Dear Texan and all heat-dwelling friends,
During my vacation in Austin, we have been experiencing high temperatures in excess of 110 degrees. I never realized it could get so hot outside of my oven! I understand that this weather is not unusual for this area, and for this reason, you all have my utmost respect.
Socket and stump issues have been trying to intrude on our family fun and I have no doubt that the heat is the culprit. My leg has literally swelled out of my prosthetic, causing sores to develop where I have ballooned out of my socket. When it is 110 degrees in the shade, my attempts to contain the swelling have been futile.
Perhaps more uncomfortable than the sores is the the fluid retention that has kept me from reaching the bottom of my socket. I am able only to get 3/4 of the way into my prosthetic, causing me to be about an inch taller on my left side. My limp is more pronounced, and my hip and knees hurt because of the substantial height difference.
Trying to seek relief from the heat and hoping to shrink the swelling in my limb, we packed up and headed to the pool. The cool water felt heavenly, and I could feel my leg shrinking by the moment. Unfortunately, the swelling returned within hours of leaving the pool, but at least I felt stopgap relief!
We were having such a good time in the pool that we didn't realize that five hours had elapsed. I should have been as vigilant with my own sunscreen as I was about Robby's. My face burned around my sunglasses, leaving me to look like a bright red raccoon for the rest of our vacation. Thankfully it didn't hurt, and I don't mind looking strange!
Between dealing with a muffin top socket, a marked height difference and a raccoon face, I am sure that I am quite a sight as I tour the area. Thankfully I have been accompanied by a little boy sporting an Ohio State shirt, shorts, leather boots and a cowboy hat that is two sizes too big. He has certainly garnered the attention away from my limp and red raccoon look.
I have a new respect for my amputee friends who deal with these heat issues on a regular basis. For me, despite having a wonderful visit, I'll be glad to be going home where the temperatures are now a comfortable 82 degrees. Hot temperatures are not beneficial for this amputee mommy!