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, December 14, 2018

Relaxing the Holiday

Heavy rain is in the forecast for the entire weekend, effectively washing out all of my holiday plans. Walking through light displays and visiting an outdoor Christmas Village are definitely more inviting in clear weather, or even snow, than they are in the rain.  I guess the boys will have to settle for a trip to the mall and baking cookies instead. 

I have a feeling neither will complain about our change in plans. They are both so excited about the holidays that every activity is both a treat and an adventure. Their enthusiasm is contagious and will surely keep me in the spirit despite the dismal rain.  

This holiday season I have been working to remain in the moment and as relaxed as possible. For so many years I have worked myself into a tizzy trying to orchestrate the perfect experience for everybody else. I have decided that perhaps it is time to take another approach. My house might not be as clean and the cookies may not have perfect decorations, but the kids are happy and my smile is authentic. This year, we are all going to enjoy Christmas!

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Insult Sales

This time of year my inbox always overflows with ads and "only once a year" sales opportunities. I feel like I spend more time deleting emails each day than I do actually opening and reading. So far, one inbox has remained semi-safe from the constant solicitations. My Facebook messenger typically only houses messages from friends (and a handful of uninvited chain letters). Unfortunately, my Messenger inbox is starting to show signs of sales contamination. 

First of all, I feel like I should explain that I appreciate my friends who hustle and work their stay-at-home businesses. As a Mom, I know that the struggle is real. Whenever possible I try to lend support by purchasing a product or two and giving them a try. My friends are not aggressive, and never inundate me with constant sales requests.  

I have noticed a handful of sales messages, and the number seems to be growing, from those who are not on my friend's list. Most of the time the messages are respectful and succinct.  Something along the lines of "You're an amputee, have you tried my CBD/Essential oil/ wraps for phantom pain/discomfort/inflammation." Again, I appreciate the hustle and even though I am not connected to these individuals, I know that they are just trying to make a living. It is easier for me to delete and move on than it is to engage. 

Yesterday I received a message that I feel crossed the clear line between unsolicited sales and predatory insults. A lady messaged me, admitting that we were not connected on Facebook. She continued to say that she found my photo and that I was "too young to look so old and tired."  Of course, she could help me if I am interested. The insult was followed by a cutsie "LOL," as if that takes away the insult against my haggard appearance.

If I were not secure in myself, the message could have pushed me over the brink. Can you imagine feeling vulnerable and then receiving a message from a stranger, confirming your skewed self-esteem? I am considering forwarding the message to the "mothership" company for review of the sales minion's tactics. Whatever product she was selling, her approach does not come across as professional!

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Yard Work

We spent Sunday morning tackling the last pile of leaves for the year. Scott drove the mower, bagging up the leaves as he passed. When the bags were full he backed into the woods, where Timmy and I were waiting. After I emptied and reloaded the bags, Scott drove away to gather more leaves while Hamlet gleefully jumped into the growing mountain of shredded fun.  

While we were busy working on the leaves on the lawn, Robby was busy blowing them from the porch and steps. With everybody working together (although Timmy's contribution was really limited to staying occupied and out of trouble), the chore only took us two hours.  It was nice to be able to come inside for lunch with the satisfaction that the leaf gathering was done for the year.

As Scott and I were making breakfast, we started to chuckle as we were thinking about how our lives have changed. When we first moved into this house we were newly married and without kids. We slept until 11 on weekends and casually went out for breakfast on a whim. Hearing mowers and leaf blowers revving before noon was an annoyance because it disturbed our solitude.

Now that we have kids, we know that you have to take advantage of every opportunity. Out of respect we always wait until at least 10:30 before revving up any loud equipment, but I can't help but wonder if the young couple without kids across the street were annoyed by our Sunday activities. Even if they were, they will soon learn that our yardwork is minimal and that they won't be disturbed often.  ;)

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Bolder Run

Timmy and Robby are so different that it borders on fascinating. With the exception of their physical similarities, it is hard to fathom that they are closely related. Robby has always been studious, cautious and intense. Timmy is silly and an adventurous thrill seeker.

I spent several hours yesterday afternoon throwing a giant yoga ball down a hill. As it was bouncing towards him, Timmy tried to beat it down the hill Indiana Jones style. Most of the time he won, but the peels of laughter when the ball ran him filled the cold air. I can only imagine how odd my trying to bowl over my preschooler must have looked to the new neighbors!

Robby would have become panicked and insulted had I rolled a giant ball after him down a hill, but Timmy hatched the idea and begged me to help. Robby loved looking for bugs and examining intricacies of bugs and rocks. Timmy views rocks as obstacles that need to be jumped over or thrown.  

This little guy is certainly keeping me active!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Hibernation

I had a wonderful weekend doing absolutely nothing of import.  I had anticipated being festive and baking cookies. In reality, I ended up binge-watching cookie baking shows on television while relaxing in front of our fireplace.

After the phantom pain nightmare from last week, a few days of relaxing was a welcome change of pace. I have to admit that I thoroughly enjoyed being completely unproductive. To my surprise, the boys seemed just as content to stay home and play quietly by themselves for most of the weekend. I guess we all needed a break from the holiday hustle and bustle.  

Where we were relaxed and hibernating all weekend, the new neighbors were overflowing with activity. Saturday morning a U-Haul truck drove into Mr. Bill's driveway, followed by nine cars. (The house will probably always be referred to as "Mr. Bill's," regardless of who lives there.)  The crew spent the weekend moving and unpacking.  

Robby and I were toying with the idea of going over to introduce ourselves, but we decided to wait until the friends left and the situation was less hectic.  Maybe today we will bake some cookies to welcome the new neighbor. Even though we are still sad that Mr. Bill has left, I want to make sure that we don't take it out on the new owner.


Friday, December 07, 2018

Frustrations

I'm thankful that the phantom pain has finally waned, but I feel like the episode continues to impact my life. I'm chasing my tail trying to catch up on everything that I delayed while I was contending with the phantom stingers. I am fearful of pushing myself too hard to catch up out of the fear that the pain will return. So now I'm pain-free but frustrated and frazzled.  

I want to just relax and enjoy the season, but I find myself running around like a crazy woman. If I'm not chasing a kid I'm tripping over a toy or a cat. Worst of all, I am losing patience with my kids. They do not deserve to reap the unfortunate consequences of my pain!

Hopefully, I can use the weekend to recover and to reset. I hate feeling this way- like I'm never doing enough and like I'm always failing. I know that I need to switch my mindset but I'm not sure how to modify my inner dialog.  I guess I just figured out my New Year resolution!


Thursday, December 06, 2018

Relief!

Relief!

The phantom pain that has been plaguing me at night since Sunday has finally lifted. Last night I slept through the night. My leg was still and wasn't instinctively kicking as a response to the stinging sensations. My goodness, I feel so much better!

I am still confounded about the cause of this phantom pain episode. It frustrates me that I can be sidelined without cause. I have a hard time accepting the "sometimes it happens" explanation, probably because it reminds me that my lifestyle is vulnerable to my limb.

After struggling for the past few days, I have a new respect for my amputee friends who suffer from phantom pain on a regular basis. I am lucky that I only contend with the demon nerves a few times a year. I have friends who have contended with phantom pain for decades. I cannot imagine how they can continue to function. A few days nearly knocked me out and drove me off the abyss.