Mishmash

A couple of pages prior to this was a hodgepodge. This one may be a mishmash. I wonder how many different words we can come up with for a mixed up mess!

Friday evening. I saw six counseling clients back to back to back. I am better at the psychological assessment piece of the work but it is good to know I am good enough at counseling to make it my professional plan B. It will extend my professional ‘shelf life’ to be able to do something without as heavy a visual load.

I guess my question to you younger folks out there – and I am hearing about AMD hitting people much earlier than it ‘should’ – is this: what do you want to be when you grow up? Grow up visually impaired, that is. Remember, if you are willing and able to keep working, vocational rehabilitation will not only supply tools, they will also pay to have you retrained. And they love intelligent, strongly motivated clients!

This brings me to two, different streams of thought. First of all: I got my “welcome back” letter from school! (Remember in real-time it is August.) Quite frankly, it was a real relief. On one level I knew I was going back. I had not had ‘the talk’ with administration and I trust my immediate supervisor enough to know she would not launch a stealth attack.

On another level I was concerned. Has the work been good enough? Are they looking for reasons to let me go?

It is a hell of a note that at the start of my 39th year there are a lot of times I just don’t feel competent.

The other train of thought I want to follow is this: I went to my first training class since my sight loss. Since this was an ‘experiment’, I took stuff! Reader, telescopic glasses and my iPad on the Justand. It turned out the telescopic glasses were not that great for reading the PowerPoint. I probably needed to be in the very first row.

Another complicating factor was we were in an auditorium with no tables. Last year at this time that would have been no big deal. This year I was moving my telescopic lenses up and down on my nose trying to shift focus from the PowerPoint to my note taking. I was also trying to focus my reader on the handouts and shuffling the handouts to figure out what the presenter was referring to. Add a coffee cup and a bagel to that to make the picture complete. Needless to say, I discovered I did not have enough hands!

My solution in one session was to very unceremoniously plop myself on the floor at the front of the room. There I set up my Justand with the iPad and my paper tablet under it so I could take notes. I used my telescopic lenses to see the PowerPoint and spread the handouts around me on the floor.

Not your usual conference behavior but I am no longer your usual conference attendee! (The real question may be was I ever😛?)

I guess the lesson in that little story is retrain, learn but don’t expect it to go quite the way it used to go. You may need to modify and some modifications may not be standard or politically correct.

And so we move on. When God closes a door, he opens a window. You just might have to shimmy a bit to get through it!

written 8/5/2016

Next: New kind of tap dance

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