“I’m not serious”

Today I was told that I am not taking this up coming surgery seriously. This is mostly coming because I say that I am “getting my leg chopped off” or “cut off”. There is also the fact that I am throwing a going away party for my leg. Yes I am also serving drumsticks and a cake shaped as what will be removed from my leg, complete with cherry filling. I asked this person how I should say it then. The suggestion was I should refer to it as losing my leg, or amputation anything but chopping off. “Losing it” are you kidding me. It’s not lost, I know where it is going. Now in a couple months should I misplace my prosthetic then yes it will be lost.

One thing this person is failing to understand is that this is a choice that I have been faced with. I have been processing it for over 14 years. Now my wife and I have made it, and now is the best time. Does this mean that I am not scared? Absolutely not! I am scared that it will hurt. I am scared that my sex life will change. I am scared that I will no longer be attractive to my wife. I am scared that my unborn child will some day resent the fact that daddy only has one leg. I am scared to have my God given limb removed. I am scared about the financial impact, along with about a million other fears going around in my head. I know that most of these fears are false and only time can prove that to me. I also know that this is the right decision.

That is why I choose to be flippant, humorous or crass about this. Again it is the right choice. By taking this approach I am able to slowly enter into dialog about it and show people that it is ok to talk about. I love talking about it. For most people they will never be in a situation like this and I am honored to share my experience with them.



  1. You are handling this far better than I or anyone I know ever could. Instead of cowering away from this dragon — you shrug your shoulders and flip the bird to its face. You are losing a fucking leg — how much more serious can it get!!!

    Your approach to this lets people know it’s okay to discuss the elephant in the room: A big, foul smelling animal that was never invited to the party yet ended up living in your room. You can either ignore it and go crazy, or deal with it, buy matching jungle furniture and live your life.

    Tell this person to save all that euphemistic bullshit for Christmas cards and dinner with the Pope.

    Robert Plastorm,
    Assistant Jungle Coordinator

  2. I wholeheartedly agree with the Bobby! Fuck off judger of how you handle your fucking business! You are living this decision how you live your whole life–embracing it and going forward!

    Jungle Resident

  3. YES!!! thank you both, for your encouragement and support. One thing though, I am not angry at this person and will not just blow them off. I am actually proud to have them in my life. They disagreed with me and told me. Even though they diddn’t want to take the bait and joke with me we still ended up dialoging about it, and I know the conversation will continue.

  4. It is amazing to me ,Son, to be reading and seeing all this play out in a blog,so thought I would respond to this writing. One thing I have seen in you all your life , your genuine heart, you care how people feel and no matter how you get the point across , it goes back to that caring factor!
    Are you serious about this whole situation, of course!, it is happening to you, and that same “heart-to care-about others” at times does come across as brash or flippant. This whole life changing experience is not something just anyone walks through, what happened to you 14 years ago is your life . Unless someone walks in another persons shoes how can they begin to know or understand the experience.
    There are many times I have reflexed on what has happened, but one in particular, an evening, typical at the burn unit where dressing changes where occuring.., we heard a boy yelling and screaming… at that time you were in what they called critical condition…,you patted my arm, and said, “It’s ok Mom, it could be so much worse”. That time and so many more after that ,even now as you and Tara have made this very serious decision , I am reminded how very special and wonderfully made you are!!
    Tha party sounds fun! Take pictures!! Love you son!

  5. Thank you Mom, and know that this kind of encouragement from both you and Dad all through my life even before the zappy zap is a huge reason why I have the attitude that I do. I love you too Mom.

  6. Hey, good talking to you today. I’m sorry I wasn’t “there” emotionally though – I haven’t felt like myself for the last 9 months. I just wanted to thank you for these posts – what a great gift to everyone for processing through this here. Thanks for capturing in words the great love present between you and your family and friends. I think you are very couragious in facing these upcoming difficulties, but I have no doubt that God will be with you giving you joy! I pray this will be a great blessing to you and your family.

  7. Kam, no worries, I can’t say that I understand why you are not yourself but I do know some of the reason of why that is and know that I pray for you as well.

    Thank you for your encouragement, support and prayers.

  8. I am Terri’s cousin, (my daughter diagnosed with brain cancer in 1999). I have such respect for you, Tara, Terri, and your Mom sounds amazing! You so obviously walk by faith and not by sight — no pun intended. Remember “Footprints” — it certainly got me through rough times in the “black hole” of my journey. You, and yours, are being prayed for by many. You are a hero Tarver and will be to your child/children as well.

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