I want to start this off with a quick introduction of myself. My name is Cierra Redding, I am 25 and was born with horizontal nystagmus. If you have read some of my comments and replies to other discussions, you probably already know how confident I am about my visual impairment and experiences. I have accomplished all that the doctors said I’d never learn to grasp, such as the biggest ones like driving, walking, reading, etc. I am actually in the middle of my final semester of Graduate school as a Masters of Fine Arts Candidate. So I have accomplished a ton!
Okay enough about he personal me. I wanted to start a little post to educate and motivate those who may struggle with feeling confident in their experiences as a person with Nystagmus. I teach creativity and I base my teaching philosophy on experience and the human condition. Although our disability can be seemingly debilitating, there is so much beauty in the way we experience the world. But in order to be comfortable with our difference you have to fist understand the process and put it on the line. Talk to people about nystagmus, educate them on how YOU experience the world.
Do not hide behind the fear of people not understanding, the only way one will understand is through explanation. I have found that if I don’t open up about my condition that people will awkwardly ask questions or say things like “did you know your eyes move?” So just be vulnerable about your visual experience!
I use my hands a lot, and I like to use objects around me to explain my experiences as well so that it’s not just through words. Our eyesight is visible. Words are auditory. I teach my students to use THEIR senatorial experience when creating art, as it’s more important to know how something exists to others rather just as we all know it as.
If you need to practice this feel free to comment below and tell me YOUR nystagmus experience, or let your child write and explain how they see the world. Use items nearest you to touch and feel and understand how you are experiencing. Or try to answer questions that you find difficult answering on the spot. BE CREATIVE!
Nystagmus is our little superpower. It is our experience. It’s beautiful. Be confident, hold your dancing eyes high and dance along with them.
I look forward to hearing from everyone!