Blurb: What happened today was one crazy event. To understand,
you need to look at both sides of the story.
I suppose it all started with a dot. She said she'd be here
before 3:00. I thought she wrote "after 3:00. Before... after...
They don't look at all the same, right? Not so if you are reading
grade 2 braille. The contraction for after is af. The contraction
for before looks like bf. There's only a one dot differences
between an a and a b. Even with my fingerless gloves on, my hands
were freezing last night, as they are now. I can imagine making
a reading error. Tiny dot = big mistake.
Now we need to add the other factors that led up to the insanity.
My cell phone is broken, so I can't get text messages. I forgot
to unlock the screen door and unbolt the front door. This meant
my father couldn't get in with his nifty key. I wasn't wearing my
alert system. It was freezing and I just felt like staying in
Even I have the right to a lazy day now and then. I was playing
with my kitten and day dreaming about anything and everything.
When Bast anxiously pawed at me, I thought she wanted fed. But
what it all boils down to (as if anything could boil in this
cold) is that I wasn't expecting my visitor until after 3:00.
So I had my lazy morning and some lazy afternoon. I was awake but
had no clue of what was going on outside. I put on my alert
system armband at 2:00 and checked email. That's when the chaos
Father... Brother... Police... Fire Department.. Prayers... Oh,
I'm still embarrassed. For most of the day, I'd say I was even
humiliated. I don't like people fussing over me. But then I
looked at it from the other side of the story.
My visitor was a nurse who was sent over by a friend who happens
to work as a care provider. That bit doesn't matter so much. When
I didn't answer the door, the nurse called my friend and my
friend freaked out. When I think of it from her perspective, I
kind of understand. She works with people who have severe
disabilities. She is trained to be ready for problems. And she's
a really caring person.
I go around living my life each day, and sometimes I forget that
I'm different. Okay, I am a person with a severe disability...
three of them. But it's not like I'm constantly thinking, "Note
to self: you are deaf, blind and physically impaired." More
likely I'm thinking I want some Dr. Pepper, I wish I didn't have
to cook, I need to finish my homework or, my god, it's freaking
My friend started to worry that maybe I fell in the bathroom or
something. I suppose that could happen. She called the police.
She contacted my brother and dad, too. People were at my door
step trying to get in. The fire department was going to break
down my door. Luckily, my dad convinced them I was just sleeping
late. That's close enough to the truth.
When I finally checked my email, I had to reassure everyone that
I was okay. People were relieved, not made. But I feel foolish.
Keep looking at the other side of the story! Many people who are
Deafblind live in complete isolation. No one knows or cares what
they are up to. In fact, just this summer, a Deafblind man died
from exposure and dehydration during a heat wave in Pennsylvania.
He was dead for over a week before anyone thought to check his
home. It breaks my heart.
I missed a visitor, and within minutes, people were concerned.
What happened today is proof that I am loved. I won't be able to
exit this world without attracting a ton of attention. In a weird
way, that makes me feel sort of good. Despite that, I'm taking
action to make sure this never happens again.
Angela C. Orlando
November 23rd, 2013
contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.