Today has been a weird one for me: weird, but absolutely amazing. I think that if most people had a similar day to the one I’ve had today, they’d thnk nothing of it, but I guess I’m not ‘most people’.
There’s a boy in my music class: let’s call him Unicorn, purely because Unicorns are awesome, and have an excellent name, don’t you agree? Anyway, a couple of days ago, I managed to get hold of Unicorn’s number, through a chain of mutural friends, and after a day or so, he answered my frankly random texts. Apparently, he was concerned that it wasn’t me, to which I assured him that nobody – absolutely nobody – is going to want to pretend to be me.
Now, to allow you to understand this sotry fully, I need to talk to you about our school canteen. In brief, the layout of our canteen has changed recently, and being blind, I’m still trying to get used to it. A change in layout can be slightly disorientating for me whilst I’m still getting used to it, especially as this part hasn’t changed for the almost three years that I’ve been at the school.
As I was at school earlier than any of my friends this morning, purely due to a very smooth journey in, with no hanging around on train platforms or at bus stops, I asked a member of staff to give me a little assistance in finding the area of the canteen from which I could buy myself a coffee. They agreed, and asked if I wouldn’t mind waiting several minutes for them to finish whatever it was that they were doing. I didn’t mind, and took a seat while I waited.
During this time, I was texting Unicorn.
… I guarantee you won’t read that sentence again today …
Anyway, he reminded me that we had a music rehearsal this morning – I had been informed of this, but my self-described ‘selective memory’ had blanked it out completely. As he had just arrived in school, he came to find me, to go over to the rehearsal together.
This in itself was enough to literally make my day: we’re not, like, really close friends, and he didn’t tell me he was coming to find me, so it was just a nice surprise that someone wanted to come and see me and talk to me. As you are probably aware, I’m quite insecure in myself – the way I look, the things I do, the words I say, all make me feel uncomfortable, and so someone wanting to spend even just a little time with me is an alien concept.
As a blind student in school, there is a need for members of staff to know where I am at [pretty much] all times, for ‘health & safety’. In my opinion, this is an utter load of crap: I don’t see myself as any different to any sighted student, and I don’t appreciate being singled out, or made to look ‘special’, at any point, in or out of school. Regardless, for music rehearsals, I usually meet a member of staff in a designated area, from which we walk over to the rehearsal.
This morning, however, after meeting Unicorn, I decided to walk over to the rehearsal with him. Of course, this already left one worried member of staff – the one who was going to help me get a coffee. Although I cared that they’d be worried, I can’t honestly say that I was overly concerned; I want to be treated the same as any sighted student – any ‘normal’ student -, and so I’m damn well going to act that way, thank you very much.
ON my rebellious adventure of, oh, 200m, I also walked straight past the designated area where I meet another member of staff for music rehearsals; they weren’t there yet, and therefore didn’t see me. I went all the way over to the rehearsal, talking and laughing naturally with Unicorn, and I promise you, it was one of the best feelings in the world. To be free of staff members, and just laughing and joking with people who want to laugh and joke with me, and who aren’t thinking of me as the blind child, but as their friend – it’s just so wonderful.
Eventually, the music member of staff – the one who wasn’t at the designated area when I walked past – showed up at the rehearsal, and alhhough she’d been a little concerned, she was not really annoyed, or upset, or angry with me: she was cool with it.
As if this all wasn’t enough, I had one more lovely thing happen to me today, which I want to share with you. I was texting Unicorn again this evening, and we were talking about insecurities; he is observant enough to have realised that I’m not particularly secure. I was just talking to him about how I don’t have many frineds at school, and he was just like: ‘yeah, you do. you have me’.
That felt so amazing. like, the fact that somebody considers me their frined, remembering that I only really properly started talking to this person outside of music lessons on Tuesday – yesterday, as I write this -, and so he doesn’t know me really really well.
So, that’s it – my day. It’s been so amazing, and I just wanted to share it with you because it’s left me smiling all day. Maybe I look daft, but it’s been just so great – a sign of things to come?