I haven't been posting in a while because I've been looking for stuff we've lost, most recently, our USEA Medical Armbands. Lily was all set to go to a horse trials last Saturday and even though I had nagged, yes nagged, her for two weeks about did she know where everything was, she admitted on Friday night that no, she didn't know where her required medical armband was. The one you can't ride without.
For readers who aren't eventers, medical arm bands are cheapo plastic sleeves with an elastic band that goes around your upper arm. Inside is a slip of paper with all your medical information on it, including a record of your falls and instructions about what to do with your dead body. It's required for cross-country and stadium jumping in horse trials. The USEA Medical Armband information page you need to fill out is readily available on the Internet, so we were able to download and print it. But how to get it on her body without pinning it through her skin (an option I considered)?
What I should have done was scratch her from the event and stay home. She'd had ample time to either find it or do something about not being able to find it. I foam at the mouth about things left until the night before. That would have been good parenting. I also would have lost my entry fee, which I'd already paid. The money spent won out over good parenting.
The weather forecast was also dismal. Chance of sleet, then rain, and the high no higher than 43. A perfect day to teach my daughter a lesson while staying warm and comfortable inside. Maybe I would have written my Christmas cards. Written my novel.
But no. Instead, I googled "do it yourself medical armband" and came up with nothing. Hence the title of this post. The things can be had for $5-$10, but they cannot be had at Wal-Mart or your local gas station. You would gladly pay the money but there is no one to take it the night before.
And apparently I'm the only disorganized person on the Internet because I could find no instructions on how to make my own medical armband. Pinning it on would have worked, except if the rain came. Plus, a safety pin might not be the greatest thing in a fall. I thought of putting it in a Ziploc bag and pinning or duct-taping it on, and that probably would have worked fine. Except for the crinkly sound it might make. The horse-killing, crinkly plastic sound. No, though I may have wanted to kill Lily for waiting until the last minute, I was not going to strap an IED on her.
So, I went to my Drawer That Contains Everything. After scrabbling through spare stock pins, extra headphones, old eyeglasses and my grandmother's handkerchiefs, I found something potentially useful: a luggage tag. A bright turquoise leatherette thing guaranteed to keep anyone else from accidentally taking your luggage, or your daughter seriously.
It was a great size and had a plastic window sewn into it. If we removed the duct tape to transfer it from her cross-country shirt to her stadium-jumping jacket it wouldn't tear, unlike the IED crinkly plastic bag of death.
And I just happened to have some turquoise duct tape. Now, I can't get my socks to match. But my luggage tag and my duct tape, why I'm practically the Michelle Obama of style.
I was worried that I might have to sing and dance to get this improvised equipment approved, but the technical delegate said it was okay. I don't know if it was because she was freezing to death or the fact that we've been friends since we were teenagers. I was grateful either way.
I've put the photo of our DIY Medical Armband at the top of the post. Isn't it funny that the saddlepad matches? (The other duct tape you see I added because Lily's body protector vest was hard to get on over all the clothes she was wearing. No doubt she should have had it on under her coat, but our brains didn't work at that low temperature.
By the way, it was her first time out at Novice -- and she won!