Jump to content
Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
mick

a simple question ?

Recommended Posts

Right Walking we all hope to do it in one form or another but what does it really mean to you?

I was asked this the other day whilst out in my favourite range of hills by a well meaning “hiker”.

I sat down and said the normal stuff:-

Getting from one place to another.

Carrying a cup of coffee from the kitchen to the front room ECT.

He stopped me there and asked did it mean any more to me than before my amputation? Because as he stated it must take loads more effort to get to various hill tops than a normal person. (I hope he meant two legged person)

It made me think the best I could come up with is:-

Although I am not religious at all, walking (I think) is spiritual. It bonds me to something fundamental and good which in our present way of life has been eroded and almost forgotten. I can take five and forget about work and the thousands of other tasks that clutter up my daily live He said that made me sound like a pagan. Fair enough - I'm a pagan then. (The word means country/rural person.)

I went on to say I'll only stop walking when they prise my boot off my cold, dead foot.

Yes after reading the above I’m heading for the funny farm, but on a serious note does your mobility mean more to you than just getting from a to b ? After all, some of us on this forum may have never walked again. So what does it really mean to you?

Thanks for reading & take care Mick xx (kisses for the lady’s not the gents)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great question Mick,

Being an outdoor person I have not really thought about the significance of walking. I find the enjoyment in the surroundings.

For me being able to see the sun rise and the dew on the fairway and maybe even turn on a sprinkler head is what drives the soul. Walking to there is just a precursor I guess. I do find the walk much more rewarding now and appreciate it a whole lot more since my amputation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For me, walking does mean a lot.... I was bed bound for months after the accident.. I was unable to move around..If I needed something, someone had to wait on me. If I dropped something, someone else had to pick it up (inevitably, it would go to the floor, or just out of reach, driving me crazy), I lost all mobility... and I guess that you could say walking means independence to me.

Walking gives me the chance to live my life, and go where I want, not bound by any means or restrictions. To be independent.

There were things, such as taking care of my father, that I could not do from a wheelchair, walker, or crutches. Mobility, gave me advantage that I needed. To stand, and walk with him, once again in my life, and to have him lean on me, when he needed to, instead of me leaning on him, as when I was growing up, is something that I couldn't of done, without being mobile. I'm very fortunate, to have been walking, at that point in his life. I do believe that God has his reasons, and it was meant for me to be walking by that point.

So, I guess, each of us find it important to us, in our own ways....that we each find our own spirituality in walking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Walking was everthing to me. I never knew how much I had taken it for granted. I was wheelchair bound for 10 months and I will never forget getting up on that first leg and later actually walking. I know that if walking had not been possible for me, I would have learned to live life another way. But walking...ahh, being mobile again. What a feeling. What a blessing! Needless to say, I've never taken it for granted another day since.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very good question Mick,

Yes, walking does mean far far more to me now than it did before the amputation. Although I do think that I forget when things are going well just how bad it can be when the leg is hurting or what it was like when I was still going through the rehab process. And I do find it really interesting that my mind seems to work by totally forgetting how bad things can get when they're going well, and also how good they can get when they're going badly.

As far as proper walking, hiking wise, goes, it means far far far more to me getting up (and normally more importantly and difficultly) down a mountain or whatever now than it ever used to before. And that is generally the case regardless of whether I'm having a good day or bad day with my leg.

Your question is very well timed for me because at the moment I'm just coming out of a particularly bad bit of my life leg wise. In December last year I fell off my bike onto the bad side and broke my hip, which has basically taken me until now to get over. I had to have an operation on the hip and for a good couple of weeks after that had to go back to scratch, hopping around on crutches, not even able to put my leg on because my hip hurt too much. Even when I was able to wear the leg again and, with time, get rid of the crutches again, it has taken me a long time to regain the level of mobility I had before the accident. Added to that once I managed to get rid of the crutches I started having the worst cramps in my stump I have ever experienced. Which made it incredibly painful even to get off the sofa to make a cup of tea. They seem to have subsided now and the hip has stopped hurting but boy did it bring me back to this time 4 years ago....

And boy was it depressing. I had totally forgotten that feeling of dread I used to get when I thought about walking anywhere from A to B. How the only way to get used to walking so slowly and in such pain was to learn patience and to keep in your mind at all times that even if it took you 8 times as long as it would take someone with 2 legs to get there, you would eventually make it. How distances that I would have looked as as 5 minute strolls along the road when I was 2 legged suddenly started to feel like I was hiking over the Andes. And etc etc etc.

The funny thing is though that I am recovering from the cramps and the hip now, and I'm already starting to forget again what a total nightmare it was when I broke my hip and just how incredibly relieved I was when things, especially the cramps, started getting better again. And I can almost see that in a year or so if no other disasters happen, I will have forgotten all over again just what it was like to be in that situation, and might all over again have started to take walking forgranted.

Weird.....

Fi

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oof, yes, good question.

Like Fi, I guess I have now taken it for granted. Lawdy lawd......I spent YEARS walking in pain (about 8 or 9 I think). I really should slap myself about the head and count my blessings daily....

:unsure:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Mick,

Great question.

Walking........whats that?

I long to be able to walk and long to have that spiritual connection to the earth again, the beauty of the courtyside, the roar of the silence and solitude, I would also settle for being able to carry a cup of tea :rolleyes:

Lynne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I walk and I run, but I still run up against limits and that makes me angry. I want to run further and faster, and walk farther. I would like to get to where I can run a marathon--not to win it, but just to finish. And I want to be able to walk 20 miles per day or so while carrying a pack. The walking's actually harder because my walking leg's not perfect yet and after a while it starts to bite me in the back of the knee. But if I can solve that problem...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The main thing about walking is that it allows me to be 'normal'.... OK, jump down my throat, what's normal blah blah.... but it allows me to get around in a fashiopn that is deemed by most to be the norm... it allows me to meet and greet people on their level, I'm not overlooked and I don't have to make allowances.

By the way Mick, Pagan normally means you are irreligious, you don't conorm to a commonly known religion, i.e. you aren't a Christian, Jew or Muslim... I've not heard it used to describe a country or rural person.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It IS a good question, Mick! In my case, I've had a few different periods in my life where "walking" was in jeopardy. I've had to fully re-learn walking twice in my life, the first time when I was 10 years old. That situation convinced me that I'd manage to walk again forty years later, following the amp.

To me, walking is...well...a really nice convenience! I've had a few different times in my life when I've been a wheelchair-user, and I can actually get around OK in a chair. But I don't live in a chair-friendly world. My apartment is only 2/3 chair-accessible; my car will hold a chair, but loading it is a major event. The simple number of transfers it takes to get my chair out of the apartment, if I'm not able to stand/walk, is daunting. And I live alone, so that also tends to make life in a wheelchair more challenging.

I'm very, very glad I can walk, then! I'm not the speediest in the world, but I can stroll where I need to go, in most cases. I'm still working on hilly, uneven, and unstable terraine, so hiking is still a precarious thing for me, but I'm slowly getting there. I miss the mountains, but I can handle a small hill with a clear path, now... that means a lot to me! I can stand and look folks in the eye...also a nice thing to be able to do. I can climb stairs, allowing me to visit friends whose residences are even more wheelchair-inaccessible than mine. Each of those nice little conveniences makes life a bit more pleasant for me! It gives me a chance to connect with the average world on an even footing, and I'm thankful for that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It IS a good question, Mick! In my case, I've had a few different periods in my life where "walking" was in jeopardy. I've had to fully re-learn walking twice in my life, the first time when I was 10 years old. That situation convinced me that I'd manage to walk again forty years later, following the amp.

To me, walking is...well...a really nice convenience! I've had a few different times in my life when I've been a wheelchair-user, and I can actually get around OK in a chair. But I don't live in a chair-friendly world. My apartment is only 2/3 chair-accessible; my car will hold a chair, but loading it is a major event. The simple number of transfers it takes to get my chair out of the apartment, if I'm not able to stand/walk, is daunting. And I live alone, so that also tends to make life in a wheelchair more challenging.

Think I can echo what Cheryl is saying really. Having had the revision I was using the wheelchair for several months and am still now some of the time, most of the time I manage fine in the wheelchair, but walking does make things so much easier, just carrying things from room to room etc. and things like visiting friends, having to get the chair in and out the car, and just 'nipping out' to the shops etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, Mick, I had to answer this ...

By the way Mick, Pagan normally means you are irreligious, you don't conorm to a commonly known religion, i.e. you aren't a Christian, Jew or Muslim... I've not heard it used to describe a country or rural person.

Don't you know nothin' OBL? :unsure: Take a look here ~ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paganism Also, take a look at this ~ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyWRkoBJiCQ It's the first part of Terry Jones' Barbarians, which I found to be a really interesting series as it turned our commonly held views about peoples such as Barbarians (it seems the Romans did a rather good character assassination on them).

As for walking: yes, Mick, I do enjoy walking, very much, but I much prefer swimming as I don't need to use any hardware to get somewhere fast. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry, Mick, I had to answer this ...

By the way Mick, Pagan normally means you are irreligious, you don't conorm to a commonly known religion, i.e. you aren't a Christian, Jew or Muslim... I've not heard it used to describe a country or rural person.

Don't you know nothin' OBL? :unsure: Take a look here ~ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paganism Also, take a look at this ~ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyWRkoBJiCQ It's the first part of Terry Jones' Barbarians, which I found to be a really interesting series as it turned our commonly held views about peoples such as Barbarians (it seems the Romans did a rather good character assassination on them).

As for walking: yes, Mick, I do enjoy walking, very much, but I much prefer swimming as I don't need to use any hardware to get somewhere fast. :rolleyes:

Thread de-railing alert!

You can make it mean whatever you want it would seem... http://www.religioustolerance.org/paganism.htm

That's the problem with the internet...

I prefer the Oxford ENGLISH dictionary... http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/pagan?view=uk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I prefer the Oxford ENGLISH dictionary... http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/pagan?view=uk

Interesting ...

... because at the end of the definition in that link, OBL, it says:

— ORIGIN Latin paganus ‘rustic’, later ‘civilian’ (i.e. a person who was not a ‘soldier’ in Christ’s army).

So, it seems that Mick was right. :rolleyes:

Seriously, though, I think you should take a look at that Terry Jones' series (it was on the telly a while ago btw) as it was really interesting. It corrects a lot of misconceptions that were promoted by the Romans, that they used to promote themselves (fairly common practice in an invading people, so I understand). :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
does your mobility mean more to you than just getting from a to b ? After all, some of us on this forum may have never walked again. So what does it really mean to you?
My mobility means independence, empowerment, freedom, adventure, travel. Guess I should never take it for granted. It means so much. I would be at great loss without it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
does your mobility mean more to you than just getting from a to b ? After all, some of us on this forum may have never walked again. So what does it really mean to you?
My mobility means independence, empowerment, freedom, adventure, travel. Guess I should never take it for granted. It means so much. I would be at great loss without it.

Agree, don't think we should take it for granted Johnny. But think we all do, even wearing prosthetics, I know I did having worn prosthetic limbs for years, it wasn't till I was hardly wearing them that I gave it much thought.

But also wanted to say that I think it is very different when you can wear a prosthesis and only have to use a wheelchair now and then from when you have no choice but to use the wheelchair 24/7, so Lynne I do understand what you are saying and do really hope you manage to get some sort of treatment that will get you walking again soon.

Ann

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would be completely stuffed if I couldn't wear my leg. My house in in accessible in a wheelchair, I work at the top of a flight of stairs, I can't use crutches because of an issue with one of my arms.

I dread the day I can't wear my leg for any reason.

I think what's been said is true, I don't appreciate fully how lucky I am, though I do think about it from time to time, I don't think I really can fully appreciate how much I depend on my leg for the simplest of things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is such an interesting question. YES, I agree with Higgie "Walking gives me the chance to live my life, and go where I want, not bound by any means or restrictions. To be independent."

My amputation occurred 4 months after my husband died of cancer. Idt left me alone and terrified. I did not cry when my leg was amputated. I cried when I took my first steps. My life was back.

JudyH

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I cried when I took my first steps.

So did I!

Ditto! With a BIG smile! :biggrin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I cried when I took my first steps.

So did I!

Ditto! With a BIG smile! :biggrin:

Oh make NO mistake.......so did I!!!!!! Just wicked, those first steps :biggrin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I cried when I took my first steps.

So did I!

Ditto! With a BIG smile! :biggrin:

Oh make NO mistake.......so did I!!!!!! Just wicked, those first steps :biggrin:

Definitely felt good to be standing up again. Kept feeling very tall, but obviously wasn't any taller than before.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know what you mean, Ann. I'd been in the wheelchair for almost 10 months and when I stood up I would have sworn I was 6 feet tall. What a feeling!

I agree also about it being different when you use the wheelchair only some of the time. I use mine when leggy is off, usually at night. But to be in it 24/7 is...well, it's just awful.

My heart goes out to you Lynne and I hope and pray things change for you real soon. :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Mick..What a great question!! Walking to me also means independance and enjoying life again. After the revision when I couldn't wear my leg for over 2 months, it seemed forever, I realized all over again that it was a real gift to be able to do all the things I missed before the amp. When my TKR failed and the RSD resurfaced I was either in bed or a w/c for 2 years. Since the amp 7 years ago I have been able to do so much that I had not been able to, I even have been horseback riding again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×