SUMMER 2017 - TEARS, TANTRUMS, EMERGENCY ADMISSIONS! & WINNING

This summer has been a little crazy as usual. In fact this whole year has. Life, (as many people know from experience) can be so unpredictable without the added complications of our bodies not working 100%. Our bodies are incredible things , but they don't always fit in with our busy lives when it comes to big plans and unexpected wavers in our health.

I began my busy summer with a heavy schedule of GCSE maths revision , riding lessons on Daisy and 6 hours of treatment every other night through my A.C.E (or as I call it - a form of torture!) Earlier in the year I'd been falling behind in maths due to my lessons all being in the morning and with me struggling to even function first thing in the day after treatment was a tremendous amount of stress that just seemed to make me more poorly. Add in the fact

I was incredibly malnourished and dehydrated , we're basically talking about zombie Evie most mornings earlier than an 8am start.

I was fortunate enough to be enrolled into our local hospital school , a home school where teachers come out to you and teach the core subjects. I'd been admitted to hospital shortly after having my first maths lesson after losing so much weight and struggling to tolerate water , as well as my bladder constantly erupting (leaving me swimming in my very own waterworks) at least 3+ times per day despite catheterising every 2 hours. Later that week I was due another maths lesson , although I was still in hospital mum had seen my on my phone earlier that morning and decided I was well enough to have my maths tutor come and teach me at hospital. After hearing his voice in the corridor and dreading having to find 'x' for 3 hours I did what I call the toddler tantrum. Before my tutor had arrived in my room at the end of the corridor , I ran (and wheeled my feed stand and drip) the nearest bathroom , ripped out my feeding tube and locked the doors before anyone could stop me. - This was the most control I had over anything since being admitted after being tube fed , deprived of food and not allowed out. The last thing I wanted to do was maths.

Low and behold my tutor spent 2 hours speaking through the toilet door to me about my horses and upcoming events. Me being stubborn had to stick to my guns about not coming out , since then I'm pleased to say we get on very well now. Although I'm often greeted with 'it's lovely to teach you without a door between us', something we now joke about. Within a few weeks I'd improved no end and we decided to put me in for my maths GCSE a year early. I was behind in maths , and now I was ahead within a matter of weeks because of Paul and his strong will to turn things around for me. I'm pleased to say that I did indeed pass my GCSE maths a year early , with the second highest grade for that paper at my school. Thrilled is an understatement , as is relieved!!

To me this proved that even if we're a little lost in our tracks , or behind in work or school perhaps. With the right help and strong determination , anything is possible. What seemed so out of reach became a walk in the park after 6 weeks of knuckling down. Set goals , work hard and enjoy your achievements in whatever sphere. We're all capable of wonderful things , it's yours for the taking.

With my results out of the way I could enjoy the rest of my summer plans (with the odd hospital appointment here and there). The plans included a visit to cosmopolitan HQ to meet the editors of the magazine, jumping at stoneleigh National Champs and Scope festival. Unfortunately what should have been just a clinic appointment with my gastro turned into a *2 WEEK EMERGENCY ADMISSION* due to me still struggling to manage my weight. I couldn't believe it, the last part of summer and all my plans and excitement were on hold for yet another inpatient stay.

The first week was relatively awful, also my peripheral vision was of concern probably due to my nutrition so I had brain scans - I just seemed to be even more unwell in hospital. By the 2nd week , I managed to be a little more productive & as I couldn't go to the cosmopolitan event, we emailed the editor all the questions I had originally planned to ask and got a great response. Probably much more valuable than going in person would've been due to how many questions I was able to ask and having the detailed answers emailed back to me. With that victory I was determined to get out of hospital. After improving so much over the 2 week period , managing my bladder which had been awful ,putting on weight and tolerating more food and finally getting my A.C.E to work after not having any movement for 15 days , it was agreed I could have weekend leave and then be discharged if stable.

Upon arriving home I had already planned my next shows ! I jumped Daisy at Arena UK festival where she won her class within the Forces Equine , with a very fast time in heated competition. I was so pleased as I was unsure if I'd need some time getting back into the swing of things. Since then we've won every single time we've competed together and have now qualified for 'Blue Chip' in April which I'm really excited about as I've never qualified before despite several attempt on ponies.

Sadly a few weeks after coming home Breeze sustained a serious injury to her leg in the field. The fencing wire had wrapped around her leg and cut through her ligaments , muscles and tendons like cheese string. Heartbroken is a real understatement , both myself and mum were devastated. But , after stitching the excess skin up , cleaning and dressing the wound every day , and a lot of tears-Breeze is now on box rest to help her heal. It's expected that she won't be able to come back into full work , but after everything that's happened I'm so lucky to still have her here with us.

With Breeze out of action I'm now riding Apple our lovely 5 year old much more , although this was planned for 12 months down the line we've pushed things forward a little due to the change in circumstances. Although the situation with breeze is awful , I'm so pleased I can now ride Apple alongside Daisy (aka the superstar) the plan is that as she grows up I will then take over from my mum and compete her- something I'm really excited about.

WINNING FORCES EQUINE LEAGUE

I was still left in nappies due to the volcanic eruptions that drenched me down to my socks. I've had to temporarily manage my bladder on free drainage indwelling catheters , which is working a treat so far. Although having a drainage bag attached 24/7 can be a bit of a hassle at times , I'm so pleased I can get some of my life back now.

So far this year has been a little challenging , I've learnt to make the most of every situation. There's always a way forward in every situation , life throws obstacles in our way and our job is to overcome them. Find a way , Not an excuse (my motto). With determination, will power and something you love so much you'll always find a way to make the most of everything and carry on despite a difficult situation.