I'm not new to talking, sharing ideas, or stating my opinion, especially stating my opinion! After all, I taught elementary school for 30 years! However, my audience has typically been smaller,just family, the classroom, or just talking to myself!

My blog has two goals: be an outlet for sharing thoughts on writing children's books and the path to publication (got my fingers crossed that I'll get there) and a place to chronicle my journey of losing my sight. Sometimes I imagine these two paths will overlap .

Sunday, November 14, 2010


Wow, days have passed faster than I realized. I thought I posted last week!

My absence is due to preparing for and now participating in a Book Festival at my local community center. The authors I've heard have been phenomenal. I especially love hearing the back stories behind their work of fiction or the research involved for their nonfiction. Last night I saw Pat Conroy! But that's for the next post.

Today I want to share a new milestone I've reached. It's one I wasn't sure I'd make for a looooooooooooong time. In fact, I didn't want to reach it for a loooooong time because it signified acceptance and a change in normalcy.

I'm talking about being glad I use my white cane. There.... I said it aloud, well virtually out loud. Even at this very moment my brain is saying "NO! Don't say glad, say you understand why you need to use it. NEVER acquiesce to 'glad!' "

But the truth is not only do I understand and accept the need for the cane, I also appreciate what it has done for me. So I must use the word 'glad' in talking about the cane.

Prior to becoming a cane-user, I needed to walk slower to prevent running into things or tripping over things. I also had to choose between looking down to avoid curbs, sidewalk dips, things left in an aisle OR look up to avoid bumping into things like SUV mirrors in a parking lot (no, I'm not in the street) or low hanging branches.

With the cane, I can safely watch ahead (up) and know that the cane will detect the things below before I trip or stumble. Now friends say, "slow down, I can't keep up!" 

Before the cane, I wouldn't consider walking outside at night without holding someone's arm. Now I'm willing to walk around because my cane is protective like someone's arm.

And as independent as I believed myself to be B.C. (before cane), I know I'm more independent now. That, my friends and readers, is a milestone accomplished! Losing one's Independence is the worst part of losing your sight....to me.
I've been teetering on the edge of feeling I'd made it, I had kept the independence, until the cane arrived. Boy, did my sense of being dependent increase! But now.....well I'm back to that feisty girl who rarely let things stop her.

Who would have thought that some graphite, thick bands, and a roller ball tip could boost my confidence. Look out, I'm coming through!