Suppose you’ve graduated your orientation and mobility lessons and you’ve successfully mastered a handful of routes. You can get from home to work and back, to Starbucks and back (because let’s face it, this route is perhaps the most vital), to the gym and back, and to the grocery store and back. You and the cane have found your rhythm; shorelining, well, it’s practically a breeze; and bus travel now only gives you a smidge of anxiety. You’ve made great strides. But now the guys at the office invite you to a new restaurant in town. You’re determined to get there independently. Are you up for the challenge?
With the collection of orientation and mobility tools and skills under your belt—but please, if you haven’t received proper training in travel skills for those who are blind or visually impaired, start there and this time hire an uber—it’s time to create a plan (and just as important, a backup plan) and take a measured risk.
Don’t let fear rob you of an independent life.
I know this can be overwhelming. It’s why I want to share former CareerConnect program manager, Joe Strechay’s words as he reflected on tackling an unfamiliar route despite the uncertainties.
Read "Push Your Limits and Take Measured Risks." Know that all travelers who are blind or significantly visually impaired have to make a decision as to whether they will push themselves past their comfort levels…time and again.
Why Should Blind or Visually Impaired Individuals Practice Orientation and Mobility Skills?
Community Travel Skills—a Predictor of Workplace Success for Individuals Who Are Blind