- Tattoo artist Lisa Scheer (29) from Duisburg, Germany, was diagnosed with bone cancer in her right leg at the age of 12.
- Doctors were, fortunately, able to remove the tumour and save her life, with over two years of chemotherapy giving her the all-clear.
- However, Lisa's bones in her right leg were left thin, weak and stiff due to the damage cancer had caused and had to be rebuilt using titanium.
- For 14 years, Lisa struggled to walk and even had to use a cane until she decided to have the leg amputated.
Lisa found it difficult to sit properly in chairs due to the rigidity caused by the titanium poles. She developed severe depression because of the ongoing pain her legs were causing her and knew that drastic action had to be taken to change her life for the better.
She then decided to have the leg amputated despite the fact that it seemed like an incredibly drastic decision to her family and friends, who tried to convince her not to.
She even lost a close friend who couldn't understand why she chose to have her leg removed.
In November 2016, Lisa underwent a three-hour surgery to have her right leg amputated above the knee.
Despite suffering initially from phantom leg pain, a condition where the brain convinces the body that pain exists in the amputated limb, Lisa is convinced that having her leg removed was the best decision of her life, as it has taken away the chronic pain and depression she previously suffered from.
Lisa was fitted with a new prosthetic leg and quickly had to learn how to walk again over the next 12 months. While learning how to walk on a new leg was a challenge, Lisa was ecstatic to have her new limb and keener than ever to get back into the world of modelling.
First modelling in 2014, after being touted for her unique tattooed look, Lisa was always self-conscious about her damaged right leg and would do her best to hide it during shoots.
"The cancer came as a surprise and without warning," Lisa says. The cancer had turned her family's lives upside down and was particularly difficult for her mom and dad.
Explaining why she opted for an amputation, Lisa explains. "After fourteen years with a very thin, weak, and stiff leg, I didn't want it anymore. I hated my leg and I had a lot of depression because of the way it looked and also the pain it caused. I wanted change, but doctors told me again and again that there was nothing that could be done," she shares.
"One day in 2017, I had the idea of amputation and when I told my doctor, I was surprised when he agreed that it could be a viable option. I quickly made up my mind after talking to many amputees on the internet that it was the right thing for me to do."
Lisa feels having her leg amputated is like being born again. "I haven't lost my leg, I've gained a new life," she says."Since my surgery, I have gained a lot of self-confidence through modelling and really discovered passion in it. I want to show that everyone can be beautiful. Since my amputation, I have finally learned to love my own body. "Hopefully, I can convey that through my modelling because there is nothing more important than self-love."
Lisa is now keen to share her new love for her body and hopes that her unique tattooed look will one day land her on the cover of a magazine, which has always been a dream of hers since she was a little girl.
Do you have a story of courage to share with us? Tell us about it here.
Credit: mediadrumworld.com / @chaos.cat./ Magazine Features
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