Hi there. I’ve decided to have a little go at writing a blog, after discovering and enjoying a number of disabled bloggers and vloggers recently, particularly those with visual impairments like myself. I knew there were disabled communities and forums online, naturally, but I hadn’t previously felt a big need to look into them before.
Last year, however, I became aware of Scope’s End The Awkward campaign, which included some nice videos, and also Fashioneyesta‘s excellent videos on disability, a number of which I felt inclined to comment on. I’ve continued to dig around Youtube and online blogs a bit more since then, and found many posts and videos that I found very interesting and could easily relate to.
It’s been great to see people raising awareness and educating others about their disabilities in this way, and they seem to be getting very positive responses, especially from those in similar circumstances who welcome the support. It’s also made me think more closely about my own disability and how it affects me, as it’s easy to go through most days almost on auto-pilot when you’re so used to it. What I experience effectively feels normal to me, and it’s relatively minor to what many others go through, yet to some people it can seem anything but normal.
So I’ve been tempted to try doing this for a while, to add another small voice of support to those discussing conditions like mine. I dipped my toes in the water last year, in direct response to Scope’s campaign, by making a video about interacting with disabled people. They were very supportive of it, and very kindly included an extract in their vloggers compilation. That felt quite flattering, and made my amateur efforts feel worthwhile. So off the back of that, I thought I would start blogging, as I feel more comfortable typing than talking. So here I am. But I may make some more videos as well.
I want to stress that this is not going to be a sob story or a plea for pity. I’m a very positive person and I’m very happy with my life. A big part of the reason is that I’ve had my eye conditions since birth, so I’ve never known any different. While they come with their inherent difficulties and frustrations, the simple fact is that I’m used to them, I’ve adapted to them, and they haven’t stopped me from achieving things. I’ve got good friends, I get out and about, I’ve had a good education (resulting in a 2:1 University degree) and I’ve held down a steady job for over a decade. And I’m only in my 30s, so I’m not elderly either, which I know can be an assumption or stereotype about people with sight loss.
So all I want to do is share some of my thoughts and experiences, both good and bad, and anything else that comes to mind. There are big changes on the horizon in my life as well, which could be interesting to document the impacts of, so that is another reason I’m experimenting with this. But I don’t have a grand plan for it. There are things I have in mind that I can talk about to get me started, but that’s it. We’ll see how it goes from there.
This may end up being a bit random, and much of what I write will probably have been said by others in some form or other. But if my humble contributions can add to people’s awareness and understanding in some small way, and if a few people find it interesting or supportive in general, then I’ll be happy. You are welcome to comment on my posts or tweet me if something particularly grabs your attention or if you want to ask any questions. And thank you for checking me out in the first place, it’s much appreciated.