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, February 01, 2019

Dr. Timmy

Another day of wicked cold meant afternoon spent at a preschool playground. Yesterday I surprised Timmy by taking him to one of his favorite playgrounds, where he always finds buddies and is free to climb, slide, run and play to his heart's content. Kid Junction is also one of my personal favorites because it features a parent lounge in the middle of the action, allowing me to keep a watchful eye on my little adventurer while enjoying the benefits of free wi-fi.

After running through the climbing structure for two hours, Timmy was wearing down and needed a brief break. He isn't one to actually sit and rest. Instead, he led me by the hand to the Veterinarian Clinic play zone. He donned a coat, put a stuffed pony in my hand and assumed his role as Dr. Timmy.

Whenever I play imagination games with Timmy other kids seem to quickly swarm to be part of the action. Within minutes of my exam I had little kids sticking every appendage with a fake injection, blood pressure cuffs on both hands, and tiny reflex hammers banging away on me as if I were a toy on Santa's workbench. (I tried, without success, to encourage a softer use of the reflex hammers.)

At one point a new buddy grabbed the small pair of toy scissors and told me that he was going to fix my (pretend) broken finger by cutting it off. As soon as he spoke those words and made a pretend cut I saw a glint in Timmy's eyes. After quickly grabbing the scissors Timmy said, "Buddy, watch this. Watch this Buddy."  He then smiled wryly, giggled and said, "Timmy fix Momom leg. Timmy cut Momom leg off."

With a room full of little eyes zoned in on the "surgery" Dr. Timmy was about to perform, he carefully made one small pretend cut. Then he put the scissors down, gave my prosthetic a yank and dropped it through my pant leg and onto the floor, where it landed with a thud.  "Ta Da!" he shouted with gleeful success.

I wish I had a camera to record the shocked and mesmerized faces of his new buddies. Timmy stood victorious, quickly swooping my leg off the floor and holding it like a prized trophy. The buddies crowded around him, clamoring to get a glance at the leg Dr. Timmy had quickly removed. Soon my leg was being tried on by every kid at the playground and had been shown to every parent in the lounge. I have to admit, the discomfort and squirming on the adults' faces when their child took my leg to proudly show them was well worth the price of admission to the playground!

When I finally received it back I was able to talk with all of the kiddos about my prosthesis, my amputation, and my abilities. Timmy certainly made meeting their first amputee memorable! Yesterday was the first time that Timmy has ever demonstrated an understanding that I am somehow unique and different from other parents. Much like his brother, I think he is going to have fun with my novelty.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Bully at the Playground

Schools are closed- again. The bitter cold has rolled into our area, dropping temperatures below zero and bringing stronger winds. Although he was terribly disappointed, we didn't let Timmy go outside to play in the snow. We knew that there was no way we would be able to keep him healthy in the extreme freeze. 

Instead of playing outside, Scott and I took our little guy to one of his favorite play areas. He had a blast for the first 15 minutes. Then an unruly family arrived, and everything went downhill. For some reason, the child took it upon himself to harass and tease our Timmy without cause. Happily jumping in the bounce house, this kiddo started screaming at Timmy, calling him names and clotheslining him as he tried to exit. 

Scott and I tried our best to distract Timmy away from the bully, but it seems that our presence was not a deterrent. Timmy was teased and mocked while playing with me, and I was aghast that his mother did nothing. We finally packed up and left when the bully bit his sister's arm hard enough for her to shriek in pain. Unfortunately, it looked like she was used to the abuse. At that point, Timmy was happy to escape the harassment and eagerly accepted the Chick-Fil-A playland as consolation.

We didn't make a scene when leaving, but we did let it known that we were departing early because of the child's behavior.  Only when we were packing up did the little bully's mom look up from her cell phone to watch her child. It saddens me that she didn't notice her child was terrorizing everybody at the playground.  

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Cold Weather Tip

Our yard is blanketed with a beautiful blanket of fluffy white snow and schools have been canceled. Robby and Timmy were eager to start playing as soon as the first flakes began the fall, but I was a "mean Momom" AND made them stay inside. The heavy snow and high wind combination always keep me nervous! Today the winds have died down, so I anticipate hours of snowball fights, sledding and covering our yard with snow angels. 

With the extreme cold moving into the area, Timmy will be completely bundled before going outside. I don't want him to miss out on childhood fun, but his cold allergy always makes me nervous. We are still trying to figure out the balance between his having fun and remaining completely protected from the elements. Hopefully, it won't always be this nerve-wracking. 

In anticipation of the extreme cold, last night I dug through our coat closet to find my disposable hand warmers. Although they are typically used to keep fingers nice and toasty inside of gloves, I discovered that they also work inside my socket. When the temperatures drop severely and I'm outside for any length of time, my limb becomes so cold that it feels like ice when touched. The pain radiates up through my knee and into my hip and lasts for hours. I discovered the hand warmer tip when Robby was young and we were spending hours playing in the snow. 

After the handwarmer is activated, I put it into the bottom of my socket (making sure to not cover the valve.) My limb stays nice and toasty for six hours at a time, even when I'm knee high in snow. If only I could figure out something just as effective to safeguard Timmy from the elements!

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Snow and Pain

Snow and ice are moving through our area later today. Timmy is jumping off the walls with excitement while I'm slowly trudging along behind him, exhausted from another night of weather-induced phantom pain. I really wish Mother Nature would make up her mind because the constant extreme fluctuations are wreaking havoc on my limb!

My phantom pain has been more prevalent during the past few months. I am really hoping that it can be attributed to the wild weather patterns, but part of me is beginning to worry that something else might be going on. Of course, my limb is recovering from the bone bruise, so perhaps that could contribute to the increased pain in my missing toes. 

I think one of the most frustrating aspects of phantom pain lies in its mystery. I'm never able to completely predict when it will occur, how it will materialize or what caused it to flare. Thankfully my tried and true comfort mechanisms worked last night and I was able to get a few hours sleep.

Scott is home sick today so I will need to find something to do to channel Timmy's energies away from bouncing on his Daddy in bed. Because I don't want to drive far due to the encroaching weather, I'm thinking it might be a good Chick-fil-a Day. He can play with buddies and I can soothe my phantom limb frustrations with free wi-fi and waffle fries.

Monday, January 28, 2019

New Start

Even though I am woefully underemployed, I spent the majority of the weekend working. Weighting my prosthesis has morphed from painful to tender, but with each step, I am reminded to take it easy. Sitting on the couch with my laptop, I was able to allow my leg to continue to heal while still feeling productive.

Timmy was still not feeling fantastic, so we opted to keep him home and quiet. He was content watching cartoons and playing ABCMouse on the iPad.  Robby, basking in the knowledge that he had finished his first semester at his new school, spent his time Skyping with friends while playing video games. After Scott complained that there was nothing good on television, he quickly found alternative activities when I offered to change the chores on the wheel for him.  

It wasn't a terribly exciting weekend, but the boys were all able to relax while I was incredibly productive. While not having to worry about constantly checking emails and responding to calls immediately, I have missed working my brain since being laid off. Thankfully my new contracts are starting to produce some assignments and more projects are projected for the next few months.  

Today I go to the doctor (wish me luck) and Robby starts his new semester. With the goal of starting summer vacation early, we are going to try to work ahead in the coming weeks. Since he know understands both the program and the expectations, I think we have a shot making his long vacation dream a reality.