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The Absence of My C-leg

September 27, 2005
This is the story of the one legged girl. The one legged girl has what is called a C-leg. This c-leg is very important to her and she doesn’t like it when she can’t have it!

So two weeks ago I had to send in my C-leg for it’s annual servicing. I absolutely love my C-leg. I helps me keep a safe distance from the ground, I can walk all over little pebbles and rocks without worry, and I can even feel like I am a somewhat normal and agile person, sometimes. When I don’t have it, and I’m using my spare leg, I feel like I’m stuck to the ground because I can’t move very fast or gracefully, and I am stuck to the ground because my hands and knees are often coming in sharp contact with it. Naturally I wouldn’t give up my C-leg unless it was absolutely necessary.

If you don’t know what a C-leg is, or haven’t heard me or someone else explain it, you may be wondering, “Why is it so much better?” It is so much better because it has a little computer (that needs to be charged every night) in it that helps make the hydraulic unit function better. The computer can read my weight distribution between my heal and my toes and from their decides if it is time for my knee to support weight or not. After my weight goes over the toes the knee can swing through freely and every other time (pretty much) it has the correct resistance for my height and weight. My spare leg never gives any resistance so if the knee is even slightly bent with weight on it, I collapse to the floor.

I’ve now gone for two weeks without my C-leg. I wanted to get it back before classes started, but since classes started yesterday that didn’t happen. I was so happy when I got it back today. I marched in with my big box, singing to Jasmine about how my leg got back. I didn’t put it on right away, I wanted to charge it for a little bit to see if I could tell how much battery was left. I only had a half an hour until my next class started. I charged it for half an hour, saw that it was at least half charge (which is plenty) and put it on. I tried to walk around but it wouldn’t work! No matter what I tried the knee was stiff and wouldn’t swing through. I jumped around my apartment for a while trying to get it to work, but decided I better call the prosthetic company.

“I got my leg back today, but it isn’t working.”
“Okay hold on.” They put me on hold forever. I was extremely upset and trying desperately (and not very successfully) to hold back tears.
“You’re going to have to ship your leg back to us, we forgot something”
What!?! By now I was fully sobbing and they actually asked why I was so upset. If anybody should understand how important my C-leg is, the prosthetic company should. So I put it in it’s box again, took it to UPS, and reluctantly sent it away again. This time will only take two days; I should have it back my Thursday.

I really wanted to have my C-leg back by the time I classes started and now I’ll be missing in for a few days more. When I get it back this time, I won’t get my hopes up until I have it on and it works.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. September 28, 2005 11:24 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear that… I hope you get it back real soon!

  2. September 29, 2005 9:56 am

    I should be getting it back today! (She does a little happy dance) I’m just waiting for the UPS woman to knock on my door. :)

  3. Pete permalink
    November 13, 2005 7:17 pm

    what’s a c-leg?

  4. Jodie permalink
    November 14, 2005 11:22 am

    A c-leg is a prosthetic leg that has a computer in the knee. The computer reads my weight distribution and respods to my movements that way. It has improved my life as an amputee so much which I talk about in my Why I missed my C-leg post. Enjoy and feel free to ask questions!

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