Safe to say my world has been thrown into utter chaos, since my last blog. Had to literally put the breaks on my life and all my plans, due to the wonderful new epidemic known as Coronavirus or COVID19.
It was very strange and worrying to go from riding two horses and working, to the next day being locked away in my house. In that short space of a day, I had to not only organise ridden help for the two, but also how I would get their feed and supplements to them, as I would usually be delivery it myself. An absolute cluster of chaos, but I am extremely lucky to have the most caring and wonderful yard staff, who took care of my two for the whole of lockdown.
After the first week or so, the novelty of having a break wore off very fast and before I knew it was itching to get back in the saddle again. It wasn’t just my outside life I had to adapt, but our home life too. As I was classed as high risk, that meant only one person from our household was responsible for getting food, petrol, etc. We also had to sterilise EVERYTHING, and wear gloves and masks if we had to go outside, and quarantine all packages and food items. It was crazy as I also had to suddenly stop work and go on furlough, which I was quite sad about as I work as a vet receptionist so I would miss seeing all the animals. Luckily, I’m living with my parents at the moment and my dad was the one going out of the house to get all our food. No visitors or seeing friends face to face anymore, and I couldn’t really see my sister, who had moved out and was living at her yard due to her being at Uni. Very sad times, but I decided keep myself busy as much as possible. Before lockdown, I was planning on launching my own cake making company, and when lockdown happened I launched ‘Amying High Cakes’. I specialise in making celebration cakes and cake toppers of animals, objects, etc. And surprisingly I’ve had quite a few commissions over the lockdown period. From making a garden cake, to making a thank you cake for the NHS at Frimley Park Hospital. I absolutely love making cakes and anything bake-wise, so this is a great way to earn extra income and be creative with my cake and cake topper making.
Unfortunately, at the beginning of lockdown I caught a chest infection or CF flare up as we call it and we all thought I had COVID! This is because our flare-up symptoms are very similar to COVID, we were afraid that I had contracted it. I started to feel really tired and then by the weekend my sputum (sorry for yucky stuff) had thickened and was becoming more prevalent in volume. By the end of the weekend, I was on the sofa feeling very sick, but thankfully the nurses and doctors at Frimley Park Hospital were on hand to help. I went in with my mask and gloves on, and was met with nurses in full on PPE, which was quite scary. Then I had to be tested for COVID, which was quite uncomfortable but necessary. Thankfully, I tested negative and was put on IVS and a treatment program and I’m happy to say I’m feeling so much better. When I finished my course, I moved onto to doing some awareness campaigning for CF month. For CF month, which is May, I wanted to raise awareness for our condition and what with being Lockdown I thought it was the perfect time to do so. I got 3 fabulous ladies, all with CF to come and have a chat about how they manage their CF in their lives. Talking about the good, the bad and the ugly parts of having CF, and it was a great success allowing people to enjoy it and learn a great deal about Cystic Fibrosis. All the chats are on my Facebook page if you wish to watch them.
I also had a go at being creative, so I made a DIY fishing rod, and had a go at making a hobby horse, and I have to say the first one I made does resemble Benji, with their puffy forelock and manes, and their adorable face. And I also made a replica of Flora. Together we will be attempting online dressage and hopefully we can do just as good as the real life ponies. Really proud of myself for making him from scratch, I still have my creative textile flair having not touched my sewing machine for a year!
Finally, at the beginning of June, I sat in the saddle again for the first time in 11 weeks, and it felt like my mind and body breathed a sigh of relief. I’m ensuring that I am doing this as safely and as clean as I can, I am fortunate to be able to drive straight to the field and tack up there, without interacting with others. I am very lucky to have wonderful friends at the yards who understand the importance of social distancing and cleanliness when I’m around. I’m only going when the yard isn’t busy and my car is full to the brim with sterile gloves, masks, wipes, hand sanitizer, etc. To ensure maximum safety. It’s been wonderful to enjoy riding again and to be outdoors for more than 5 mins. Unfortunately, due to COVID still around it looks like we won’t be competing for a while as I’m still technically supposed to be shielding and I feel that won’t be able to stay 2 metres from the other competitors in the warmup ring. I’m probably being paranoid with it all, but I’m not taking any risks and instead we’re going to work on training and having as much as we can in the sun. We’re also planning on doing the Wellington fun ride in August and going to the beach which is mega exciting!!
- Pam Hardin Para Dressage Rider Team USA – My Upside of Lockdown and one text put the whole barn on guard
- How does 10% off your first order at Trendy Equine sound?
- Holly Norris – I genuinely thought we’d never see this day!
- Amy Maris has become quite the creative entrepreneur during lockdown…
- Grade IV Para Dressage rider Marcelle Ward – its like juggling jelly
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