Shout out to my fellow lefties on International left handers day, There can be many challenges like ink up your arms when doing art, rubbing off a whiteboard as you write on it or having to turn everything around so that it faces the other way (ie ironing board and when cutting bread) As a child I could sneakily get out of things like peeling potatoes and carrots as it didn’t quite work for a left hander!
I will never forget when I was about 8 I had to learn to do things with my right hand as something went a little bit wrong.with the left.
My sister and I were playing gymnastics at the bus stop on the farm and for once I was actually beating her at balancing on the fence. She said quick ‘I can hear the bus coming’ so I rushed and my manoeuvre ended up with me falling and my left arm copping the brunt of the fall.
I was really hurt and I told her not to tell anyone because I was embarrassed,didn’t want to cause a fuss and somehow thought it would just go away.
I was a little bit annoyed when she told the bus driver as next minute the bus stopped and everyone was inspecting the damage – my sister knew that we needed help but as a shy retiring type I wanted to keep it to myself. It was a tad overwhelming as the bus even stopped off at local deli (with all the other kids on the bus) to get ice etc.
One thing led to another the school couldn’t get in touch with parents as Dad was out in the paddock and someone had to go and find him and Mum was in Adelaide visiting my brothers at boarding school. In great country community spirit one of the teachers drove me to the hospital which was 50 km away and waited with me until my Dad could get there. I ended up having surgery as it was broken in two places and come to think of it – I wonder how I would have gone not telling anyone – not very good I suspect.
The point is that even though we don’t want to make a fuss, can be a little bit shy and think we can handle things ourselves, sometimes there is a community of people around us and experts that can assist us when things are broken.
That goes for many things including our body, minds, emotions, spirit. This arm was not going to heal itself without my sister seeking help, the others travelling with me and the expert doctors and nurses pinning along with giving it time to heal.
When I think about it this story is a bit like therapy. You may think that its easier to keep things to yourself, that you want to hide what is happening, that you can handle it on your own but just like my broken arm – getting support and people that know what to do are necessary to heal.
I had to learn to do things with my right hand while in plaster for six weeks – it was a little awkward, uncomfortable but after a while it became new way of doing things. The advantage is that I can still do things both left and right handed (well almost!) Imagine what new things you can learn and new ways of being by seeking the help you need.