Socket update

On Wednesday I was with Lynne (my prosthetist) and at the end of the session I managed to get my stump in the socket with the new air release hole she had made in it. Why is it then that when I’m at home I can’t get fully into it? May be I get more leverage by holding on to the bars at the clinic, I have no idea but it is, to say the least, very frustrating. I am so close but just not quite there with it, one of the reasons I know I am not in is because I have some bruising. It is slightly lower than where I was getting the bruising before, I am also feeling the socket pinching and pulling the skin. I just wish that Lynne could see the problem I am having, I feel like some sort of fraud when she sees I can get it on in the clinic and then I can’t at home. I tried to think of anything I was doing different at the clinic to what I am doing at home. The only difference was that at home, so I can manage by myself, I put my leg in my shorts, put the prosthesis through the other short leg and then try and get the prosthesis on. At the clinic I have just my underwear on when I get into it, so this morning I tried it like that and then got my Mum to help me put my shorts on after but it still didn’t work.

The problem with being able to do it at the clinic and not at home is you start to question yourself. If I am totally honest there is just the tiniest part of me that doesn’t want to use the prosthesis. May be ‘doesn’t want to’ is not the right wording, may be it should be either unconfident or better still untrusting of the leg. You have to concentrate so hard all the time and the difference between standing/walking or being flat on your face is the blink of an eye and there is nothing you can do to stop or save yourself from hitting the deck. I am sure that when you have been walking on it for ages it will be like driving a car or just an extension of yourself. You will probably know how it feels, feel the joint, know how and when it bends and it will be a fluid confident movement. I want to reiterate though that it is only a miniscule amount of me that feels that, the biggest part of me wants to just get on and walk. Even though Lynne has told me that it is quite a common problem and another amputee in my physio session had the same problem, which took about a year to get sorted, I can’t help but think I’m just being a total pain in the arse with it.

I am putting the prosthesis on a couple of times a day in the hope the compression from the socket will start to slowly reduce the stump size. I am not expecting great things from the socket, which was another thing I questioned myself about. It is plastic with thin edges, hugging the stump and you are taking your weight on places that weren’t designed too. I expect discomfort and a process of areas having to toughen up to be able to wear it for long periods. I’m trying to change my mind-set and how I approach it from now on. I’ll take the first step of getting it on in any way I can, if that means using the bag I don’t care I’ll do whatever it takes. Then I will start the really long hard work of walking properly on it, and I mean properly. I was getting to the point of saying that I will just stay in the wheelchair but Lynne has got it right before and I know she can do it again. I am not going to give up on this and no matter how long it takes I will do whatever it takes to get walking again.

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