skip to main content
  1. Up in the Air: Loving Life as a Blind Aerialist

    Hi – I’m Rachael, and I’m a blind aerialist and pole dancer. In fact, I’m currently training in pole dancing, aerial trapeze hoop and silks, contortion, chair dance, fire-spinning and breakdance. And I love it! So, how did I get here? I was diagnosed with sporadic exudative vitreoretinopathy at around two years of age. I never had much useful vision in my left eye but had fairly reliable site in my right. It’s a very unique, very unpredictable degenerative condition that caused me to lose the remaining vision in my…

    Read More
  2. Twists and Turns: Personal Growth, Pluma and Pretzels

    My name’s Lupin, and my guide dog is Pluma. We’ve been traveling together since July 2014: from the middle of nowhere (aka, Southern Vermont), the barrier islands of North Carolina where the wild horses run, through a crowd of thousands at Anime Boston, to the seacoast of New Hampshire. She’s my energetic knucklehead, and there’s so much I wouldn’t have done without her. Before I blab about how she and I are doing today though, there’s something else I should say. During high school, I was an active member of…

    Read More
  3. “Yes, Let’s Do It!”

    If my vision loss has taught me anything, it’s that I always have to make use of every opportunity that comes my way. Because, one: I never know what the future may hold, and two: I have no idea whether this opportunity that is in front of me right now will come my way again. The society that we live in today always encourages us to be involved in some sort of activity – whether that is employment, domestic work or study, we always have a number of reasons to…

    Read More
  4. Say It Loud! I’m Blind and I’m Proud.

    You know that feeling you get after winning a video game on the hardest difficulty level, or baking the perfect brownies on your first try without instructions, or beating your frenemy in a race after you’ve given them a ten-second head-start? That feeling is called pride, a pride sparked from determination, and a determination sparked from a healthy self-worth. Giving society all the cheat codes and a ten-second head-start and still winning – that’s the pride I get to feel every single day as a brown-skinned blind woman. Hi, I’m…

    Read More
  5. Evolution and Inclusive Language: Creating a New Term for Visual Disabilities

    The terms we use carry with them significance. They can denote power and strength, or they can also denote weakness and other negative biases.  As a society, we have become more aware of the power of language when describing people who may identify in ways that are marginalized. Even better, we have been adopting language created by those people themselves.  I am a DeafBlind person. This is just one aspect of who I am – I’m also a husband and soon-to-be dad, a graduate student, an instructor at Perkins School…

    Read More
  6. Dance Beyond Boundaries

    I open my eyes but see nothing. I feel the smooth marley floor under my feet and gently move my toe over the tactile marker on the ground. The music begins to play, and light begins to flood my field of vision. For a moment, I am disoriented. I take a few steadying breaths and begin to move. I trust my body. I trust my knowledge of the stage. I allow my proprioceptive instincts to carry me; these instincts let me know how far and which direction I move. With…

    Read More
  7. Insensitive: My Humorous and Insightful Journey with Sight Loss

    For the past 12 years I have experienced sight loss through macular degeneration. When the pandemic hit last year, I found myself with time on my hands and decided to journal my journey with this life challenge in the form of a podcast called Insensitive. So I have been busying myself with the latest episode. Ahh ha, now I’ve got your attention haven’t I? A podcast! When I was in my early 40s, I started having difficulty with my sight. I have had high myopia (severe near-sightedness that, if left…

    Read More
  8. There Aren’t Any Shortcuts to Make Beautiful Things

    My name is Ana Cristina and I’m a deafblind jewelry designer. I am 40 years old and I haven’t ever felt as blessed and complete as I do now. But it took me some time to get here, and this is my story. The long road to diagnosis It was 2 p.m., our calculus professor wrote an equation on the board for us to compute mentally: no papers, no calculators. Just our eager young competitive brains crunching out numbers, because whoever won this round got extra credit plus pizza.  I…

    Read More
  9. help2type: Tech to Make Smartphones More Accessible

    I’m almost blind, with eyesight of 1%. When I try writing on my smartphone using the common touchscreen, it takes forever. I’m sure you know this feeling! Also, I’m always short on time.  For example, when I get up in the morning and would like to answer some important messages or emails first thing, it could lead to me missing my train or subway to work. Naturally I’m aware of the dictation function on my smartphone and the possibility of using the braille input, but I don’t think anybody feels…

    Read More
  10. Action Is the Antidote: Reviving Hope in Hard Times

    My word for 2021 was heal. 2020’s was connect. Instead of resolutions, every New Year’s Day I choose a verb to live by for the year. After an isolating pandemic and inherited retinal disease (IRD) diagnosis, both words seem wildly ironic. Last month – weeks after losing my dad unexpectedly – I was diagnosed with a rare inherited retinal disease called Stargardt’s. Affecting roughly one in 10,000 people, Stargardt’s causes progressive vision loss and eventually blindness. This disease, like many others, is the result of a genetic mutation. There was…

    Read More