I lost both my legs below the knees to a devastating disease at the age of 29. The Drs said that I would not live, and then they said I would never walk again. I never accepted that as fact and today, not only do I walk independently, but I also frequent the gym, and I am in the process of getting running legs. Having prosthetic legs has changed everything in my life. I drive without adaptive assistance, I work, I have a great social life, and I frequently stand on podiums and give speeches about the vaccine preventable disease I contracted: Bacterial Meningitis. I wear my prosthetics with pride and I am constantly stopped by people who tell me that I am a great inspiration to them. My struggles have been significant over the years, but I am grateful for every day that I can wake up and put on my prosthetic legs. Being able to walk as I did before my illness means everything to me. More than words can even express.
-AM, Austin, Texas
When I first was told my leg was going to be amputated, I really thought that my daily life as I knew was going to be over. I would be confined to a wheel chair or crutches for the rest of my life. I was not for sure what truly that would be like but I knew that it was road filled with obstacles and difficulties. However, as the doctors, a fellow amputees and the prosthetic staff begin talking to me. I realized my life would be more normal with the use of a prosthetic. I am blessed because I was going to be a great candidate for one, I have the financial resources to get one and great family and friends and a wonderful team to make it happen.
I have had my prosthetic for about six months now, it has not been easy, there are lots of things that happen along the way to get a great fit. However, it gives me life, it allows me to do almost everything that I was doing before. I have started a new business with partners and I am able to work full time and be on my feet and deal with the riggers of the hectic schedule.
During my journey over the last months, I have come to realize that many individuals don't have the financial resources to have a prosthetic or have the family support to get one. I know what they are facing, the challenges of the life in a wheel chair or crutches, I lived it while I was getting my leg. It makes you not want to go or do anything because it is so difficult. It is difficult for your family and friends. You have to ask for help but you want to do it on your own, you want to be independent but you can't. I am healthy and to walk on crutches to go to the store, movies etc takes a lot of strength and endurance. I took it for granted when I had two legs. There are so many things that you can't do or that are extremely difficult. You can't get to the things and carry things without your two hands because you have them on the crutches. You can't reach for things because you have to balance. The environmental challenges of the lack of sidewalks, stairs, holes in the ground. My prosthetic give me that ability to deal with those obstetrical and challenges.
Everyone that can should have that sense of freedom. It is life changing.
Without my prosthesis it would be a bummer cause I like to go hunting and I like to go fishing. Before I got my prosthesis, it was very hard for my wife, lifting the wheel chair and everything. I couldn't do without it.
-DD, San Antonio, Texas
I cannot express how much good the Prosthetic Foundation has done for me. I am getting used to walking with my new prosthesis, improving my balance every day with no problems. My mobility has greatly improved. I visited my prosthetist who had to reset it a little, but I feel very good with how they have taken care of me. I am feeling a lot better and am very pleased with The Foundation.
-Jimmy L Keith
My prosthesis has helped me want to get up out of bed every morning. It has given me the ability to walk to the mail box instead of drive. It has made me able to chase my 4 year old daughter out in our back yard and the ability to play t-ball with her. I'm so thankful for my prosthesis because if it wasn't for it, I wouldn't be able to do the everyday things I want to do for myself and my daughter
-Lindsey Clark, San Antonio, Texas
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