Amputees Help Each Other Cope

By: Toni Harrison
By: Toni Harrison

"There are a lot of amputees out there. When we're walking down the street most of the time you don't know us," said Georgia Taylor, amputee.

Not long ago, Georgia Taylor had her leg amputated.

"It's a very traumatic experience, you don't know if life's going to go on," said Taylor.

Before her operation she met with a surgeon, a physical therapist and an occupational therapist. She had more medical information than she knew what to do with, but something was missing.

"Before my surgery the one thing lacking was the peer visitor. Although I got a lot of good information, I didn't know there was some else out there like me," said Taylor.

Taylor didn't like feeling isolated and alone and she didn't want other amputees to feel that way either. She contacted the Amputee Coalition of America and decided to start a support group.

"They just need to know someone's there when they are ready and there's a lack of that in this community," said Taylor.

St. Joseph Rehabilitation Center in Bryan has donated free space for the groups meetings, but Taylor says their efforts will extend to all parts of the Brazos Valley.

The object of the support group is to match recent amputees with someone who's faced a similar situation, so far 10 amputees have volunteered to counsel others. Ralph Fowler, a trainer with the amputee coalition, says peer counseling is an important part of recovery.

"Peer visitation helps the individual recover faster physically and mentally, they can automatically see someone else doing better," said Ralph Fowler, trainer, Amputee Coalition of America.

This is the only amputee support group in the Brazos Valley and they might be few in number, but that won't stop them from helping as many as they can.

For more information about the local group contact Georgia Taylor, georgiat_ctop@hotmail.com.


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