Posts Tagged amputation

Pretending to be Patient

I may seem patient on the outside, but I am full of anxiety, excitement, and anticipation as I wait for my new prosthetic leg.  It has been a long summer, knitting has distracted me for the most part, but always there  are nagging emotions just waiting to explode.  In less than a week, I get my test socket.  School has started life is falling into a routine and I wait.  One more week and I can take normal steps, probably just a few as my stump toughens up.  I want to watch my boys run cross-country, walking from checkpoint to checkpoint cheering them on rather than sitting in a wheelchair or riding a scooter.  I hate being dependent on others and actually look forward to cleaning my house.  But I can’t yet, soon.  I wait and knit.  I am finishing some projects, things I lined up before surgery to give me purpose through the recovery process.  Socks, pillows, washcloths and hanging towels have been most of my projects.  Now if only the anticipation didn’t weigh so heavy on me, I might enjoy them.  For now, they are just a distraction as I pretend to be patient.

Casting my leg so my prosthetic can be made, less than a week until my test socket is finished. 
  

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Twin set and update on me

So it’s been awhile since I have been on here.  Sorry about that.  I am doing really well since my amputation, much better than my first amputation.  My previous amputation was traumatic due to my foot having gangrene caused by treatment of the AVM throughout my foot.  Now I am just resting from my second amputation, right below the knee amputation.  The Dr performed an Ertyl amputation using a cadaver bone to bridge my two leg bones.  He did a great job the X-rays look perfect.   So now I am recovering.  I knit some but not as much as I would like but the medications I am on don’t make concentrating easy and the phantom pain makes it impossible without the medicine so I guess my knitting will be slow going.  I did finish the twin set I’ve been knitting for my new nieces.  I just need to sew in the ends and connect the I-cord that keeps the mittens in pairs.  So this is my update post, I haven’t forgotten my blog just been busy healing (physical therapy and nurse visits wear me out and they come to my house, well maybe the seven kids that are here exhaust me too 😊)

 My X-ray  
The twin set

  

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Surgery

I am sorry it has taken me so long to post about my surgery.  The surgery went awesome, smoother and quicker than the Dr had anticipated.  He was able to perform the exact same surgery just before mine, which is very rare. A relief to me too, since my surgery was just his third of this particular procedure.  (Well, worth it, if it heals properly it should be the strongest type of stump that can be formed via amputation.). My healing process has been great, nothing at all compared to my first amputation as I am learning now, was considered a traumatic amputation making recovering much more difficult.  I am being well taken care of, a nurse visits my home 3 days a week to help us change my dressings, it takes two people to properly put on the shrinker sock without causing more than necessary pain.  (Staples+Shrinker sock=very unpleasant).  My oldest two sons (17 and 15) and my husband take turns helping the nurse apply the Shrinker sock.   Everything is healing well, I haven’t counted but it looks like around 32 staples that remain for three weeks.  Once a week my physical therapist comes out to help me stay strong and prepare for my prosthetic.  He was originally suppose to come more often, but seeing my six kids and the exercise equipment I already owned, he felt once a week is plenty, which makes me happy, less poking and prodding.  My kids have stepped up for the most part, but being kids they do on occasion take advantage of the fact that I am not up and about and break the rules that kids abhor (such as no eating in the living room–I gave up on that one a long time ago but I’m pretty sure this one will give my husband a heart attack 😊). So all is well, I’m not knitting as much as I would like to, I sleep at odd hours and I’m back to watching anything since I’ve already watched everything.  Thank you for your prayers and concern!  I am getting more excited each day as my strength increases my medicine decreases and I’m a day closer to getting a new leg!   Thanks again and I hope you all have a great day!

PS even though the knitting has slowed my knitting list increases by the hour, there are so ma y things I want to make right now….next time I’ll share some!

 

first time up in a chair after surgery

  

my youngest and I get ting comfortable today

  

this is my sons joke, he had us laughing do hard……”that moment when you realize your arm is gone”

 

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What a day!

I had an early start today. It’s cold and I needed to be at the amputee clinic by 9:50 AM. I thought I left plenty early but had to park at a McDonalds because my minivan had steam coming from the hood. The gauge didn’t show that my engine was hot but given that it was in the single digits this morning that doesn’t surprise me. I was really regretting not finishing my knitting project sooner, I really could have used the gloves. Fortunately, my sister had a spare pair I borrowed when she brought my youngest three children to get me to my appointment on time. So much for sparing them the cold boring trip. We made it on time, sliding a little here and there.
Now for the exciting news, well, exciting to me….my Dr gave me all the information I needed to get the ball rolling on my next amputation. Hopefully, by the end of summer I will be ready to have a mid-calf amputation on my right leg. This will open doors for me, not literally, but I will get to run around with my kids again! I will call my surgeon just as soon as I am on the mend from my total hysterectomy scheduled less than two weeks away. After what seems like a slow healing process since most of my foot was amputated, it feels great to have a plan and have more control over the situation.
So now that I have a plan, I will start on the next most important thing–my fingerless gloves so I am not caught in the cold without them!

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Oh yeah the minivan….I’ll let my husband handle that, I still have AWANA to get through tonight, as secretary they really keep me on my toes (with only five toes that can be exhausting!)

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Resolved

I have decided to knit more this year. By Knit more I mean have at least one possibly two surgeries. First my hysterectomy in January. I am stock piling yarn like there’s no tomorrow, not really, because there’s no need to–I already have. So I just need to mentally prepare myself….patterns are accumulating. The second surgery will come later but I have decided I would like to pursue the mid-calf amputation for quality of life. I was waiting until I was sure before I would tell people that is what I would do. I’m finally sure and very much at peace with the decision, and that was what I was waiting for–the peace. So now I feel ready for the next year….for now.
My projects I’m excited about….
http://www.craftsy.com/supplies/sunshadow-tam-and-gloves-kit/5944?_ct=iuqhsx-kdyluhiqb-huikbj-ixef&_ctp=5944
http://www.craftsy.com/supplies/lima-hat-kit/3932?_ct=iuqhsx-kdyluhiqb-huikbj-ixef&_ctp=3932
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/knitting

And yes the last one is right….pretty much going to have fun searching patterns and posting on ravelry…..Happy New Year!

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Halloween

We had a lot of fun this Halloween. Dressing up six kids is still a lot of work, but the make up got on, the knitting finished, just in time to send them outdoors and for me to take a seat.

Now, my seat was specially orchestrated…..we had to have fun with my amputated foot. We wrapped it in gauze, spread some red face paint on it and propped it up with zombie foot below. I was kind and lowered the foot before the babies and toddlers saw, but those middle school boys had some funny reactions. One boy was positive it was fake, but I really can’t imagine how you hide most of your foot. Hey, if you are going to have a tragedy might as well make it a tragic comedy. I sat there knitting while stunned children attempted to choose candy from the bowl next to my bloody stump. Guaranteed leftovers, it’s hard to be greedy when you are trying to stare at the stump.

I did forget to take pictures of my kids before they left so I was only able to get soggy pictures of the oldest four since the younger ones had showered and changed before I remembered, oh well.  I will post what I can especially the knit beard, that was fun to make.  I even knit a crown, that, of course, my daughter chose not to wear.  Itchy wool, ugh.   Both the crown and beard were knit in record time, after four and finished before five-thirty.  Awesome, I even had time to eat a slice of pizza before they all ran off to empty the neighborhood of candy.

This will definitely be a Halloween to remember, and maybe the start of a great tradition, embracing my amputation, in a gory way.   We forgot to carve pumpkins but at least the kids have giant sacks of candy to distract them from the rotting pumpkins that should be outside our door.  I even forgot the glow in the dark bracelets/necklaces to keep them from getting run over by the parents who care to keep track of their children…..I finally convinced my husband to join the concerned crew and check on our sure to be soaked children.  He tried but couldn’t find them.  They all arrived home in spite of my worry.  Like I said a Halloween to remember.

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An Update with Wash Cloths and Dish Towels

Well, I haven’t been on in a while, with good reason. This past summer I spent a month in the hospital beginning with a procedure to destroy the vascular malformation in my foot and ending with partial amputation of my right foot. Basically I am left with my right heel and a little bit (centimeter or two) to flex up and down. I unfortunately was too medicated to complete much knitting, but the stack of hanging dish towels I had made in advance served me well. As women dropped off meals, or helped with the upkeep of my home, or watching my kids,, the towels were passed out, along with wash cloths as the towels ran out. I am very happy I had finished them and was pleased to pass them on as a gift in return for all the help so graciously offered. We have been blessed beyond measure in the midst of what has been the most difficult time in our family. Spending a month away from my children was harder than I care to go through again. I am slowly getting back to myself, knitting baby hats, towels, wash cloths, and looking at starting up some scarves for the school year. I am also transitioning as most of my kids are now in public school. I only have two kids to distract me so my knitting should be doubled, if it wasn’t for the foot distraction. Thank you for continuing to visit my website and hopefully I will not take such a long break.

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