When I talk about raising kids as a person with low vision and what concerns or strategies I had, there are a few things that jump to mind. One was the importance of reading and that I wouldn't be able to model that. I'm so relieved that my kids turned out to be readers. I was not a good example of someone who enjoyed reading or who sought information in books so I worried that they wouldn't pick it up. Fortunately Ray is an avid reader and he read bedtime stories to them. He also read them some novels as they got older. I think my part in encouraging reading was that, as soon as they could, I would have the kids read things for me. I imagine that could have also been a bit of a confidence booster for them. Being a "helper" for an adult can be an ego boost for little ones.
We live in a beach town so a strategy I used when going to the beach was to have them wear large brightly colored hats. I was doing a bit of sewing at the time so I made them myself. It was a good thing I could do that because I wanted them really big! They were too young to be self-conscious about them, but eventually the spectacular hats had to go. After that, if we were on the beach, I just went everywhere with them. If I didn't feel like swimming, it was sand sculpture and water erosion experiments till I got my energy back!
Another practice we had was that if we were in a park and they wanted to play a distance from me they had to sing, and loud! The alphabet was the usual song of choice and again, they only did it until they were old enough to feel it was just too uncool! We had to develop some trust so that they could play further than arm's length from me.
Last month I was delighted to receive a brief video greeting from Rick Mercer. It was a 24 second spot in which the comedian gave the basic information the CEP is trying to pass along and encouraged visiting the website for more information. It had taken a bit of begging and pleading so as soon as I got a yes from them I was over the moon.
I immediately put it up on Youtube and shared it on my Facebook page. Ray posted it on the Champions for the Checkered Eye Facebook page, because I couldn't figure out how to do that!
Well, Rick Mercer got "shared" a lot more than any other checkered eye video's I post. I suspect this is because he is a famous person, someone people recognize. Familiarity seems to catch people's attention, so I'm now making more efforts to see if I can engage any "famous people" to help tell the whole wide world what the checkered eye means.
If you know anyone famous, can you send them my way?!?
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