opened the door to my examination room. “I must be within the saddle earlier than June to be match, prepared, and totally certified. That is the primary time I’ve ever certified, and the one likelihood I’ve of competing with this horse.”
My sucky ankles simply at some point after the harm. Photograph courtesy of Meagan DeLisle.
My husband sighed, however my orthopedic simply laughed. “Finished and achieved,” he mentioned as he defined to me a brand new surgical procedure choice that might simply have me out for six quick weeks. The rehab can be intense, however my ankle can be higher than ever. We scheduled the surgical procedure for 2 weeks later (his earliest availability), and I used to be on my method dreaming of cross nation runs on the Kentucky Horse Park and hopefully low dressage scores. 
After which, the coronavirus really grew to become a factor. As my surgical procedure date crept ahead, a number of folks reached out to me curious as to if my surgical procedure was nonetheless on the schedule. I started to panic. They wouldn’t ACTUALLY cancel my surgical procedure, would they? I imply, I might barely stroll, certainly they noticed this as an important surgical procedure, proper?
Incorrect. At 7:02 PM the night time earlier than my surgical procedure, the hospital known as me. The primary constructive testing within the county had come again, and all non-essential surgical procedures have been off the docket. I cried myself to sleep that night time realizing that this was just the start and that it might get a lot worse earlier than it might get higher. I used to be so shut. 
I do know that I’m fortunate in some elements that my surgical procedure was canceled. I do know that there was an inherent danger of myself or my surgical staff coming into contact with COVID-19. I do know that surgical provides must be saved for life-threatening circumstances. Belief me; I do know all of this. However that doesn’t imply that this totally doesn’t suck. 
I’m an lively individual. My solace is driving, and that’s gone for who is aware of how lengthy. My jumper mare continues to be in Florida, and I took Bear, my eventer, to Illinois for boot-camp so that when I used to be healed and able to go, so was he. For some time, I might go to Bear a couple of occasions per week, however then the necessity to quarantine grew to become so pressing that I knew I might now not put my great barn household in danger. So right here I’m, caught at dwelling, barely capable of stroll, unable to take care of my farm and its many inhabitants and unable to trip or see my horses. And it sucks. My husband has been great coping with my curler coaster of feelings and serving to take care of all the pieces at dwelling and on the farm. I do know I haven’t been a simple affected person. In actual fact, my physician refers to me as “his worst affected person.” Sorry, Wayne. 
So what does one do when the world appears to stack towards them? Once more, I gave myself a while to be mad, unhappy, and all the pieces in between. I let myself curse the world, after which I let myself draw inward and eat as a lot ice cream as I presumably might deal with. Then I regarded myself within the mirror at some point and mentioned, “suck it up, buttercup. Life sucks. Make it suck much less.”
So I ordered a TON of books and have devoted this time to studying and studying and betting myself as a horsewoman, even once I can’t be round a horse. I lastly realized about conformation and how one can assess it due to Deb Bennett’s “Ideas of Conformation Evaluation,” and I took notice of some barn administration abilities I can implement at dwelling with Cherry Hill’s “Horsekeeping on a Small Acreage.” I re-read and sticky-noted the crap out of one in all my favorites, “World-Class Grooming” by Cat Hill and Emma Ford. 
Looking for my completely satisfied place by studying one in all my all-time favourite books, “World-Class Grooming” simply minutes after my hospital cancelled my surgical procedure, whereas my husband tries to cheer me up with YouTube movies. Photograph courtesy of Meagan DeLisle.
I subscribed to YouTube after YouTube {of professional} riders who I like and have watched 1000’s of helmet cams, counting the strides between combos and feeling the way in which an upper-level rider executes their plan. I watch Dressage riders clarify and dissect tough actions so I can higher my scores when the time comes. I assess present leaping rounds one-by-one, watching outdated dwell feeds, and understanding why a rail got here down and the way it might have been prevented. 
I’ve cleaned my tack so completely that it appears to be like model new. I’ve organized my present trunks in order that when the season lastly comes round, I’ve all the pieces as a replacement. With the assistance of my husband, we now have combed via my truck and trailer, ensuring that every one is in working order for when I’m lastly capable of go present. And I’ve scoured the web in search of the right scooter to take to exhibits with me in order that despite the fact that I may be in restoration and unable to indicate, I can nonetheless go and dwell within the second with my mates and teammates and scoot across the grounds as finest as attainable.
Don’t get me mistaken — I’m nonetheless unhappy and annoyed, and the hospital most likely hates me as a result of I name weekly hoping for an replace solely to listen to, “sorry, Meagan, nonetheless not occurring anytime quickly.” I nonetheless assume my ankles and the coronavirus completely suck. I nonetheless don’t perceive why any of this occurred to me, to my nation, to my sport. However on the finish of the day, I’m wholesome. I’m alive. And I’m going to make the most effective of this. As a result of my ankles and the coronavirus may suck, however my life doesn’t need to. 

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