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dreamygirl

How soon can / did you go back to work?

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I was wondering, how long it takes to get back to 'normal' and be able to work the job you used to before you lost your leg. Did you decide to not work by choice? I can go on dissability/ssi , but I dont like that. I want to earn some money. That state pay is very little anyways. It is nice for help, a little. But the feeling of earning your own way is a great feeling that I have. I am lucky enough to be a below the knee amputee. I work so hard every day. I miss my job and I know it sounds crazy, but I loved my job before I got injured. I am a simple cashier at a grocery store. :) I was just at a clinic for my leg, I dont have it yet. The day after tomorrow I am getting sized. Any advice there ? I am hoping that with the physical therapy they tell me i have to go through, will only be a month. Is that what it was for most of you? What kind of work do you'all do. Am i stupid for wanting my job back. ahhhh :)

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No, you're not stupid for wanting your job back, dreamygirl! Many of us work -- some at very demanding, physical jobs -- because it reminds us that we are "normal" and gives us a chance to use our abilities to earn our own keep. Disability/ssi is great for those who need the help, but it's much better to be able to earn your own way.

For me, it was five months before I was back to work, which just shows how much we all can vary: it took me four months just to get the leg, and then another month to be able to use it properly. I'm an educational secretary and, by the end there, I was watching local school board meetings on TV just to get my "dose" of work talk! I've heard of others who were back to work within just a couple of weeks.

Since you're a cashier, you might want to see about using a stool at your register, so that you can sit if you need to. Aside from that, all the best to you!

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See if they'd mind you going back on crutches/ in a wheelchair and sitting at the till that way. I went back 8 weeks after my operation on crutches because I knew I would have gone crazy sitting at home thinking about the leg and my femur was broken so I also knew that it would be about 6 months before I could get a leg. Work was very good about it.

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It is not silly at all to be ready to go back to work...I think that's what helps the most. I was pretty sick before my surgery, so was off work for a few months, and am lucky enough to work for a great company that let me work from home on my laptop. I am a below knee double amp,so my physical therapy was longer than yours will probably be. I was back to work 4 months after my surgery, although I had to use a wheelchair quite a bit at first..graduated to different kinds of canes, graduated to 1 cane and now either use no cane or 1 cane depending on distance. Being a double amp, and my surgery only being 1 year ago, I still have to have a wheelchair for distances, but am hoping with new legs that that eventually will go away. I don't want you to get discouraged. I know it's not easy..I still get down too, but just keep at it. with you having 1 good leg, you are going to do great. It sometimes takes forever to get your leg to fit right, but just be persistant. Hang in there, you are going to do great. And I agree...the sooner you can get back to work, the better.

flip

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it took me 358 days to get back to work. but i had a pretty slow recovery. and my job is very demanding as far as physical labor. you can check out pics i took at work on my myspace page under work photos.

myspace.com/pegleg72307

p.s. feel free to add me if you have an account

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Work is therapeutic after a life changing injury or illness. It is a way to get back to 'normal'. I will tell you that standing all day in the beginning won't be easy. You're still getting used to wearing a prosthesis and going through atrophy in your limb. It can make for very uncomfortable nights after standing all day. I know because I'm a hairstylist.

My injury was March 8......amputation was April 5......Went back to work on May 11.....Got first leg on May 20.....I haven't looked back. It hasn't always been easy, but that's the way I did it. I'm self-employed and needed to get back to work both financially and mentally.

Everyone's story is a little different. I had no other injuries. When they took the leg, my body was ready to go.

Good luck to you.

Neal

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Had my legs resized in Feb and went back to work 1st May. Didn't get my legs until the end of Oct, managed with a wheelchair and for most part without a problem. I went back because I needed to get back to my normal routine as I felt it would help me, after all I had my legs removed not my brain.

As Neal has already said, everyone is different what works for one may not be right for another.

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Hi, I was off work for 18 months altogether but went back to work 10 weeks after I got my limb. I work in admin so spend 50% of the time sitting down. I think everyone is an individual, so recovery is different for us all. Its the best thing to go back though, keeps you sane!! - I think :mellow:

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To be honest, if it weren't for bills to pay, I could do without work and would have zero problem occupying my time. But I have bills to pay and I'm in the "prime earning potential time of my life". So I was pretty aggressive about going back to work, particularly because there was a whole new management reorganization right after my amputation and I knew the time was on for competing for our roles in the business.

I was out for two weeks after breaking my leg and then back for six months, albeit a bit shy of full time during the period immediate following the accident (I had an external fixater 249400200-O.gif ). After that I had the surgery and that led to the infection a month later, but I worked about two months until I couldn't bear it due to the pain of the infection.

I was out for a week before the amputation and was back to work a month and a half after the amputation. That was Jan 2 this year. I've been back working hard since then and I'm certain if I had done less, I would be far less happy with my present role in the business.

It's funny what will drive us. For some (like my father) work is a nearly essential part of their life and without it they are without a large part of their "purpose". I'm not from that mold! 78726360-O.gif I have spent years traveling and doing other non-income things and stay very busy when "unemployed" but I still consider myself to have a very strong work ethic. I work hard and find many aspects of it very rewarding. But if I didn't have to earn the money, I would be very busy doing many other things..... 69920717-O.gif

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as soon as you like!

I am fortunate I love my work, but work for myself. no work, no income.

There was no insurance payout after the accident. mortgage and school fees to pay. My wife has a good job but we would have to move house, change schools etc to make ends meet.

I need to be mobile for my work as a marine surveyor getting on boats of all sizes, climbing into tight spaces and ladders.

When I got out of hospital I didnt know whether I would walk again. (other leg was a mess old fractures breaking again and metal work replaced)

First job was sitting on the pc at home and organising fall back if I was to be wheel chair for life.

next stage was instructing 3rd party from wheel chair (three weeks out of hospital)

bum shuffled onto a boat and moved on bottom and hands (three months out of hospital)

got a leg (five months out of hospital) and got back to work proper.

getting back to work was liberating, for me the sooner the better.

Good luck, be determined, you will find your way.

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I was wondering, how long it takes to get back to 'normal' and be able to work the job you used to before you lost your leg. Did you decide to not work by choice? I can go on dissability/ssi , but I dont like that. I want to earn some money. That state pay is very little anyways. It is nice for help, a little. But the feeling of earning your own way is a great feeling that I have. I am lucky enough to be a below the knee amputee. I work so hard every day. I miss my job and I know it sounds crazy, but I loved my job before I got injured. I am a simple cashier at a grocery store. :) I was just at a clinic for my leg, I dont have it yet. The day after tomorrow I am getting sized. Any advice there ? I am hoping that with the physical therapy they tell me i have to go through, will only be a month. Is that what it was for most of you? What kind of work do you'all do. Am i stupid for wanting my job back. ahhhh :)

Thanks EVERYONE for sharing that with me. No leg yet, but did get casted for it. baby steps. :) Thanks for sharing and responding to me.

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I was in 2 hospitals for 3 months after my accident and then spent two months with day therapy gaining strength and endurance and then went back to work. Wow, it was great to be back. I got to walk more and if I fell, it was on carpet and not hard hospital floors or parking lots! :) I worked in an office but also travelled. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to keep up with my old schedule, but knew that the only way to find out was to try it. Had lot's of interesting times... broke my temporary leg and had a carpenter in the office fix it (he put the post on wrong and my foot was sideways!). So had an office buddy help me fix it. On my first out of town trip in winter, got caught in a blizzard in Montreal, forcing me to stay over night without any travel kit... I managed and even learned that I could climb a spiral staircase that was at the end of a long hall with a restaurant above. Amazing what you can do with faced with a long walk back or climbing a spiral staircase to a restaurant when you're tired and hungry! :) The reason that I mention these things is, I'm sure that you'll be faced with challenges when you return to work, but you'll find a way to cope. Life an adventure and the trip there is half the fun. Don't be afraid of the unknown, after a couple of days you find ways to do your job and have fun doing it.

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I was wondering, how long it takes to get back to 'normal' and be able to work the job you used to before you lost your leg. Did you decide to not work by choice? I can go on dissability/ssi , but I dont like that. I want to earn some money. That state pay is very little anyways. It is nice for help, a little. But the feeling of earning your own way is a great feeling that I have. I am lucky enough to be a below the knee amputee. I work so hard every day. I miss my job and I know it sounds crazy, but I loved my job before I got injured. I am a simple cashier at a grocery store. :) I was just at a clinic for my leg, I dont have it yet. The day after tomorrow I am getting sized. Any advice there ? I am hoping that with the physical therapy they tell me i have to go through, will only be a month. Is that what it was for most of you? What kind of work do you'all do. Am i stupid for wanting my job back. ahhhh :)

I think that returning to work is an incredibly positive thing to do if you want to. For me returning to work stopped me from going mad at home! I work at a university in London and they were thrilled to have me back - I actually think that working and having to push myself physically has improved my state of mind and made me feel my old self. Still doesn't mean that I grimace when the alarm clock sounds though!

Good for you - you sound like you enjoy your job, so why not get back to it!

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I've been out of work for nearly 18 months now since my accident but in the next few weeks i should be starting again at last :smile:

I was waiting untill id finished physio with my new leg and had the operation to fix the ligaments in my knee so that i didnt have to worry about sorting out time off and things . But doing nothing all day starts to get really boring after a while and not having any money to do anything makes it worse so decided it was time to get a job.

So i should be nice and busy again soon which should help more with getting fit and back to normal again.

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I was wondering, how long it takes to get back to 'normal' and be able to work the job you used to before you lost your leg. Did you decide to not work by choice? I can go on dissability/ssi , but I dont like that. I want to earn some money. That state pay is very little anyways. It is nice for help, a little. But the feeling of earning your own way is a great feeling that I have. I am lucky enough to be a below the knee amputee. I work so hard every day. I miss my job and I know it sounds crazy, but I loved my job before I got injured. I am a simple cashier at a grocery store. :) I was just at a clinic for my leg, I dont have it yet. The day after tomorrow I am getting sized. Any advice there ? I am hoping that with the physical therapy they tell me i have to go through, will only be a month. Is that what it was for most of you? What kind of work do you'all do. Am i stupid for wanting my job back. ahhhh :)

Hi Dreamygirl

Course you are not stupid for wanting your job back. I am a bilateral b/k amputee and have worked on and off for most of my time as an amputee and know plenty of amputees who do successfully hold down jobs.

I was 12 yrs old when I had an accident, this was nearly 40 yrs ago, and I was in hospital for about four months, that was how it was then. Whilst I was in hospital there was lots of emphasis on physio, and always talk about being able to do most of the things I did before. In some ways I think I was lucky because by the time I got home I was quite independent, was walking on the old type of pylon legs on crutches, and within a short time back out with friends. I went back to school full-time on crutches at the beginning of the new term two weeks later, and used to have physio two or three times a week after I had finished at school, looking back then it was quite a tough regime, but it worked and it was never suggested, and I never considered myself to be disabled and that I wouldn't be able to do certain things, I was expected to do more or less the same as the other kids. There was never any thought that I wouldn't get a job when I finished school.

I say I think I was lucky, because, I am not sure with the 'set ups' they have today (ie. I have just had to wait four months for a very basic b/k leg to be made) that I would have acheived all this so quickly - but I am having a revision operation next month on one of my legs so will let you know how quick I manage to get back.

When I was growing up all the teenagers had p/t saturday/holiday jobs, and I didn't feel any different to my friends, so a couple of years down the line I got myself a p/t job working in a shop, and at 16 also did a full time secretarial course, and at the end of that got a full time secretarial job, and did that for about five years until about 3 months before my first child was born. I had three children and have worked on and off p/t throughout most of their growing up years, unfortunately though in the last few years have had problems with the prosthetics and haven't worked so much, which is why I say I question todays "set ups" regarding prosthetics, because everything seems much more complicated than it used to be, or maybe thats just me getting older. However, am still running a household and do voluntary work, after Christmas I went back and did a temporary job for five months, when my legs were not at their best - so it can be done. Most of my jobs have been admin/secretarial, but I have also worked in shops and supermarkets and can't say my legs have caused a problem, I have even climbed steps and done shelf filling.

Just keep working at the physio, do your best and keep thinking positive, always have in your mind what you can do (not what you can't) and what you plan to do in the future. Good luck, I am sure you will do whatever you want to do.

Ann

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I was wondering, how long it takes to get back to 'normal' and be able to work the job you used to before you lost your leg. Did you decide to not work by choice? I can go on dissability/ssi , but I dont like that. I want to earn some money. That state pay is very little anyways. It is nice for help, a little. But the feeling of earning your own way is a great feeling that I have. I am lucky enough to be a below the knee amputee. I work so hard every day. I miss my job and I know it sounds crazy, but I loved my job before I got injured. I am a simple cashier at a grocery store. :) I was just at a clinic for my leg, I dont have it yet. The day after tomorrow I am getting sized. Any advice there ? I am hoping that with the physical therapy they tell me i have to go through, will only be a month. Is that what it was for most of you? What kind of work do you'all do. Am i stupid for wanting my job back. ahhhh :)

Hi Dreamygirl

Course you are not stupid for wanting your job back. I am a bilateral b/k amputee and have worked on and off for most of my time as an amputee and know plenty of amputees who do successfully hold down jobs.

I was 12 yrs old when I had an accident, this was nearly 40 yrs ago, and I was in hospital for about four months, that was how it was then. Whilst I was in hospital there was lots of emphasis on physio, and always talk about being able to do most of the things I did before. In some ways I think I was lucky because by the time I got home I was quite independent, was walking on the old type of pylon legs on crutches, and within a short time back out with friends. I went back to school full-time on crutches at the beginning of the new term two weeks later, and used to have physio two or three times a week after I had finished at school, looking back then it was quite a tough regime, but it worked and it was never suggested, and I never considered myself to be disabled and that I wouldn't be able to do certain things, I was expected to do more or less the same as the other kids. There was never any thought that I wouldn't get a job when I finished school.

I say I think I was lucky, because, I am not sure with the 'set ups' they have today (ie. I have just had to wait four months for a very basic b/k leg to be made) that I would have acheived all this so quickly - but I am having a revision operation next month on one of my legs so will let you know how quick I manage to get back.

When I was growing up all the teenagers had p/t saturday/holiday jobs, and I didn't feel any different to my friends, so a couple of years down the line I got myself a p/t job working in a shop, and at 16 also did a full time secretarial course, and at the end of that got a full time secretarial job, and did that for about five years until about 3 months before my first child was born. I had three children and have worked on and off p/t throughout most of their growing up years, unfortunately though in the last few years have had problems with the prosthetics and haven't worked so much, which is why I say I question todays "set ups" regarding prosthetics, because everything seems much more complicated than it used to be, or maybe thats just me getting older. However, am still running a household and do voluntary work, after Christmas I went back and did a temporary job for five months, when my legs were not at their best - so it can be done. Most of my jobs have been admin/secretarial, but I have also worked in shops and supermarkets and can't say my legs have caused a problem, I have even climbed steps and done shelf filling.

Just keep working at the physio, do your best and keep thinking positive, always have in your mind what you can do (not what you can't) and what you plan to do in the future. Good luck, I am sure you will do whatever you want to do.

Ann

Ann....wow what an incredible life you have had so far, I think that is wonderful what you do and how you do it. Way ta go and I wish you the best also. Thank you soooo much for sharing your thoughts and feelings and encouragement, I will look forward to seeing your posts.

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Still fighting to get my job back...or one like it. The white-shirted ass-monkeys who make all the decisions have got the idea in their big balloon heads that I'm not able to do the job any more. They'll lose eventually...it's only a matter of time.

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Ann....wow what an incredible life you have had so far, I think that is wonderful what you do and how you do it. Way ta go and I wish you the best also. Thank you soooo much for sharing your thoughts and feelings and encouragement, I will look forward to seeing your posts.

I don't think I have done anything out of the ordinary Dreamygirl, there are loads of amputees out there (and on this forum) who do and have done similar things and I am sure you will do too.

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Still fighting to get my job back...or one like it. The white-shirted ass-monkeys who make all the decisions have got the idea in their big balloon heads that I'm not able to do the job any more. They'll lose eventually...it's only a matter of time.

Unfortunately, I think sometimes things are more difficult these days Stagger Lee, too much health and safety, which obviously has its place (don't want to get too controversial here) but think it makes employers wary of what we can and can't do and probably whether we are going to trip over and end up sueing them.

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