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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, June 22, 2012

Not as Much Fun!

When I was in my early 20's, I thought nothing of jumping in the car and going for a road trip. I loved the freedom of leaving when I wished and arriving at a destination at a time of my choosing. I didn't have any constraints, could pack light, and went at my own pace.  I was reminded yesterday how drastically my life has changed!

I spent nearly two hours packing for our Ohio visit, trying to anticipate every need, only to realize that I have forgotten things and we will need to go to Walmart when we arrive. The trunk is stuffed so full that both Scott and I have to be at the ready to grab items that fall when we open the door. Robby with his DS, DVD player, and cell phone games required that we invest in a power strip for our cigarette lighter.

Obviously traveling with my family has crimped my road trip style. I'm no longer uninhibited and free to travel the open highways. I have to plan meticulously and work to entertain both fellow travelers throughout the drive lest I be bombarded with "I'm bored. Are we there yet" in unison.

Even if I were traveling alone, I know that a road trip would not be as enjoyable anymore. Driving and sitting for long distances is now uncomfortable and sometimes downright painful because of my amputation. I hate that I am reminded of my limb loss when I'm just trying to sit in a car seat!

I'm usually comfortable for the first two to three hours. After that time, my stump begins to cramp within my socket. I then spend the remainder of the trip trying to strike a balance between keeping my leg on so that I can equalize my weight distribution and relieving the pressure because of swelling.

Removing my leg completely makes my limb more comfortable, but then all of my weight and balance must be born through my remaining leg. I certainly never appreciated the important role that feet played during sitting. Without my foot, my lower back and hip begin to ache and cramp because of the unequal pressure.

I spent the final two hours of our drive putting on and removing my leg in an attempt to strike a balance between accommodating for the swelling and alleviating an achy back. I was frustrated and downright miserable as I was squirming in my seat to become comfortable. By the time we finally arrived at our hotel, I venture to guess that I was more excited than Robby to hop into the pool and stretch out.

This morning we are going to the pool for a quick swim before taking off on the second leg of our trip. I'm hoping that swimming in the morning will thwart any swelling that would occur from my sitting in the car. If it doesn't work, I might join the whining, "Are we there yet" chorus!

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