An Image Of Positivity Changes Perceptions In A Big Way

Logan & The Silhouetted Man

Liz is standing on the left, and Logan standing on her right. They are both dressed up for Logan's chorus concert at school this past May. Her guide dog, Bryce Krispie is sitting in front of her, his nose and face towards the left side of the photo and his rump pointed between her and Logan's feet.
Liz Oleksa, her son Logan, and guide dog, Bryce Krispie

It all began when talking with my 13-year-old son, Logan about this really amazing website and blog of “Bold Blind Beauty,” and the icon that comes along with it all; her name is Abigale. She is a beautiful combination of “Ability” and ordinary brown bird, the “Nightingale.” Abigale is depicted as a classy bold woman, who wears a stylish dress, handbag over her arm, a snazzy updo hair style and proudly walks with her red and white cane, as Abigale is a woman who happens to be visually impaired.

I was speaking with Logan about how important it is to be proud of who you are, regardless of disability, regardless of how we look on the outside because we all have an inner beauty that shines through. It is about how we present our attitude and image of “self-worth” to the world around us. Logan said that it was really cool and an impressive idea to be sending out to everyone, not only people who are blind or visually impaired. He told me that made him think of something, and he would be back in a bit because he wanted to go make me something.

I had lost my sight in September 2012 from Diabetic Retinopathy. Logan had seen how I went from living my life as a person who was sighted and had no self-confidence, to being a person with no physical sight and finally being proud of who I am. I finally can walk in a room with my head held high, knowing that I am enough and that I don’t need to prove myself to anyone except myself. I have always joked with Logan about my loss of eye-sight, that no matter what, I will always be cooler because I can do everything with my eyes closed, so to speak…

Needless to say, about a half hour later, Logan came back to me and said that he had something to share with me. He had taken my positive attitude and combined it with the amazing “Abigale” concept to create an image of his very own. He described it as the following to me: It is a silhouette of a man using a red and white cane, on a pure white background. The man is facing the right of the picture where the black text reads

“Blind people can do anything that sighted people can do. But blind people are cooler because we do it with our eyes closed!”

He told me that he was so proud of me because he knows that whenever someone says to me that I can’t do something because I am blind, my initial reaction is to prove them wrong and say, “Watch me! I may not do it the same way, and it may take me a bit longer, but I WILL do it!!!”

This is such an important message to be sent out, for both Abigale and “the silhouetted man”. Not just for the blind and visually impaired community, but for all people. People as a whole. So many people, disability or no disability, struggle with negative self-image. What people need to remember though is that it doesn’t matter what the outside looks like, but rather what shines from the inside. How can we present ourselves in confidence, self-pride, and self-worth if we keep a negative image of ourselves as a whole? Let yourself be proud of who you are! You are unique and beautiful in your very own individual way, and that inner beauty has so much to share with the world!

Liz  Oleksa aka Her Royal Blindness, who also happens to be the President at Lehigh Valley Council of The Blind has one of the most sparkling personalities of anyone I’ve met and I’m so happy I have connected with her. The loving gesture made by her son is a testament to not only is doing a great job as a parent but demonstrates the content of her character. 

Advice For Purpose Seekers

“My mission is to improve humanity by changing the way we perceive one another.”

Illustration of three hands raised in the air as if volunteering, with words like: act, give, initiate, create, provide, try, adopt, seek, acquire, perform, do, do more, let go of, allow, etc. written all over themMany of us live our lives in search of our purpose. I know this because I was one of these people always thinking that surviving a crisis or overcoming an obstacle would lead me to my mission. What I wasn’t prepared for was the fact that I was already living my purpose.

One of my new Facebook connections Hélène of Hélène T. Stelian Coaching invited me to be featured on her website where she shares the stories of others who’ve found their life’s mission. My feature is Here and I encourage you to check out the other stories of some amazing people Here.

Thank you Hélène for this wonderful opportunity to be featured on your site!

 

Beauty Is A Tapestry Of Inclusivity

“Oh, Look She Knows Where She’s Going!”

Description in body of post. Have you ever left your house feeling so good that nothing could bring you down? You know, those days when you’re sporting a new hairdo, outfit, manicure, or you’re just feeling flat-out fabulous?

One day last week I had such a day. The weather was gorgeous and I was so looking forward to meeting with several friends I used to work with but hadn’t seen a few years.

After I was dropped off and heading to the pre-agreed meeting place, I heard some woman say “Oh, look she knows where she’s going!” An innocent enough comment and I suppose it didn’t have to be about me, after all, there were a number of people milling about the plaza during the lunch hour but the fact that I heard it just as I passed slightly irked me.

Description in body of post.

I mean here I was, all decked out in my new cork mules, coordinating top, white jeans, and gray hooded vest. Granted my mules were a tad high and I suppose seeing a woman in heels with a white cane may appear a bit unusual, but I was too excited to meet my friends to attempt to address the individual who was speaking.

What the person didn’t know about me was number 1, yes, I knew where I was going because I worked there for 13 years. Number 2 the significance of the white cane doesn’t mean a person can’t hear.

Description in body of post. One of the core messages of Bold Blind Beauty is transcending barriers by changing the way we perceive one another and the only way to do this is by sharing our stories, getting out there and living. Sure, I could have had an attitude and if I knew who said it could have snapped at the person but in the end what would that achieve?

All too often we make assumptions and come to conclusions without knowing the full story. Social media has helped to fuel a massive amount of misunderstandings because people don’t read an entire message, take it out of context or believe something simply because it’s posted. Because it is so easy to have our say with a couple of keystrokes it almost seems like we forget the targets of our comments (in real life or virtually) are human.

People with disabilities are human, people without disabilities human, people with deformities are human, people without deformities are human, people of different cultures, races, rich, poor, overweight, underweight, young, old, tall, short, well, sick are all human.

Could we try to think before we speak or hit a key on the keyboard? While I know there are many who wouldn’t agree, this world is beautiful because of its diversity.

What I Wore:

Sleeveless navy with tiny polka dots, white jeans, navy cork block heeled mules, light gray hooded vest, silver jewelry, and my white cane. In each of the attached photos, I am standing in front of my counter.

A different world cannot be built by indifferent people. ~Peter Marshall

Have a great Monday!

 

 

 

 

A Lil’ Inspiration #39

Image description is in the body of the post.“This bright, new day… complete with 24 hours of opportunities, choices, and attitudes a perfectly matched set of 1440 minutes. This unique gift, this one day, cannot be exchanged, replaced or refunded. Handle with care. Make the most of it. There is only one to a customer.”
~Unknown

Description: www.boldblindbeauty.com template with Abigail (Abby) to the left of the quote. Abby is an illustration of a stylish fashion icon who walks in confidence, handbag in one hand, white cane in the other and her exquisite hairstyle floats about her head. She is wearing heels with a dress made of individual panels resembling overlapping banana leaves. The dress panels gently curve from her nipped in waist to just above the knee

Have a great weekend!!