I am Kirsty Thomas and I am 52 years old.  I am married to Paul and we have 6 children between us, (none with each other) and 8 grandchildren from all those kids 😊

I was born with a left club foot, only one but pretty severe.  I had my first surgery at approx 7.5 months old.  When I was 4 years old I was the first person ever to have some pioneering surgery but it didn’t go well and the operation is no longer performed.  Over time I had over 30 surgeries to try to correct my foot and leg but it was eventually amputated on July 10th 2022.  I spent 5 days in hospital then came straight home, I went back to work 3 weeks later, although only from home.  I went back after 8 weeks properly with my prosthetic leg.  I have no name for my stump although I am not keen on the word stump.  I cant remember what I was most concerned about becoming an amputee, I think I took in my stride as I had time to prepare.  I work full time as a Funeral Service Manager for Coop Funeralcare, I manage 8 funeral homes across the South Coast and look after all aspects of the funerals and the staff that work in them.  I have been with the Coop for almost 19 years now and I love it, they have been great with me and I work with some great colleagues. It was through the Coop that I passed my ILM Diploma in Management two weeks after my amputation.

When I am not working I like to crochet, this helps me to try and forget about phantom limb pain.  My husband and I like to go to the theatre or cinema or to eat out, when we can afford it, we are both vegetarian.  We have two mini dachshunds, Mabel and Arnold who are our world, they are naughty and hard work but we wouldn’t change a thing (I think) I volunteer for a Dachshund rescue, helping people to rescue dogs and help to rehome those in need.

Last year I was bullied (nicely) into walking a mile across Gosports Golden Mile Beach to help raise money for the Lifeboats, it wasn’t easy as mobility is something I really struggle with but I made it along with my husband and some great friends from work.  It was a great achievement for me and I got a medal for it.

A funny memory was at the petrol station near Stonehenge, we got out of the car and my leg literally slid off and landed on the forecourt, the poor man in the car opposite didn’t quite know what to do, but my husband and I laughed for ages.

I came across Steel Bones through another amputee, I remember the lovely welcome pack I received shortly after the amputation and it just made me smile, the little gifts in the pack were so nice and made me feel cared for.  I am hoping to do more with Steel Bones in the future.

One thing I would love to achieve is to be able to walk my dogs with my husband through the woods on a Sunday morning, this is something I haven’t done since before the amputation, I know my husband Paul would love this too.

 

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