The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports


December 27, 2008

disABILITY: Painfully updating my computer skills


In a field like medical transcription, time plus speed equals money.

I knew I had to make the changes and I knew it would be a real headache and slow me down in a big way, but I went ahead and did it.

It was a horrid transition. I had a headache after the first, second and third days of making the change and I got so little done. It was a sacrifice I made, though, because I knew it would yield great results in the long term.

At this point, I am doing better with the new means of navigating around my computer programs and the Internet, although I am still a tad slow.

It seems so contradictory that I have to mess myself all up and take away from my current productivity in order to get faster. Like many things in life, though, you have to take the plunge at some point, do what feels difficult, or very marginally tolerable, in order to reap rewards.

So here I am, making myself as productive as possible by making myself thoroughly confused and slow. Once I get a feel for it, though, it will be as second nature as it was when I was using the old keystrokes that I first learned years ago. This time, however, I will be much faster.

Change is a challenge, whether it’s on a keyboard or on the path of life. Change takes patience. In my case it takes a lot of patience with myself. Unfortunately, being patient with myself isn’t my strong point, but this has shed some light on my weaknesses and I’ve had some time to ponder how to strengthen those weaknesses.

There’s always so much to learn when you face a challenge, whether self-imposed or not. Struggles can go a long way to making you stronger, if you let them. Cliché, but true.

Kate Pavlacka, a graduate of the State University College at Oneonta, has been totally blind for 11 years.

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