• Alternatives... 2.

    From Ardith Hinton@1:153/716 to Richard Webb on Wed Oct 26 23:56:04 2011
    Hi again, Richard! This is a continuation of my previous message to you:

    My lady's eldest daughter learned sign, as she has
    deafness in one ear, and a Sunday school program she
    attended in Florida was very inclusive and got their
    deaf members involved in all their church programs.

    Good for them! Over the years I have noticed that some denominations
    seem more receptive to folks with disabilities than others. When I was growing
    up, there were two families with offspring in wheelchairs who attended the same
    church my family did. For as long as I remember there has been a ramp into the
    church... and when renovations were made to the church hall & office area, i.e.
    some time before Nora was born, an elevator was added. At the other end of the
    continuum, there was a woman in this echo years ago who said the members of her
    church had shunned her family because one of the kids had a learning disability
    & they interpreted it to mean the family weren't good Christians... (sigh).

    HEnce, when she was a clerk at a fast food establishment
    years later the deaf folks who liked to gather for coffee
    gravitated toward the line she was working at the counter,
    as they didn't have to write out their orders on a slip of
    paper, but could converse with her naturally using sign.

    They may even have been attracted to this place because they knew she
    understood their language. We know which coffee shops in our neighbourhood are
    receptive to folks with disabilities & we're glad to support them. On numerous
    occasions these establishments have attracted groups of eight or more customers
    who would otherwise be unable to get together... a win-win situation IMHO.

    While I'm not fluent in sign language, I know a lot of people who use
    it for various reasons. It's helpful with kids who have difficulty enunciating
    certain sounds... e.g. the consonant blends in words like "please", "thankyou",
    and "hungry"... and we still use it in certain social situations to indicate to
    one another without interrupting the flow of conversation that we need to go to
    the washroom. I can also relate to how this person's customers must have felt.
    When Nora was younger & still using the stroller, I would often stop to let her
    observe construction crews etc. One day, as the two of us approached the glass
    door at the entrance to the community centre, we saw a woman washing the glass.
    She started to make a move toward opening the door for us... but I indicated to
    her in my best Sesame St. sign language that Nora wanted to watch, knowing Nora
    couldn't see what I was doing from behind. The woman grinned from ear to ear &
    cheerfully went on with her job. Only then did I realize she was deaf.... :-)

    Even if you can't do things in the "normal" way the
    important thing is that you get them done, and can
    live a full life.

    Absolutely... you do what works! In our bathroom we have a key chain
    with a stuffed animal suspended from a toggle switch. Before that... when Nora
    was too short to reach the light switch... we attached a bit of dowelling to it
    as a less expensive alternative to the commercial product we'd seen in the home
    of a friend whose husband was quadriplegic. Although Nora's needs have changed
    we're still using the basic concept of modifying the switch so she can turn the
    light on & off by herself. If other people think we're weird, chances are they
    already realized that before visiting our home or before we invited them. :-))

    Even if that's as simple as using our dry measuring
    cups to measure liquids

    I hadn't thought of using dry measuring cups that way, but I think it
    might work well for Nora too. She often finds it difficult to read the numbers
    on the graduated cups associated with liquids. Thanks for the suggestion. :-)

    --- timEd/386 1.10.y2k+
    * Origin: Wits' End, Vancouver CANADA (1:153/716)