After six months, I am finally sporting a permanent socket. I had forgotten how comfortable carbon fiber is compared to the plastic check sockets I've been wearing. My limb slides easier when donning, and the smooth outside allows my pants to flow naturally without becoming snagged.
While I am celebrating the fact that I am again in a permanent leg, the adjustment is causing the predictable phantom pain issues. It doesn't seem to matter if a socket is cast out of the same mold; anytime I wear something new, I experience a brief "break in" period. I don't feel any discomfort while wearing the device, but the first few nights after getting a new leg are always ouchy.
Of course, the weather is probably not helping my phantom pain. The temperature is fluctuating wildly causing just about every joint in my body (and a few that are missing) to hurt. I've come to the conclusion that I despise growing old!
Since lamenting isn't going to help, I've dug my phantom pain remedies out of my bag of tricks. The massage pillow has been going at full blast, gently rubbing the soreness out of my non-existent ankle joint. My leg is snug and warm around the heating pad. In addition to providing comfort, the warmth seems to minimize the feeling of my big toenail being twisted and pulled. And when all else fails, the Tylenol PM makes me so groggy that I no longer care about the discomfort.
I know that in a day or two I will be fully adjusted to the new socket, and I can stow my phantom pain relief kit. I am so lucky that my issues with phantom pain are minor and fleeting as so many of my friends suffer with debilitating phantom pain. Far too often I take my limb health and mobility for granted. Moments like this, when I am feeling discomfort, I am trying to count my blessings. My pain can be relieved with a few simple tricks, and for that I am very lucky.