Getting back in the saddle

Despite some damage to her shoulder, Ferris pre-pharmacy junior Logan Bixman is living life in a normal fashion again.

The significance of living in relative norm for Bixman, is that in March 2013, that was seriously in doubt.

Bixman, an honors student rides horses and is the Co-President of the Hunt Team. The practice of horseback-riding has its dangers, and on one particular March day, Bixman experienced the full force of those dangers.

“I was warming up. I [went] over the first jump and it was so long, I barely got over the second one,” Bixman said. “I went to jump over the last one, and we went up and over. Then, the horse I was riding caught it with her legs and she went down. She went down so fast, it sent me flying.”

Witnesses estimated that Bixman flew around 30-40 feet in the air and landed on her left shoulder and neck.

“I was instantly in so much pain,” Bixman said. “I wasn’t sure if it was all in my head or something. It wasn’t like any other pain I’ve felt before. I remember just lying there, sobbing and not sure what to do. It was like this radiating pain I just couldn’t shake off.”

Bixman had her friends use her phone to call her parents and an ambulance as she was unable to move her body.

“I was picked up by the ambulance and driven to the hospital,” Bixman said. “They were asking me ‘can you feel this,’ or ‘can you see this,’ and everything was fine except I could only feel things from the base of my neck up.”

X-rays revealed that Bixman had broken her spine in five places, broke nearly all of her ribs and cracked her sternum in half. As of today, she still has muscle damage in her left shoulder.

“For three months, I had my mom, my sister and boyfriend at the time,” said Bixman. “They had to help me go to the bathroom, feed me, bathe me and change me and stuff. It was a total eye opener to how much everyone takes for granted. If I wanted to change my pants because I was too warm, I had to call my mom to do it.”

Bixman had to finish her freshman year at home in Fenton, roughly a two hour and 40 minute drive away from Big Rapids.

“It was exciting because I had gotten a 4.0 GPA that semester,” Bixman said. “I really didn’t have anything else to do.”

Bixman is an honor’s student and recipient of the Outstanding Leader Award, Volunteer Award and Rising Star Award.

“It’s a lot better now,” Bixman said. “I’ve ridden since then and stuff, but there’s still so much I’m afraid to do. You never think something’s going to happen to you, but it can.”