Title says it all!
What happened was back in mid/late November (2011) I had a pretty bad accident off my mare, an accident that I know I could have so easily prevented. I also know that the way my mare behaved that day is NOT at all her usual and if I had only taken simple precautions leading up to the accident it likely never would have happened. I ended up on the ground that day head first, in the ER I was told I had a concussion as well as a fractured vertebrae and a herniated disc (I believe this is what it's called, but I am not doctor and don't speak all those scientific terms, so I could be wrong on the correct terms here. Anyway! In the weeks following closely after my accident my trainer asked me multiple times if I felt scared of my mare or horses in general, at the time I said no, because I knew that what happened that day was my fault and not at all Beverley's usual personality, she is generally very calm to the point I have to use the crop to keep her moving.
So now it's February, my doctor said I could ride the first week of February, which I have. Though throughout January I began noticing I was actually completely traumatized by this accident. My original "no I'm not scared" has turned into "I'm terrified of being in my mare's stall alone", "I'm scared to lead my mare on my own", little silly things like that that have absolutely nothing to do with the accident that occurred. I've had my trainer working Beverley throughout all of January to keep her in shape and such, and each time she is worked I am out there ...my trainer even gets me to tack her up on my own (because honestly even this scares me for whatever reason), I have even been able to lunge her on my own now ...with my trainer right next to me though.
Is it normal to be so so traumatized by little things like leading my mare or being in her stall alone or what have you? Obviously it can't be normal =( Before my accident I was NEVER this way. I've always been the person who, when the barn gets a new horse in (often green 2-6 y/o's) I jump at the chance to be the first on them, I would take any horse out with zero supervision what so ever, and if I ever had an issue with a horse I just got right back in the saddle.
The other night I hopped on my mare for the first time since I fell off and I was shaking the entire ride. Even though my trainer lunged her first and rode her for a good 40 minutes beforehand and Beverley tried not one thing with her, she was amazing - has been all of January as she is being worked regularly, I was still shaking as I was sitting on her. I stayed in a very tiny circle around my trainer but every time Bev even so much as tripped on her own feet I had tears in my eyes and all I could see in my mind was the ground and thinking of the "what if's". But Bev was so perfect that first ride, she didn't pull any funny moves on me. It's like she's not the problem, my fears are and I have noooo idea how to stop that. Is it really normal to be this scared of everything? I've never had this problem before and I have fallen off and broken bones before I just don't know what's wrong with me =/
How do I gain my confidence back? Obviously it won't happen over night, but still. Has anyone else had a bad fall and lost ALL confidence?