“You can write a blog, but you use a guide dog.”


As I have said multiple times, I welcome questions, any and all questions. One reader on my blog asked me a little while back what my vision was like because she noticed that I can write on the blog “with no problem,” yet I use a guide dog. This is a very good question and I especially welcomed this question from her because she is middle-aged and was just diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa. As anyone would be with a new diagnosis such as that, I’m sure there are a lot of questions going through her head. However, I’m sure other readers, especially ones that don’t know me personally, are also asking this same question so I thought I would answer it in a blog.

As most of you know, I have hardly any peripheral vision. However, I still do have a fair amount of central vision. The situation has to be perfectly lit, not too light or dark and no glare, and the object has to be at the perfect position in front of me and the perfect distant away from me for me to really fully identify the object and most of the details. Therefore, navigating around the world (aka my orientation and mobility) is very affected, but writing at a computer is a little affected but not as significantly.

Writing a blog: I have my computer use large-print and some day inverted contrast. I am a very fast and efficient typist so usually I just type it all out and then go back and proofread it for grammatical mistakes and typos. I luckily can navigate a computer just fine as it is and I know with the new software and assistive technology that continues to come out, I’ll be able to do just fine, even if there is a bit of a learning curve.

Walking and navigating with my guide dog: I’ve explained this in other posts, but I’ll explain it a bit here too. Because the lighting situation has to be perfect for me to be able to see, and I see out of a little bigger than a toothpick sized hole in my eye, and I have cataracts, navigating without the use of a mobility aid is extremely dangerous and frustrating. I used a cane for a year or so before I got Makiko because I am not able to see obstacles on any side of me (left, right, bottom, top) and therefore trip, bump, fall, etc. I also have somewhat of a hard time figuring out where I am in large places, like outdoors, and that is a huge benefit of having Makiko.

I hope I answered your question with clarity and enough detail. If I didn’t answer it well enough or if you have additional questions, please feel free to leave a comment and I’ll address them to the best of my ability.

Thanks,
Jess

Makiko's position as I write my blogs :)
Makiko’s position as I write my blogs 🙂

 

Makiko decided she just wasn't as close as she would like (even though she's less than a foot away in the bean bag) so she decided to come sit down by my chair :)
Makiko decided she just wasn’t as close as she would like (even though she’s less than a foot away in the bean bag) so she decided to come sit down by my chair 🙂

 

 

Published by

Jessica N and Makiko

Jessica is a proud Texan. She graduated in 2014 with her Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling and is now employed. She is visually impaired and has a retinal disease, Retinitis Pigmentosa. Originally Jessica started blogging about everything from being diagnosed with the disease to where she is now, almost 9 years later. Then, Jessica went to Guide Dogs for the Blind and was blessed with Makiko, her new guide dog. Now, her blog "The Way Eye See The World" is about everything related to visual impairments, including guide dogs.

3 thoughts on ““You can write a blog, but you use a guide dog.””

  1. love your post.
    I to am vision impaired as well and i love reading blogs where the writer instead of getting frustrated with these types of questions words their answer in a way to educate people, great post!

    1. Katherine,

      Welcome to my blog, and thank you for your sweet comment. I am all about advocacy and empowering other individuals with disabilities and educating the world about disability. I hope you will continue to read my blog and keep leaving me feedback. I’d love to hear from you more.

      Best,
      Jessica

  2. I also am visually impaired (registered blind although I do have some residual vision, better in my left than in my right eye). I feel more confident with my guide dog, Trigger than with a white cane although I do, on occasions use a cane rather than my four-legged friend. Having some slight vision means that I have to trust Trigger’s judgement and not override him. For example I sometimes see a lamp post coming up out of the corner of my eye but I leave it to Trigger to avoid it as, otherwise I might try to go one way while he goes the other leading to a right old mess! Enjoy reading your blog.

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