Tag: David Banks

Get a Grip

Get a Grip

Dealing with Phantom Pains, Part 2

As a continuation to last week’s podcast on Phantom Pain, and how my faith has helped me through, I thought I would add in other ways you can try to deal with these inevitable pains we go through, as amputees.

If you experience phantom pains you know how unpleasant and downright horrible they can be. They can mess with your head, bring you down, and keep you from sleep.  They don’t discriminate, and if you’ve never had them, be forewarned, you could still have them rear up even years down the road.  My prosthetist, who is also an above knee amputee, has been an amputee for 20+ years, and just last week experienced them for the first time, and the full blown kind.  It amazes me that no one is safe from experiencing them, in one form or another, and at any given time in their amputee life.

Which brings me to the point I tried to make in the last podcast, and will, again, reiterate it here:

You need to learn to deal with these pains, realizing that they come and go, no one is safe from them, and your mindset about them will ultimately determine how you push through (or not), to rise up and continue on with your life.  They may knock you down, but they don’t have to destroy you.

In this podcast I discuss many different ways you can help yourself deal with them, but ultimately, I believe you need to become really strong, mentally and emotionally, to win each battle, when they come.

 

Listen in to this week’s podcast and see what might be able help you the next time phantom pains strike.  And they will….. will you be ready to take on the battle?

 

 

Do some research. Understand your options. Research neurotransmitters.  Understand that what works for one person may not work for you so be open to that possibility and don’t be afraid to keep trying different options.  And remember, the more you understand that phantom pains are a part of your journey, the more capable you will be with overcoming them, and not being defeated by them, when they do arise.

Put on your big girl boots and push through!
I’m a “Mind over Matter” kinda girl.

 

I believe being outside and staying active helps me push through bouts of phantom pain. How about you?

 

Remember, you are not alone. and you CAN and WILL make it through it.

 

As always:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!!

 

Much love,

Angie

 

When The Going Gets Tough

When The Going Gets Tough

How do you deal when hard times come a knockin’?

 

Do you throw your hands up in defeat or do you reach deep down and find the strength to carry on?

Do you belittle yourself into an out of control spin or do you use words of affirmation and pull yourself up by the bootstraps?

 

I have been realizing, of late, that I am struggling with motivation. I think the move did me in and I’m still recuperating from the physical battles I had to overcome with packing and unpacking a home.  My body has been aching more and my residual limb, well, let’s just say we are trying to come to terms with what I want to do and what it is capable of doing.

I have pushing myself to get out the door and put my walks and exercise time in, only to find that my physical game is struggling, which then plays into my mental game. This past weekend I went for a long walk with my husband, only to find that my limb really didn’t have it in it to walk as long as I wanted to… but I pushed myself and my mind won.  However, that wasn’t the only win that day.  I walked the longest I had walked in my new socket- 2 miles, but I also pushed myself into an opportunity to see where my mental fortitude lay.  This is how this podcast came about. I realized how much I talk to myself in the “heat of the battle”.  My mind was speaking to my heart and my leg.  I then asked myself why I go through this pain and hurt.  What was I getting out of doing this to myself?

I learned a lot about myself as I walked in the 98 degree Arizona summer sun, pushing myself to go farther, to not turn around, and not to give up.  I find that this is beneficial for me to see what I am made of, to work out the kinks in my prosthesis, and build my character and create positive moments in my life.  Is it easy? Was it easy?  Absolutely NOT!  But as the saying goes, nothing worth earning comes from “easy”.  We benefit more from a situation that is hard to get through because when we rise out on the other side we claim victory, and this is great for self motivation and helps us deal with the next hard moment, which is sure to come.

 

This was a moment of finding out what I was made of.
A 10K race just 1 year after amputation.

 

The question is, how are you handling those tough moments? Do you want to do better? Feel better? Look better? Then it comes down to your mindset and the way you talk to yourself.  Positive self-talk is so important. We tell our kids to not put themselves down, when they screw up, but are we beating ourselves up when we fall short? It’s easy to say this to people when you realize what they are doing to themselves, but to practice what you preach can be tough and a hard pill to swallow.  I realized the day after I did this walk that I had a really hard time with the pain and my usual exercise, and I started to get angry with myself, using negative words and being frustrated…. so easy to fall into that pattern. I saw that I was doing exactly what I said NOT to do and instantly changed my inner voice to a positive tone. Did it make it easier to finish, not necessarily, but I was better for it, and learned a lot about myself that day.  I know that I can be physically strong but mentally weak and will struggle.  These two go hand in hand.  It’s time to change how you treat yourself and how you talk to yourself.

Listen in to this week’s podcast to hear how that day went for me, as I recorded in the midst of that moment. It’s raw emotion and the reality of that struggle and hear what you can do to help yourself the next time doubt and fear creep in to your mind.

 

 

This week I want you to really listen  to your inner voice.

Are you speaking negatively to yourself? Putting yourself down and beating yourself up?  Be honest.  Nothing good will come from lying to yourself or being in denial.

Listen to your mind when you realize you’re battling something. What do you hear?  More than likely you are negative. It’s really common to do that. We hate making mistakes, and sometimes we feel unworthy of where we are. Stop! Give yourself grace to fall, talk kindly to yourself and pick yourself back up.

This week practice positive self-talk. It’s time to ramp up your mental game so you can go out with confidence into this world and kick butt.  There is no room for negativity. Love yourself for where you are now, set goals to where you want to be, and speak kindly and positively. You just might find yourself reach those goals quicker than you imagined you ever could.

You can do this!  Believe in yourself, I do!

 

And as always,

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!!! (You deserve that!)

 

Much love,

Angie

Attitude is Everything
Shop Talk with Randy West

Shop Talk with Randy West

How about that fit, though?

Randy, my prosthetist, with the cast of my residual limb

 

This is the first step, for some prosthetists, when it comes to making their patient’s next socket. There are many steps, and it can be frustrating with how long it can take, only to realize you may need to make a bunch of corrections to the final socket over the course of the following weeks of receiving it.  It is a process, like everything in life, and can test your resolve and patience.  But  stay the course, my friend!  If you have an amazing prosthetist, like I do, then let them work their magic and make the adjustments.  It’ll be a better fit in the long run and you’ll be a better, well-adjusted person conquering the world once again.

Adjustments need to be made, over and over again! Thanks, Randy!

 

But what if you don’t feel like you’re being heard or, better yet, being blamed for the fit not working for you?  That’s when you may need to seek outside help and opinions….and NOT from strangers on social media but from practicing professionals.  It may take some time and effort on your part but it’s ok to shop around and talk with other prosthetists. Having a new set of eyes on the issues you may be having with your fitting is your prerogative and your right.  This is YOUR life after all.

Teamwork makes the dream work!
And even professionals will ask for a new set of eyes to help them make it right for you…or at least they should-It’s called humility.

 

Communication and listening are two qualities you should look for in a prosthetist. they should be willing to take the time that is needed, not allotted, to talk with you and understand your pains, concerns and issues with your fit.  If they can’t do that, listen to your gut and find someplace else to go.

Listen in to today’s podcast where I talk with my prosthetist about the types of sockets, how to handle office visits and reassuring you that it’s ok to move on if the relationship isn’t working out. We also jump into what you can do to help yourself and getting out of your own way when working with your professional.

He makes some really good points that you really should hear especially if you’re struggling right now with your fit and/or your prosthetist.

 

You can also find the interview on my YouTube channel: Angie Heuser-BAWarrior360

 

Time to get real.

I believe there are 3 components to your success with fitting and then succeeding as an amputee:

Physical, Emotional, Mental

First, get past the amputation-or with whatever you are struggling. This is the mental component and it might be taking you in the wrong direction. If you are still struggling with being an amputee then you need to figure out how to right this or you won’t be able to move on. Stop looking into the past, at what you had, or how you were wronged. To be successful at anything, not just being an amputee, you need to embrace where you are NOW.  Find someone to talk to, create a journal, add to your vision board, do something to get you to look forward and not in the past.

Make time for you and embrace the journey YOU are on.

 

 

Second, it’s ok to be sad, angry, disappointed at where you are. Express that emotion and then move on. It’s not ok to dwell in that negativity, it will only lead to other issues such as health issues. Your body isn’t designed to stay in a stressed, angry phase for long periods of time and it will eventually start to react to the negativity. You don’t need more issues on top of what you are already dealing with, so deal with your emotions- now!  Use the above ideas to help you get started.

Finally, the physical aspect. As amputees we need to get a great fitting socket or life can get harder than it already is. You need to be in the right office, with the right prosthetist, who listens to you and takes your scenario to heart. But you are responsible for communicating well,  and giving him/her your best. if the above two aspects are a struggle for you then this physical aspect is going to be tough. Your mind has to be in the right place because the physical side of amputation is demanding. We must be strong, courageous, willing to push through some hard stuff, just to get exactly what we need to live a full and healthy life.

It is an uphill battle some days, but the view from the top is amazing! Get after it!

 

You can do this!

Don’t give up. Ask questions, get help, talk it out with people who love you and listen.

You will get through this, and when you do, you’ll be all the more stronger and badass for it!!

 

As always,

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!!

 

Much love,

Angie

Fit As A Fiddle-Ha!

Fit As A Fiddle-Ha!

Prosthetics 101-Part 2  Fitting

Getting my fitting checked with Randy. (@limbmaster)

 

No matter how many questions I asked and how many people I talked to prior to amputation, no one can help you understand the things you don’t even know to ask in the first place…. for example, I knew it would take time, about 2 years, for my residual limb to shrink, change, and mature. What I didn’t know was that what I ate the day before may make my socket not fit the next morning, or that losing weight and gaining weight can be detrimental to a good fitting socket!  Oh, I’m learning that now, boy am I ever!! But it’s these moments that I hope my journey will help someone else navigate their own. It’s not something I would have even thought about asking someone before my amputation, but it’s definitely a factor in why so many amputees are struggling to fit well into their sockets.

My newest socket that’s almost ready for pick up! No more excuses!💪🏼

 

This socket is one of the many I have had made for me and my ever-changing limb. It truly is a journey, and one that you need to embrace and wrap your head around. Once you go through an amputation you won’t be problem or pain free. You will have ups and downs, good days and bad. It’s how you handle them that counts, and understanding your own body is vitally important for you to get the best fit for your socket.  Being able to accurately communicate what is going on with your fit, to your prosthetist, will help him or her make the best socket, and adjustments, for you. Also, if you know where you want your body weight to be, and hold yourself accountable, that will also help eliminate issues with fitting into your leg as well.

I wish I had known that in the beginning, but I’m glad I understand that now. I am more aware of changes to my body and therefore able to comprehend what’s going on with my fit. Sometimes it’s just what it is, and my limb is changing and maturing the further out from surgery I get. Other times, it’s on me and whether I’m eating well, or exercising too much or not enough. Self-awareness is vital to your fit, and your fit is vital to your overall health. If you aren’t fitting well into your socket then you’ll be more apt to give up and not wear it, thus causing you to become more unhealthy and that in turn can really bring you down, emotionally.  See how your fit can effect the other areas of your life?

Check out this podcast as I delve into some issues I’ve been having and how I am correcting them. Also, you can check out my You Tube channel for my video podcasts and other videos on exercise,

Before you go, subscribe to my site so you won’t miss an episode!

 

This week I want you to start making goals and sticking to them.

*Set a specific day AND time to weigh yourself, weekly.

*Decide where you want to be with your weight and start working towards that.

*Baby steps- start making good habits with exercise. Maybe start with simple pushups and do what you can. The next day do the same if not one more, and so on. Also, don’t forget about your core! A strong core will make walking easier and help you avoid other issues like a bad back or sore hip.

*Track what you eat! work on having a calorie deficit, if you want to lose weight, or set a calorie intake for the day and stick to it. It’s ok to have something you love, once in a while. Total restriction isn’t fun nor beneficial. This is NOT a diet but a change in your thinking. Accountability is key to seeing this through. Use an app for calorie counting, it’s so much easier that way. I use the app Lose It! and have for several years now.

*Remember, it’s a journey. It won’t happen over night and give yourself some grace when you fall down. Get back up and continue to move forward. You can do this!!

Reach out to me if you have any questions. I’m happy to help and here for you.

Follow me on Instagram at @BAWarrior360

 

As always:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!

 

Much love and happy exercising,

Angie

Prosthetics 101: Part 1

Prosthetics 101: Part 1

In the beginning….

This is me, with Randy West, in my first prosthetic and 50 lbs heavier! Yikes!!

 

This picture is hard for me to look at. I had been through years of surgeries and being laid up. I wasn’t active at all because I couldn’t. I was either in surgery, elevating my knee from surgery, in PT, or in just too much pain. Sadly, my mental game took as big of a hit as my physical game. I was starting to worry that my physical health was going to continue to decline and never be good again, but my prosthetist, Randy, knew that I wanted more out of life and so he and I worked so very hard to get the best fitting socket I could get so I could get out and become active once again…after all, I hurt myself going for my 2nd degree black belt. I was actually in great shape when I got hurt.

Deciding on amputation wasn’t an easy decision but I am so glad I did it. Not only did it save me from becoming even heavier and more unhealthy, it saved my mental and emotional life, as well.  I am so very happy now, even when my days are long and hard, even when my socket isn’t fitting just right, and even through phantom pain, I can say, without a doubt I made the right choice, for me, and I am stronger, healthier and happier then I had been.

Me now.  What a huge difference, and I was able to achieve a healthier physique as an amputee!

 

I want that for you, too! And you can have that kind of life. You can find happiness and joy, peace and health, laughter and activity. It really does come down to just a few key things to get you on your way. Attitude, perseverance, choices.  These key elements can turn a lot around for you and me. No, it won’t take away your challenges and struggles, but it WILL help you cope and rise above them.

Listen in today as I talk about the first 2 years of my amputation journey and what you might not expect to happen and how I’ve dealt with those low moments so I can continue to rise everyday and make my life worth living.

You can also watch my podcasts on my YouTube channel HERE.

 

 

This week I want you to LAUGH! Find ways to make laughter part of your healthy routine. Watch a funny movie, hang out with fun friends, read cartoons or watch silly, short animal videos on your phone with your family. I know you’ll feel better about yourself and your situation if you make time to relax and enjoy life. Give yourself that. Allow yourself to be happy.

Have an amazing week… and on that note,

This was the very first day I brought my leg home! My boys have such great sense of humor!🤣

 

Until next week:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!

 

Much love and happiness,

Angie

 

 

 

 

Traveling Once Again-Tips and Tricks for Traveling

Traveling Once Again-Tips and Tricks for Traveling

…and ROMP: Helping Others Gain Freedom of Mobility One Prosthetic at a Time

This is me, July 2020 climbing Mt. Humphreys in Flagstaff, AZ. My highest and most challenging terrain thus far.
I did this for ROMP’s #We Still Climb campaign.

 

OK all, I am here to tell you that if you haven’t heard of ROMP: Range of Motion Project Global yet you need to check them out!! Do you feel the need to give back, or help others? Do you want to get in shape for yourself but need motivation? Then this is the group for you to get involved with. ROMP is a non-profit group that helps get prosthetics to underserved communities here in the U.S. and abroad. Since their creation in 2005 they have been able to deliver 3,345 devices and visited 9, 249 patients! I became involved last year through Living With Amplitude magazine’s team for the We Still Climb initiative. We raised money as a team and went out and climbed our own mountains (usually they have teams go to Cotopaxi, in Ecuador, to climb the highest glacier covered volcano there to bring awareness and raise funds-but even though a pandemic stopped that travel it didn’t stop them from recreating the challenge to fit the times).

Today, I am now a team leader for the 2021 Challenge AND Mobility May.  I have an amazing team working with me to raise funds but also to log miles, anyway they can and want to, to bring awareness to the lack of mobility that some people have in the world. Everyone deserves to have the freedom that comes from mobility, and shouldn’t be stopped from having that opportunity just because of where they live.

If you’d like to join my team (No, it’s not too late!) or donate to my team: Romping Warriors, please click HERE

We will be charging forward to raise $2021 and log 2021 miles, as a team, by December 31, 2021.  Join us!!

 

This Friday I am traveling back home to Chicago!!! I can’t wait. I miss my family and my husband’s family, and it’s been too long! However, if you’re an amputee, you know that traveling can produce stress and anxiety. Trying to remember all the things you’ll need, and what you MIGHT need, if case of an emergency, can make traveling hard.

Listen in as I discuss the things I bring with me, how I get through security at the airport and make everything run smoothly so I can enjoy the trip. I sometimes need to remind myself that I need to enjoy the journey not just the destination, but that can be hard when there is so much to remember to bring. Don’t fret the small stuff, and know that you’ll be fine no matter what.

Enjoying my hike up one of our Arizona mountains. My happy place!

 

 

Today’s Call to Action is a simple one:

Check out ROMP’s website, Instagram and/or Facebook Page!

Range of Motion Project Global

IG: @ROMPGLOBAL

Facebook: Range of Motion Project

 

Get involved if you feel led. Join my team, donate. I promise you, that helping others gain their freedom of mobility and their independence will fill your bucket, making you feel great and wanting to do more. You can also take on the challenges, like joining my team, and getting out and active for yourself (which will produce endorphins-that will make you happy), and you’ll be a better person for it. It’s a Win-Win, in my book.

 

Join me! Take on a challenge! Change someone’s life for the better.

Mobility is not to be taken for granted.

Mobility means freedom

Mobility means independence.

 

As always:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!

 

Much love,

Angie

Kauai beaches and my first time snorkeling as an amputee…
..actually the first time to get in the ocean since my injury 8 years ago!!!
FREEDOM!!!
Starting Point

Starting Point

Again, and Again, and Again…..

Starting Line to my 1st race as an amputee, and as a St Jude Hero.

 

If someone asked you where your life began, or where you started out, you might answer, when you were born. Others may answer where they started their career or life as an adult, when they had to be responsible for themselves and maybe a spouse or significant other.

For me, my starting point is always changing, and comes around…OFTEN!

Of course we all start life at birth, then we grow, move out and start our own life.

If we get married and have kids, those are all new points, starting once again.

At 40 something years old, I thought most of my starting points were behind me but in December 2018 my life shifted greatly. I elected to amputate my left leg above the knee, and start over. This was a huge discussion and was quite tough to make. Many questions came to me, like- Would I die during surgery? Would I get an infection? Will I really learn to walk again, or hike or ski, for that matter? Did I have the energy and strength to begin again and learn to do everything I knew how to do (with 2 legs) now with just one?

When I woke after surgery I started over. A clean slate. A new beginning. As scary as that was, it was also a moment of new hope. I could dictate the outcome of my decision, to some degree, with my attitude, mindset, and fight. And that’s just what I did!

In this podcast I discuss what it’s like starting over. And how as an amputee we “start over” A LOT! Every new socket, the change in weather, a new pair of shoes, a change in prosthetics, from walking leg to running blade, etc.

Another new socket fitting by Randy West 5/3/2021

 

Stop and rest now and then. Life is a marathon NOT a sprint!

 

All of that feels new, and changes our perspective and outcomes of that moment, day or week.

This was my 3rd ski trip as an amputee-the first one without instructors!

 

Starting over isn’t for the weak or faint of heart.❤

And sometimes we succumb to the constant newness of our circumstance. I discuss options you have on how, as an amputee, you deal with these obstacles, and how your support system can help you navigate day to day living.

Remember, it’s all about your mindset, but even the most optimistic people hit roadblocks they struggle to get around. Give yourself a break. Have grace with yourself and don’t hold on to those struggles. They are inevitable, and we all deal with them. Take a step back, breathe, then move forward-head held high!

Roadblocks are a part of life. Embrace the challenge and ATTACK!
Smiling’s my favorite! 😁

 

You are a warrior! Press on, good and faithful soldier, press on.⚔

 

This week, I want you to look in the mirror, and look deep within yourself.  Praise yourself for how far you’ve come. Recognize your successes, let go of fears. Press onward. If you haven’t made a vision board yet, give that a go this week. Check out my own vision board HERE  for an example.

If you have a vision board already made, then maybe now is a good time to refresh and renew your dreams, goals, thoughts and mantras.  Good big!! Aim for the stars and realize that you can achieve what you put your mind and heart in to.

As always, I would love to hear how you are doing. Reach out to me. Follow me on Instagram at @angie_heuser and/or @bawarrior360. DM me our email me. Leave a comment here and let me know how your goals are coming along, if you need help, or if your are struggling.

I’m here for you!

And as always:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!!

 

Much love,

Angie

Head, Shoulders,…..Knees? and….Toes?

Head, Shoulders,…..Knees? and….Toes?

Physical Therapy After Amputation is Vitally Important to Your Success as an Amputee

My Tribe

 

Everyone needs a tribe. A group of people who are there for you, care about you, make you laugh when you want to cry and support all of your crazy ideas.  These are my people and I am so fortunate to have each and everyone of them in my life.  Some of them have been in my life since I was a teenager (my husband), others for the last few years, and others have been my medical team that have helped me through my journey into amputation. They have become friends, confidents, and the people I care about in my life. They’ve seen me at my worst, and they have watched me rise and been there watching and helping me achieve my goals. These people are priceless!

How many people can say that about their physical therapists? Some people curse those who put us through pain so we can heal, not me, they have only wanted to see me succeed…whatever it took. They never said it would be easy, but they never left my side. They worked with me, helping me get to where I wanted to go and, only then, began to let go, so I could soar.

I am excited for you to hear my interview with Dan and Kelly, the two PTs that got me up and walking in a prosthetic and running in my blade. They continued to work with me even when I got that crazed look in my eye and said, “Could we try….?” You name it, they did it. They stopped being surprised when I’d walk in saying I have something I’d like to do and just started asking what the new goal was. They continued to build my confidence and never backed down to my challenges I’d present to them.  They were my support system, and if they thought I could do it, then I could do it.

 

Relationships. It’s truly all about relationships. You see, I’m a relationship kinda girl. I love being around people, talking with people, and getting to know someone new.  My medical team is no different. The way they listen to me, hear my goals, dreams, and fears brings us closer, and we begin to work together and create a bond like no other. They have all seen me through some seriously hard times, but also the best of times. They have watched me shed tears of frustration and doubt, and laughter after accomplishing something big.

In this interview I talk with Dan and Kelly, from Touchstone Rehabilitation, about the importance of physical therapy, pre and post, amputation and how to find the right therapist for you. Not all therapist are the same, just like I said about prosthetists. Your therapist should have a ton of experience with amputees and listen to you and what’s important to you, never making you feel like what you want to accomplish is impossible- You want the therapist who wants to help you reach your goals, no matter the size.

Take a listen and take notes. Know that you have control over who you see and that you should feel confident and comfortable in their presence. Go with your gut and don’t settle. You deserve to find your tribe, too!

My “Surf Crew”- Mark, Mariah and Jovanni

 

Stopping by to say hi to the people who got you on track-it’s all about relationships!

 

This week I want you to get out and get active everyday! It doesn’t matter how long, just that you set a goal, and do it!

If you struggle walking in your prosthetic for more than a block then set a goal of walking a block. Once you do that then add another block, and continue to get out and move EVERYDAY! Don’t quit! Give yourself one week, to push yourself just a little bit more each day. At the end of the week you’ll be surprised how far you’ve come.  It takes time to build a positive habit, give yourself time to do just that.  Even after the week is up, continue, just use this week as your starting point. The sky’s the limit and you can do anything you put your mind to.

Reach out to me. Tell me how it’s going. Share your accomplishments, tell me your setback. We can do this together!!

I’m here for you!

 

Until next time:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU!!

 

One foot in front of the other- that’s your starting point.
One Size Doesn’t Fit All

One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Not All Sockets (or Prosthetists) Are Made the Same

Randy West, myself, and David Banks

 

I consider myself so fortunate to have been directed to The Limb Center by my doctor, Dr. Judd Cummings, as I was planning for my amputation. And I think I am a good judge of character, so when I went in to meet Randy West and David Banks for the first time, pre-amputation, I knew I was getting the best care out there!

Fitting my running blade and trying it out for the first time

 

When I told Randy I wanted to surf and I brought him some surf leg plans he graciously went to work and built it for me,
just because he knew it was my dream!

 

Cheesy, but priceless, photo op with Randy, the Blue guy and my new surf leg!😎

 

They listened to me. They actually HEARD what I was telling them about my dreams, goals and aspirations….as well as my fears and doubts about going through with this surgery.

Not often, but in my situation, I was able to take my test socket out for a “test drive”

 

…and test drive it I did!! A 5K hike! It ended up being a great fit.

 

I had visited another prosthetist’s office before I knew of The Limb Center, and I had a pretty good experience there, too. I also met an amazing young lady who was an above knee amputee and a fighter, while I was there. However, three major factors first swayed me to Randy and David, before I really knew them. 1) They took my insurance- this is VERY important and the other office did not! 2) My doctor was very familiar with them and worked with them directly and, quite frankly, I trusted my surgeon and his opinion in this matter, and 3) David was an above knee amputee with 20+ years of experience being one. He could see things and understand an amputee better just by living it.

Amazing attention to detail, and always teaching me how to be independent,
by showing me how my prosthetic works and fits.

 

Then once I got to meet them and talk through my decision to amputate, I knew that we had a connection far greater than me being an office visit here and there. I had their cell phone numbers, could call or text whenever there was a problem, and time and again, they showed me that I mattered to them.

This is the type of relationship you should have and that you deserve with your prosthetist.

Randy and David join me in this podcast as we discuss the right “fit” in your relationship with your prosthetist, insurance and getting the right coverage, steps to getting your first socket, and when to turn around and walk out of that office and find the right relationship you need to be a healthy, happy amputee.  It can happen, but you need to push that for yourself and know when to do it.

Knowledge is power, and I want to arm you with as much knowledge as I can so you can feel confident and ready to advocate for yourself in the medical field, in your doctor appointments and when finding and working with your prosthetist. When we have knowledge, confidence, and opportunity we can access limitless possibilities in our lives.

 

 

People don’t realize that who you see for your prosthetics is so very important-it can make or break your desire and ability to really live your life after amputation, and it’s a relationship, like family.  You’ll be working with them for years to come so you’ll want to make sure you trust and enjoy working with them.

As always, if you have comments or questions, for me or our guests, please feel free to reach out to me. I’d be happy to help.

Time to do the research and leg work- no pun intended. Talk to people, find social media groups that work with amputees, reach out to the Amputee Coalition and your doctor to see who they recommend as a prosthetist for you.

Once you have found a couple, make an appointment to go talk with them. Read their body language and how they talk with you. Do they want to hear your history, problems, dreams and aspirations? If not, move on to the next appointment. You deserve better, and it’s out there!

Make sure you address insurance issues and coverage with the prosthetist’s office. This is expensive equipment and will need to be upgraded over time- remember, it isn’t growing back so we need to make sure we have some help in coverage of costs.

If you have a prosthetist that you are unhappy with, and they don’t seem to listen or invest any more than your short office visit then you really need to find the courage and tell them it’s not working. If you are seeing someone who,  when you tell them you’re hurting or something doesn’t feel right, and they tell you that it doesn’t get any better and you need to deal with it…that’s a red flag! Time to research other places and prosthetists and find someone who can help.

This is YOUR life and YOUR body. You need to push for the best care so you can live it to the fullest. Don’t be afraid to stand up for your rights. I’m telling you, there are really good practitioners out there, you just need to look and ask the right questions to find them.

I wish you all well, and please don’t hesitate to reach out to me for help.

 

Until next time:

Be Healthy,

Be Happy,

Be YOU

“We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the game.”

-Randy Pausch