We need your pics

We are working on a new website for shirts for limbs. One of the pieces that we are looking for is an interaction with the process, a way to show that everyone is a part of this venture. To fill this piece we are asking that if you have received a shirt send us a picture of you wearing the shirt. We are going to have a slide show, of sorts, showing off all those that have contributed to the cause.

So please, wear your shirt.

Take a picture.

Then email the picture to me. tarverh@gmail.com

If you have a Fickr account you can add it to our pool here.

Here is a picture of the Saturday Market booth we do when daddy has gotten enough sleep to be able to enjoy a Saturday with Portland finest.

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Keep the picture clean, but send in pics of you doing what you do while wearing the shirt.

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Tarver, Walking?

It is getting so close I can taste it. Last week I took my first step on a prosthetic leg. Through the process of what we created with Shirts For Limbs and some of the press that we have received, I was donated a knee.  Here, is the full story of how that came about.

The socket needed some adjustments and tomorrow it should be done. This is the piece that is so crucial fits just right. I am going with a suction type socket and over the last month I have been working on the strength of the stump, with that the shape has changed. Aside from all that I was able to walk on the leg. In a matter of minutes I figured out how this knee works and how to control it. When straight, and with heel pressure it locks. Then, when you put pressure on the toe it unlocks and bends for a step. Over about a half hour of walking back and forth between parallel bars, stopping to tweak here and there, I was able to walk! Half way through the process my prosthestist suggested putting my full weight on when stepping and not using the bars for support. I said I have been doing that the whole time and then he started paying attention to my hands.

It felt so good. I still have a decent amount of nerve pain in the stump but when I was in the leg and moving around there was no pain at all. I was so close to tears, I have not been able to walk with out pain for fifteen years. Tara said that if I would have had pants on she wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference from before.

This is by no means the end of the need to raise $$$ though. This knee that was donated will work as a great knee to learn on and possibly use as a back up. We still have the goal of $40,000, and I am still amazed at what has come in so far. Thank you to all of you that have donated and are keep up with the progress. There have been some cool things happening with legislation in Oregon that will help out in January. I will write more about that soon, but it is still going to leave gaps for amputees and I would love to be of assistance to help pick up those out of pocket costs, let alone what mine will are now. So please keep spreading the word.

Here are a few pictures of the process.

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Oh yeah, have I mentioned how adorable my son is. Here is a classic picture of Xander and Daddy taking a nap.

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New Club

Before Xander was born I really had no problem attracting conversation from complete strangers. Whether it be because of my tattoos, the scars on my head, the fact that I have one leg or the shirt that I am wearing that emphasizes that fact, people really have no problem approaching me and at times I have wondered if I have a sign on my forehead that says “I want to talk to you”.  Don’t get me wrong, I love meeting new people but when I am standing at the urinal in the men’s room I really don’t want to answer the question “what happened to your leg”, I’m a little more focused.

Over the years I have noticed that there are different ways a person gets treated depending on the different stages of life. In the last year and a half I have gone through a couple big ones that most can or will be able to relate to. The odd thing is that they are almost like elite / current members only clubs.

Single stage: Everyone knows someone that would be perfect for you, whether you are content with your singleness or not. Most of your friends are single people as well because they are the only people not trying to hook you up or telling you it is time to “settle down”.  In general you are treated as a lesser group and not quite complete. Damn the line from “Jerry Maguire”. “You, complete me”

Couple / in a romantic relationship stage:
Granted mine lasted all of a few weeks. Finally everyone is happy for you, or in some cases not.  Your friends wonder where the hell you’ve been until hearing that you are in a relationship, then are either happy that you have finally come around or are secretly jealous that you no longer can close out a pub on a weeknight.  At a certain point you start spending time with more couples at couple friendly establishments and everyone has advice on how fast or slow the relationship is going.

Newly wed / before kids: Most frequently asked question is definitely, “So how soon are you having kids?” as though you still are not whole. You disappear again but to everyone this time.  Ok, not really but that’s the other thing you hear on a frequent basis. Dinners out with people turn into cooking at home and playing a nice game of Scrabble.

Married / with a newborn: This is the one that feels more like a club in social situations.  I know that we are only two weeks into parenthood but it is crazy how both Tara and I are both even more approachable. Everyone wants to see the baby.  They want to know how big he was (7lb 6ozs) and if we are getting enough sleep (yes, we have a great boy). But then there are the other parents. Now, finally I’m not looked at like a pervert when I want to hold a baby or I am making faces at /with kids.

There are other stages that I have yet to get to and not one of them is assumed to be a point that produce a greater man as if I can ever be completed.  I am grateful for the man that I am now.

Xander Cole Hannant

Incase you read the comments on the last post let me be the 2nd to say that Xander Cole Hannant was born July 31, 2007 at 11:46pm after four long days of labor. He weighed 7lbs and 6oz. and was 21 1/2”. Tara started having contractions that were measurable (7-10 minutes apart). For the most part that was the longest break she got until he was born. Tara was amazing through this process and after only 45 minutes of pushing he slid right out. I had the privilege of catching him as he came out. That was probably the best part for me aside from seeing some relief for my wife. The little trouble maker started early by splashing Dad in the face with fluids blinding me. As soon as it was safe we were able to get him up to Mom’s belly. So without further ado here are some pics.

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