I was thrilled to attend this year’s annual Pinot & Pups Gala at the Portland Art Museum. I could go on and on about what an amazing event this was, but I truly think you should attend one of Guide Dogs for the Blind’s auctions and experience it firsthand. Hence, my top 10 list of WHY you don’t want to miss GDB events such as Pinot & Pups. Continue reading
June was a month filled with travel for me. As I maneuvered my way around bustling airports and unfamiliar hotels, my marshmallow-tipped white cane leading the way, I encountered the joys and challenges of blind travel. While the majority of the public are respectful and kind, there are some rare “gems” that inspired me to write another round of thank you notes.
Dedicated to my Daring sisters who met me in Salt Lake City in early June and know how to find the humor in blind travel.
Thank you public restrooms, for having such a variety of flushing mechanisms, causing me to fumble around in a small area where the dirtiest of germs are lurking on every possible surface. I am especially grateful for the toilets that flush before I have even finished doing my business.
On the Go Joe
Thank you stranger on my left, for keeping pace with me as I walk to baggage claim. Yes, YOU, the one who thinks that I cannot see you slowing down when I slow down, and speeding up when I speed up. Thank you for being my silent companion, ensuring that I get safely to my destination.
Peeping Back at You Tom
Dearest Airport Security, Words can hardly express how thankful I am for your awkward gestures, vague instructions, and patronizing tone. I may not have graduated from the same Ivy League college as you, so I am grateful that you talk to me as if I am 5 years old. The way you instantly turn on your baby voice and say “good girl, good girl” as I walk through the screening process makes me wonder if you are about to tickle my chin. But instead, you swipe my palms and send me on my way with a look that assures me of your pity.
Lady GooGoo Gaga
“Mothers don’t need to “see” in order to love; we simply “feel” it. The depths of emotion we have for our children takes root within each of our souls. Never let another person’s words cause you to doubt this unshakable bond. Always remember, loving your child requires no “special” accommodations.”
As a mother, I am guilty of comparing myself to other mothers, and sometimes judgement follows. Sometimes it is judgement towards myself (Why can’t I be more patient with my kids like that other mother at the park?), and sometimes my judgement is directed towards another mom (Wow, she sure lets her kids run the show!) But when I’m in a good healthy state of mind, I focus on learning from the mothers around me. I observe their empathetic language and attempt to use that same tone when my child is having a meltdown rather than fueling the tantrum with my own frustration. I observe how they put away their cell phones, and get down in the sand to build a sand castle with their child at the beach, and I feel encouraged to fully engage with my own children.
Most recently, I’ve been learning some amazing lessons about motherhood from a fellow blogger, Holly Bonner, author of “Blind Motherhood”. I’ve gleaned so much from this honest, witty, unstoppable mama, and knew instantly that our readers would want to meet her, too. If you haven’t met before, I’m pleased to introduce you to Holly Bonner.
Blind Motherhood by Holly Bonner
Welcome to Blindmotherhood.com! I’m Holly Bonner, a 36 year old, wife, mother and social worker! After completing chemotherapy for breast cancer in 2012, I became legally blind from a neurological condition. Thrust into a much darker world, I went from the role of social work practitioner to the part of disabled client in need of services. With months of training in technology, mobility and ADL (adult daily living) skills; I finally began to feel like I could confidently rejoin the land of the living with my trusty white cane by my side. Then, what doctors had said was impossible happened, I got pregnant! Doctors….LOL! What do they know, right? Continue reading
We’ve done a lot of Q&A posts here at Double Vision Blog, but this is our first interview with an eye doctor. I’m pleased to introduce Dr. Kierstyn Napier-Dovorany, OD, FAAO, Associate Professor, Western University of Health Sciences, College of Optometry I didn’t just choose a random eye doctor to interview. This is “Kier”, a dear friend going all the way back to our days at Naperville North High School. I love that I can ask her anything eye-related and she will respond with experience, research, and honesty. Continue reading
There’s something deeply satisfying about completing a stack of thank you notes. So I can’t help but continue to write more. Hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy writing them!
Thank you mannequins, uh, I mean, excuse me. I mean, I’m sorry I bumped you. Wait. You’re not a real person?
Lady Who Was Not Just Talking to an Inanimate Object Continue reading
My friends have always played an important part in my journey through life. In college, time with girlfriends often involved dressing up in black pants paired with a flirty top to explore Seattle’s night life. Over the years it evolved into meeting up for martinis after work, and flying to Vegas for bachelorette parties. These days, we often opt for yoga pants and a bottle of wine in someone’s quiet, childless living room while pretending to discuss a book that no one actually finished reading. And I picture my future self with these same “girls”, sharing photos of grandkids while drinking tea following a 4 o’clock supper date. Continue reading
Last week, I reviewed Mobility Matters by Amy Bovaird. This week, I am pleased to introduce a guest post by Ms. Bovaird, in which she takes a trip down memory lane to describe how night blindness led her into a very unique situation.
With a quick wave to my housemate, I stepped out of the car. Early commuters sat on the bench under the flickering streetlights with the transit map behind them. Someone pointed and the bus lumbered into view. They fell into line just as the door opened. Hoisting my teaching bag over my shoulder, I showed the driver my pass and took a seat. Ingram Park Mall became smaller and disappeared altogether as the bus turned toward Loop 410. I settled in for the ride. My stop was last—Lackland Air Force Base. Continue reading
If you’ve ever wondered what the process of learning to use a cane might entail, then there is a book you should add to your personal library. Mobility Matters: Stepping Out in Faith by Amy L. Bovaird provides a detailed account of an adventurous woman’s journey from denial to blind rehab services, including braille and cane training.
If there’s one thing our mom taught us, it’s to write thank you notes. When we were kids, we absolutely could NOT play with our new toys until those thank you notes were sealed and dropped into the mailbox. So when late night show host Jimmy Fallon started writing satirical thank you notes in front of a live audience, we knew our mother would applaud. Then we read author and blogger, Jen Hatmaker’s mommy thank you notes, and we developed a conspiracy theory that our mother was somehow behind this thank you writing trend.
That got us thinking…has anyone written thank you notes from blind people? We haven’t seen any. But if we missed it, please let us know, and we will start working on our apology notes immediately.
Thank you dishwasher, for always being wide open when I’m plowing through the kitchen. I love how you announce your presence by pushing abruptly into my shins.
Bruised Blind Lady Continue reading