About Me

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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.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Memorial Weekend

Happy Memorial Day weekend! 

We have reached the unofficial start to summer. Unfortunately the weather is not going to cooperate, so we won't be making the inaugural trip to our pool anytime soon. I'm a little bummed out, but I am consoling myself with the knowledge that there will be plenty of pool time in the coming months. 

Instead of lounging poolside, this weekend we will be inside hiding from the rain. I am hoping to spend some time getting ready for my trip to California next week. Somehow weeks of planning is necessary when I need to go away for a few days.  Next week is going to be extremely busy, so I'm going to take full advantage of our quiet time. 

Although we don't have any exciting plans for the weekend, I am wracking my brain to come up with an activity to fill Sunday. Scott is eagerly anticipating his "day of racing" and we be planted in front of the television from early morning (F1 race) through the afternoon (Indy 500) and late into the night (Coca Cola 600). He is nearly giddy with the prospect of watching 1,300 miles of auto racing throughout the day.  While I don't understand the appeal of watching cars circle for endless hours, I accept that he finds it exhilarating and wildly entertaining to watch. 

I learned many years ago to avoid all social interactions with him on racing day. My contribution to his special day will be keeping the kids occupied as much as possible. Of course, that's easier said than done.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Falling Snakes and Pig Pens

With a brief reprieve in our rainy and dreary weather, I decided to pack up Timmy and head to the farm. I knew that it was going to be muddy, but it turns out that the ginormous puddles were the least of my issues. While he had a blast, I could best sum up the trip as memorable. 

Our adventure began while driving on the meandering road through the countryside. It doesn't matter how many times I drive the route or what season it may be, the view is always spectacular. I'm in awe of the beauty of the picturesque farms and rolling hills. Timmy was amusing himself by pointing out the animals he saw in the pastures and making the corresponding sound.  His mooing was interrupted by a loud kerplunk on the windshield.
A large snake had fallen onto my windshield. I screamed. Then Timmy screamed because my reaction had scared him.  Soon we were both nearly hysterical as I was frantically driving with a dead snake on my windshield.  (I can't be positive but I'm fairly certain it was dead when it fell onto my car. I suspect a bird dropped its prey onto our SUV.)

Although we were physically unscathed by the unexpected guest dropping in on us, I have to admit that Timmy was not the only one to arrive at the farm with wet pants. I changed his diaper, tied a sweatshirt around my waist to hide the tell-tale wet spot on my shorts before we headed into the farm to play. As much as I tried, it's hard to muster confidence when you know that you had wet your pants because of a fallen snake. 

While we walked around to air out my shorts, Timmy happily jumped in the muddy puddles. He was wearing his rain boots, which were of little consequence. He splashed with such gusto that he was covered with muddy water from his chest down. He was soaked, but at least his socks were dry in his happy face boots. 

We were standing in the baby pig petting area when my Mom called.  While talking with her, I saw Timmy leap into what he anticipated to be a normal puddle. Only it wasn't a puddle. It was the pig trough. Instantly he was up to his chest in muck and smelly gunk. 

I managed to pull him out and corral him back to the car. Despite his vocal protests, I refused to carry my little mud puppy. I stripped him down (pulling old food scraps off his thighs and out of his boots) and put him in new diaper. We didn't have an extra shirt (poor planning on my part) but I did find a pair of his pants in the trunk of the car. Unfortunately they were only a 12 month size, so he ended up wearing rather snug capris.  I'm sure we were quite the sight in the parking lot!

After his escapade in the pig pen, we decided to head home. I used the last of my window washer fluid to remove the remnants of snake blood from my windshield, ditched his clothes (I didn't want the smell in my car) and put my mildly soiled sweatshirt in the trunk. This was definitely an adventure at the farm that won't be forgotten anytime soon.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Another Terror Attack.

I am so tired of waking up in the morning to news of yet another terror attack. My heart is breaking for those impacted in Manchester.  As I was watching photos of those still missing flashing on the television screen I couldn't help but think of my niece Tiffany. She will be 13 next week, the same age as many of the concert goers. I recognized her pre-teen enthusiasm, obviously feeling so mature and excited to be at a concert, in the faces of those girls still missing. Yet again, I am grieving for those whom I have never met and who live thousands of miles away.

Because of the frequency, I fear that I will become numb to the horrors unfolding. Out of this fear, I made an effort to fully absorb and to try to personalize each occurrence. I don't want to live in a world where terrorist acts are not felt.  Somehow it feels disrespectful to the maimed and the fallen to go about my daily life without outrage and grief.

I am not embarrassed to admit that I hugged my kids a little more yesterday, a trend that will continue for the coming days. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Stepping Carefully

Yesterday was dreary but that didn't deter Timmy from his mission. He seemed to wake up with the ultimate goal of becoming as dirty as possible, and I'm not surprised to declare that he was victorious. He jumped in every single mud puddle, conquered the wet mulch mountain and dug in the mud with glee. He was a happy, mud caked little boy by the time Scott came home from work. 

While Timmy relished playing outside in the damp yard, I wasn't nearly as excited. In an effort to keep my bum dry, I avoided sitting on my swing. After three hours and 12,000 steps I gave up and surrendered to the wet seat. Having a damp rear was better than dealing with an achy limb.

Walking in wet grass and on slick asphalt is something I try to avoid. After slipping and falling a few times on the wet grass in the past, I have come to respect the risks of maneuvering slick surfaces.  Whenever possible I seek as much traction as possible, but yesterday everything was slick. Timmy had a blast sliding and splashing while I spent my time dutifully following behind, meticulously stepping to avoid slipping.

I really don't like having to think so much when I walk. Although I spent 5+ hours playing outside, I felt the impact of my amputation with each movement. I hate being reminded that I live with a prosthesis. I hate feeling disabled. Yesterday I felt both, and it was exhausting physically and mentally.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Wonderful Birthday

I had a fantastic birthday. I am truly appreciative of everybody who took time out of their day to call, send an email or tweet, or left me a message on Facebook. I felt the love all day, and I was reminded that I have an awesome circle of friends and family. 

Scott surprised me on Friday by letting me sleep in and by setting up my new coffee pot. I am now the owner of the Coffee Ninja, and so far I'm definitely a fan. He sent me numerous texts throughout the day which made me feel both special and loved.

Robby was ecstatic to help me celebrate my birthday, singing to me first thing in the morning and doting on me throughout the day. He wrote me a wonderful little poem in school, and I cried when he read it to me. Lately most of the time he is a frustrating and snarky pre-teen, but every once in awhile I catch a glimpse of my sweet little Koopa.

Timmy was excited as well, but his emotions were purely reactionary. Not wanting to be left out of any excitement or fun, he happily danced, clapped and cheered whenever possible. He was particularly endearing during lunch with my Mom. I worried about how he would behave in the restaurant, but he could not have been better. If he keeps behaving well, we might be able to go back in public again on a regular basis. Talk about a birthday miracle!

If my birthday is any indication, 43 is going to be fabulous!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Happier Birthday!

Happy Birthday to me!

This year, instead of being frustrated by the number, I'm going to celebrate new beginnings. It sounds cliche, but the fact that I am getting older is inevitable. I'm tired of feeling sad about being middle age. Unlike other birthdays, this year I feel excited about the future. I believe that 43 is going to be my best year ever!

A few weeks ago I quit my job and accepted a new position. I had been building up to making the change for nearly a year, and the stars finally aligned for me to resign. Starting a new job is exciting, but it is also overwhelming. The past few weeks have been spent transitioning, and I now feel like I have my footing.

I am less stressed and considerably happier since resigning my previous job. The change has afforded me more time to devote to taking care of Timmy and projects related to Amp'd. My changing my job has been the best thing that I could have done for myself and for my family. I haven't felt this free in years.

I really believe that 43 is going to be the year I make my mark. I'm excited about so many things on the horizon, and I now have the time and energy to see them to fruition. Timmy and Robby are both doing well, and I love watching them both grow and learn daily. Right now, I'm in a pretty good place in my life, so I'm not going to ruin it by focusing on a number.  Happy 43rd Birthday to me- bring on the cupcakes!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Outrunning the Cops

The sudden heatwave was wreaking havoc on my limb yesterday, but it certainly did not seem to impact the boys. Despite my suggestions that it would be more comfortable to play inside, Robby pleaded to go to the park after school. Last week he bumped into a group of boys and had a great time playing. When we left, they invited him to return on Wednesday to play again. It turns out that he has been looking forward to reuniting with his new friends all week and was going to be devastated if I had refused.

So, despite the heat and my swollen leg, I drove to the park so Robby could meet up with his friends. Although I knew he was going to be disappointed, part of me was hoping that the heat was enough to keep his new playmates away. As soon as I drove up to the playground I saw the mini van, and I knew that I was destined for an afternoon of hot and sticky fun.

Robby jumped out of the car, grabbed his military hat and took off running. Timmy and I spent the next two hours playing at the park. Despite my efforts to convince him to play in the shade, he was set on climbing the structures and digging in the mulch. At one point the police drove past the playground on a routine patrol. The officer waved and I saw some other kiddos wave back. In response, he turned on his lights and sirens, a gesture that sent the kids into an excited frenzy.  All of the kids except for Timmy.

For some inexplicable reason, Timmy became panicked when he saw the lights and heard the siren. He looked at me, dropped his truck and exclaimed "Ut oh. Run!" He then took off at a full sprint in the opposite direction.  I have no idea why his instinct was to run away from a police siren, but his reaction was succinct and strong! After sprinting across two soccer fields I finally managed to convince Timmy that the police weren't chasing him and he agreed to return to the playground.

It turns out that Robby's new friends are part of a local homeschool group.  The boys (all age 10-12) meet every Wednesday for "unguided play." Robby was delighted to be invited into their circle. So, it looks like Wednesday afternoons at the park will be put onto our regular schedule.  Even though it was hot and uncomfortable, it was really nice to see Robby so happy. Now if I could just figure out why Timmy tried to outrun the fuzz...