My husband loves to grocery shop and when I had my sight I was more than happy to let him go on his own. Since my vision loss, we go together on the weekend. I usually push the cart while he stands staring at the shelves waiting for the product on our list to do a perfect swan-dive right into our cart. Please note this is but a SLIGHT exaggeration for the sake of this post.
For certain items that I am easily able to find I take the cart and go get them and we meet up in one of the side aisles. Sometimes I will walk from aisle to aisle looking for him. He is most often adorned in Seahawks’ swag but I am unable to see that unless he is standing right in front of me and the logo is large.
I realized something this past weekend: that I am able to identify him by how he carries himself. Even if he is just standing, willing our cart to fill with the items on our list via Acapulco shelf-diving, I can recognize his posture. And if he’s walking at a distance from me I can tell it’s him a lot closer than trying to see his face or clothing. I don’t see most colors; my world is more dark than light with pops of certain shades of blue. So really I only have his carriage and movement to go by and no one is more surprised than me that this is a thing. How you hold yourself and move is as much an identifier as your voice, apparel and face.
We think of body language as nonverbal cues that give our true feelings away, for example: arms crossed indicating defensiveness and lack of eye contact shows that we aren’t telling the truth. And our physicality when our guards are down is as unique and recognizable as a fingerprint. For someone who hasn’t seen the lines on her own hands in four years, the whole really is greater than the sum of its parts and, yes, I am quoting Aristotle. A man who never searched for his spouse in a grocery store