Today I went to ABVI for my second meeting for Mobility Training. It has been months since I had my first meeting. When I went to that meeting, I was not ready to think about needing “mobility training.” All I could think was that I did not want a cane and I did not want to think about giving up driving. That first meeting was pleasant and Kasey, my mobility trainer, was very nice, but I didn’t really enter into the process.
Since that first meeting, Kasey has called me a few times to set up another meeting for training. I avoided setting a date for a long time. Then, finally, I was ready. I wanted to learn how to be more safe in my travel. I wanted to learn how to use the bus system instead of driving. So, I returned his call and set a time to meet.
Of course, since we set the training date, I was offered and accepted the position at ABVI. So, it was kind of weird to go in as both a client and an almost-employee. I need not have worried. Our training today was great. Kasey taught me so many things. I learned how to walk with a “sighted guide.” Instead of clinging to my husband’s arm when we are walking, I now know just how to hold his arm with a light touch and can teach him the clues he needs to give me so that I am safe. Kasey also helped me with some simple ideas for when I am walking alone. We worked on stairs and that was really hard. I never realized how much I look down at my feet when I go up and down stairs. Kasey explained that this is unnecessary and unsafe and had me work on looking up when I am walking up and down stairs. I had such a hard time, but was able to laugh at myself as I caught myself constantly looking down.
While we were working on mobility training, we walked all over the ABVI building. The facility is really amazing. I feel less nervous about my first day, because I now have had sort of a “sneak peek” tour. There is a huge sewing room where they make items for a contract and another huge area where they make “sticky notes” for another contract. There is a lovely cafeteria and Kasey says that the food is good.
Next, we talked about the bus. It seems like it is really easy to take the bus from my house to ABVI. Kasey offered to take the bus with me one time if I want, just to be sure I know what I am doing.
I am so glad that I had the luxury of waiting until I was mentally ready to get mobility training. If I had been pushed into it through time constraints or more rapidly deteriorating vision, it would have been really difficult. Now, I ready to enter into the process of training. I can embrace the opportunity. I am also very pleased that I can look forward to working in such a good place. The whole time we were walking around ABVI, I just felt so excited to think that soon I will be working there. I have loved working at Nazareth, but I really feel great about my new position and I feel extremely excited about being part of the work ABVI is doing.