Prior to losing my sight, I used to think that when a person used a white cane, it meant they were totally blind (no light perception). I was wrong. The range of sight loss/blindness is enormous and differs greatly from one person to the next.
Contrary to popular belief—after the acceptance of, and acclimation to sight loss—though life has significantly changed, for the most part we remain the same. With few exceptions, the things we loved and excelled at are still integral to who we are at our core.
Transitioning from sighted to blind is a process aided by personal adjustment to blindness training which enables us to learn new ways of accomplishing tasks. So in understanding who I am it was no surprise to learn there are many fashionable blind women in our society.
Inclusion and accessibility are issues that impact every area of blind individual’s lives. One need not to look too far to see little representation of blind people in the world at large and when we look at the beauty industry there is next to none. For this reason a number of us blind fashionable gals are blogging and/or vlogging on topics such as makeup, fashion, and beauty.
My blog, Bold Blind Beauty, believes that “Real Beauty Transcends Barriers” and as such I felt it was time for a stylish icon to represent blind women. Abigail, the white cane icon, is a beautiful image that evokes power, independence, chicness, and confidence; a woman on the move stepping forward with purpose.
Expanding perceptions is one of many ways we help to eliminate fear and stigma associated with the word blind. To further the cause I developed Abigail Style—after its namesake—an online boutique, whose message is designed to “improve humanity by changing the way we perceive one another.”
Once, an eye doctor told me it would be a tragedy for me to learn how to use the white cane. However I believe the real tragedy is the shame many people feel when losing their eyesight. Having a visual image that exudes positivity will change hearts and minds towards blindness.
Stephanae McCoy, a passionate Advocate and who likes to be referred to as an Abilities Crusader, is a Style Blogger and Founder of Abigail Style an e-commerce startup whose mission is to “Improve humanity by changing the way we perceive one another.”