When is it Time for the White Cane?

When is it Time for the White Cane?

Posted under Guest Blogger David Goldstein

White Cane

We had very nice weather on Saturday, so my wife, daughter, and I went to Suburban Square in Ardmore, PA for lunch and some shopping. Suburban Square is an outdoor shopping area with local and national branded stores and restaurants. Unfortunately, we weren’t the only ones who had the idea to have a look around.

Being legally blind, crowded areas make things a bit more difficult for me to navigate. Some of the sidewalks around Suburban Square are narrow and have cutouts with trees. Other sidewalks have parking meters, telephone poles, and assorted signposts. Since there was only enough room for us to walk single-file, I couldn’t hold my wife’s or daughter’s hand. Couple that with all the shadows from the trees, poles, buildings, and whatnot, a leisurely walk was anything but for me. I walked behind my wife or daughter and tried to avoid the cutouts with the trees, the poles, the people, and the shops’ doors, which I did, but my concentration level was about as great as that of a tightrope walker 100 feet up on a windy day. It was a huge relief when we were on a wide sidewalk and I could hold my wife’s hand.

While walking hand in hand with my wife, I started thinking if it might be time to learn how to use one of those white canes. I’ve never liked the idea of having to use one. I’m not comfortable with the attention it would draw to me. It would make me different from just about everyone else. I’ve always wanted to just fit in.

Of course, some of the attention it would draw to me might not be a bad thing. I’d certainly get the benefit of the doubt when I bumped into someone. People would probably get out of my way when they see me coming too. I just don’t think I’m ready for it yet.

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