Monday, July 22, 2013


I love the way Ashley smells, especially right after a shower and having had her hair washed.  She has taught me to use all my senses to the fullest, and smell is one of the strongest.  I'm particular about the laundry soap I use, the shampoo, the body wash, and nothing smells better than my house on a Sunday afternoon after a marathon cooking session.  But the things that stir my senses the most are the way Ashley smells.  Unfortunately, there are times when her scent is overpowered by the scent of others.

I know that a person who is deafblind needs support and that support often means hands-on.  So, at the end of a day when Ashley has been at school and in the community, her scent is overpowered by that of many other people.

There's the bus aide in the morning whose scent is a little like stale bread, and the bus driver, an Indian gentleman who often smells of curry and spice.  I don't know how many people have their hands on Ashley during the school day, but it may be up to 5 people or more.  If each of those people, often women, come to school with perfume or scented lotion, they all seem to mix on Ashley.  Then the home aide comes into the picture - 2 or 3 different people during the week - all of whom have their unique scents.  Sometimes it is stale cigarette smoke, or heavy patchouli-based cologne, or the sausage and peppers preferred by another.

The result is that the scent that is uniquely Ashley is lost, mixed into a dozen different scents that taken all together are not pleasant.  That's why I so look forward to her shower at night so we can reset and bring Ashley back to me.  I truly appreciate the help of so many people, but I do wish it didn't have to assail my sense of smell so drastically all the while altering that which is so Ashley.

1 comment:

Lisa Gleeson said...

As I am assuming that the sense of smell is important to Ashley as well,please correct me if I am wrong, doesn't it behoove those who work with her to be more mindful of the scents they employ on themselves? I am not thinking that much about those who eat curry, or just your typical scents, but those who use perfumes or smoke. Does that make things more difficult for Ashley?