Monday, July 27, 2009

Yes, folks, riding horses can be risky


We all know this, or we think we know it, and then sometimes it smacks us right in the face. Or in Steve's case, the shoulder.

Saturday, after I bought the cutest white Miata in the world and went to show it to my dad, I got home, Steve and I went to a late lunch at Sushi Hana, then to the barn to ride. I have not let Steve ride Bar in a really long time and decided I was going to let go of my control-freakiness and allow it and just see what happened.

Poo happened, but not because Bar was acting up at all. In fact, he was being really good, really responsive and cooperative, and things were going along really well--plus I was having a great ride on Lena.

I was by the gate of the big outdoor arena and turned around just in time to see Bar and Steve turn, trip, and go down in a big puff of dust. Bar got up and immediately came over to Lena and me. I got her settled down, heard Bill settling his horse down, got off Lena, and turned around to see Steve lying prone on the ground on his back, not moving. Bill got off his horse and called out for help and headed out of the arena. I got our two horses calmed down and called to Steve, who was laying way too still.

Finally, after what seemed like forever, he started to sit up and the three of us headed over there. The horses started to bicker and I backed them both up and told them in uncertain terms that it was not the time for that and they settled immediately. When we got over to Steve, they both wanted to get in closer to see why he was on the ground, but I wouldn't let them. There was someone there, a friend of one of the boarders, who was a nurse and she came out and checked him out. He fell on his right shoulder and was really sore there, but it didn't seem like anything was broken because he could move his arm and squeeze his hand.

Carlyne and Bill came to help with my horses at that point, so I let Carlyne take Lena and I took Bar up to put them away. Bill and the nurse and several other people stayed with Steve, who managed to be on his feet when the ambulance and firetrucks got there. (Thank you, Forestville Fire Department!)

Steve was coherent, though a little out of it and obviously in pain, and didn't want to go the hospital, so he and I went home. His first question to me? "How is Bar?" Bar seemed to be fine, though Steve was really disappointed that this had to happen while things were going so well in the arena.



Once we got home, he alternated between resting prone and upright until about 9:30, and then he tried to get up and threw up. Hm. I checked his pupils, and they were fine. He was tracking well with both eyes and said his head didn't hurt, he was just really dizzy. Did he want to go to the hospital, yet? No.

So we slept on the sofa, both of us, me waking up to check on him periodically and help him with blankets and pillow angles, until the next morning when he could not get up at all--even to go to the bathroom--because his vertigo was so bad.

He had me call the ambulance and the first crew to show up was our guys from Forestville again. They didn't lecture him, and in fact say it is very common--particularly with men (no offense, guys)--to get a second call in a case like this.

So Steve and I spent all day yesterday in Kaiser's ER, then they finally admitted him because he still couldn't sit up, let alone get into a car. He's still there and they did find a vertigo medicine that seems to be working, though he's still pretty shaky and hasn't tried to stand up, yet.

The vertigo is what's keeping him there, and it's probably caused by a mild concussion. He had a CT scan and his brain is fine, no bleeding or issues there, which is obviously very good news. He did manage to fracture his scapula, four ribs, and his collar bone. One of the nurses told him "nice job" today. He won't take any pain meds, though, because he says it doesn't hurt that badly unless he coughs or sneezes, and because most of the normal meds make him too sick and he doesn't figure that's a good idea at the moment.

The lesson is two-fold. Anything can happen, even on a good day, and going to the hospital initially might have been a good plan. But.. hindsight, as they say, is 20-20.

Since Steve is my editor, he isn't here to point out typos or where things could be worded smoother, so I apologize if this post isn't as clear as usual. I'm also eating grilled cheese for dinner because, well, it's about all I know how to cook.

And I miss him, but am glad he seems to be on the mend and really glad it wasn't more serious.

AND--thank you to Randee for the iPhone photo documentation on top of calling 911!

1 comment:

Kate said...

Hope he feels better soon - ouch! I've had bad vertigo once and it's the worst!