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Michael & Leber's

  February 8, 2017   

"I developed a condition called Leber's Hereditary Optic Neuropathy which causes optic nerve degeneration. As such, I have no central vision, which is the vision required to see detail. Despite being registered blind, I do have some navigational vision which helps me get around un-aided. Equally, with 11% sight, it's impossible to read, recognise people's faces or travel to new destinations independently. As sight is the main medium of knowledge acquisition by which we learn and develop, sight loss has had a profound and severe impact on my life since being diagnosed with Lebers in 2010. I was at medical school on the road to becoming a doctor and those aspirations rapidly unravelled during the quick collapse of my visual field.

There exists much literature on post traumatic growth, documenting the positive legacy and life experiences individuals develop after suffering a negative life-changing event. My view is that there are clear benefits that I've derived since losing my sight. Life throws challenges at everyone in various shapes and sizes and irrespective of what that challenge is, the way one surmounts it determines an individual's mettle and resolve.

In a pressurised, fast-paced and global workplace, employers place increasing emphasis on the skills of resilience, problem solving and staying calm under pressure. MyPlus is that the exciting and sometimes painful journey I have undertaken over the past five years has allowed me to develop many of these skills and mature as an individual." - Michael Smith

These stories are tagged with: Blindness Blindness faces faces Leber's Leber's