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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.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

15 Years

I am proud of myself for suppressing the urge to spend the day hiding under my covers with a bag of Hershey Kisses while catching up on the latest season of The Biggest Loser.  I detest not being able to walk. Whenever I am restricted from using my prosthesis, regardless of the reason, I become an anxious and resentful shell of my former self.

Those who know me well realize that there is more behind my somber mood than my recent setback. Fifteen years ago today was the final time I was able to walk unassisted and without pain. In some ways it feels like just yesterday that I was that eager young woman attending her first conference. At other times it feels like it was another lifetime and a different person. 

Thinking about the ramifications of that seemingly benign business trip, I feel a enormous sense of loss. I don't particularly enjoy feeling negative emotions, so today I'm going to try to switch my internal dialog. Losing a limb was never part of my anticipated life path, but sometimes wonderful opportunities spring from a tragedy.

Had I not attended the conference 15 years ago, I would probably have remained bi-legged. I would probably be able to wiggle all ten toes instead of my just five, and I wouldn't even know what a prosthetic issue meant. I wouldn't have handicapped bars in my bathroom and a knee scooter ready for when I can't walk. I wouldn't have to make room in my suitcases for my specialized prosthetics when I travel, nor would I have to reinforce the knees of my pants to prevent the holes that always develop between the top of the socket and the fabric. Life was certainly simpler with both legs!

However, had I not been injured and moved to Virginia I never would have met Scott. Had I not met Scott, I wouldn't have Robby. I know that I'm biased, but I think he is a pretty great kid! I can't imagine a life where I am not Robby's Momom.

As of today, I have been dealing with leg issues for 15 years. So much time has passed that it's increasingly difficult for me to relate to my pre-injury life. I feel sad when I think about what I lost, but today I am choosing to be grateful for what I have gained.  I may not have my left foot, but I do have a life that I love, and I am surrounded by people whom I cherish. On my injury anniversary, I think I'll treat myself to a cupcake.

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