From Endurance to Dressage
I am still here. Thank you to those who reached out to me to make sure I was still around. I wasn't able to respond, but I very much appreciated your thoughtfulness.
While it might appear that I am pretty public with what goes on in my life, there are parts that I don't feel are relevant to this space. That doesn't mean I am hiding the TRUTH or presenting a rosier-than-what-it-really-is life. I think you all know by now I am pretty honest about the frustrations of being an underachieving over-achiever in the world of dressage.
Typically, this is a space for me to share what life is like for a middle-aged, adult amateur equestrian. Sometimes, my work life affects my equestrian life, so I write about teaching. Sometimes my personal life affects my equestrian life, so I write about my finances, car trouble, or even politics. For this MIA episode, it was a health issue. I tested positive for COVID-19 on November 4th.
Like everyone else on the planet, I've caught different bugs that have kept me from the barn. Four years ago, I had a very serious case of bronchitis that kept me home for nearly a month. I've also dislocated my knee, been kicked in the face, had amnesia, and been dumped into more than one fence. COVID has just been one more thing to add to my list of things that interfere with riding.
I chose not to get vaccinated, and even while miserable in bed, I did not regret that decision. I am a healthy, active woman with a strong immune system. I am not anti-vaccine, and I believe this vaccine is certainly helping many people remain healthy. It just wasn't something that I felt was right for me. The vaccine can have serious side effects, and it's not a guarantee that you won't get COVID. Besides that, I do not believe the government has the right to dictate my medical decisions.
Fortunately, my husband took great care of me, and I did not need to be hospitalized. The whole thing felt like a really crappy flu. I ran a fever for more than a week, lost my appetite, spent a night hovering over the toilet, had a small cough, developed pneumonia, and then spent another week on the couch recovering.
My regular doctor doesn't treat COVID patients, so I went to Accelerated Urgent Care, a local chain of clinics that seems to specialize in the treatment of COVID-19. I was first given the antibiotic Azithromycin (to treat secondary infection) and prescribed Zinc, C and D. I was also put on the schedule for a REGEN-COV treatment, a synthetic antibody administered subcutaneously (in my case). When an x-ray revealed pneumonia, I took another course of antibiotics. I returned to the clinic for two follow up visits just so the doctor could observe the REGEN-COV's effectiveness. I was treated with the utmost compassion by the nurses and doctors at Accelerated Urgent Care. They took the whole thing in stride without ever making me feel as though I were overwhelming the health care system.
I developed symptoms on a Tuesday (slight congestion and fatigue), tested positive that Thursday, and then was sick for eight or nine days. I spent another week alternating between resting on the couch and puttering around the house. On Thursday, two weeks after testing positive, I made a quick trip to the barn to pay my board and sit in the sun. On Saturday, I finally put on a pair of breeches and laid hands on both of my boys. That seemed to really kickstart my body back to wellness. I think spending time with horses should be on the list of therapies for any illness.
Now, I just need to rebuild some fitness. I've finished the antibiotics, and other than some loss of stamina, I am symptom free. My fingers are crossed that I am strong enough to begin my Saturday lessons this weekend. In the meantime, I'm going to be spending as much time in the sun as possible, and that was prescribed by the doctor. COVID was definitely inconvenient, but no more so than any other thing that has sidelined me in the past.
It might take me a few days to get back into the swing of things, but I am definitely ready. It's good to be back!
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at Second Level. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2022 Pending …
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
4/10-11 SCEC (***)
5/16-17 El Sueño (***)
6/26-27 SCEC (***)
7/17-18 El Sueño (***)
8/7-8 SCEC (***)
10/30-31 SCEC (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read