When Amy woke up from surgery, her life was forever changed. She reached down towards her leg that was operated on and when her fingers felt the surgical dressings from her below-the-knee amputation, she let out a sigh of relief. Amy settled back into the hospital bed and was able to sleep knowing that she was finally on the road to recovery and able to move forward with her life.
Amy started rehabilitation while in the hospital. Reconditioning her muscles to relearn daily living activities and core exercises for balance. While Amy worked on her coordination, safe transfer practices and learning to walk on one leg with a walker, her husband built a ramp for the front entrance of their home. In order to be released from the hospital, Amy had to master vehicle transfers with her car and her husband's truck.
No matter how big or small a challenge was, Amy was able to troubleshoot and adapt. Instead of getting frustrated, she viewed challenges as opportunities to learn, grow and thrive. Amy connected with Disability Network Northern Michigan’s Community Resources team to advocate about disability awareness concerns and inquire about peer opportunities. When faced with the realization that no peer opportunities were available in our area, Amy coordinated with Teter Orthotics and Prosthetics to develop an Amputee Support Group hosted at Disability Network for peers to discuss shared experiences.
Peer support is one of the fundamental services at Disability Network. Who better knows the issues that individuals face than another person with a disability. Peer mentors provide role modeling, discuss disability awareness and build relationships by connecting people. Amy is a vibrant example of how one person can promote personal empowerment and position social change for people with disabilities. To learn more about the Amputee Support Group, click here.