In July 2019, while visiting my military husband in Germany, I hit a trolley line on a bike and went flying which broke my ankle and dislocated my foot. I was rushed to surgery and while being wheeled back, I was given a 50 percent chance of losing my foot. I spent two weeks in the hospital with an external fixator, then was pinned together, but the post-trauma damage has been exceptional.
On a recent conference call with my fellow Carolina International committee members, we were discussing the aftermath of our gutting cancelation. I asked Lefreda Williams if there was this much hysteria and fear during the Flu epidemic of 1918, to which she replied in true Lefreda form, followed by a light moment and some laughter. Which we all needed.
Usually at the beginning of the year I'm pretty excited about getting back out in competitions on my horses. This year was no different, with the notable exception that I was shuffling around my upper level horses and starting out only on the lower level ones. I was still eager to get back into competing and continuing to improve.
One day Denny and I were talking, I can’t quite remember what started the conversation, but I said I do not think of myself as being that brave. He looked at me like I was nuts, I think he even said, but you went advanced! My response was that I am brave enough, but I am not crazy brave
My dad used to say when I was growing up that if you looked up the word relentless in the dictionary there would be a picture of me next to it. I think at the time he meant my relentlessness in constantly asking for a horse (and everything else that went along with it), but over time I've begun to realize just how much of this personality trait is needed in eventing.
I recently had the chance to take part in the great eventing migration south and although my trip was only a little over a week-long, it was an amazing experience. I left Middleburg, Virginia after work one afternoon with my dog wedged in the back seat of my trusty SUV amid every rain jacket I own, all of my show equipment, and a trunk full of fun items I had collected over the winter months. I reached Aiken sometime in the middle of the night (thanks to my roommate Ashley Kriegel for not minding the late arrival), but the 8-hour drive was painless knowing my destination was a week of eventing-bliss at Lynn Symansky Equestrian South.
I am Debbie Hastings and along with running my web design business, Flying Change Webs & Graphics, family activities, and the hectic schedule of two active children, I love following the sport of eventing. My screen names on many social networks is EventerMom, but I am not a competitor – in fact I’ve only ridden in a few times in my entire life.
One week ago, 23 of my best equine friends perished in a terrible fire that leveled Over The Hill Farm in just minutes. Two of the horses who passed away had a special place in my heart: my beloved 17-year old grey Thoroughbred named Weathermark, and my former 25-year old black Morgan pony named Fletcher Indy Winner.
“BEEP, BEEP, BEEP!!” the 5:30 a.m. alarm sounds. Begrudgingly, I scramble out of bed, stager across the bedroom carpet, drop to all fours and climb under my desk to search for the source of the hideous alarm and silence it (such distant placement of the alarm clock forces my arousal).