Poor Sight, Excellent 20/20 Vision
It’s 2020 and I can’t help but join the craze 20/20 vision. Since the beginning of the year, my social and professional networks have been using the commencement of this new decade as a metaphor for perfect vision and insight.
Sight versus vision
As a result, I want to share how I understand sight versus vision. For me, I simply believe that sight refers to tangible items that are seen and vision refers to intangible things such as thoughts, notions, or goals. For example, sight would be that you know it’s raining because you see the raindrops but vision would be knowing it’s going to rain because you felt the humidity in the air and saw clouds in the sky. Both sight and vision inform you of the rain, just in different ways.
In my opinion, I have poor sight and excellent vision. I often see things in other people that they do not see in themselves. People are often blinded with negative statistics, fear, and lack of confidence because they never saw someone in their immediate circle accomplish the goal that they have set for themselves.
Honestly, I can relate; I was a first-generation college student, from the inner city, with a visual impairment. I am also the first in my nuclear family to own a house and start a business. If I had listened to what society said about people who look like me and/or come from similar backgrounds, I too would have been nervous to take the risks to get me where I am today.
Accomplishing goals even when scared
Clearly what I have accomplished is difficult; if it was easy then I would not be the first in my family to do so. I am not suggesting I do not get nervous — because I definitely get nervous, and even scared when it comes to working towards big goals. However, I have recently adopted this mantra: “Do it scared. Do it even when you’re voice shakes. All it takes is three seconds of insane courage.”
Vision loss won't hold me back
It admittedly gets difficult at times, especially living with a visual impairment. Whenever I begin to beat myself up about how limiting my visual impairment is, I begin to reaffirm myself with positive affirmations. I think to myself: “If I saw what normal people saw, I would do what normal people do.”
Ability to achieve goals with vision loss
I believe that one reason I am able to dream so recklessly and take risks even when it is uncomfortable is in fact because of my diagnosis. With Stargardt’s, there are literally blank spots in my retina and so it is difficult for me to see details of objects far away. I can see that there is something in the distance, but it is difficult for me to figure out the specifics until I get closer or use assistive devices.
Such is true about my goal setting. It is easy for me to envision the goal. Additionally, I am often confident that with the proper support and assistive devices I will be able to accomplish said vision. So while I have poor sight, I believe it gives me excellent 20/20 vision… at least that’s the way eye see it.
Do you find it easy to advocate for yourself?