Book Review: Thriving Blind, by Kristin Smedley

Review by Jennifer Trombley, Director, Clinical Trials LMRI

At a recent conference I attended, Kristin Smedley gave a very inspiring keynote talk on the task of parenting three children into adulthood.  Two of Ms. Smedley’s children have been blind from 4 months of age. They are both now productive, healthy adults.

Ms. Smedley wrote a book filled with stories of others who have suffered vision loss and refused to live in darkness, but participate in the world as everyone else does.  The people she profiles were mainstreamed in school, participated in sports, navigated college campuses or major cities on their own, even climbed the world’s highest mountains.

Her message is simple – SEE: See Extraordinary Expectations, no matter your circumstances.

The book is titled “Thriving Blind – Stories of Real People Succeeding Without Sight.”  It is a compilation of stories of people blind from birth, and those who suffered progressive vision loss or sudden and traumatic blindness.

One woman profiled in the book has macular telangiectasia type 2.  While her case is more severe than most MacTel-affected persons, she is not totally blind as are most of the others in the book.  However, she had to make adaptations as her vision changed.

The book is available on Amazon.  It is also available in an e-braille format through Ms. Smedley’s website.