5 Essential Things to Know as a New Amputee

Have you lost a limb and are now a new amputee?

Do you feel alone or lost? Don’t know what to do now with your life?

The good news…

You can get direction. Help is out there. I know losing a limb is devastating but trust me you are not alone!

Having support and making sure you don’t go through this stage of your life alone is crucial. There are many avenues to look into and different places for advice and information but what I want to do is give you real-world information from someone who is in the same boat as you.
Yes, I’m a  new amputee and I lost my leg below the knee in December 2017. So, I know what you are feeling. I know the struggles and they are real.  I’m going through it right with you! What I want to do is shed some light on a subject that is hard to talk about for most.
Most people avoid it because it is difficult to put into words the feelings you are having. I get it! I’ve learned that seeking advice and help is healthy. There is nothing wrong with it at all.

Here are five essential first-hand tips on getting adjusted to your new life as an amputee.

  • Being Confident in and on your new prosthetic- Once you start getting out into the world again with your new prosthetic, having confidence in yourself is the first step in recovery. Trusting in your prosthetic to walk, climb stairs or even run is essential. Being able to stand upright, walk, run goes a long way toward helping you recover mentally from your loss. Throw away your worries and doubts about others. Yes, it might take a while to get back up to speed and you may limp a little while. That is okay! You are up on two feet! Learning how to walk and use your new prosthetic doesn’t happen overnight. It takes patience and it takes time. You will do it!
  • Get used to Stares! I admit I would get angry when people looked at me. I felt they were making fun of me. Honestly, what I’ve realized is that most people are just curious.  I felt like I was being judged and made fun of. I hated it!  But now, I think my new leg looks pretty damn cool! It is Black and chrome and I’ve realized that most people just don’t see things like my shiny black leg every day. As I talk to some of them, they think it’s cool. And I’m sure yours is too! So, if someone is looking at you, get used to it. They are probably just curious and maybe even admire you! So, walk proud!
  • Be Prepared. Always take with you and have in your car the different supplies you will need during the day. Do you need an extra leg sock, prosthetic ointment or lotion? Whatever the need, make it an essential thing to have on hand at ALL TIMES. Make a prosthetic emergency bag for your laptop case, vehicles and for travel. I’ve even needed an Allen wrench to put my new foot back on. Yes, it fell off in the middle of the street! So, trust me it’s worth its weight in gold to have one on hand when this happens. So be prepared.
  • Educate yourself-Learning all that you can by studying books, reading articles such as this, podcasts and even talking with your prosthetist is essential to adapting to your new life. There is always someone out there in the same situation, or maybe worse that can help you cope and make your life easier.
  • Seek support from family and friends. Know that you are loved and seeking support from friends and family is the most important aspect of it all. Your family needs you around and trust me they would rather have part of you than none of you.  Help them help you by being patient, humble and allow them to help you with your needs. Even if that need is a hug on those bad days.  That’s ok. Ask for it. Your friends and family want to see you get well and back up and moving.  Don’t be shy and reach out with your concerns and expectations. It is healthy and most of all wise!

If you need to learn more or want to learn the nitty gritty on everything you need to know to live a health and positive life as an amputee check out my new book LIMB LOSS LIFE.

This book leaves no stone unturned on everything on limb loss for the first days, weeks, months and years. Click the link and read all about it.

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