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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, December 09, 2011

Vroom Vroom

I am happy to report that I survived my go-cart experience unscathed. Not only did I not meet a fiery demise, but I also stepped out of my little car without any broken bones! Considering the scenarios that I was conjuring during my drive to the track, I was delighted.

Go-carting is not as easy as one might believe. It's not simply a matter of sitting in a car and driving fast. For starters, I had to figure out how to get into the car.

The car was small and extremely low to the ground. My fellow racers seemed to have no problem hopping behind the wheel. I, however, was anything but graceful as I clumsily maneuvered around the assorted bar, pedals and fuel tank to assume my seat. Surveying the car from the driver's seat, I immediately realized that I was going to have a disadvantage.

The brake and gas pedals were on opposite sides of the car. I typically drive with only my right foot. In this fast little car, I was going to have to use my prosthetic to brake. Experimenting before the race, I discovered that I couldn't push my prosthetic against the brake if my leg was positioned "correctly" on the pedal. Apparently the designers assumed that the drivers would have active ankle control. I was going to have to improvise.

I managed to position my foot against the bar adjacent to the brake pedal. If I pushed hard, the brake engaged. Now all I had to do was just make sure that my leg didn't slip off the narrow bar when I was driving! I opted to maintain mild pressure through my socket so that I wouldn't lose contact with my brake bar. It turns out that by doing this, I was keeping the brake engaged throughout the race. Perhaps this was the reason I kept getting lapped.

I had a good time go-carting, but I don't think I'll be chomping at the bit to do it again. I don't like feeling out of control and unsafe. My competitive nature did come out though and I was thrilled that I didn't finish last. I finished next to last, only 5 laps behind the leader. Imagine how fast I might have gone had I not had the brake engaged the entire race!

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