About Us

This blog is about how the world is viewed by the visual and the visually impaired. The intent of this blog is to bring the two worlds together. It is administered by two fabulous sisters, Toni, who is sighted and Robin, who became visually impaired in 2002 at the age of 18 due to misdiagnosis.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Must Read - Alive Day...

It’s been a while, but I’m back! I was asked to read a book called Alive Day and give a review. It took me a while because I really wanted to take my time and enjoy the book and not rush through it; it was really well written and filled with emotion. I recommend that you pick it up and read it for yourselves. I’m going to check and see if it’s on tape for Robin. I was telling her about it and she can’t wait to hear it! I haven’t been this excited about a book since I’ve read How People Grow by Robert Townsend and Henry Cloud. Let me tell you after I read that book it was my official “gift giving book”, it was so good I wanted to give it to everyone as a gift…so now I have two! Alive Day was so inspirational; I loved it, not only was it a touching story it gave a lot of insight on being blind.

Alive Day is a part fictional story about two individuals with completely different backgrounds becoming disabled by circumstance. Brendan a psychiatrist who is blinded after a mountain fall and his patient Antwone a Marine who becomes paralyzed in the line of duty learn valuable lessons of life from each other. This inspirational story was brilliantly written by Tom Sullivan who lost his sight as an infant and coauthored by Betty White of the Golden Girls. Alive Day is about living life to its fullest and shows that with faith and love all things are possible. There are so many aspects that this book covers; the importance of family, friendships, those serving our country, faith, misconceptions, self value, love etc. It was so beautifully written that you feel the emotions of the characters...the book was definitely a heartfelt read! The most powerful line in the book for me that I will remember forever is “Everybody in life has a disability. Some disabilities seem to be more complex or more profound than others, but everybody has the same choice: you can either live life fully or you can live it feeling sorry for yourself.” Absolutely profound.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Need For Assistance

Help seeking behavior is a natural part of life, and at one point in a person’s existence, he/she will need a lending hand. However, although a person may need assistance with a task, does not mean that they will ask for it. One possible reasoning behind this could be attributed to the fact that we live in an individualistic society, where asking for help can be hard for both sighted and blind/visually impaired people. As a part of our society, every man or woman for themselves has been ingrained into the mindsets of people. It is these mindsets that cause people to put pride before compassion. Since I have lost my eyesight, I have noticed that there is this underlying dictation on how blind/visually impaired individuals should act; particularly, when it comes to asking for help. Some people believe that asking for help is a sign of weakness and it gives way to society’s stereotypes about the disabled. On the contrary, as mentioned above, I believe asking for help is bound to happen, and there is nothing wrong with it. Whenever I find myself in a situation where I need assistance, I am not afraid to ask for it. I am an independent person, who at times does need help, along with a lot of other people. It would be remiss if I or anyone blind/visually impaired felt that assistance would not be needed at any given time. It would be callous if anyone believes that a blind/visually impaired person should wing it for themselves and not request assistance when needed and/or requested. Just because I am blind does not mean I have to be superwoman. In my opinion, sighted or blind/visually impaired, not asking for help when needed, can leave room for a person to put a lot of pressure on themselves. Look at politicians, doctors, nurses, judges, and policeman; they all need help by someone in one way or another. Just imagine, would you not want these people asking for help? In addition, Stevie Wonder, Scott Macintyre, and the late Ray Charles were not afraid to ask for help when being guided onto the stage. It is like Winston Churchill said, “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference”. Let’s change our attitude towards giving and receiving help because what may be viewed as being dependent to one person may be the opposite for another.