About Me

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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, April 25, 2014

Update from Nana

Hello!   Peggy does not have access to WiFi in the hospital so has asked me to post for her.

 It is wonderful to become a grandma (aka Nana) again.  The sweet little baby is perfect.  Well, almost.  He doesn't know how to eat yet and is having some difficulty breathing on occasion.  He needs to be kept very warm but thrives being held.  All of these things are normal.

Her birth experience was just short of being a miracle.  The baby had been living horizontally in her womb for the entire pregnancy and the cord was wrapped about him twice.  There was never a doubt that she would be having a Cesarean section.  I guess the baby thought otherwise because Wednesday evening he struggled to turn himself into the correct birthing position and her body cooperated.

At the hospital, the staff was prepping the Operating Room for the surgery when suddenly the nurse exclaimed that she could see the head!  A few pushes later and VOILA!  He appeared!  A beautiful little baby boy!

Peg had been having contractions for weeks so the birth was a relief.  She is feeling better than she has in months, looks fantastic, and can sleep again!

Name for Baby Boy?  No decision yet.  She claims she didn't expect him this early and was not prepared.  She said she had to meet him first.  She said a lot of things---but the bottom line is that we have no name yet. Robby suggested the name Johnny Doodleston but admitted he made up that name because he figured the child would have a hard time spelling it.  Personally, I think it is catchy.  In the meantime, I call him Cutie.

Peg will be happy to take back her blog on Monday and I know it was difficult for her to give me control.  Thanks for supporting her through the whole pregnancy.  Your messages and comments were greatly appreciated.  Bye for now.


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Facebook or Faceless?

With all of my professional and personal endeavors, I am fully aware that I spend more time on the internet than the average person. It is rare that I don't have Facebook, Twitter, and my email tabs open and running simultaneously while I work on a project or report. Sitting with my laptop perched on my lap, it occurs to me that I am extremely fortunate that I can accomplish so much without changing out of my pajamas. 

Unfortunately, the internet also has pitfalls made especially visible through social media. Although Facebook can be utilized as a wonderful vehicle to create a support system, seek answers, and cultivate and maintain friendships, it can also mirror the worst in society. People feel protected through their keyboards and often write posts, post videos and comments that would be considered reprehensible to speak aloud. In many ways, Facebook has allowed us to become Faceless. 

I tend to be a duck when it comes to social media, letting much roll off my back without becoming too invested. Every once in awhile, a post catches my eye and stays with me. On even rarer occasions, I feel compelled to act. A few days ago I encountered one of these posts.

Casually surfing around Facebook, I happened upon a "how to" video which rendered me speechless. I hesitated to click the link, but eventually my curiosity got the best of me. I just simply couldn't believe that this type of informational video would be so readily available to be viewed by children and those who are vulnerable. Against my better judgment, I clicked play.

To my horror, the title of the video was an apt description of the content. The video featured a man amputating his own foot as he provided commentary concerning how much dry ice was necessary, the safety precautions that he put in place, and the surge of adrenaline that he was experiencing. Once I realized what I was viewing and began to feel that it was authentic, I immediately closed the video. This was not something that I needed scarred into my psyche! 

Disgusted, I completed the "report content" form on Facebook. Since this video was easy for me to find, it would certainly be viewed by youngsters and those confused about their own body image. I am fully aware that self-amputation occurs, but this type of video has no place on a social media platform!  I flagged the video as abusive because it displayed self-injury/harmful behavior and spent the remainder of the day trying to shake the images I viewed. 

Yesterday morning I received a from Facebook  informing me that my report was reviewed and that the video was not deemed inappropriate. Seriously? If teaching others how to cut off a limb isn't demonstrating self-injury or harmful behavior, I am not sure what would qualify! I was disgusted by the ruling and disheartened that the video is still on the social media platform.

I don't see my reliance upon the internet or on social media changing anytime soon. This most recent experience simply solidified my view that social media, especially Facebook, is not an appropriate platform for children. I may be lax about many things, but Robby should not expect to open an account anytime soon!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tight Leg

After a laid back Spring Break, both boys will return to school today. Unlike other long breaks where I found myself feeling anxious for the normalcy of my schedule, this morning I am saddened to see them both leave. Although we didn't do anything spectacular, it was nice having them home. I came to rely upon their help throughout the day, and I am a tinge nervous about being by myself again.

I continue to be on "movement restriction" (which is apparently the new term for bed rest), a directive easier to obey when help is readily available. Now that I'm on my own, I will be forced to fend for myself. I know that I'll be okay; I am just not looking forward to it!

As if contending with the leaking amniotic fluid and cramping weren't enough, I am struggling with my prosthesis. The socket is tight making it difficult to don and painful to wear. Although I know that Elliot (my prosthetist) would certainly make the necessary adjustments or build me another socket if need be, I have reservations that a trip to the office would be worth the effort. At this point in the pregnancy, I don't see the swelling in my limb stabilizing any time soon.

Not only is the socket painful to wear, but I am no longer independent when it comes to putting on my liner. The baby bump just doesn't allow me to bend enough to slip it onto my limb. Thankfully, Scott and Robby have been home to help with the liner issue, but with them both away during the day, I am going to be on my own. I know that the solution is keeping the liner on all day which isn't a problem when I'm wearing my leg and comfortable. However, I find wearing the liner without my leg to be uncomfortable and hot. I realize that this is a "suck it up" moment, but it doesn't mean that I have to be happy about it!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Review

Although it was relatively laid back in revelry, especially compared to year's past, we had a nice Easter. With my movement restrictions we just couldn't complete our normal traditions. I am proud of Robby for not complaining and for taking the changes in stride. He is growing into such a patient and easy-going child; I'm so proud of him!

Saturday evening we finally completed the one Easter tradition I refused to ignore--dyeing Easter eggs. It occurred to me that this activity takes considerably longer now that he is older, but that he also finishes exponentially cleaner. Gone are the days of dipping his hands into the full cup of colorful dye. This year he carefully moved each egg between trays, created striped and overlapping circles featuring a rainbow of bright colors. I became excited when it occurred to me that next year I will be preparing two dozen eggs instead of one. I'm looking forward to scrubbing little hands clean after he (or she) playfully splashes in the colorful dye cups!

Easter morning I woke up early, not because that was my intention but instead because sleep has become elusive. While the boys were still dreaming, I sneaked outside and carefully hid the eggs and Easter surprises. (For a reason which we still don't understand, Robby does not like candy. Therefore, his Easter treats always consist of outdoor toys for the coming summer.) It turns out that the egg hiding was easier in concept than in execution. I can't bend, so I was forced to either squat down to place each egg or find a spot knee high to hide it. I have no doubts that I resembled a pajama-wearing chicken each time I not-so-gracefully squatted down to place an egg.

Despite my efforts, Robby found his treats and eggs in near record time. He soon settled down on the couch, content to play Xbox with a friend for much of the day. Scott lounged in bed watching hockey. Realizing that nobody needed me and knowing that I wouldn't be missed, I took the opportunity for a long nap. We certainly didn't have the most exciting Easter, but this year I think it was just what we needed!