Your stories: My journey to a medical diagnosis and inspiring others

Equine Pursuit are running a series of ‘your stories’ where we hear from some of our facebook followers and website users. In this post we hear from Georgia. If you would like to tell your story send an email to info@equinepursuit.com.

My name is Georgia, I’m 20 years old and I live in Cornwall, UK. I have been riding and competing since the age of 6, riding was and still is my passion. As I child I would sleep, breathe and dream horses so it was destined way before I could walk that I would be a horse mad girl! 

As soon as I could convince my parents to let me move out of riding school ponies I started working freelance as a groom and riding for people, I worked with many different horses and ponies, from feral moorland ponies to ex-racehorses, yearlings to a 40 year old gelding. Every moment I wasn’t in school I was working extremely hard with horses, it was my dream to be a professional rider and I wanted to succeed! 

It was also around this time I started experiencing generalised body pain, thinking nothing of it and putting it down to growing pains, it took the back burner.

After riding many horses and sharing a few along the way, in 2014 I decided to knuckle down, leave my passion for dressage behind and start eventing which is when my horse, Junior comes into the story.

Junior was at the time a 12 year old ex-hunt service horse (sired by Bandmaster) who had done pretty much nothing but who had collected a lot of issues in his life journey. My plans at the time was to produce him on and sell him after he started going well. This never happened. 

After a rocky journey with Junior through severe napping, injuries, illness and falls, as he improved we bonded. Becoming nearly inseparable, I knew then that I had found my partner to take on eventing with. We placed 1st in our first class and Junior champion in our first show. The success continued through the seasons. 

I left college in 2017 and focused on working with junior more, we also decided to move yards and take a break from competing to have some downtime and enjoy each others company, in this time we achieved many goals such as jumping 1.15, riding tackless for the first time but also, my pain grew worse. 

In December 2019 I was diagnosed with stage 2 endometriosis following my diagnosis with ME (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) and Fibromyalgia, my diagnosis’ were a huge relief to me but also bittersweet. It meant I had to change my life to fit around my body and that meant work and unfortunately my riding. My goals changed from wanting to compete at the top, to just simply wanting to inspire others. 

I started my page G.A Eventing and my Instagram, bandmastertales to share my story and journey with others. I have had a overwhelming response from people I  a similar situation to me and people who are able bodied who have thanked me for being their inspiration. To me, knowing I am helping to inspire others to work towards their dream is way better than qualifying for HOYS. 

2020 holds some interesting plans for me, I am hoping to get back into eventing and I am hoping the rules to grading will change so I can compete under a para title. Until them I keep working 110% to be the best I can be and always have been.

To keep up to date with Georgia’s journey you can follow her instagram page here: https://www.instagram.com/bandmastertales/