[nabs-l] Could someone lend me a hand, please? (Question about juggling multiple items)

Jewel S. herekittykat2 at gmail.com
Thu Aug 5 23:19:35 UTC 2010


I like the idea of carrying just an iPhone around. I just wish I had
the funds. I'm living on just SSDI and SSI. After rent and bills, I
have only $300 for transportation, food (now that EBT has been cut to
$16/month), apartment needs like toilet paper and cleaning supplies,
school supplies (DSB only pays for $50 of the supplies), and all sorts
of thigns like that. $300 doesn't go very far, especially when I'm
trying to save for the Orlando trip next year, and I'm trying to put
aside $200 each month for that...not that's it's happening like that,
but I'm trying.

It was hard enough getting DSB to pay for a laptop, refreshable
Braille display, embosser, scanner, and other things...I need the
Braille display because I have trouble with audio input. I really
can't do without them and do well in class. If I go without and just
record to take notes later, I might as well not be in class at all...

On the point of a utility cart, that would be the same problem as my
rolling backpack. How would I pull it if I'm using my white cane and
my support cane? I wouldn't be able to.

Talking today with people (VR counselor, rehab teachers, boyfriend),
I'm going to discuss the possibility of a motorized wheelchair for
part-time use (for around campus primarily). If insurance will pay for
it, I will get one and if I use it, I use it...I know I won't use it
every day, but just walking around today, I realized how much a
struggle it really is for me to walk sometimes. I was stumbling and
tripping and in such intense pain, I was actually wishing I had a
chair.

I did join the blind-rollers listserv. If I knew that was there
before, I would have joined...I didn't see it!

Thank you all for the ideas. Maybe I can save up for the new PacMate
Omni, which is small, or another small notetaker. For now, the laptop
is what I have to work with.

Thank you all,
Jewel

On 8/5/10, Ignasi Cambra <ignasicambra at gmail.com> wrote:
> The thing is that, depending on how much money you are able to spend, I'm
> sure you can find substitutes for your laptop, keyboard and braille display
> which would be much smaller and portable. Smaller and portable things are
> not always as convenient as large ones, but maybe if you get used to them...
> These days I take notes in class by using my iPhone and a small bluetooth
> keyboard. Maybe you want a bigger keyboard, but there are bluetooth
> keyboards of all sizes, and you can connect any of them to an iPhone or
> iPad. Both of these devices are much, much smaller and lighter than any
> laptop, and you can use them to take notes and organize them, read and write
> emails, browse the internet etc. I also know there are small, portable
> bluetooth braille displays available, and any of those will work just fine
> with either an iPhone or iPad. Plus, with an iPhone or iPad you can take
> notes and record the lecture at the same time.
> If not, maybe using a BrailleNote would be a good idea. It has a braille
> display, can record, and can be used to take notes etc.
> Basically what I'm saying is that I feel as though for what you need to do,
> you can find equipment that would be small enough for you to carry around
> with no need of a huge backpack. I'm really happy taking notes with my
> iPhone and keyboard. It's like having a laptop without having to take it
> around all the time. I only use the bluetooth keyboard when I'm writing long
> texts or taking notes in class. If not, the iPhone by itself is enough.
> Just throwing in some ideas...!
>
> Ignasi
> On Aug 4, 2010, at 4:47 PM, Jewel S. wrote:
>
>> Hi everyone,
>>
>> As the title suggests, I need a bit of help...some advice, really. But
>> I sure wish someone could literally lend me a hand. I need that third
>> hand something fierce!
>>
>> Here's my dilemma. I will be starting school at the local community
>> college in two weeks. I have a very nice High Sierra rolling backpack.
>> It has a retractable handle with a T-grip which makes it easy to pull.
>> However, I also have a long white cane and a T-grip support cane. One
>> hand for the white cane, one hand for the support cane (I have tried
>> carrying things in my right hand while using the support cane and I
>> simply can't put enough weight on the cane to use it properly if I'm
>> holding something...if it can hang on my wrist, and is not too heavy,
>> I can do that, but it must be very light, such as a bag of light
>> groceries {a bag of papertwoels, a bag with shampoo and conditiner,
>> some small grocery items, etc.}, and one hand for the rolling
>> backpack. That just doesn't add up to two!
>>
>> My primary doctor and my chiropractor have warned me several times not
>> to put anything more than a few pounds on my shoulders or back, and
>> definitely not a backpack full of books, so carrying the bag on my
>> back when I use my support cane is out of the question. I have several
>> slipped discs in my neck and severe misalignment in my back and hips,
>> so I have to be careful not to carry too much. I also have problems
>> with my arms and wrists; if I carry something heavy on my wrist or
>> forearm, it will start tingling and sending lightning bolts of pain up
>> and down my arm. Further, with my bad hips and knees, using a waist
>> harness of some sort to pull the backpack seems out of the question as
>> well.
>>
>> I brought this concern up to the Disability office at the college and
>> they and I together could not think of anything to solve my problem. I
>> suggested a volunteer pulling my bag from class to class, but they
>> said they do not have the means to find someone or schedule such a
>> volunteer's time. I am going to ask my VR counselor and my O&M
>> instructor about it tomorrow, but I wanted to ask here. Surely I'm not
>> the only one who has had this dilemma? Are there any of you out there
>> who use both a white cane and a support cane with no hands for rolling
>> backpack or other items?
>>
>> Any advice, suggestions, or ideas would be invaluable to me, as I'm
>> truly at a loss. I didn't even think of it until yesterday when I was
>> at the college and tried to do it and couldn't, and was in no
>> condition to walk without my support cane without stumbling and/or
>> falling often.
>>
>> ~Jewel
>> Check out my blog about accessibility for the blind!
>> Treasure Chest for the Blind: http://blindtreasurechest.blogspot.com
>>
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-- 
~Jewel
Check out my blog about accessibility for the blind!
Treasure Chest for the Blind: http://blindtreasurechest.blogspot.com




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