I think every deafblind person needs a manual. A sort of "how to" of deafblind life. I'd call it the Hitchhiker's Guide to your crazy new DEAFBLIND Adventure! And it would have all kinds of helpful sections in it, explaining everything from how to make a relay call to the best way to find an interpreter at an event in another state. This book would be overflowing with informational tidbits, and it would come with a bonus section for deafblind professionals and our particular situations. Don't Panic!
I really could have used this book today when I was asked to attend a lunch meeting. The concept of a lunch meeting is pretty smart-- if you're hearing, or sighted and can gather the information being presented with either eyes or ears, and can use your hands to eat. Since I have yet to grow the additional pair of arms I have been requesting, I don't do lunch meetings very well. I've found my best strategy is to arrive early, try to be first for food, go off to my corner and eat as much as I can before it starts. Even better than that would be to eat ahead of time, but usually the mornings on the days of lunch meetings are jam packed and I don't have time to eat. Such was the case for today.
I arrived early, get in line and grab my plate. Lunch for today is salad, chicken breast, and fruit. This is not good because meals where I have to use my fork and knife like a civilized adult take longer to eat than a sandwich which is also easier to save should I be unable to have any before the meeting starts. My interpreter finds me a corner where I sit down and begin to eat. I get about half way done with my salad, and am about two bites into my chicken which is actually good-- unlike most of the stuff that is served at meetings of this nature, no matter your location. I go to take another bite when my interpreter taps me on the arm, indicating we are about to start. No more eating for me, my 2.5 minutes are up and it's time to participate in the meeting and secretly regret that Santa did not see fit to bless me with even one more arm because I did not eat breakfast and would like to have some fruit.
But business waits for no man, or woman and so we are off! ... until my interpreter-- in an over-exuberant use of elbows- knocks my glass of tea into my chicken and in one swift motion, unites the two, in a fit of tea-flavored chicken goodness. The interpreters switch out, and another one takes the place of the one I had while he runs for napkins to clean up the mess. There went my lunch! Oh well, I didn't have time to eat it anyway! And at least this time it wasn't me who did it!
I was really hungry when I finally arrived home! Good thing Mister Pawpower made me pork enchiladas! They were better than chicken any old day!