As I am on this journey of sight loss and I know I say in blogs that I will approach a certain subject and I will, I promise! The thing is I want to take you on the journey with me and sometimes things come up before that I want to talk about and share with you so I hope you don’t mind today I want to share my rehabilitation experience. I want to share with you my. fears, excitements and achievements. I would love to give a big recommendation to my lovely beautiful rehab officer, without her my journey could be somewhat different. She has been so supportive, knowledgable and patient with me it is a credit to
Her and the Manchester City Council.
So I came about the Sensory department at Manchester City council after being referred by the hospital when I had my first accident with my right eye. They thought it may have been a good idea for me to start white cain training as my depth perception had altered and they thought it would help me adapt. So I started the cain training and had an at home assessment to get gadgets to help me in the home. This I accepted with open arms as I wanted to stay as independent as possible. The cain training however, this was a different story. I started but I felt I didn’t need it. I didn’t want to draw more attention to the fact that I felt different and that I may not be able to manage. I could still see out of my left eye so I thought why take the resources when I truly didn’t want it. I say that as I was stubborn and fought against my sight loss and didn’t want to be different.
Fast forward 10 years and there I was again on the waiting list for rehab. This time was so different, this time I knew I needed the help if I were to remain independent. I had a choice I could hide in the help my family were giving and remain disabled by my sight loss or I could face the fear of being different and get my independence and confidence bak. I was ready to accept I wasn’t going to be disabled by it anymore. I truly believe for any kind of rehabilitation training to work you have to be in the place for it to work,, you have to be ready yourself!
We are about 4 months into my training and I have now got to the point where I can again take my son to school alone. Don’t get me wrong it is not an easy task and some days I really can’t face it, this is where excepting help and acknowledging that help is needed comes in. The satisfaction I get from that short journey when I do it myself is like nothing else I have experienced. I am still learning though to be kind to myself in this process. I have a habit of being very hard on myself, picking out the things I could have done better, the things I should have done and the time it took me to do it. Instead I should have been like, Nina you done it! Nina you got from A to B without hurting yourself or others! You were confident! This I am learning and hoping to get better at.
I believe so much in the system even more so now than ever. It is so invaluable to people in need. It enables those who need a little help and push to regain their Independence and confidence. I think there should be more investment in the rehabilitation systems for blind and Visually Impaired (VI) people. The waiting list is a long one and in the time the person will wait, the help the fear and anxiety will build up and they will talk themselves out of it and it is such an important and amazing process to give that person back their lives. I understand it is not for everyone and it may take others longer to come to accept help but I can’t recommend the process enough.
Anyway I have had my moment to rant and share I hope that when you next see a blind or Visually Impaired person or your child asks “why has that lady got that stick?” when you see this I hope you think of what that person has been through to get there and how much it has changed their lives and please be mindful of them.