- Disabilities & the Disabled
Does your body enhance other senses?
There are five basic senses which everyone is supposed to be born with: Hearing, Sight, Smell, Taste, and Touch. These are what humans consider to be normal, and how we create our society. We use sight to signal traffic. Smell to tell what is rotten. What if you do not have these basic senses? How are you going to function in everyday life? I believe that your body automatically enhances your other sense in order to compensate for your lost sense. It is capable of creating a world that works for you.
For my survey of exceptionalities course I had to close my eyes, or blindfold myself, and do some everyday activities. I decided to close my eyes for an hour and a half, because I felt this would be more authentic than blindfold. I walked up the stairs with my hands on the railing. I stood on the landing I felt that I was going to fall backwards because I wasn't used to walking straight yet, and I could feel the door in front of me. I was able to find the doorknob, and opened it. I told my mother my plan for the day. My mother told me I was pointed in the direction of the doorway.
I then used the wall to guide me, and I felt that my body was at an angle to the wall. I felt the hinges of the bathroom door, and walked in. While I was using the bathroom I could see the light through my eyelids, and I kept feeling like someone was watching me.I had to ask my mom which things were mine, and which things were hers. I put my hand up to show her. When I got changed, it was exhausting. I put my shirt on awkwardly (for me) because I felt where the tag was, and did it kind of sideways. I couldn't put my pants on that well, I didn't know where my legs were to my hands. I even brushed my teeth. I had to feel the tooth brush, and the water. I am very glad that my hands were clean! My house is definitely not suitable for someone who has lost their sight. However, my dog did a great job at guiding me around the house.
When I opened the door, it was very bright. The sun was shining in my face, and I could see the difference between the dark, and the light. The intensity of it made me quite anxious. I was able to use the railing, and walk down the stairs to the ground. I could feel the difference between the dirt and the wood.
When mom started to drive I could feel us going down. I could feel the openness. We crossed a bridge, and I felt that we were higher than the ground. That we were kind of flying. I could tell there was openness around me, and made me anxious. I told her when we were going down, and I rarely realized we were going up. I could feel that one side was higher than the other, and that the car was somewhat tilted. Sometimes I was confused as to whether we were up, or down. For example, we were driving on the road, going down, but I could also feel this presence that was higher than me. I thought we had to go up. I asked mom "Is there something higher in front of me, like a mountain?" She said yes. Once the mountain went more to the side of me, I was less anxious.
This experience was eye-opening for me. I had a glimpse of what it was like to be visually impaired, and I was able feel my ‘sixth’ sense. There is no reason for support, except for dealing with society. I believe that all people can live a fulfilling life no matter their disabilities. A person who can see will keep a place clean because they need to know where things are, and a person who cannot see will keep a place clean because they need to know where things are. It doesn’t matter the reason for it, as long as it works for each individual person.
Each human is an individual who has the potential for greatness. Lacking senses which are considered normal are not required to have a fulfilling life. Each person can create a life that is rewarding, and exciting. The body will adapt to each individual's environment