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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.

Thursday, June 03, 2010


I remain undecided about my run on Saturday. Whether I run, jog, walk, or perhaps a combination, I know that I will complete the full 3.2 miles Saturday morning! I am hoping and planning for a full running experience, but I am not sure if my leg will cooperate with my plans.

Physically following through with running the race is perhaps not the most prudent choice. I may be exacerbating the bursa/ bone spur. I worry that I will be causing more damage by continuing to run.

Strange as it sounds, I think that it would be more detrimental for me to abandon my 5k dreams. I have made a commitment, and I am determined to follow through. Emotionally, the blow that would be dealt by quitting would be significant. Quitting would mean that I failed myself, my friends and my family. I worry that Robby would view his Mommy as a quitter, somebody who gives up whenever the situation becomes difficult. I do not want to be that kind of role model.

I received my jerry-rigged prosthetic this afternoon. Elliot and his staff invested a lot of time and resources into creating a more comfortable running experience. He put a series of wedges behind the components so that I am no longer rubbing in the front of the socket. After I slipped on the leg, I was optimistic about the prospects of running.

After dinner, I went for my evening run. I started out slowly, unsure of how my stump was going to react to the impact. It was sore, and I could feel the knot rubbing and start to throb. Thankfully, my pain level never increased to an intolerable level. I only had to stop to readjust the socket 3 times!

I jogged the entire 3.2 miles, and I was elated. Scott and Robby came to pick me up from the 7-11 and they found me jogging home. Shamelessly seeking a compliment, I asked Scott how I looked running. His response was short, "Miserable." Gee honey, thanks.

My time is nothing to brag about, but for a novice one-legged runner I think that it is acceptable. I ran the entire 5k in 51 minutes. No, that is not going to break any records, but I am proud of that time. I worked and pushed through every stride. I bragged about my speed to Scott, who responded "When I was 18 I ran the 5k in 21 minutes. You're in your 30's. What do you expect, you're not 18." Again, thanks sweetheart.

So I look miserable when I run, which I am. I run slow, and I am certainly not 18. I am a 36 year old amputee who is trying something new. I've discovered that sometimes, when I am seeking a compliment, they are nearly impossible to elicit. Perhaps I should give one to myself instead.

I'm trying, and that counts for a lot. I am discouraged by the pain in my socket, but I am not letting it hold me back. I am going to finish the 5k. If I'm not able to run the whole time, I will be disappointed.

Right now I am feeling the affects of my efforts. My stump is sore and the bursa/ bone spur is swollen and painful. I have a few more days to adjust my running style and to continue to tweak the prosthetic. Hopefully we'll find the magic combination that allows me to run without pain.

I hope that Robby sees that I'm not giving up. I want him to know that you don't have to be the first person across the line to be a true winner. I am becoming depressed because the pain and difficulty persists. Instead of dwelling on the negative, I think I'll celebrate how far my running skills have come. Perhaps I'll have some cake, but I think I'll walk to the kitchen instead of sprinting.


  1. Good day Peggy:

    I stumbled upon your blog recently as I was searching for wisdom as a disabled parent. I am a parent and step-parent to a large family ranging from pre-school to high-school. My ankle was damaged in an accident and I wear a brace until the swelling and pain sends me to my couch or crutches.

    My children have learned my limitations and we are all reminded on occasion. I learned several years ago that when I overdo it, I cause damage and more limitation for longer. My kids know that I can't play tag but I can play hide and seek or take them to the playground whether I am walking with my brace or crutches.

    Each of us knows our limits and only you can decide but from the few entries I have read nobody around you would sell you short any time you yield to your limitation. I have explained to my kids that everyone has limitations. My preschooler is still upset that he is not tall enough to drive the car.

    Thanks for the encouraging blog and I apologize for anonymous but I am still argueing with insurance and tired of the letters saying "you said you can ___ so you no longer need coverage".

    Look after yourself

  2. Peggy,

    I'm sorry that Scott didn't give you the encouragement or compliments that you are looking for. Here you go: strong, commited, determined and graceful as a cheetah. Okay the last one probably isn't true, but there isn't a description for someone who is an amputee trying to run in a socket that isn't a best fit for running your first race. Maybe you run like the lion from the Wizard of Oz because you definitely have COURAGE!!! Go getem Peggy.

  3. Hi Peggy,
    Our daughter ran cross country while in grade school. One particular race day it was really hot; she was sweating like mad; and then the liner came loose. She stopped about 50 yards from the finish line, took off the leg and liner, dried off her little leg and liner with her shirt, put everything back on, and then finished the race.
    Run your race. Do the best that you can do. Your style and time do not matter. Run, walk, crawl, crutch, or roll- but go run your race.

    -Jeff Brantly (Maria's Dad)

  4. I want to thank everybody for both the kind words and encouragement. Thank you!