What can it be like to suffer from sight impairment?

What can it be like to suffer from sight impairment?

Extremely distressing, yes, but experiencing sight impairment needn't be the end of the world. In fact, it might mean touching the top of it!

Erik Weihenmayer took up mountaineering after losing his sight completely. (He even has artificial eyes, so literally has no sight.) His book Touch The Top Of The World describes his experiences from childhood onwards and includes details of his mountaineering expeditions - even to Everest! His latest book, The Adversity Advantage, co-authored with Stephen R Covey and Paul G Stoltz, explains his belief that people with a disability are actually at an advantage. Both books are well worth reading if you're grappling with sight loss yourself, if you know someone who is, or if you simply want an inspiring read.

David Lucas, the author of Stepping Into The Dark wrote his autobiographical account of his journey into sight impairment after his sight deteriorated. He uses special computer software (or different settings with the usual software) to enable him to read.

Helen Keller (1880-1968), one of the most famous blind people in history, became a teacher, despite being both deaf and blind. Apparently, she once said: "The only thing worse than being blind is having sight with no vision."

Some other inspirational quotes from Helen Keller:

"Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it."

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure."

"Never bend your head. Hold it high. Look the world straight in the eye."

"We could never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world."

Find out about a very down-to-earth man's ways of coping in Stepping Into The Dark.