I set goals for myself and I have already achieved my short-term goals. I went back to school 6 months after the accident. I rode my first para-equestrian competition one year after the accident as an invited rider at France’s Haras de Jardy. I graduated with my friends on time and I stood and walked a few tiny steps to get my diploma.
Thanks to Senator Bill Nelson in Florida and the Pentagon team, I was granted access to the Naval Medical Center in San Diego to do my rehab. Wow. This is the real thing. Then my dad flew my DeeDee to me in California. Now I am training with my next goal: to represent my country as a member of the US para-equestrian team. Maybe Tokyo 2021, maybe the World Championship 2022 in Denmark, maybe Paris 2024… but that’s my goal.
I’ve sort of put college on hold for the moment because getting myself and my horses qualified for an international event like the Paralympics takes a LOT of time and work. There have been some ups and downs since my accident, but I am doing the best I can. Whatever I do now, I know I have been given the opportunity to do something amazing with my life… and I am going to do it!