Here is my second Odyssey article. I wrote about my aide. I hope that you enjoy it.
Losing An Aide I Really Liked
So I am on a community hab program and that is a state program where my agency gives me an aide to help me learn how to organize my stuff or help me socialize in the community. I have been on it for a year and I had a terrific aide.
We were roughly the same age and she was in grad school to be a special education teacher. And she was, in many ways, my teacher because she knew a lot about how stuff works. For example, we started going to the movies and she introduced me to sensory-friendly screening because I never went to the movies due to the noise. At these movies, the volume is turned down. Just the other day, she taught me how to return merchandise. I mean, it’s the little things that I learned from her.
We would go to fairs and outings and I would get to bump into people that I knew and socialize with them. I could talk to them and catch up. I remember running into a security guard that I knew at the Renaissance faire and I could associate with them. Little things like that made me happy.
She helped me organize my schoolwork, but in doing that, she taught me a few things. She taught me study habits by helping me create flash cards, recording audios of my notes and even quizzing me on the material. I remember struggling with American Music, which was an online class and I had no idea how I was doing. I e-mailed the professor and got no response from him. That was so annoying! So I did assignment after assignment and no grades. I finally got feedback at the end of the semester and I had a really low grade. I had the option of doing everything over for a better grade plus the last few assignments and the final exam. My aide said that this was a load of busywork and I was in a fog as to how I was going to get all of this done plus my other work. But she supported me through it.
Another example that I can give is her teaching me to think of circumstances. By that, I mean, thinking about what is involved in planning an activity. For example, I would go with her to the movies and she would ask how much is the movie, what time is the movie and is the theater handicapped accessible?
We were both shopaholics. We would go to the mall and go from store to store. We would basically shop til we dropped. We loved to spend money. Our money would go to clothes or food. That must have been our favorite pastime. She would introduce me to new stores like Rue21 or H&M.
I’m really going to miss her. I really had a lot of fun with her and I really enjoyed her company. I hope I get a good aide, but nobody will ever replace her.