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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.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Down a Leg, and Temporarily an Arm

With my wrist in a cast, I have had more difficulty completing even the simplest tasks. From cooking to cleaning to caring for Robby, everything is more laborious. I am not complaining about my inability to change Robby's diaper or clothes. As I see it, this is probably the only perk to my current situation.

I was surprised at the difficulty I encountered by trying to put on my liner. I never realized how much hand strength pulling the liner onto the limb required. It is difficult, but as I figured out not impossible, with one hand.

The difficulty I have been experiencing putting on my liner in recent days has reminded me of when I was pregnant. At a certain stage (i.e. weight) in the pregnancy I was no longer able to bend over and pull my liner onto my limb. My stomach got in the way of my being able to reach the end of my stump. At the time, I was unprepared for this situation.

Being a special education teacher, I have a talent for adapting and for making accommodations. I knew that I either needed to figure out a way to be independent or I would be stuck without a leg all day. Pregnant and on crutches, paired with my natural grace, would not have been a good option.

After some experimentation I developed a method for sliding the liner onto my stump using two pairs of tongs. I rolled the liner inside out and grasped it with the tongs. Holding it in the air I was able to position my stump on top of the liner. Carefully pulling, I was able get the liner on.

The "tong method" won't work in my current situation because I don't have the strength in my left hand to hold and pull. After some finagling, I discovered that I could use my opposite knee as a balance. I can pull the liner with my right hand and roll the opposite side against my knee until it it is in position. I'm sure it looks odd, but it is effective.

We had a vacation planned before the injury. Unfortunately, my wrist will not be healed in time. I know that Scott will be able to help, and when he isn't available I will adapt and develop a solution. With my left leg gone and my left wrist out of commission though, I am a little worried about swimming. Am I concerned that I will become dizzy from swimming in circles...

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