Why am I going on about this? My left brain was in a “dither” about the lack of accommodation to my dominant left hand while attempting to use “normal” scissors. I nearly strained my hand in discomfort and “awkwardness factor”. I did master them and was able to cut what I was attempting to, but it was no easy feat and it always reminds me how the world revolves around the right-handed majority. Between that and my "middle-child syndrome" I'm just a mess!
I own a can opener that nearly “rocks my world” in frustration every time I pull it out of the drawer to begin the weekly battle of wits: Kim versus the can-opener! So far I’m ahead at 225 to 196, but I feel the pressure of that can opener gaining on me, especially as I age and my hands become weaker.
Obviously there are some adaptations I’ve made to survive. I can insert a key into an automobile ignition and start my car with my right hand. I can also use my right foot to accelerate and apply the brakes in my vehicle. However, I refuse to even use some products that are strictly created and marketed for right-handed people. I don’t use spiral bound paper, I don’t sit and work at those chair/desks that are nearly ALWAYS on the right side.
I remember when I was learning to write in elementary school the teachers tried to make me hold the pencil and/or crayons with my right hand to “correct” my handwriting “issue”. I now realize it’s because they couldn’t teach me “backwards” and it was less frustrating for THEM to just teach me to use my right hand. It never “took”. I just became one of the many left handed individuals who write “upside down and backwards” according to the “norm” because the teacher couldn’t teach us how to hold the pencil and write.
I do realize now, after the frustration and minor ridicule of being “different” what a huge blessing this anomaly also brings. I am extremely creative. I find ways to adapt things to work and I can brainstorm ideas with ease. I find creative solutions for problems both interpersonally and in more pragmatic means as well. I have learned “endurance” while trying to ‘fit in’ to the right hand culture that is our world. Plus, I was able to show my nephew how to tie his shoes with him doing exactly what I did...while sitting in front of me! How cool is that?!
I can now embrace my left-handedness as a blessing, not a curse. It has been the source of many wonderful creations and I believe a more open mind to people and their uniqueness.
Here’s a little info to think on: (taken from Gauche! Left Handers in Society).
“The following common tools all require left-to-right wrist turning movements more comfortable for right-handers: corkscrew, rotary dial phone, analog clock-setting & winding, screws, lightbulbs, etc. The following are specifically designed to be used in a right-handed fashion: scissors, can openers, coffee makers, computer keyboards (numeric keypad on right), calculators and pushbutton phones (left-to-right array), golf clubs, many musical instruments (especially stringed), cars built in right-lane countries, most hand-held power tools (drills, saws), etc. Many of these tools are also used in the work environment (telephones, computers, power tools, kitchen utensils). But real danger is often encountered in manufacturing and construction environments: industrial meat slicers, drill presses, band saws, textile machinery, production lines, and heavy equipment. Some researchers believe the risk to left-handers under such conditions can be significantly greater than to their right-handed co-workers (Coren 1992).
Have a wonderful, left-handed day!
Presented with ubiquitous right bias in the physical world, a left-hander or ambidextral has two options: (1) to learn to use the tool in a right-handed fashion (awkward and inefficient at best), or (2) to learn to somehow hold the tool backwards so that it can be manipulated with the left hand (often dangerous).