My friends at the RDA have asked me to tell you about my involvement with the Glasgow Group. First let me tell you a bit about me and how I arrived at the RDA.
Back in January 2004 I had a brain haemorrhage, which isn’t a very nice thing to happen to anyone, never mind me. I was very ill and was in hospital for 6 months. The injury left me in a very bad way indeed, as initially I could not move a muscle or speak. In hospital I had to do lots and lots of physiotherapy as my brain had to relearn how to control my body again.
The physio-terrorists knew I liked horses as my mum and dad had brought pictures of our holidays in Ireland where I was riding Bracken. They suggested that when I got out of hospital that I joined the RDA.
My dad contacted the Glasgow Group and I was lucky enough to get a place. I started riding on Cullen. I was still very weak and had no balance so needed three helpers. I needed one helper to lead Cullen and one on either side of me to hold me.
During the class we would play games which are fun but also helped my balance. My helper friends were great. They taught me lots about the names of different parts and the different colours of ponies. Also I learned the names of all the tack.
When I returned to the RDA after my summer holidays I surprised all my helper friends by using my K-Walker instead of my wheelchair when I came to class! My mum and dad believe that the RDA helped me regain my strength enormously. Sometimes I think they forget about all the other exercises that my physio was making me do!
The helpers will use every excuse to have a party, but my favourite is the Christmas party. Santa arrives to deliver presents in a trap pulled by a very small pony called Smudge. My friends at RDA get very excited! Santa has presents for everyone including my wee brother Paul, who always seems to turn up when there is a party!