Sports Fiction posted July 18, 2016

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Struggles I Have Yet To Face


by country ranch writer

This is all I ever wanted to do -ride horses. Growing up out in the country when you are a kid is exciting. I started riding when I was three and being in a family of riders I was expected to pull my weight. Can you even imagine or comprehend all the hard work that goes into a rodeo families life? You would have to be shown before you could understand how one feels about competition.

When I am on a horse I'm happy and content. It makes me feel confident and there isn't anything I can't accomplish if I put my mind to it and keep focused on the task at hand. How can I show you how I am feeling? It is something you have to feel inside yourself.

I could never turn down a challenge even when I got older. If it had four feet I was going to do my best to ride it, that is horses or cows. I fell in love with barrel racing by chance and have been doing this ever since.
Being in my teens I never gave it much thought about getting seriously hurt.
But fate has a way of bringing me down to earth in a hurry. I never can count on things in life always staying the same. I have seen so many get hurt and still return to what they love doing, rodeo.

A career in the sport of barrel racing was my dream. I wanted to be the winner of the barrel racing championships of the year. Many would say I grew up on the back of a horse. For me, it was the happiest place on earth. Riding in rodeos, working on the ranch, keeping up with school work was a juggling act. What did I have to show for it? " Money in the bank and recognition for my efforts."

For me ( like most who love doing what they do best) rodeo was the first thing I thought about when I woke up every morning and the last thing that was on my mind when I went to bed."
I learned that I don't have to be first all the time. I go out and show the crowd how it is exciting and a crowd pleaser.

I just want to go out there and give it my best shot. Winning comes with age and the learning the ropes from experienced seasoned riders around you.

My grandpa said, "We'll just have to see how well you perform over time." He was my biggest fan. He was there the first time I ran the barrels. He , " was in tears as he watched me."

It was a proud moment in his life, he told me to have fun while I was young. He said you was the most stubborn and determined gal he ever came across besides Grandma. He kind of chuckled when he said that.
Determination really pays off in barrel racing, a life I wouldn't trade for the world.
I would not be left behind. I was determined to overcome any obstacle. Until the night of my accident when my whole world fell apart.

I was headed for the next rodeo when it began to snow heavily. Looking at the map I began I slide on the ice, it freaked me out turning the wheel I swerved going off the road. My truck rolled over and over, I was thrown from the truck. My face was a bloody mess from all the glass.
After hitting a pole head on I landing 300 feet in the snow bank, it broke my back, broke my right arm, broke some ribs. I was a real mess. It was the first time I ever forgot to wear my seat belt. "I would never walk or ride again." Shaking his head in disbelief the first responder said, "you was also lucky to have survived,"
There I was a crumpled up mess, I was lying on the cold ground shivering , snow coming down all around. I was scared, as I waited to be airlifted to the hospital. The only good news was the horses survived. When the trailer went over, it snapped the tongue of the trailer and by some miracle it stayed up right.
The helicopter, landed in the field as close as they possibly to get to me. They hurriedly ran to me and tried to get back up in the air. In hopes of getting me to the hospital before the blizzard grounded them. They were having a hard time taking off and landing in all this weather.
I would not accept this at all! There was no way in hell I worked so hard to see my dreams go up in smoke." I would face any obstacles and challenges to get my life back.

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To be continued in the next chapter.
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