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“They have asked to see the one with the dog” he chuckled. Now, many people may take offence to the fact that everyone knew the dog, but nobody really knew me. For me however, I loved it. Pre-Munch life, I was recognized by “so and so’s mother”,but these days my identity had also grown to include the owner…sorry… maid to the unusual guide dog that everyone knows and loves. Not only in my personal life but now my work life, I was recognised by my furry soul mate that led me through the day.

Being 1 of the 4 school counsellors in a school that we worked in, means that we share a case load, but pupils could request to see a specific one if there was availability and many had asked for the “one with the dog”. I was under no illusion that this was because of me as a person but I knew that my better half of our partnership was what they wanted to see. My early fears of not wanting to draw attention to my public display of blindness had long gone out of the window as I settled into the synched-up life that Munch brought with him.

Throughout our two years together, I have heard many words innocently leaving people’s mouths as we pass. From “it’s that blind woman again” to “that blind dog is there” comments tend to follow us around wherever we go. What I love about working with children is that they say the most innocent things such as “how does she know what seeing is if she can’t see?” and “do you think she can see us?” which makes my internal giggle bubble up. I would prefer this though to the silence that sometimes surrounds us when we encounter people for the first time.

Silence to me is a far scarier sound to hear. It is the unsaid words in the silence that creates the uncertainty that is present in the atmosphere that creates the unease. Hearing what is on someone’s mind makes me smile whether it is politically correct or not. Even the most hurtful of comments can come from a place of curiosity and not hate. The comments that we hear are always received with love and amusement. Being known as the one with the dog is totally fine with me. I could be known as far worse.

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