A few months ago I went for my first sleepover at the supported living place I hope to move into. Closer to the time I wrote another blog post about this but now I have moved to using word press instead, so I have decided to write it again.
On Tuesday evening I had my first sleepover night at the supported living place I hope to move into. I was nervous to see what staying the night there would be like.
Throughout the day I was feeling very anxious, stressed, worried and scared. I wasn’t sure what would happen. I was anxious because I hadn’t seen my care plan, I wasn’t sure if the staff at the place would not know what to do if i had a seizure or if I got my hands on anything I could harm myself with.
Luckily I saw my care coordinator during the day they were very good at helping me to calm down. I was also anxious because I had thoughts buzzing in my head at 100 miles an hour ” What if they don’t have my living aids I need”. As well as this not very long before the sleepover I had chosen my bedrooms curtains but I wasn’t sure if they would have arrived on time.
On The Way
On the way to the house I felt scared and sick. It felt like I had dozens of butterfly’s in my stomach. I wasn’t sure if i wanted to stay the night because I had felt so stressed about it earlier the same day.
When I arrived at the house I saw my room. My parents and the staff were good at trying to make me feel a bit more relaxed and not so anxious. My parents and I still hadn’t seen the care plan but I enjoyed seeing what I needed to get for my room and thinking about colour themes ideas. I decided to stay the night.
Night Into Morning
The night was ok it went better than I expected , I had staff come and check on me throughout the night and support me when I had a seizure. My parents said they would collect me if needed but I stayed the whole night. In the morning I felt alright so had breakfast then went to college.
When I saw my family I told them how it went.
I’m glad I did it despite all the feelings beforehand.
Before I started riding with the RDA I had riding lessons at a different stable. I had to wait ages to do riding with the RDA because the waiting list was so long. To this day I still remember going to the RDA for the first time for my assessment to see what class I should go in. I’d been so excited about the idea but when it came to it I didn’t want to get on. I thought the pony would be like this very naughty one I used to ride. However when I got on this lovely gentle old pony called Barbie even though I was nervous I began to trust her.
This is me with the beautiful Billy.
I’ve now been riding at the RDA for 9 years and I love it! Going horse riding has helped me in ways I thought wasn’t possible. Not only is it good to do because it helps me to improve my balance and strengthen my body but it’s helped me grow in confidence, helped me get through the week when I was getting badly bullied at both primary and secondary school. You could say it’s my rock and I am always looking forward to the next week. It has also helped my mental health massively. I often say to people it’s funny you know because I trust the horses and ponies I ride more than humans.
Riding the celebrity pony of the stables Forester at The Countryside Challenge Regionals 2011.
This is Bonnie and I at The Countryside Challenge Nationals 2012.
The very cheeky but lovely pony Eddie.
I love all the horses and ponies at South Bucks RDA, some of them have been in the Paralympics. I love to talk to the horses when I ride them as well. I have done the RDA Countryside Challenge Competitions. A couple of times I have been to the regionals and once to the nationals. Once the pony I was riding at the regionals called Eddie was so cheeky he wasn’t allowed to participate in another RDA Countryside Challenge again ! I love how all the horses and ponies have their own personalities and cheeky things they like to do.
Riding the fantastic Pieces at the 1st round of The Countryside Challenge 2018.
In our lessons we have leaders to help us they volunteer for the RDA and without all the volunteers riding these amazing animals would not be possible. Even some of our riding instructors are volunteers too. The volunteers help us during our lessons sometimes we get to ride unled so they help us to make sure we are safe they are all very helpful and I’m always learning new ways to help me ride.
Here I am riding the brilliant Yogi with help from my amazing helper.
In our lessons we practice things such as making sure our ponies and horses walk in a straight line, changing the reins, practising different sized circles, riding round obstacles, and I have done some trotting in the past! In the summer we sometimes go on hacks in the woods.
Going for a hack in the woods
Horse riding gives me so much pleasure and I have so many happy and funny memories that I will have for treasure for ever. My sister has recently become a volunteer which I’m super proud of. My dream one day is to have my own horse! If you’re thinking about trying horse riding my advice would be try it I am so glad I got on Barbie and ever since then I haven’t stopped. If you’re thinking about volunteering at RDA try it you might come back home telling funny stories round the dinner table.