7 Advantages Of Being Visually Impaired

7 Advantages Of Being Visually Impaired

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So I decided to start writing for Odyssey because I thought I could bring a unique perspective to some issues that people tend to be pretty uncomfortable talking about. I’m a visually impaired student at Dartmouth, and while most people know of me as the girl that always seems to tag along with her guide dog, Smidge, or as the girl who has literally run into you trying to maneuver my way around Collis, I tend to feel like a lot of my Dartmouth relationships are rather superficial. Anyone that knows me well would tell you, I am really open to talking about my sight and my experiences.

Disability has such a negative connotation. I’ll be the first person to tell you there are some challenges that come along with being legally blind, but I would be remised to say that it’s all bad. I think it’s important to be able to acknowledge some of the positive aspects of what might usually be considered a not- so- great situation. So here are a few of the advantages that comes with being visually impaired.

1. I always have an excuse to wear mismatched clothes

Half the time I walk out of my dorm looking like an absolute mess! I’m partially color blind so matching clothes isn’t really my strong suit. Whenever people ask me about why my socks don’t match or why I’m wearing an obscure combination of colors, I can always just tell them it’s because I couldn’t tell what I was putting on.

2. I never have to be the designated driver

No one would ever want me behind the wheel of the car so I’ll never have to stay sober and drive my friends home at the end of a night out.

3. I don’t judge people off of how they look

Unlike most people, I actually mean it when I say looks don’t matter. I base my relationships purely off of personality. I usually miss physical features that are immediately obvious for most people, which I think really helps me because I make my first impressions of people solely off of their personalities.

4. I get to bring my dog wherever I go.

Perks of being blind is that I get to take my dog wherever I go. However, my guide dog is very specifically trained to help me safely navigate to wherever I need to be. Fake service dogs are a huge issue and are not in any way okay, but I would be lying to you if I said I don’t love always having my dog with me. She’s my best friend and I know she’s always looking out for me. She gives me independence I never knew before I had a guide dog, and because of that I am so grateful to have her in my life.

5. I don’t need to obey signs if I can’t read them

I usually don’t see signs that are posted up on doors. As far as I’m concerned that means they probably don’t apply to me.

6. I have the greatest most genuine friends in the world

Being legally blind means that sometimes I leave my house with makeup smeared all over my face, or with my bathing suit on inside out, and the fact that I can trust my friends enough to tell me those things and laugh at me for them makes me realize how lucky I am to have those kinds of people in my life

7. I have opportunity I would definitely not have if I could see.

A lot of people know that I am a United States Paralympic Alpine ski racer, but most people don’t realize how much opportunity skiing has given me. Skiing has shape my character in ways that are unparalleled to anything else in my life. In the last year I have traveled to seven different countries and gotten to explore the world with some of my closest friends. All of my teammates come from different backgrounds and walks of life. I have learned to be accepting and understanding of others and to juggle so many different parts of my life all at once. I would be a totally different person if I had full vision and I am so grateful for every opportunity I have been given.

Cover Image Credit: Allison Frantz

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20 Signs You Were A High School Cheerleader

You got really tired of hearing, "Point your toes."
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Cheerleading is something you'll never forget. It takes hard work, dedication, and comes with its ups and downs. Here are some statements that every cheerleader, past and present, know to be true.

1. You always had bobby pins with you.

2. Fear shot through you if you couldn't find your spankees right away and thought you left them at home.

3. You accumulated about 90 new pairs of tennis shoes...

4. ...and about 90 new bows, bags, socks, and warm ups.

5. When you hear certain songs from old cheer dance mixes it either ruins your day or brings back happy memories.

6. And chances are, you still remember every move to those dances.

7. Sometimes you catch yourself standing with your hands on your hips.

8. You know the phrase, "One more time, ladies" all too well.

9. The hospitality rooms were always one of the biggest perks of going to tournaments (at least for me).

10. You got really tired of hearing, "Point your toes."

SEE ALSO: How The Term 'Cheerlebrity' Destroyed Our Sport

11. If you left the gym at half-time to go get something, you better be back by the time the boys run back out.

12. You knew how awkward it could be on the bus rides home after the boys lost.

13. But you also knew how fun it could be if they won.

14. Figuring out line-up was extremely important – especially if one of your members was gone.

15. New uniforms were so exciting; minus the fact that they cost a fortune.

16. You know there was nothing worse than when you called out an offense cheer but halfway through, you had to switch to the defense version because someone turned over the ball.

17. You still know the school fight song by heart and every move that goes with it.

SEE ALSO: Signs You Suffer From Post-Cheerleading Depression

18. UCA Cheer Camp cheers and chants still haunt you to this day.

19. You know the difference between a clasp and a clap. Yes, they're different.

20. There's always a part of you that will miss cheering and it will always have a place in your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Doug Pool / Facebook

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Tiger Woods Looks To Eclipse Remarkable Comeback With A Win This Weekend

In the final event of the FedEx Cup, the Tour Championship, Woods could complete one of the greatest comebacks in sports history with a win

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Even though I may be over 4000 miles away and five hours ahead of schedule, the fanatic fan that I am for Tiger Woods has not died down one bit. Entering the Tour Championship, the final event of the FedEx Cup and essentially the Superbowl of professional golf, Woods has a chance of eclipsing one of the greatest comebacks ever with a win this Sunday.

Woods, who hasn't played in this event since 2013 is still in search of a coveted first win in his comeback tour from injury. With a win here, on arguably one of the toughest golf courses in the world and against the top 30 players on the PGA tour, the legacy of Tiger Woods will forever be cemented in golf lure.

So yes, as I am in London studying for the fall term as an abroad student, my heart and soul are still intertwined with one of America's greatest sports icons. To demonstrate my commitment as a fan, I will share a little tale with how I have been able to keep up with Woods' play. On Thursday, the first day of competition, I strategically planned my day around when Tiger would tee off. Making sure to have computer access, I was able to watch his first three holes of the round. To say the least, I was mildly unimpressed. Starting off with a bogey and finding himself in the bottom half of the field, I figured I was only hurting Woods' performance by watching. I backed off, shut the computer down and went out for a meal.

I made a conservative effort to not stay glued to my phone for updates, feeling that if I let Tiger do what Tiger does best, then, sure enough, he would come around. I was right. Woods was able to turn around his bad start and with three holes left in his round he was tied for 2nd place and only two shots back. I had to see him finish out, I knew the good mojo was there.

I quickly made my way back to my dorm and was able to log onto a live feed just in time for Woods to tee off on the final hole of the day, a par 5. Sure enough, Tiger landed a beautiful shot on the green in 2, with a chance for eagle and a tie for the lead. It was all but too good to be true until it wasn't. With 30 feet to the hole, Tiger lined up his putt and gracefully took a tap at it as the world, and myself from the United Kingdom, watched him knock it into the hole and take a share of the lead entering the second day of competition.

The crowd erupted nearly as loud as I had from my dorm room. The energy was palpable and with a signature fist pump from our man, he took a gigantic step in the right direction towards capping off this unfathomable comeback.

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