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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum


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Ally last won the day on August 17 2012

Ally had the most liked content!

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About Ally

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    Super Member
  • Birthday 12/27/1966

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    Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Interests
    Music, animal & human rights, the African bush, travelling, religion, pain, and watching in awe as my son grows into a stunning young man.

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    Right Above Knee
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  1. Hi Cale - please forgive this little "hijacking" of the thread, but can you organise spare seals for the hydraulic units of 3R60's? We have an OttoB here in South Africa now - if you could send the seals there, you would make me a really REALLY happy camper! Say you can.........??? :)
  2. Ally

    3R60 Tech question

    I know someone who bought two knees (Totals I think) on E-Bay. She's thrilled with them - one for her, and one for her brother. I'm a bit wary of buying arty bits online though, probably because I'm always so far away from where they would come from.....
  3. Ally

    New to forum

    Welcome - enjoy all the lovely people here!
  4. Ally

    One of my stories

    I know that I am probably posting this "out of the blue", but briefly, I have never have funds to walk well. This year I faced the daunting task of never walking again. That broke 3R60? Remember? Anyway, Ed Dean sent me a knee that was such a life saver at the beginning of this year.......and such a blessing...... This is my story....from after receiving my knee from Ed.....until my conniving CP and Ed put their heads together and turned my whole world upside down. Wednesday 25 July 2012 - A very special day in the life of an ordinary RAK amputee from Africa I think it was round about the middle of July maybe, when Marco (my legman) gave me a call and asked for a favour. He had a group of student prosthetists coming to his practice and he needed a body to use to show them how to build and fit a test socket. Test sockets. My favourite thing, sigh. But for Marco, anything. I'm normally quite good at self motivation.......stuff like, well, how bad can it be? I've done it a hundred times before. I'm not walking so badly on this 3R60 that Ed Dean sent me. In fact, I'm doing quite well considering that the knee is built for someone almost twice my weight. I'm lucky to be walking at all. There's a click in my foot, Marco can fix it for me. I need to get off this farm and see real people. I don't hate the fitting, and pinching, and tweaking, and donning, and "ow" here, and "ow" there. Marco standing behind me like a sergeant major yelling "walk walk!" Nah. Not so bad. Dawns the morning of Wednesday 25 July, and I am ready to go. Dressed as only a seasoned AK amp can be for a fitting. Girlie brooks, passion killer brooks, boy short brooks, short shorts, long shorts, and finally tracksuit pants. Yip, as ready as I am ever going to be. And I hie off to Pretoria, a goodly one-hour-and-a-bit drive. And I arrive in Pretoria, well on time (I'm usually late) and then I realise that I must have taken the wrong off-ramp. Every single street name is foreign. And when I say foreign, I mean foreign to a white South African chick. They are all black and ethnic names! No man. Names I can't even pronounce! I drive straight (which I always do when I am lost) and then pull over about 25 kilometres down the road to find out where I am, and what they've done with Marco's offramp. Is it even called Pretoria now? Maybe it's Tswane..... Ja, ja, I get the "oh didn't you know?", and the "but all the street names change all the time", and the "come back down for 25 kilometres and look for "January Maselela". Sigh - that is SO far removed from the original "General Louis Botha Drive" it's not even funny. So I'm late......but I get my coffee and walk into the rooms. Three people there, one with a camera (oh my hat, no man), and two with note pads (that I can handle). Yip, gonna be a long day. Marco smiles, thanks me for coming and introduces me to the three strange people in the room. And says "I have a confession to make....." I knew it! I just knew it! The b*gger told me that I wouldn't have to go through the whole plaster-of-paris rigmarole and now he is going to make me do it! Still smiling, he hands me a huge beautifully framed letter, and says "this is from Ed". I read most of it, get a bit teary......and hand it back to Marco. He has tons of beautiful letters and pictures up at his practice. He says "no, it's for you....to keep". Mine? Ah man....my heart. How precious is this? Marco says "by now you probably have guessed that these aren't students". Huh? Well no, the thought hadn't even crossed my mind. Then who the hell are they? These strange people, taking notes, smiling at me, sharing my private Ed and Ally and Marco moment? "They're from the media" says Marco. Oh. OH? Marco hands me a very familiar and deadly expensive box, a gift from Ed, he says. It's an Iceross Liner! A brand new Iceross Liner! I'm so confused, so very confused now. I manage to sputter out "but what size is it? How did Ed know?" Marco tells me that Ed asked him to buy it for me, a gift, from my Ed. I am properly finished. This is a hugely expensive piece of silicone. And the three strange people are smiling and taking notes and taking pictures, and I am cradling my liner like a brand new baby. And I am blessed. Then the journalists are asking questions. Tons of questions. Old questions that most people would find boring about my life. My accident, how did you cope, what was it like - nothing, I swear nothing in my life is this interesting that three journalists would take time to write down the complete normalcy of my every day existence. Then Marco says "Ed sent you one more thing" and hands me a tiny little box wrapped in pretty pink paper. Can I open it now? Yes, yes, and Marco is smiling and the strange people are smiling, and I am warm inside. So very warm because Ed has done so much for me already, and still he continues. I think my scream may have shattered Marco's glass doors. I think one of the strange people snapped his pencil in half. And I am screaming, and crying, and shaking my head "no no no". This cannot be. Marco is smiling and nodding, yes, yes it is. And then I am silent, tears falling down my cheeks. I am holding sixty thousand rand in my hands. I am holding my first brand new prosthetic knee. And it's hard to breathe, and it's harder to believe. And there is one more thing.......Marco says "are you ready to speak to Ed?" And he hands me the phone, and I speak with my Ed in person for the first time in all the years I have known him. I forget the conversation now, truely I do. I remember standing in the corner, trying to hide from the strange people, trying to say thank you, trying to not be so overwhelmed that I fall into a heap on the floor. And then we fit the knee. It is so pretty, so small, so light! And I am walking, and walking, and outside I am leaping in the air, and the strange people are laughing and taking pictures and I am queen of the universe. Queen of Pretoria, or Tswane.....who cares - today I am standing tall. And I am wrapped in a bubble of love and compassion and complete awe. The journalists leave, still smiling.....and the biggest black chap turns to me and says....."well, you have a good day. Oh hang on, never mind, you already are!" And I impulsively bear hug him which I guess isn't the most culturally correct thing to do in Africa, but I don't care because I am after all, a woman with a new knee. And I am blessed. Who knew that two most extraordinary people would take such time and care and effort, and conspire for nearly 5 months to make this awesome day a reality for me. And present it to me so beautifully and so lovingly. Lots of hugs, tears, laughter and kind words later, I am on my way home. Light as a feather. Smiling like a crazy woman at people in the traffic. Smiling at nothing and smiling at everything. Smiling and smiling and I just can't stop. My mind is ticking over, my head is going to explode.....I have so many special people to tell. I have so many special people that must read my letter from Ed. There is much to do. Much to do, my Ed, today, and for a long time to come. You are my golden, my PLU. You have blessed me in abundance. And I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
  5. Ally

    3R60 Tech question

    Hi there - I took a hellava tumble the other day on my 3R60 too. It was first thing in the morning, I guess I hadn't completely sunk into the socket, and yes, small steps around the dining room table - not good! I'm trying to be more "aware" first thing in the morning, and when ambling gently. I wonder if there are any 3R60's around where something else broke, not the seal. Then we could take the thing apart and hijack a good seal.......
  6. Ally

    Share my jy!

    http://www.iol.co.za/the-star/friend-gives-her-get-up-and-go-1.1349451?fb_action_ids=4297503120334&fb_action_types=og.recommends&fb_source=aggregation&fb_aggregation_id=288381481237582 My perfect Wednesday!
  7. Ally

    Share my jy!

    Ok, so if you laugh, you are NOT a bad person. This was taken 3 days after I received the most precious gift of a brand new 3R60 from Ed Dean. My one amputee pitbull is also somewhere in this vid, laughing (I hope), but probably thinking "what a chop"! PS : I am normally quite sane......yip, I am :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ievUE-fhLU&feature=plcp
  8. Ally

    The People Who Stare

    Having said that, I LOVE LOVE LOVE the kids when they look, and they want to touch and they have questions. It's the parents who have issues. Best question from a kid who examined my arty leg indepth? "DOES IT HAVE BLOOD?" Bless their hearts!
  9. Ally

    The People Who Stare

    Ah, I have given up on the people who stare. From "take a pic, it lasts longer" to "3 out of 4 ain't bad" to "throw money and I will do a trick" - oh the list goes on. Typically when they stare, it's not at YOU, in your face. It's at your missing bit/s. But sooner or later they just have to look up into your face (which is staring straight into their eyes). And all you do is give them a "Mona Lisa" smile, like "I see you honey"....and walk/limp/crutch/wheel away. You can feel them crumbling behind your back! Then again, if you're in a bad mood, eish - let rip with all the quips you ever learned about being gimpy and "normal" people being odd. We have earned the right to be pee'd off actually. Don't poke the bear.....
  10. Ally

    A curious observation.....

    @Mr Gimp - do you think that since you started using the Lidocain drip, your pain is less frequent? What I am trying to find out, is......since I started my own horrific pain meds, I can see that my phantoms are really taking a back seat. Maybe my body is just terrified of the stupid side effects, but maybe, just maybe, once you get to control the attacks.....they come less often...and less often.....etc ad nauseum. You know? Have your pain attacks been less severe since you started Lidocain, and do you think there is a connection there? @Ann - I am SO not a camper. And if I was prior to our move to this broke-down farm, I would most certainly NOT be a camper now. If someone mentions "candles and romantic" in the same sentence, I am likely to collapse in a jibbering heap! On a more serious note, because I started this thread, and I do completely believe that my choice of treatment "cured" me.....I would be remiss not to steer everyone to this Methadone link..... http://www.drugs.com/news/methadone-pain-relief-leading-cause-fatal-overdoses-cdc-39086.html Nobody should have to live with this kind of neurological pain. Unfortunately, treatment for phantom pain varies from patient to patient. Do your research. Find your drug of choice. Cause sure as God made little green apples, nobody is going to do it for you!
  11. Ally

    3R60 Tech question

    Hehehehe, we have to try and open the knee unit first - have asked someone with fancy schmancy tools to try - will keep you updated.
  12. Ally

    3R60 Tech question

    Diane!!! Blast from the past - trust you're good! I got a very quick "hydraulics for dummies" lesson. Apprently in most hydraulic units, there are two compartments. One is empty, and the other is full. As you walk (or as any hydraulic unit walks, or pumps or whatever it does), the fluid will move from one compartment to the other as it goes along. Or something like that..... So.....we are just going to fill up one compartment and see how it goes. Another thing I learned from my "lesson" is that the seal could be a problem - they are precision made and we probably won't be able to make one up. We will have to try and find one somewhere that is the same. Unlikely, but worth a bash. There I was thinking it was like a seal on a tap, a rubber thing. But no, not that simple, and certainly not those little rubber ring things LOL!
  13. Ally

    A curious observation.....

    PS to the mods.....not sure if naming the meds is out of line. If it is, please forgive me and delete my last comment. Ta.
  14. Ally

    A curious observation.....

    LOL Ann!! No actually, it's not illegal, but highly controlled. To be fair, the first drug I asked for after all my research was Methadone. Methadone is a potent neurological pain killer. After spending much time with my doctor, she said "let's first try TEMGESIC (Buprenorphine SP?), if that doesn't work, we will go the Methadone route". Temgesic is only slightly less harsh than Methadone. Temgesic and Methadone these days are primarily used to treat heroin and crystal meth addicts during their rehab. Addicts have to report to their clinic to collect one pill every day. They are never given more than one at a time. I don't know of anyone else who uses these drugs for pain. Maybe cancer patients? Not sure. If I did not have a solid relationship with my doctor, and she did not know my history, and if I had not gone in with tons of backing documents and a long list of why ANY other drug would not work for me (including other morphine based pain killers, epilepsy drugs etc), she would not have allowed me to try this. If there was ANY possibility and I would have abused these meds, she ran a very real risk of losing her licence to practice medicine. The first time I used a .2mg sublingual Temgesic pill, it made me very sick and I was a literal zombie for 2 days. BUT IT WORKED! The trick is to know when to take a pain killer. If you wait too long, the pain killer is ineffective. With Temgesic and the horrid side effects, I ran a very fine line for a long time.....not wanting to take one in case the phantoms were just a random "couple of hours" pain run, or the phantoms would be the start of days of pain. I am NOT advocating that this drug is good for everyone. It is a harsh drug. But I used it with care, and I am very happy to say that today, I think I have my phantom pain very well under control. The first time I walked into a chemist with a script for Temgesic, the chemist looked at me like I had crawled out from under a rock and had horns on my head. He really did give me a shifty look. And I have to admit, I felt uncomfortable taking them and walking lop-sided out of his pharmacy! Ann!!! Eish........... LOLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!
  15. Ally

    3R60 Tech question

    Thanks Grum, I think I might try that. As for the amount of fluid - I suppose we have to hope that it must be full? (What the heck do I know about anything remotely hydraulic...) Because that would be a total guess if we don't get the specs from OttoB. As for the seals - my CP also said that we may not find these, but he said "how hard could it be to try and make one of those little things?" Well, I'm holding onto that. How hard can it be? I suggested silicone, he said probably not a good idea. There I was thinking all those years that duct tape and silicone were the answer to all life's technical problems LOL! Onward and forward.....any other people who may know, or could find out from OttoB....I'd be grateful if you could try and find out.