Do the math.
The most recent figures say more than 2.7 million Americans live with limb loss or a limb difference. That number is likely to reflect a significant increase soon.
That’s 2.7 million people with loved ones, caregivers, and medical teams. All have traveled a unique path with the cause of their amputation or limb difference, the obstacles they have faced, the goals they have set, and the lives they have lived.
That’s tens of millions of stories to tell.
At the Amputee Coalition, we aim to tell as many as we can, especially during Limb Loss and Limb Difference Awareness Month, which is going on right now.
“As a proud amputee of 25 years, the reason why it is so important to bring more awareness around our community of amputees is because, let’s be real, we’re involved in almost every facet of society,” Jamaica Harris said. “You can find us in everything from athletics to the beauty industry, to the music industry, and even on the big screen. …
“The more we allow people to see our beautiful imperfections, the more people will know who we are and what we’re capable of. Let’s allow people to kind of peek into our world and go beyond perceived limitations.”
Jamaica said this in one of dozens of testimonial videos we are featuring this month on social media.
You can relay your own story in our #WeTHRIVE campaign. We want to hear from everyone, even if you’ve shared your story before. Teresa Thompson, who had her leg amputated 50 years ago because of bone cancer, recently posted her thoughts.
“I am not going to say it’s been easy,” she said. “But it is who I am. You do what you have to do. I’ve met a lot of great people because of my amputation. People who I love and would not have met if it wasn’t for my amputation.”
We also will be bringing you special member stories on the THRIVE blog. That is the best place to go anytime for news, information, and features about the limb loss and limb difference community. It is also one way to read our special online edition of inMotion Magazine.
Emily Rowley, who has adapted to her upper-limb difference by learning to do things with her feet, demonstrates how she cooks, dresses, writes, and more on social media. The 21-year-old woman explained why Limb Loss and Limb Difference Awareness Month is important to her.
“Not only am I normalizing having a limb difference,” Emily said, “but I’m also educating on what it’s like to have a limb difference. I find it so important that people with limb loss and limb difference share their stories and their experiences and what it’s like to have their disability so others can learn and understand what it’s like.”
Learn more about Limb Loss and Limb Difference Awareness Month and how you can get involved all month long. Join the conversation on social media using #InspireToElevate #LLLDAM, #LLAM, #NoAmputeeAlone, and #WeThrive.
Are you connected? Become a community member by joining the Amputee Coalition today!