A couple of months ago I mentioned that I was being fit for a new set of prosthetic legs, the X3 microprocessor knee by Ottobock. I had done the diligence checking out all of the available knees that were available – and opted for the X3. A big part of my decision was based on the waterproof feature of the knee. I live in the land of 10,000 lakes and my lifestyle often includes being close to the water. Whether it be an unfortunate downpour during a round of golf, putting the boat in the water or just hanging out in the pool or lake with the family – water is a part of our lives!
I was fit for the X3’s in December of last year and started getting used to the additional functions and features. In January while partaking in a social event with some friends, talking over a couple of adult beverages I mentioned to one friend that I had just received the new legs. I carried on adding that I was looking forward to spring break more than ever as I would be able to jump in the pool and perhaps the ocean. My friend had another idea. He was kind enough to let me know that in a few weeks he was fulfilling an item on his bucket list by taking the Polar Plunge. The Polar Plunge is when a group cuts a large hole in the frozen lake to expose a 15 x 15 area of open water. Individuals and teams request donations for their efforts and all monies raised goes to the Special Olympics. Well, at the time (recall the comment about the adult beverages) it sounded like a good idea. I committed to taking the plunge.
As the weeks went by, I didn’t hear much more about the event and thought maybe that it would pass – nothing until early February. That is when a notification popped up in my email that I had been registered for the Polar Plunge. Terrific I thought. Here we go. I made a few phone calls including one to the technical team at Ottobock. Looking for an out I explained the situation to the representative and commented “I know these things are waterproof but they certainly aren’t capable of withstanding something like this…. are they?” I had my fingers crossed that the representative would reply something like “I wouldn’t recommend it.” Unfortunately that is not what I heard. The reply was something more like “the knees are going to be fine – but why would anyone commit to doing something like that?” At that point I knew that there was no way out.
Since a picture tells a thousand words I will wrap this up by providing a few photos of the jump. The good news is that I survived and the legs performed flawlessly. The great news is that team “Wiggle Your Toes” raised over $3000 for the Special Olympics! From now on when someone starts talking about THEIR bucket list – I will set my beverage down and quietly walk away!!