I am a leftie in a right-handed world; which means I need to adapt to a world designed for the rest.
I face obstacles but I enjoy the thrill of overcoming them.
Sit on my left when I’m having an Asian meal if you want to experience a chopsticks fight. Watch me write at a snail’s pace when I use ink. But when I use a mouse to draw, you won’t know that I’m a leftie.
Except for some kinks and quirks, being a leftie brings positive changes. I’ve evolved and become ambidextrous; I’m more patient and able to adapt to new situations. Most of the time, even those close to me forget that I’m left-handed.
While learning most things came easily, because I just mirrored the actions, some simple right-handed tasks pose something of a challenge to me.
Writing in books that are thick with pages still pose problems; spiral-bound books are worse. I’ve yet to completely master the can opener. So it is surprising to me that I took to the mouse naturally like a fish to water.
One great inconvenience is writing in ink. When I started, smudged words and ink stains on my hand were not uncommon. Because words flow from left to right, my left hand would go over freshly-penned ink and get stained. My lifesaver – the blotter.
Another thing about writing from left to right. For a leftie, the writing hand covers the words being written. I’m now used to lifting my hand to read what I’ve written after writing every few words. But writing neatly in ink was especially challenging at the start.
During my teens, art lessons became a nightmare when I learnt calligraphy. Today, I still use a blotter whenever I write in ink. It’s no wonder I love using the computer so much. It’s ‘leftie-friendly’.
Along the way, I became ambidextrous; partly because it makes life easier and partly for social and cultural reasons.
So now, here I am – left-handed; and ambidextrous. I write and paint with my left hand and I use a mouse to draw with my right. I sew with my left and cut with a pair of scissors with my right. I wave with my left and shake hands with my right. I can dribble and catch a basketball with my left and my right hands.
Both hands are almost equally good at doing quite a lot of things but one feels more comfortable at it. At times, I can’t remember which is the better hand for the job. But I’m still a leftie at heart.
Take away the inconveniences I face, I’m happy to be me. I’m different and I’ve learnt to constantly adapt. Being left-handed is awesome!