Amputee Support - GFS - VCH

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Manas - Greater Vancouver and Lower Mainland - Above Knee

Bang! Smash! Ka Pow!
Left leg gone just above the knee.

My name is Manas Dichow, 62 years old, I'm from Vancouver, BC.

Ron (long time motorcycle buddy) and I were riding our Harleys to Florida in June, 2005. We got as far as Hot Springs, Arkansas (Bill Clinton's home) before I was rear ended by a car and knocked for a loop (unconscious). The next thing I know, I'm on an operating table and the surgeon is explaining why they had to amputate my leg. "Amputate my leg....... Above or below the knee?" I ask. "Can't save the knee, there's not enough of it left" says Dr. Lewis. "OK. Get on with it" I say. Then I sign some sort of release form (they like that) and away they go doing their best to save what they can.

After a short stay of 5 days in the Hot Springs Hospital, I was flown back to Vancouver's VGH to spend another 5 days before I was released to become an "out patient". It took about 2 months for my wounds to heal well enough so I could start my rehabilitation at the GF Strong Rehab Centre.

My attitude has remained positive from day one. I see my life as being different, not difficult. I'm a very lucky person to be alive. I approach each day knowing that I've got a lot going for myself and that it's up to me to make it happen. No room for cry babies in this amputee game. It's tough slugging and you're much better off to tackle it head on instead of worrying about it. There's no going back so "get on with it".

I'm currently on my 2nd leg which is a suction fit socket and have been wearing it (on & off) for about 4 months. I can walk for 3kms on an incline using a treadmill and wear my leg pretty much all day. I'll walk farther tomorrow. I work 5 days a week, 6:30am - 1:00pm and go to rehab 3 days a week in the afternoons after work. I find that between rehab, my prosthetist and everything else that goes along with being an amputee, my days are full.

I'm starting to play a little golf and hope to play a lot more as the year goes by. I'll be trying a new C-leg (computerized knee) shortly and we'll see what that can do for my mobility.

I've traveled out of the country twice by air and found the experience rewarding. I bring my wheelchair as a safety measure. Sometimes distances can be tiring. If anything happens to your leg when you're away, you'll be pretty happy to have the chair along. People are really helpful when you travel in a wheelchair. I like people.

Sometimes I have to give my head a shake and tell myself "No matter how bad things might seem, they could be a lot worse."
Count your blessings and drive on.

Have a good life.

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