Challenges of being blind

London, ON, Canada / 106.9 The X
Challenges of being blind

Blindness is strictly defined as the state of being totally sightless in both eyes. A completely blind individual is unable to see anything at all.

While some people lose their sight due to eye diseases such as Glaucoma, Cataracts, or even from eye trauma, some are simply born with no eyesight whatsoever.

“I was born 2 months early at 7 months,” says Volunteer for the YMCA of Western Ontario, Anton Mijatovic who was born completely blind, “What happened was I was put in the incubator for premature babies, and I guess there was too much oxygen in the incubator which caused the blindness. I can see a bit of light out of my right eye, if something is really close I can see the shadow, but out of my right I can’t see a thing. So I’m basically totally blind.”

“There are a lot of challenges,” Mijatovic says, “Mainly you can’t see how you or other people look like, or colours or clothing. Mainly society though, when it comes to getting a job people think you can’t do anything because they couldn’t imagine themselves doing anything if they were blind. It’s challenging proving to them that you’re just like anybody else. That you’re a person too.”

Although no eyesight comes with a barrage of challenges, there is one positive that Mijatovic takes from it.

“I can’t be judgmental by seeing things. I’ve met some really nice people, I have a lot of interracial friends and I wouldn’t have even known they were a different race if they didn’t tell me. I just view them as somebody else, I’m talking to somebody.”

Mijatovic has volunteered for various YMCA’s across London over the last 5 years in order to have an impact on the community’s youth. Having no eyesight has certainly not hindered Mijatovic’s 20/20 vision of a stronger London community.

“Have an open mind and don’t let negativity get the best of you. Time and time again you hear people say ‘people are telling me I can’t do it’, and then they end up proving them wrong. So if you really want something, give it your best effort and don’t give up easily.”

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