As I have decided to start a blog about all things me and my thoughts, one of the things about me that can’t be missed out is that I am an amputee.
For a lot of people loosing a limb (or even more) whether it is through trauma or illness, it can be something that is very hard to deal with. The experience of loss of life as they knew it, having to relearn basic skills most of us take for granted, it really can be a massive challenge. For me this was not the case as I had for 8 years had a foot that was stuck at an awkward angle like in a spasm that didn’t release, it was swollen, super sensitive to touch with a chronic feeling of burning electric shock pain. For years they tried to figure out what it was. Me and my husband started ticking off the hospitals visited like a football fan would tick of football grounds visited, but with less delight and enthusiasm. Procedures, specialists, tests and medication was the constant loop we were in for the first years. And then it was diagnosed as CRPS (chronic regional pain syndrome), which easily explained is a doctors version of ‘hey this really REALLY hurts in this place right here, and it’s chronic’.
My children were all small at the time, and the longer it went on the more I felt like a grandmother who you have to tip toe around rather then a mother. I wasn’t able to concentrate for long periods of time because of pain, and the copious numbers of drugs I was on. After 3 years we explored the idea of amputation, but was talked out of it by different specialist who always had one more thing they could try. After 8 years I finally had a wonderful team of surgeons who decided that my cry for a better quality of life was worth taking a gamble on. The 8.July 2017 my right leg was removed below my knee, and I am forever grateful to the surgeons who helped me get my life back.
Through many failed attempts of saving the leg over the years, I learned not too hope for too much. Better to be surprised beyond expectations then to have your hopes crushed. So as I went in to hospital in July 2017 my hope was to be able to have a little less pain, and be on less drugs, even if I wasn’t able to walk again, having the painful foot off should limit the spikes in pain every time it was brushed against, and make me more able to enjoy the simple things like cuddles with my children and social occasions without tiring too quickly.
‘Maybe, just maybe, you will exceed your wildest dreams’ Kobi Yamada
So for me loosing my leg was a choice and not actually a loss at all. For me loosing my leg was a win, because I have been able to give my children hugs daily without being scared they will accidentally touch my poorly leg, I have been able to shower and swim again without the water feeling like acid, I have climbed mountains and peaks again, cycled again and can play badminton with my family. I can go out with friends and it rejuvenate me. It exceeded all I dared to cautiously hope for, even if it is not perfect all the time, it is so much more then I dared to dream for.