About Me

My photo
I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

School Days

The school year adventures have begun.  Yesterday Scott embarked on his 26th year in the classroom while Robby begun year eight. Neither were particularly thrilled about the return to the school routine, but pair survived the stress and frustrations associated with the first day.

It is hard to believe that my sweet little Koopa is in eight grade. Robby thrived through his online school program so we opted to continue through this year. I realize his classroom is unconventional, but it works for him. 

After Labor Day his extracurricular classes begin which introduces another level of scheduling into my calendar. Most afternoons will be spent chauffeuring Robby from activities and schools for a variety of programs. His enthusiasm definitely makes spending so much time in the car worth the effort!

We plan to enroll Timmy in a pre-K program, but all decisions are on hold until we meet with his doctors next week. I need to make sure that my little guy is healthy enough for a classroom setting. Until then, he has begun working on his "schoolwork" at the same time as his brother. Fingers crossed he is cleared for pre-K, because I know that he would love every moment!



 



Monday, August 19, 2019

Hide and Seek Sirens

Friday I thought it would be fun to take Timmy to a play area in our local mall. Every time we have visited he has had a fantastic time, and Friday was no exception. As soon as we arrived he ditched his shoes, and his mom, and took off running with new buddies. Every once in awhile he stopped by to say hello and to have a sip of water, but other than that he was happy running and playing with his new playmates.

After we were there for nearly three hours the entire facility went dark. Within a few seconds emergency strobe lights started flashing, accompanied by an announcement telling everybody to shelter in place. My heart jumped as I joined the hoards of other parents frantically searching for their children in the enormous climbing structure.  

It felt like forever before I found Timmy walking out of a trampoline. I immediately scooped him up and began to scan the facility for a clue as to what we were supposed to be doing. I saw parents being turned away from the exits and overheard commands to hide. Not knowing where to go, I directed Timmy to climb up a red tube slide. Let me assure you, a plump one legged woman can still book it up a slide when necessary!

We stayed in the center of the slide for about five minutes, trying to remain as quiet and as still as possible. Timmy was confused as to why we were suddenly playing hide and seek, but I think he sensed the urgency of my directives because he obliged without argument. Finally the warning siren quieted and we were told that it was safe to evacuate.  

It turns out that there was a "domestic incident" at the other end of the mall involving a weapon, and the entire building was put on lock down and shelter in place as a precaution. Not knowing what was going on, my mind was flooding with recollections of mass shootings and worst case scenarios. Timmy and I were escorted into the parking lot by the police and we headed home.

Hiding in the slide with Timmy were some of the most frightening minutes of my life. Timmy was scared and spent most of Friday night reenacting the incident, which I think was his way of trying to process the events.I have a feeling it will be quite a long time before either of us wants to go back to that playground!

Friday, August 16, 2019

Bike Fun

Thank goodness it is finally Friday. Scott's dreaded week of prep meetings is drawing to a close, and Monday he will be in the classroom teaching. No doubt that he will still be tired next week, but teaching always trumps administrative meetings and I know that his mood will elevate once he is in front of his students.  

This has been a difficult week of adjustment for the entire family. Returning to the school schedule has been especially hard for Timmy, who misses the excitement and activity of having everybody home. He continues to cry each morning and requires near constant attention throughout the afternoon. I know that eventually he will adjust, but my goodness the transition is not easy!

Thankfully my Mom sent us a present that harnesses his energy in a productive manner. A little stationary bike, Timmy is able to steer, race and a play a variety of games on a tablet by riding his bike. The faster he pedals, the quicker his avatar moves on the screen. Hopped on as soon as it was assembled and pedaled for hours, allowing me time to clean the kitchen without disruption.

Over the weekend I plan to bring my stationary bike upstairs so that Timmy and I can ride together. I have gained some weight over the summer, primarily because walking was painful due to my socket and liner issues. 

I would feel better if I was at a healthier weight, but finding the opportunity to exercise is difficult. It seems that whenever I try to turn on an exercise video Timmy wants or needs something.  With his new toy, I know that Timmy will hop on his little bike whenever I am on my stationary bike. Riding together will keep him out of trouble while I'm focusing on my workout. Talk about a win-win for everybody!

Thanks Mom- you really are the best!




Thursday, August 15, 2019

Secondary Conditions

Several decades ago (yikes), I learned a statistic in school that has stayed with me. In reality I  learned a lot of statistics, the majority which I promptly forgot after the exam. For some reason, the fact that 90% of all health problems are experienced by 10% of the population  absolutely fascinates me. I find it both perplexing and sad, although as I have gotten older I have come to understand the cycle.

Our bodies are always teetering on the verge of collapse. It's depressing and scary to dwell on that reality so I try to avoid thinking about it too much. When one thing goes wonky, other issues arise as collateral damage.

My back and hip are starting to cause pain. Each morning I wake up tender and I have to calculate each move until I am fully mobile. My days of hopping out of bed are gone. Now I feel like an old lady, carefully contemplating each movement before creeping out of bed. I have no doubt that the pain is due to my prosthetic use and it stinks!

Earlier this week we recorded a podcast centering on the uneven distribution of both healthcare issues and spending.  The impact of secondary health conditions is staggering, and I'm glad it is starting to receive more attention.  You can listen to the podcast here.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Hypnotized

We are almost halfway through what I believe to be one of the worst weeks of the year. Between blathering meetings and the stress of classroom preparations, Scott is simultaneously exhausted and edgy. I am doing my best to keep things low key at home, but it hasn't been easy.

The boys, especially Timmy, are having a difficult time with the school year transition. He is quick to vocalize his displeasure each morning when his Daddy drives off to work.  Hopefully Timmy will adjust soon because the morning tantrums while I drink my coffee are becoming an annoying way to start the day.

Yesterday my attempts to distract and entertain Timmy backfired. Our favorite indoor playground has been remodeled and I am not happy with the changes. The lobby and play areas are littered with money grabbing electronic games. Between the flashing lights, cartoon figures and high pitched music, Timmy was hypnotized. I was frustrated that he wasn't playing, climbing and sliding and was, instead, begging to play electronic games. 

Sigh. I think it's time for us to find a new playground. If I wanted to play for arcade games I would take him to Chuck E Cheese.

 




Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Tiptoeing

Yesterday was the first day I have been alone with both boys for awhile, and they wore me out! I know that we will eventually ease back into our school schedule, but the transition is exhausting. Timmy was upset that his daddy left for work and seemed to demand my attention and focus from the time that he woke until he finally went to sleep at night. Between helping him write his letters to playing pirates and riding bicycles, I didn't have a chance to sit down all day.

Scott's transition back to work is just as tiring and frustrating, so I am trying to keep demands low when he comes home. This is historically a difficult week as he is forced to attend endless meetings while the administration constantly changes and tweaks his class schedule. I know that the stress will eventually normalize, but I have learned to lay low and tiptoe during the prep week before school opens for students.

Today is supposed to rain so Timmy and I will inevitably end up at an indoor playground. I have some work I need to do in preparation for a meeting tomorrow and I really need the time to focus and work.  I know it is only Tuesday, but I will be very glad when this week is over!

Monday, August 12, 2019

Home for a Surprise

After another fantastic week at my mom's, the boys and I returned home on Saturday. I am happy to be home, but I am always a tinge sad to drive away from my mom's house. No matter my age, it is always comforting to be around my mom.

The boys, especially Robby, always have so much fun visiting with the Cousin Crew. I know that he is going to miss the laughter, the inside jokes and the companionship in the weeks to come.  Thankfully school will be starting next week, so hopefully the return of his schedule and classmates will take the sting out of his loneliness.

Saturday was spent unpacking and getting settled back at home. Yesterday we headed out on a mini family adventure to the Animal Park. Jethro, the giant tortoise, was celebrating his birthday. Robby was looking forward to seeing all of the tortoises in party hats for the celebration.  Needless to say, he was not disappointed!

After we came home, Timmy and I were playing in the yard when a familiar silver truck turned into our driveway. I immediately recognized the truck and began to sprint towards the driveway. I was over-the-moon to be able to hug Mr. Bill again!

In town for a family wedding, he decided stopped by to surprise us.  I don't think I realized how much I missed him until he was sitting next to me, chatting by our fire pit. Timmy immediately began to showcase his new tree climbing and bike riding skills while Robby was just beaming chatting with his longtime friend. My goodness it was nice to see him again.  The neighborhood just hasn't been the same since he moved away.

Mr. Bill is in town all week so hopefully we will be able to connect again before he returns to Florida. I was sad leaving my mom's house, but I'm so glad that we were home for our surprise visitor.