Well its now December 22nd 2010. So what has happened since I got home on the 25th of August?
In the first week of September I went to the Disables Services Center (DSC) at Leicester General and had a chat with some of the staff and they had also arranged for a really nice guy called Steve to come and talk to me as he has had a prosthetic leg for a long time and he voluntarily helps new amputees by answering various questions they might have.
Although I was not down, depressed, or feeling negative there are many questions that come up once you start thinking about your situation. Steve Was great and his advice was of great use.
ok I can not continue without introducing the team that looked after me and helped me get back on my feet (or should i say foot) again.
The Physiotherapist team Consisting of Rajinda, Kerry, and Chaz are a fantastic team that are really dedicated to getting you up and walking again.
The receptionists Sam and Eileen are also really nice and do everything possible to help and assist, especially when you are waiting for the transport to take you home again. But more on that later.
There was also Jo who made the cast of my stump and then created my prosthetic leg and was and still is responsible for making any adjustments needed. There is also Pip the nurse and last but not least Doctor J (yes that's how he is called as apparently no one can pronounce his name) Who keeps his eye on all the patients and does follow ups once discharged from the expertise care of Rajinda and her team.
Due to Vacations etc the team was short staffed in September so I could not start the actual physiotherapy until the 23rd of September.
I started trying to walk with a prosthetic that was for all and sundry and had, as well as the standard waist strap, a shoulder strap as well the reason for that is that when you first start you find the leg feels quite heavy.
My first half hour was with a locked knee to get used to the leg and prevent it folding on me and causing me to fall. After the first half hour Rajinda took the locking pin out and started to teach me how to walk with a leg that bent at the knee just as our real legs do.
This is quite an effort with so much to remember to do all at the same time, you really have to concentrate. If your mind wanders at the start that bendy knee soon reminds you as it starts to fold under you. (note you do all this while between two parallel bars so you got something to stop you going down and hitting the floor.).
On the 13th of October I was measured up and things were nice and stable so I went and got my Cast done By Jo.
The next Wednesday Jo fitted my prosthetic leg and we made a couple of test walks to figure out the correct length it needed to be cut to and angle adjustments.
Over the course of another 8 sessions I grew more confident and stable and graduated from using parallel bars to using two walking sticks. I was also taught how to get up from the ground both with and without my leg.
On the 3 November Rajinda said that I was to be signed off as I felt confident enough to continue with out having to go to the DSC every week. So after a total of 16 sessions spread over the 2 months I was on my own so to speak.
Well since then I have worn the leg on and off but it is winter and we have snow and ice so i can not really get going out side, and inside there is not a lot of room as you can imagine.
The good thing is I can get it on and I can move around although I need two walking sticks to ensure balance. I have had a couple of near misses in the falling department but have not hit the ground yet, but sooner or later it will happen.
So from having the leg removed to being competent to walk with my prosthetic leg aided by two walking sticks it took approximately 2 and a half months and now it is just a case of getting on with life. From the day I was told I had 3 choices one of them being the amputation until now I have been extremely positive about it and this is the reason it all went so well and so fast.
I will never be able to wear the leg all the time because although I can now walk i must be careful that I do not stress the other leg and have the same thing happen to it. So it is some time using the leg and other times either when in the house in a wheel chair and when out side using my mobility scooter. So As you can see I am still very independent although naturally there are things I still need help with
Through out all of this there is one person that has supported and helped me and stood by me and that is Wendy If it were not for here I would not have been so positive and I would never have recovered so fast. I can never thank her enough.
So as the title says life goes on and we must accept what happens to us and find the positive in each event. Now you may say what can be positive in losing a leg and becoming a disabled person.Well in my case the pain in that leg that I went through 24 hours a day for the last 5 years is gone. being unable to walk more that 50 meter without the use of two crutches is gone (yes i still need the walking sticks but eventually i will be down to just one and that only for a little balance where needed
Well I think that is about it for now.So If there are any changes I will be sure to let you all know