My 'Normal' life With sight loss Blog
18-year-old Claire Potter is completely blind, but enjoys most things that a regular teenager would. Here, she blogs about how she navigates the world, how her gadgets help to make life that little bit easier, and she tells us what 'normal' means to her...
My name is Claire Potter, I'm 18 years old and totally blind, and this blog will give you an insight into my reality with sight loss.
Think about all the things you just love to do every day - checking Facebook and Twitter, making a drink or cooking some food, or maybe reading a book. The list is endless.
And now think about how many of those tasks you would still do if you were visually impaired? Think about how your life would be different, and the type of person you would be if you had a sight problem.I am going to tell you about how my blindness affects my life.
My personal interests constantly change, but they mostly include anything to do with technology, especially iPhones. I also love to read books, and I also do a bit of podcasting now and again. I use so many types of gadgets to get by, that it's impossible to list them. My iPhone talks to me, as does my computer, and my iPad. Thanks to this technology, I am able to do the things I do. Without them, I couldn't talk to the people I talk to - I wouldn't even be writing this blog. It's how I'm able to start my day browsing Facebook and Twitter!
I struggle to go out by myself. I use a white cane, which helps a tiny little bit, but I still don't feel safe to go out alone. What if I tried to cross a road and started to walk across thinking it was safe, and then a cyclist were to charge towards me and cause an accident because I cannot hear him coming towards me? Or, what if I wanted to know how much something was in a shop? I would feel awkward shouting around, because I am unable to see if anyone is nearby to help me.
I prefer to do things at home, where I feel comfortable. I use my equipment to shop online, and also ask other blind people for help. This way, I can do so many things I don't think I would otherwise do.
There is one thing I would like to say to people like me who can't see, and it's something very simple: do what YOU want to do, not what those around you want you to do. Prove people wrong. If someone keeps telling you that you can't dsomething, try it anyway... you may just prove them wrong, and if it doesn't work out, at least you tried!
Claire on what 'Normal' means to her...
So what is normal? I have never found the correct definition for that word, and I think there is a reason for that; there isn't one, and I don't think there ever will be a correct definition for it, because what is normal to me may not be normal to you. Am I normal? Of course I am, and so are you!
If you'd like advice and support related to sensory impairments, follow the link to the Channel 4 support page