I’ve been getting a lot of feedback about the stuff I’ve written so far. I’m kind of flattered that so many people want to know more about me, so I’ve decided to tell a story about me that I’ve never told to anyone before. It’s kind of embarrassing, so I’ve kept it a secret, even from my closest friend, Michelle. But because of the anonymity of this website, I’ve decided to share this story with my audience.
For those of you who are reading about me for the first time, my name is Jeremy and I’m a medicine intern. The summer after my first year of medical school, I was in a car accident and lost most of both my legs. I’ve gone through a lot since then, including my decision to come back to school and breaking up with my fiancee. But now I’m doing what I want to be doing, so I’m a happy guy. I just wish my love life were a little better, but there’s plenty of time to work on that.
This story takes place during my third year of medical school, when I was doing my surgery clerkship. Surgery is historically the hardest rotation, but it’s even harder from a wheelchair. There was a lot of discussion with the administration about how the hell I was going to do this rotation or whether I would even be able to do it at all. After all, it would be pretty difficult to manage a wheelchair in the OR.
Finally, my parents hit on a solution that wasn’t ideal, but was doable. They got a device that is kind of like a walker that babies use. It has five small wheels at the bottom that support a metal pyramid-like structure that I can sit on. It has a little leather seat with holes for my stumps to go through. It’s pretty good in that it’s not much wider than a person and I’m high enough to see what’s going on. Plus the wheels lock into place so I won’t roll around.
The downside is that I can’t move the walker myself, since unlike a baby, I don’t have legs. So I was completely dependent on the nurses to help move me around and even get me into the walker in the first place. This was kind of a drag when I had an irritable nurse, but most of them were pretty nice about helping me.
The best thing about the walker though was that it made me feel like I was standing, something I hadn’t been able to do since the prostheses failed. I was nearly five feet tall with the walker, which wasn’t as good as my original height (5’10”), but it was really nice to be able to look at people eye to eye while they were standing.
I also got lucky in terms of the team I was assigned to. I was working with Dr. Liam Callahan, who was one of the chief residents. Liam was probably the best mentor I could have hoped for. Aside from being really nice, he was also a really brilliant surgeon. He was originally from Ireland, so he took me under his wing, being that I was an Irish doctor too (even though he was born there and I kept telling him I was many generation removed and of mixed blood).
I think Liam picked me as his medical student after we first scrubbed in together. An attending surgeon was doing the case and Liam came in after everyone else had already scrubbed in. “Thank you for gracing us with your presence, Dr. Callahan,” one of the nurses teased him (I found out later that Liam was notoriously late).
“Always a pleasure, love,” Liam said in his refined Irish accent as he slipped on his gown. He positioned himself across the table from me and the attending surgeon. He had his mask on and all I could see were his blue eyes. “Who are you?” he asked me.
“I’m Jeremy Andrews,” I stammered. “I’m a medical student.”
“Andrews... what is that? Scottish? Irish?”
I could see he was smiling under his mask. “I hope you’re going to become a surgeon,” he commented.
“Liam loves fellow countrymen,” the attending surgeon confided to me.
True to form, Liam treated me royally during that surgery. He even let me put in the staples, which brought back a few bad memories of the staples that were on my stumps when they first took off the bandages. I was a little edgy because I knew Liam couldn’t see my walker with my gown on, so he didn’t realize I was disabled. I was dreading the moment I had to scrub out and he saw that I didn’t have any legs.
Liam actually shook my hand at the end of the surgery. “Fair play, Dr. Andrews!” he said to me.
At that moment, one of the nurses came over and pulled me away from the table. She helped me out of the gown and for a split second, Liam’s eyes registered shock when he saw the stumps of my legs. But I have to admit, he recovered real quick. “That’s a nifty device you’ve got there,” he said. He checked the clock on the wall, “Go get some food and I’ll see you in surgery again in another hour.”
Liam was the favorite surgeon of the nurses. Between his intense blue eyes and his accent, which was a mix of growing up in Ireland and boarding school in the U.K., pretty much all the nurses were in love with him. Even the middle-aged nurses got all giggly around Liam—it was actually very funny.
“When are you going to marry that pretty little girlfriend of yours, Liam?” this nurse, Cookie, kept asking him.
Liam would shrug and smile. “I don’t know. What are my chances with you, love?” And Cookie giggled.
“Dr. Callahan is never going to get married,” another nurse, Marybeth said. “He’s a confirmed bachelor.”
“Now that’s not true,” Liam said.
“How old are you, doctor?” Marybeth asked him.
“So what are you waiting for?” Marybeth asked.
Liam was like the other surgeons—completely married to his work. He got in at 4:30 AM and left at 10 PM when he wasn’t on call. He was dating this really beautiful woman named Kelsey for about four years, but they weren’t living together and I don’t even know when he ever got to see her.
A few times when things were slow, Liam would cut out a little early and we would go to this pub near the hospital at around 8 PM. The pub was the closest thing to a bar I had been in since the accident, since bars didn’t really go well with my wheelchair. Even the ones that were accessible were usually too crowded for me to navigate my way through. This place was okay though, and it wasn’t too crowded on weeknights.
Liam and I would talk about medicine and surgery, but also about personal stuff. I wound up telling him all about my ex-fiancee Wendy and that whole mess. Aside from Michelle, he was the only person I told the whole truth about what happened (and that includes my parents).
“I just can’t get out of my head the look on Wendy’s face when she saw my legs,” I told him. “She looked at me like I was... disgusting.”
“So who needs her, eh?” Liam said.
“Yeah, but if a person I was with for so long couldn’t even accept me like this, what chance do I have a new person?” That was something I thought about constantly back then.
“Perhaps everyone isn’t as simpleminded as she is,” Liam said. “Did you ever think of that?”
Liam was very encouraging, but I just didn’t believe him.
“I think one of the nurses has a bit of a thing for you,” Liam said.
I laughed. “Which one?”
“The fine thing who always wears the pigtails.”
“Yes, that’s the girl. I overheard her saying she thought one of the students was cute.”
I knew which nurse he was talking about. She was very nice to me and really good about helping me with my walker.
“You should ask her out,” Liam suggested. “I could do it for you, if you’d like.”
“No, that’s okay,” I said quickly.
Liam put his hand on my shoulder. “Don’t worry, Jeremy. You’re just having a dry spell. When you’re a great surgeon, you’re going to look back on these days.”
That was Liam’s big thing—trying to convince me to be a surgeon. It didn’t work, as you can see. It was just too hard to do it with my wheelchair. Plus the lifestyle is really awful. I didn’t want to have the hours that Liam had when I reached my thirties.
Liam didn’t seem to mind at all. If he was off the next day (a rare occasion), he would get “shit-faced”, as he jokingly called it. Liam was great at holding his alcohol, but a couple of times, he overdid it. He would clutch his head and say, “I don’t think I’ll make it home... better give Kelsey a ring.”
That’s how I wound up meeting Liam’s girlfriend, when she drove down to the pub to pick him up. Kelsey was so ridiculously hot that my mouth went dry just looking at her. She was really nice too. She offered to drive me home and when I said no, she insisted on giving me money for a cab (“just in case”).
It seemed kind of weird. I mean, Liam was a great guy and really smart and girls loved him, but I couldn’t imagine any woman, much less a knockout like Kelsey, would tolerate a boyfriend who never called except when he was drunk and needed a ride home. I guess it was possible there was something I was missing, but unless there was an extra five or six hours in the day that I didn’t know about, there was no way Liam was spending any time with her.
I couldn’t help but think that if I were still with Wendy (or anyone, for that matter), I would have treated them a lot better than Liam treated Kelsey. He was so lucky to have her and he didn’t seem to get it. I wanted to say that to him on multiple occasions, but I always convinced myself it was none of my business.
I scrubbed in to most of Liam’s surgeries during the day. The process of scrubbing in was much more difficult for me than it was for most people. I would have to get a nurse to help me, but if one wasn’t available, sometimes another medical student could help me. Another third year from my class named Brad would always come up to me in the morning and ask me if I needed help scrubbing in, even when he had to scrub in himself. So toward the end of the rotation, he usually wound up helping me out, because I didn’t want to bother the busy nurses.
I stored my walker in the locker room and Brad would help me bring it out to the sinks. Then he would lift me out of my chair (I’m pretty light, so this isn’t very difficult) and place me in the walker, lining my stumps up with the holes. The way the holes were sized, about three of four inches of each stump came through and my pants legs wrapped underneath.
Once in the walker, I couldn’t move without Brad helping me, so he’d have to supervise the rest of the scrubbing. He’d put my wheelchair off to the side and push me over to the sinks. I’d scrub in and then I’d really have to rely on him to get me into the OR and over to the scrub nurse, who helped me into my gown and gloves. Since I was sterile then, Brad would be unable to touch me, so he’d just wish me good luck and head out. Generally, I would just stand there, trying to stay sterile, until the surgery began.
Liam was probably the best surgeon to work with. He never ever lost his temper or even raised his voice. He was extremely patient with me, especially about the fact that I couldn’t move without help. The nurses all adored him and I could see them melt with he called them “love” or flirted with them. Honestly, I got jealous of Liam sometimes, he really had it made.
I only saw Liam get upset once during a surgery. We were doing a carotid endarterectomy, a procedure he said he had done like a hundred times. It was just me and Liam, a PA, and the nurses scrubbed in. I still am not really sure what happened, but something went wrong and blood literally started pouring out of the incision site. I remember Liam yelling at the nurse, “Give me the fucking right angle!” which surprised me, because I never heard him curse during surgery before. I was trying to hold the suction, but I wasn’t doing a very good job. Liam turned to the nurse and yelled, “Will you find a goddamn resident, please? All I’ve got is a medical student who can’t even fucking move!”
His words really stung me, after all his talk about how I should be a surgeon. But then again, he was under a lot of stress at that moment and thought he might lose the patient, so I guess I can’t really blame him.
After the surgery was over and the patient was okay, Liam came up to me and apologized. “I’m truly sorry, Jeremy,” he said. “That surgery was brutal, but there’s no excuse for that.”
“It’s all right,” I said.
“I mean it,” Liam said. “I feel awful about it. Let me buy you a drink after work today. I insist.”
We went out for a drink that evening and I forgave Liam, but I think I decided on that day that I didn’t want to be surgeon.
Near the end of the rotation, Liam threw a party at his apartment for the residents and medical students. Liam hinted to me that there would be a lot of available women there and he would be happy to introduce me. I didn’t know how there would be females at a surgery party, but I supposed he invited some of the younger, cuter nurses. Anyway, Liam seemed like the kind of guy who had a lot of female friends.
I got more worked up about the party than I should have. I spent a lot of time trying to decide what to wear to hide my stumps as much as possible. I guess I’m less self-conscious now, but back then I was really self-conscious about my stumps. I still had the image of Wendy staring at the little mounds of flesh burned into my head. Finally, I picked a pair of khaki slacks and tucked the ends under my stumps.
When I got to the party, I saw there were a decent number of girls there. I immediately felt almost suffocated with self-consciousness. I wasn’t that great at hitting on girls before, since I always had Wendy, and now even the thought of trying to go talk to a girl was enough to make me blush. I decided to go get a drink, thinking maybe it would loosen me up.
Liam ran into me at the bar. “Jeremy, I’m so glad you made it!” he said. “Getting yourself a drink?”
I nodded and reached for the rum.
“Good, you need to catch up to the rest of us,” he said. He smiled. “Also, I’ve got a class bird for you. Her name is Rachel.”
“I think I need a few drinks first,” I told him.
“Nonsense,” Liam said. “Pour your rum and I’ll take you over.”
I held my rum (and coke) while Liam wheeled me across the room. The girl, Rachel, was pretty cute. She was small, with very dark hair and eyes. She was talking to some other guy who wandered away when we came over.
“Rachel love, how are we doing?” Liam asked her.
Rachel eagerly wrapped her arms around Liam’s lanky frame and kissed him on the cheek. “I’m fine now,” she giggled. “Where have you been all night?”
“Rachel, I’d like you to meet a friend of mine,” Liam said to her. “This is one of my medical students, Jeremy. He’s the smartest one of the bunch.”
“Oh, are you?” Rachel said with a smile.
I just blushed.
“Well, I’ve got to attend to my party,” Liam said. “I’ll see you both later.”
With Liam gone, I felt a deep sinking sensation in my stomach. I couldn’t imagine that this cute girl would want to waste her time talking to me. I looked down at my drink.
“So what are you thinking of specializing in?” Rachel asked me.
“I’m not really sure,” I mumbled.
“I’ve heard Liam is a great teacher,” Rachel said.
“Yeah, he is.”
I really wanted to leave. I felt so embarrassed that Liam had implied to her that she might want to hook up with me. I thought to myself she was probably looking at my legs and thinking, “how horrible for him, poor guy”. It was crazy, but I just couldn’t push this thought out of my head. Finally, I excused myself and went back to the bar.
In the middle of pouring my second drink, I heard someone clinking their glass. It was Ed, one of the other chief residents. “Attention everyone!” Ed was saying. “We’ve got a very important announcement!”
Ed was standing in the middle of the room, next to Liam and his girlfriend Kelsey. Kelsey look really hot, as usual. She had her blonde hair piled on her head and a short skirt that showed her really great legs. She was probably a hundred times hotter than my ex, Wendy.
“We’ve got an important announcement,” Ed repeated, now that he had everyone’s attention. “I just found out that our favorite chief resident, Dr. Liam Callahan, is finally getting hitched! Is it true, Liam?”
Liam put his arm around Kelsey’s shoulder. “Yes, it’s absolutely true, Ed.”
The room broke out into applause. “So tell me, Liam,” Ed said. “Who’s the lucky lady?”
Everyone laughed and a crowd formed to wish Liam and Kelsey congratulations. At that moment, I remembered asking Wendy to marry me. I actually got down on one knee and held out the ring to her, and she started crying. We were supposed to be married by now. I never thought that four years later, I’d be alone at some party, trying to get drunk enough to forget her.
I always felt a little jealous of Liam, but now I felt like I almost hated him. He really had everything and it was like he didn’t even realize it. He was exactly what I had wanted to be. It didn’t seem fair that he could have it all and I had nothing.
So to make a long story short, I wound up getting pretty shit-faced. Luckily, I stopped drinking before I was drunk enough to make a complete idiot of myself. I started feeling dizzy and I asked Liam if there was a place where I could lie down. He directed me toward the master bedroom, which was empty, and I wheeled myself there as fast as I could. Another piece of good luck was the bedroom had a bathroom attached to it, so I was able to throw up in the toilet.
I felt a little better after I threw up, so I wheeled over to Liam’s bed and transferred into the bed. For a moment, I considered how horrified Kelsey might be if she came in here and found me in bed instead of her future husband, but I was too tired to care. I passed out.
Some number of hours later, I woke up. The party must have been over because I couldn’t hear any music. A dim light was on in the room and I could see Liam shuffling through his dresser, looking for something. I struggled to sit up, making sure my stumps were still covered. “What time is it?” I asked.
Liam jumped slightly. “Jeremy... I didn’t want to wake you. It’s three in the morning.”
“Oh, shit,” I said. “I’m sorry. I’ll get out of here so you can go to sleep.”
“Don’t worry about it,” Liam said. “You don’t look like you’re in any shape to get home by yourself.”
“I’ll be fine,” I insisted. “I don’t want to bother you and Kelsey.”
“Kelsey went home,” Liam said.
“She has to get up early tomorrow,” Liam said with a shrug. He unbuttoned his shirt and tossed it onto a chair.
“Things didn’t really work out with Rachel,” I said apologetically. I sort of felt bad Liam went to the trouble of finding this girl for me and I blew it.
Liam shrugged again. “She’s not the only girl out there. Hey, would you shove over a bit?”
I used my hands to pull my body to one side of the bed so Liam could sit down on the other side. He yawned and lay back against the pillow. “Mind if I shut off the lights?” he asked. Without waiting for a reply, he reached over and turned the lights out.
I closed my eyes and tried to get back to sleep, but I didn’t feel that tired anymore. I couldn’t stop thinking about Wendy and how lonely I had felt since we broke up. I would have given anything to be with her right now.
At some point, I became aware of the sensation of something touching my stump. At first I thought it was just the blanket, but then I realized that it was moving. I looked down and I saw Liam’s hand pressed up against my left stump.
I didn’t say anything. He was rubbing my stump now, pushing away the folds of my cut-off pants to get to the flesh. When his hand touched the bare skin of my stump, it was such a weird feeling. It was the first time anyone aside from my doctor or nurse touched me there.
Liam kept rubbing my stump and to my surprise, I saw that I was getting hard. I tried to shift so that he couldn’t see the growing tent in my pants, but it was really obvious. I honestly don’t know why I was turned on. I mean, Liam was a really good-looking guy, but I’ve never been attracted to men. Not ever. I guess it was just the sensation of someone touching my stump and maybe the thought of someone finding my stumps attractive.
I didn’t try to stop Liam when he reached over and undid the button on my pants. It all felt so unreal, like some kind of dream. He pulled off my pants first, then my boxers. He started stroking both my stumps at once. I was really hard now. I started thinking about how Wendy used to go down on me and how much I missed that. Even though it was strange, I really wanted Liam to go down on me... I wanted it more than anything right then.
I was so hard that it almost hurt. Every time Liam touched my stumps, it was like torture. My stumps started quivering like crazy—it probably looked like I was having a seizure or something. Liam was really into it—I could see sweat beading at the top of his dark hairline and he was looking up at me with his intense blue eyes. He licked my stumps and it was like I felt every individual nerve fiber. Finally, he took me in his mouth and I came almost immediately.
Liam returned his side of the bed and quietly started masturbating. I waited for him to finish, then he collapsed against the pillow, breathing hard. “My god,” he muttered.
“I’m not gay,” I said to him. It sounded so lame.
“Yes, I know,” Liam said. “But I thought you might be horny anyway.”
“Are you gay?” I asked him.
Liam propped his head up on the pillow. “Well, what do you think? I just sucked you off.”
“But you’re getting married,” I said.
“I’m aware of that,” Liam said. “I love Kelsey and I want to have kids with her. And I can perform for her most of the time.”
“But you’re not attracted to her?”
“No,” Liam replied. “I’m attracted to you, though. Very attracted. So I wish you’d stop all your whining about how no woman will ever love you.”
I shook my head. “I can’t believe this. I mean, I didn’t want to...”
“We’re both adults here,” Liam said. “I didn’t take advantage of you.”
I felt that he had taken advantage of me though. If he had asked my permission, I never would have let him do it. The fact that I enjoyed it almost made it worse. I felt like this was the best I could do now.
“Look,” Liam said, “I tried to set you up with Rachel. I would have preferred you got off with her, I really would. I know you would have liked that better.”
“I don’t know if I can work with you anymore,” I said. And I never did.
“That would be a shame,” Liam said quietly.
There was a long pause that felt like torture.
“Why don’t you just come out about being gay?” I said finally.
“You’re joking,” Liam said. “It’s bad enough I’m a foreigner, I may as well be the only homosexual surgeon in the hospital, right? Believe me, people are not so understanding about their doctor being gay.”
Liam had a point. If I could have hid the fact that I was disabled, I would have. Why make things harder than you need to?
I went home that night. As soon as I got back to my apartment, I started crying. I felt so ashamed of what had just happened. I couldn’t even look Liam in the eye again and I just tried to avoid him for the rest of the rotation. But in a way, it was a good thing. At least I felt that another person could think of me in a sexual way.
I’ve been a DAK amputee for over four years now, and unfortunately, that was my one and only sexual experience during this time (excluding my masturbatory fantasies, of course). I am dating a really sweet girl right now named Gina, who’s a social worker I met at work. So far we’ve been going out casually for five months and we’ve mostly just kissed a little bit, but even that is a big step for me. I think the best thing is to take things very slow right now. We see each other about once a week and I try to be as much of a gentleman as I can. (I’m a big romantic type, I like to get girls flowers, etc.)
I don’t know what will happen with Gina. We haven’t really talked much about my stumps and how she feels about them. I feel nervous about bringing it up, so I’m hoping she’ll bring it up first. I want things to get more serious with her, but I don’t want to push her. My number one fantasy right now is that during a movie or something, she’ll just reach out and start stroking one of my stumps like Liam did. That would be incredible. But I’m willing to wait as long as she needs until she feels completely comfortable with me.
To be continued...