I was lucky in that I made the final decision to lose my legs. For me it would have been worse to wake up and find them gone, but I understand sometimes that has to happen to save someone’s life.
That’s the important thing, life comes first. Losing a limb is not the end of the world. In my case I think it opens up new possibilities.
Next after life comes quality of life.
When everyone was trying to save my leg, life was difficult. I coped, but I didn’t realise how difficult and painful it was, until now when I look back on it. I could only walk a short distance, in pain. I was putting on a lot of weight due to low mobility. This brought my mood down and I realised this can’t go on.
Medical staff are amazing. They do everything they can. I was waiting for someone to tell me it had to go. But no one else can help you make that decision. Unless your life is at risk. So I began thinking that the surgeries would just go on and on, and maybe even then I would have to lose the leg.
I spoke to friends and family. They were all supportive but no one could tell me what to do. I understand that. If they said to do it, and it went wrong, then they would feel responsible.
I like lists. I drew up a ‘for’ and ‘against’ list for losing my leg. ‘For’ won. In a way it was a relief when I made the decision. A little bit of me was still unsure, the rest was planning life after.
In the end there was a delay. I was admitted into the surgery waiting area. I was number 2 on the list. Unfortunately number 1 overran and turned into an emergency so I had to go home. First thing on my mind was that I had to go back to work again the next day !!
It was only a month before I was back again and operated on. But in that month I was able to celebrate my birthday and realise 100% I was ready.
So my advice to anyone else. Speak to those that support you. Draw up a list. Think what it’s going to mean for your life if you do and if you don’t.