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I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active eight year old (Robby) and an infant (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, October 02, 2015

Cleaning House

It is gearing up to be a wet and cold weekend. With the hurricane off the coast and projected to impact our area Sunday night I am not anticipating seeing the sun until next week. I don't mind rainy days, but when they multiply they tend to take a toll on my mood. At this point I'm not as concerned about the rainy day blues as I am about the associated wind. Living in the woods and being surrounded by tall trees, I have come to fear the combination of saturated soil and wind gusts. 

This weekend will be spent trying to get hurricane ready. Although I doubt that we'll be able to work in the yard, at the very least we will become organized inside. Cleaning may not safeguard our home from fallen trees, but it will certainly make me feel less overwhelmed.  The amount of clutter that has accumulated during the past few weeks borders on obscene.  Since everybody will be forced indoors, I figure that we might as well work on a common project.  Of course, Scott may have a different perspective when his football watching is interrupted by the vacuum. 

I have been delaying sorting through Timmy's clothes for several weeks. Each morning I promise myself that today will be the day that I pull out everything that he has outgrown. It seems silly to admit, but weeding through Timmy's clothes makes me sad. There is something concrete about packing away his outgrown clothes that forces me to face the reality that my baby is now a toddler.

While everybody is stuck inside, I am going to take the opportunity to clean out Timmy's clothes bins. I'm hoping that having a house full of commotion will buffer the emotions that always arise when I am faced with this chore. Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Weather Pain

Thankfully, last night the phantom pain finally eased, morphing from angry to nagging. I am fortunate that I don't have persistent phantom pains. I am miserable when they rear their ugly little nervy heads, but so many of my friends suffer greatly because of their frequent intrusions. Although I complain when it happens, I consider myself lucky because of the infrequency.

I always find myself feeling both angry and depressed when I experience phantom pain. I have to remind myself that my phantom pain is fleeting as I try to ride it out. I underwent an amputation to rid myself of constant pain. When I relive the agony, I just want to cry.

With the hurricane brewing in the Atlantic projected to hit our area Sunday night, I am anticipating an uncomfortable weekend. My phantom pain seems to be impacted by drastic changes in weather systems. Our local news station has started featuring a pain meter in conjunction with the weather. I've realized that when the pain meter is in the red, the probability of my experiencing phantom pain is greater.

Hopefully my predictions are wrong and the nagging pain will never materialize. We have a lot of work to do before the hurricane makes landfall. I don't have the time to be laid up with pain! Fingers crossed that my limb cooperates.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Phantom Pain

Between my phantom pain and a waking up with a killer headache, today is not shaping up to be a good day. My leg was doing the jitterbug kick most of the night, keeping me awake with the movement and near constant stinging. I blame the cold heavy rains that pushed through our area for my pain, but knowing the culprit has done nothing to mask the problem. 

My headache can probably be attributed to fatigue and my clenching my jaw throughout the night.  I tried to remind myself to relax, but as the hours wore on it became more and more of a challenge. Needless to say, today is not shaping up to be a good day!

I'm hoping that my pain eases as the day progresses. At this moment, I hate being an amputee.  I've said it before, but it bears repeating.  There is nothing 'phantom' about the pain I'm feeling!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Great Potato Fight

I used to love to cook. I remember chomping at the bit to get into the kitchen, eager to play and whip up new and exciting dishes. I still enjoy spending time in the kitchen, but what was once a beloved and relaxing activity has become a chore.  In between writing reports, fielding conference calls, finishing assorted projects, managing my social media responsibilities and entertaining Hamlet, I still manage to make dinner. Every. Single. Night.

Yesterday was especially busy because I decided to surprise Robby (and Timmy) with a trip to Jumping Jimmy's after school. (In addition to wanting to see the boys have fun I must admit to some ulterior motives. I've discovered that taking the boys to a bounce house tires them out, dramatically simplifying our bedtime routines.) Before I left the house to pick up Robby from school, I prepared dinner. I prepped chicken and potatoes so that all I had to do was put it in the oven when we came home. Granted that roasted chicken and potatoes isn't gourmet, but it is a solid meal.

After spending an hour jumping and playing, we came home, and I immediately put the chicken into the oven. Because I was tired and wanted to be comfortable, I changed out of my clothes and into my yellow nightgown. (I realize that it was only 4:30, but I had already been up for 12 hours at this point and was beginning to anticipate going to bed.)  Ninety minutes later the house smelled yummy and dinner was ready. Sitting down for dinner, I saw Scott turn up his nose when he saw the chicken and potatoes.

With all seriousness, he asked me if the potatoes were crunchy. I explained that they were freshly dug potatoes from the farm that had been roasted with the chicken. He put down his fork and proclaimed "I have decided that I am only going to eat crunchy foods from now until my surgery." (He is having his wisdom teeth removed next Thursday which, if you have been reading this blog for any length of time, you realize this is quite the traumatic event for him.) 

Seeing that his Daddy was refusing the non-crunchy potatoes, Robby followed suit. Both crunch-seeking eaters picked at some chicken and refused to touch the potatoes. I could feel my blood pressure rising each time they pushed the food around their plates.  Finally I had enough! I put the rest of the potatoes and chicken on a plate and directed Scott to take it to Mr. Bill.  I dismissed all of his attempts to defend his crunch-seeking ways and proceeded to clean the dishes. 

As I was loading the dishwasher, my ire was rising. Seeing Scott across the street laughing on Mr. Bill's porch was my tipping point. Still holding a dirty red spoon, I went outside onto our deck and screamed across the street.  "Hey Your Highness, make sure you apologize for the potatoes not being crunchy enough."

And then I saw myself: I was standing outside, furiously squawking across the street while wearing a yellow nightgown at 5:30 in the afternoon. Yikes. When did fighting over non-crunchy potatoes become my reality?  I took a deep breath, tried to muster as much dignity as possible and went back inside. 

I decided to forgo arguing about dinner. I figured that the boys would find something to eat when they were hungry. I closed down the kitchen and proceeded with Timmy's bedtime routine.  I have no intention of rehashing the great potato fight, but I must admit that I'm looking forward to whatever Scott and Robby decide to make for family dinners for the remainder of the week.  This Momom is on strike. 

Monday, September 28, 2015

Nana's Friends

By Friday Robby was fully recovered from his cold, allowing us to proceed with our weekend plans. We packed up the car Friday afternoon and headed to Nana's house. It has been awhile since I visited with my Mom and I was looking forward to the visit.

Although Robby enjoys visiting his Nana, he has been known to complain of boredom. This is especially true when we visit during the weekend, when his cousins are with their dad. He always brings his computer during our visits and typically ends up in a "fort" watching videos for countless hours.  I feel badly that he is bored and watching videos, but realizing that his options for entertainment are limited I try to avoid nagging him to do something more active. 

During our last visit Robby became acquainted with the neighbor children who live up the street from my mom.  He spent hours playing with them and had such a good time that he lamented returning home.  As we were driving to my mom's house, he asked if his friends would remember him and want to play with him again. We both crossed our fingers that his playmates would be available.

After spending a few hours with his Nana, Robby put on his shoes and headed up the street to find his playmates. When he didn't return home, we assumed that he had found them. Sitting on my mom's porch I could hear his squeals and giggles, confirming that he was busy playing. When the sun was beginning to set I headed out to find him. He was happily jumping on the neighbors trampoline with a small army of new friends. 

While Timmy and I were quietly visiting with my mom on Saturday, Robby was busy playing. He left her house after lunch and only returned for bathroom breaks and a snack. Seeing him so happy with playmates, I began to wonder if we should consider moving to a neighborhood with children. I love our house in the woods, but maybe the seclusion isn't the best thing for the boys? In the meantime, at least he can always play with his neighborhood friends at Nana's house. 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Sick Day

Robby woke up yesterday morning complaining of a sore throat and headache.  After verifying that he was running a fever I sent him back to bed. I texted his teacher and went about rescheduling all of my appointments for the day. (Between work meetings, appointments and personal errands, I had an extremely busy day planned.)

As the morning progressed Robby's moderate fever began to lessen. Soon he was at that phase where he was well enough to play Xbox on the couch but too sick to go run around outside. Because his brother was sick, Timmy and I spent the majority of our day outside playing. I blew up our moon bounce and we jumped for almost an hour in our yard. We looked at stick and rocks and also spent a lot of time picking up nuts from our driveway.  (I wouldn't let him then throw those nuts at the car and I held my ground despite his red faced protests.)

It wasn't the busy work day that I had planned, but thankfully I have enough flexibility in my schedule to adjust for the unexpected. I am hoping that a solid nights sleep will knock the bug out completely, allowing my little Koopa to go back to school today.  Thankfully I have the weekend to play catch up after the  sick day. 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Rough Housing

Yesterday I sprung Robby from school a little early so that we could enjoy the fabulous fall weather at the farm. Before the judging starts, know that the early dismissal had the blessing of his teacher. His school values off campus experiences and encourages families to participate in and enjoy community resources.  This educational philosophy is one of the many reasons that Scott and I have chosen this school for Robby. 

Both boys love our weekly farm visits. Robby because he thoroughly enjoys visiting the animals and playing on the various structures and amusements. Timmy simply delights in spending time outside with his big brother. Usually content to tag along behind, pure joy emanates from Hamlet on those rare occasions when his brother actually plays with him instead of just next to him.

Unfortunately, rough housing with a toddler is vastly different than rough housing with another 9 year old.  Timmy doesn't realize that his brother is being rough and smiles through the pain inflicted simply because he is happy for the attention.  Robby doesn't appreciate that he is being too rough because Timmy continues to smile and giggle. I end up standing on the sidelines squawking for Robby to calm it down and play nice. This cycle typically continues until either Robby becomes bored and finds a new activity, I intervene or Timmy becomes hurt. 

Yesterday our fun farm visit ended with me dabbing blood off of the tip of Timmy's nose. Despite my constant warnings to calm down the play, my littlest guy ended up getting hurt on the jumping pillow. It is just a brush burn injury, but hopefully drawing blood will serve as a reminder for Robby to heed my warnings.  Thankfully, his pain was quickly soothed by a few pushes on the swing and feeding the goats.