What's behind Door Number 1?
Another leg malfunction!
At Mile 3087, Genium #2 (a.k.a. "The Loaner") stops working. Maybe it gets a few drops of water in it. Maybe it's a computer glitch. Maybe it's just tired of playing second-string.
|Gleaners! Best reason|
for a morning workout!
As usual, I remove my water leg and reattach my Genium. But when I stand up, I can't take a step. The loaner leg LOCKS the knee in a bent position.
But here I have options. I grab my Allen wrench. Unscrew the malfunctioning Genium. Replace it with my water leg, still dripping from the swimming pool.
That's Deal #1.
I send an S.O.S. to Prosthetist Tim:
When I get to Prosthetic Innovations, he is waiting with open arms. Did I mention Tim's a really good sport?
I hand him the Loaner which is now vibrating with error signals. "Take her to surgery," I say.
He opens the knee up.
"It's humid in there," he says. Then he shows me several tiny beads of liquid on the inner workings.
"I didn't swim in it, I swear!" I insist. "It stayed in my locker the whole time!"
It's the truth.
Tim tries to reboot it, but no avail. He puts it back on me, and I take a few steps. It bends slowly now, like walking through thick mud. The vibrations feel like I have a buzzing cell phone in my pocket.
Tim doesn't have any more Geniums to loan me. And worse, he just received word that my own Genium -- which was due back any day -- won't be repaired for another 2-3 weeks. Geez.
It's time for some wheeling and dealing.
"Do you have any OTHER legs I could use?"
We move to Door Number 2. Plan B...
or more precisely, Plan C -- the C-Leg.
Tim goes into the lab and returns with a C-Leg in his hand. "It was broken, but we had it rebuilt," he says.
|February 2011... Time flies!|
"The C-Leg is an inch and a half longer than the Genium," Tim says. "Are you willing to give up your rotator for a while?"
I tell Tim yes, I'd give up the rotator to have a knee that actually works.
Tim aligns the C-Leg on my socket and hooks me up to the computer. In 5 minutes, I'm walking more smoothly than I have in months. Functional leg? Check. Deal #2 is complete. It feels like I've won a grand prize!
Then Chase walks in.
You might say he comes through Door Number 3...
Chase is a firefighter and paramedic. He's also an amputee -- right leg, left arm. You may remember him from the great "Stairclimbing Showdown" arranged by PT Deb a few years ago.
Today Chase has stopped in to pick up a new liner and -- it turns out -- to claim his old C-Leg, which has just been rebuilt.
Prosthetist Chris goes into the lab to get Chase's leg. He's gone for quite a while. He turns the place upside down. He cannot find Chase's C-Leg anywhere.
Let's Make a Deal becomes Whose Leg Is It Anyway?
Through the process of elimination, we discover the answer: I'm wearing Chase's C-Leg!
"Mind if I borrow it?" I joke.
|X3: the next generation Genium|
Apparently, leg malfunctions are an epidemic this summer.
my running leg while I wear his C-Leg.
It's Let's Make a Deal, amputee style!
So what's behind Door Number 3?
Not exactly a new car, but a NEW LEG! Well, a rebuilt, slightly used, hand-me-down leg... But hey, it totally works!
And I got a pretty good deal on it.