Future plans not limited by lack of sight

Imagine for one day, you had to find your way to all of your classes by walking with your eyes closed. With my low vision, I basically have to do this every day.
I was born legally blind. Many people think being blind and being legally blind are the same thing, but there is in fact a difference. I, unlike people who are blind, do have some sight. I can see light and shadows from a distance. I can also see different colors and patterns from my right eye, although I have to be quite close to the object to see it clearly.
When I am at school, I use a cane, which is intended to help me avoid unseen obstacles in my path. Like other blind and legally blind people, I read Braille. It is a language in itself, and it took me three years of studying to master the combinations of dots needed to form certain words and letters.
This year students at PHS were issued Chromebooks. I was given a computer like everyone else. However, it was not equipped with all the necessary programs and would not read what was on the screen to me.
After a lot of efforts by a lot of people to help me figure out how to use a Chromebook with my limitations, I was then given an iPad, which has a program that reads everything on the screen (including the words and letters I type) out loud to me. Because of this program, I must use earbuds with my computer to avoid disturbing other students during class.
I have to endure bullying from time to time, simply because people do not understand the circumstances surrounding me and my vision. I learned from a young age that, if you act like you don’t care what people think of you, then a bully has no power. As a sophomore in high school, I am thankful to have friends who support me, but I am also able to ignore rude comments other students make from time to time.
Though my low vision limits me in some aspects of life, I do not dwell on my weakness. I hope to one day teach Braille to elementary school students. The world needs more Braille teachers, and some blind children need an adult role model to show them they do have a place in the world. Anyone can overcome obstacles in life by them physical or otherwise, and everyone has a right to dream.

Story by: Nikki Stewart