Ask me anything about blindness.

I had this fleeting but reoccurring thought for quite some time already, to make a post where I’d give people an opportunity to ask questions about all sorts of things to do with what it’s like to be blind. My Mum and some of my penfriends also strongly encouraged me to do this, but I’ve always felt like I’m not really the best person to do such a thing. I felt that if I was to answer such questions, then I would be kind of representing the whole big community of blind people, and I am not really a very typical representative of it, or at least not in all aspects, so I was afraid that it could be potentially harmful to the community at large if people were to consider my answers something of a general standard for blind people, or that in order not to be harmful, I’d have to constantly explain in which ways am I different and try to answer the questions from as broad a perspective as possible, rather than just my own, which I feared I wouldn’t always be able to do in a competent way. For example, I don’t live on my own, but there are a lot of blind people who do, and I was afraid that by hearing that I do not, people are going to assume that no blind people do and that they cannot.

But I guess that over these almost four years that I’ve had this blog, I’ve finally realised that I have no obligation to represent the blind community if I don’t feel like it, just because I am part of it. I can just represent myself as an individual. If I don’t believe that all sighted folks like K-pop just because Sofi does, why should sighted people believe that all blind people read Braille based solely on the fact that I do? I think I must have gotten the idea from school, where one of our staff told us that we need to be able to eat with knife and fork so that sighted people won’t think that all blind people are not able to eat this way. 😀

In general, I see that people tend to be either very in-your-face or very fearful of asking disabled people and their families any questions pertaining to the disability. As much as the in-your-face attitude is bad, because I don’t live to answer people’s questions and I may choose not to (not because they hurt my feelings or anything but just because I don’t have to, and even if disability isn’t a sensitive topic for me, it’s still generally quite personal), the fearful attitude, though very often coming from good intentions of not wanting to offend someone, is just as bad because the brain doesn’t like emptiness, so in place of the unanswered questions you create your own conclusions, which might be incorrect, or even quite harmful.

So that is why, in the end, I decided to do this. Perhaps you’re a regular reader and you’ve always wanted to know something but were afraid to ask or simply had no opportunity to do so. Or you’re a total newbie here and just want to know what it’s like being blind. That’s what this post is for. Ask me your questions in the comments and I’ll reply there, or if any questions will require some particularly detailed answer or I decide it could be interesting to expand on I might do a separate post on it.

As I said, I’m not going to be answering collectively as a blind people’s spokesperson or anything, but rather from my own perspective, so what you’ll be getting here is simply one Bibiel’s personal experience. Some bits of my blindness experience may be the same for the majority of blind people, others not necessarily. Still, I know a fair bit about blindness and a lot of blind or visually impaired people, so if you have a more general question I’ll also try to answer it as best I can, even if it may not always be exhaustive. As I’m blind since birth, I’m really not easily offended or hurt when it comes to blindness questions, as I have no idea what it’s like to see, haven’t lost my sight in any traumatic circumstances, and therefore I have a distance to it.

Oh, and I’m going for a summer trip on Friday/Saturday for at least a week, so if you ask me anything during that time you might need to wait some time for a reply, as I’ve no idea if I’ll be able to reply on the go and how regularly.

Some random questions.

So as I wrote in my last post, I’m very sorry for my blog absence and that I didn’t tell you guys earlier or schedule some posts, but it all happened quite suddenly and I knew about it last minute myself. I went on holidays with my parents to Masuria for two days. We didn’t end up doing much there, but I hope to make a coffee share – although it won’t be a weekend coffee share any longer of course – and I’ll tell you more about it then, as well as other things. And then I was a bit disorganised for a couple days. I know those of you who read my blog regularly like my question of the day series, but I’m feeling lazy and not like catching up on every single question and making them all up or looking for some separate ones online so I just picked up some from the Interwebs, I guess they’re circling around a lot as I’ve seen them as a tag on a few WordPress blogs, so, I’ll simply answer them for fun, just to write something before I go to sleep and before I write more tomorrow, and you feel free to join in, in the comments, or in your own posts even, however is more convenient. We can call it MIM (as in My Inner Mishmash) Lazy Tag, if it didn’t have any other name already.

1. Do you like blue cheese?

Ugh yuck! It’s smelly! Even I can feel it, and my sense of smell is really rubbish. I immediately get weird and obscene associations feeling that smell, so no, I’d rather normal cheese.
2. Coke or Pepsi?
Pepsi, but if there’s no Pepsi, Coke will do.

3. Do you own a gun?

Well that could cause some world wide disaster, so I’d better not.No, I don’t own a gun.

4. What flavor of Kool-Aid?
I’ve never drank KoolAid. I don’t even think it’s available in Poland, not in normal shops. Perhaps I should get it from Scrummy next time. But from what I know it’s a sort of lemonade-like drink in terms of taste, isn’t it? Not a fan of those, so probably wouldn’t like it.

5. Do you like Hot dogs?
Naah. Hot cats – with their bellies stretched out in the sun, and especially one cat Misha – are much better. 😉 Seriously, i’ll eat if you’ll force me, but actually I hate hot dogs. I’m generally fussy about fast food and like hardly anything other than chips. 😀

6. Favorite TV shows?
None at the moment. I don’t watch much TV.

7. Do you believe in ghosts?
Yes. I am Catholic, so I believe in purgatory and that sometimes a soul can come to you and ask you for prayers, mostly in your dreams, and if you pray for purgatory souls, they are very grateful to you and pray for you too, and you can really count on them. My great grandmother apparently saw purgatory souls and was in contact with them. And I pray a lot for those that are close to me, and those that aren’t, myself, it’s quite an important part of my spirituality I’d say. But I don’t call them ghosts. It sounds evil and Halloweeny. Souls in purgatory don’t scare or harm or haunt people. I guess I believe in stuff like poltergeist or haunted houses or such, but I think it’s not as common as people like to say, loads of people I know have some creepy paranormal experiences. I don’t say it can’t happen, but am kinda sceptical usually. I do believe that people who do spiritual seanses (is it how it’s really called in English? it looks weird!) see ghosts, but not necessarily those that they will like, as purgatory souls don’t come to you on your whim, I believe they’re evil spirits and can do you potential harm, even though I sometimes joke about it myself that I will make a spiritual seans and get someone back to life, I’d never do that, not only because of my beliefs, but it’s rather creepy.

8. What do you drink in the morning?
Green tea – instead of coffee now, or light iced coffee just for the taste, not the effects, and a bit later on a mug of raspberry tea usually.

9. Can you do pushups?
No way!

10. Favorite jewelry?
I only wear a ring made of agate, it’s just a simple ring that looks much like a wedding ring, without any ornaments or anything. I’ve got a present from a gem stones shop owner in Stockholm two years ago, a sapphire ball that I have a pendant with and I used to wear it all the time, but now I don’t, only for some special occasions. I also wear a holy medal, but I don’t consider it jewellery really. I have some brooches and clip on earrings that I wear on some big outings.

11. Favorite hobby?
Hmmm… language learning? Is that still a hobby or a lifestyle? If not that, then blogging.

12. Do you have ADD/ADHD?
No, definitely not, but apparently I do have some executive functions impairment, or so is stated in some of my school paperwork and other stuff, as we’ve recently discovered, and that would actually make some sense, although I didn’t know that it was apparent enough for others to see, and not even tell me, well, I hadn’t thought about all that much at school myself either and it felt kind of rather that it was the way I was than some sort of an “impairment”. And I don’t know which functions they exactly meant back then and what led them to that.

13. Do you wear glasses?
No. As a little child I used to think I will see something if I will wear glasses, but since I didn’t, and found the feeling of wearing them rather annoying, I no longer do.

14. A favorite cartoon character as a kid?
I loved Gumi Bears.

15. What are three things you did or are going to do today?
Did – read emails, fed Misha, helped Mum with cooking lunch – will do – feed Misha and put him to sleep, go to bed, do my Welsh listening. –

16. Drinks you drink all the time?
Water, kefir and green tea (out of necessity).

17. Current worries?
I’m going to get a lot of new tech equipment, I’m scared of changes and that I won’t get used to it or something will go wrong, I don’t even know what, it’s all really stressful! My parents are going to my uncle’s funeral for two days and I’ll be home with Zofijka and Misha, I’m worried how I’ll survive with constantly bored Zofijka and I can’t stop ruminating that something awful will happen – from the house catching fire to Misha choking with food to Zofijka coming back from the camp tomorrow with a norovirus. 😀 These are the main things at the moment.

18. Do you believe in magic?
No. OK, I may believe in some things perhaps that you would call magic, that’s possible. But I don’t believe in magic as such and find the word highly overrated, and hate it especially when people use it in the context of Christmas. So cliche and silly! Christmas is a miracle, that’s for sure, but no magic.

19. Favorite place to be?
My bedroom.

20. Any bad habits?

Nailbiting/picking/cuticle biting/picking, lip biting/picking, self harming, overthinking, self-loathing, if that’s a habit, in a way it could be, being messy, suppressing feelings, and probably some more that I can’t think of right away.

Your turn! I’m off to sleep. 😪 😴

The belated FridayFour.

It’s well over weekend, but  here’s another of the posts I wanted to write during the weekend but finally didn’t. It’s my first time participating in Rory’s Friday Four

, it’s fun so I thought I’d still give it a go despite it’s already Tuesday. 😀

Here are Rory’s questions and my answwers:


1] How often do you update your ‘About Section’, in your blog and do you consider it an important aspect to your blog and if so – why?

Well I have my current blog for exactly 13 months. That sounds like a lot but not very much can change usually during this time in your life and yourself. But when I started this blog and created my About page I decided that I will try to revise it every year or so and change it if necessary. And so I edited it a month ago. There was actually more to edit than I thought it would. Yes I think it is an important part to any blog, if you have an About page, it’s easier for new readers to find out who you are and what your blog is like, whether it can interest them, which is not always easy just looking at a couple of your random recent posts. Also if you write about things that aren’t necessarily obvious to a random visitor, I think it makes your site more friendly and approachable if there is a place on your blog to which people can go to actually learn what it’s all about and why it is the way it is. I am quite an inquisitive person when it comes to other people and when I visit someone’s blog, I like to know what they are like just out of plain nosiness, but it also helps me to decide whether it would be relevant for me to follow them.

2] Which do you prefer and why and what entices you to become involved with them?

a] Competitions

b] Challenges

c] Quizzes

d] Prompts

i like challenges and prompts a lot. Challenges can be very fun, and bring bloggers together in interesting ways, while prompts are great if you want to stimulate your creativity with something new or have plain old writer’s block that won’t go away on its own. I’m not very competitive usually, and so far I’ve never tried doing quizzes on my blog, though it doesn’t mean I don’t like them, overall I often enjoy playing quizzes.

3] How often do you ‘reblog or share other blogger’s posts?

It depends, I don’t know what’s often or what’s not in general but recently I’ve done it fairly regularly. I follow quite a couple blogs that are focused on some of my interests and I reblog regularly posts from some of them.


4] What prompts you to do so?

I reblog posts from blogs that I find interesting in hopes that maybe someone who will stumble upon my blog will find them interesting as well, as well as because I want to share what I like, show those bloggers that I enjoyed their posts, and also, as much as I can, perhaps encourage others to visit them and make those bloggers at least a bit more popular. I also reblog posts that i can strongly relate to or that move me deeply in any way, or if I see a blog that is very interesting to me for some reason but with few likes or comments, for example when someone is a beginner. I want to show them they’re doing a good job.There are lots of blogs out there, and lots of people start blogging, but so many find it disheartening, even if their blog is great, and give up so easily.

Queen Of Questions.

I’ve seen some of the bloggers I follow taking part in

Queen Of Questions

hosted by The Haunted Wordsmith. So I thought I’ll do it too, ’cause it’s fun, and because the questions are food-themed, they sort of match the short story I’ve just published! 😀

Here goes:


  1. What is your favorite chocolate dessert? I like most chocolatey things, I like plain milk chocolate, chocolate with hazelnuts, various biscuits with chocolate, some chocolate cakes, etc. Yeah most of it all I guess.
  2. Where do you go first in the grocery store? – I guess we don’t have any routine, depends on a shop and what is where and what we need.
  3. You win three minutes of free shopping in the grocery store with an empty cart…what do you fill it with? – Kefir, olives and other veg I like, some fruit like tangerines, grapes, oranges, freezed chips, some crisps or other snacks, raspberry tea… don’t know, whatever I need. That’s just what came to my mind spontaneously and what I usually think of while grocery shopping.
  4. What is your favorite fruit and how do you like to eat it? I like most fruit, except for bananas, papaya, avocado and some others, and I am not a big fan of plums and cherries, well I can eat cherries as such but I hate cherry-flavoured things ugh yuck. But the rest of fruit I like or love, at least those I know so far, and I actually can’t say which one I like the most. Maybe raspberries? Dunno really. Anyway, I usually like to eat them raw, on their own, or in a salad/jelly/cake. My Mum also often makes jams or marmelades or preserves in the summer and they are good too, or she makes what we call kisiel in Poland, it’s such a type of jelly so to say, but it’s thinner and usually served hot, I guess you don’t have a separate word for it in English. You can eat it or if it’s thin enough even drink it.I also like some fruit dried.
  5. You go to a magic cafe where plates fill with whatever you request…what do you get? – Some delicious spaghetti, the best spaghettii in the world. Recently I’ve been really craving for spaghetti for some reason. 😀
  6. How do you like your fish? – Preferably not at all. I’ll it if I’d have to, but I’m not a fan of fish. Oh maybe except for tuna. I quite like it, especially tuna salad.
  7. Do you eat jello (what is your favorite flavor)? – I do, I really like it. Any flavour other than cherry and my other least favourite fruit flavours will do.
  8. What is the most, ahem, “adult” food you can think of? – Adult food? Hmmmmmm in what sense? Maybe some hot food, children don’t seem to like hot things most often.
  9. What food do you eat that might put you in the “old” age? – I think old age food would be all kinds of mashy, pulpy things, or bland, insipid food with little or no spices, or non crispy food. Stuff like bread without crust, completely peeled apples, mashed potatoes, semolina, all sorts of gruels, overcooked meat, etc. you get it, I feel deeply for anyone who has to eat such things unless they are OK with it and it’s their choice, then I don’t understand them.:D
  10. Mall food courts…yes, no, where do you eat? So far I’ve never eaten on a mall food court.


Question of the day.

What do you hope for in the next few months?

My answer:

The first thing that comes to my mind is for Misha to settle down, I mean I’d like him to feel comfortable now that Sasha is with us. He is getting better and better, but I can still feel he’s very insecure at times.

I also hope that I’ll be able to catch up quickly on all that time I was not able to ride. By the way, haven’t updated you guys on that, I’m going to the stud tomorrow and ride for half an hour. Usually it’s a full hour, but this time, because I’m still having this yucky skin infection, it’s gonna be half an hour, I don’t want to irritate it more, but I also don’t want to wait God knows how much longer until it heals. Oh yes and I hope my leg heals quickly, not for months as always.

I hope for doing some more visible progress in therapy. I can see that at this point there is something going on but so far it’s very small progress and I hope that with time I’ll go a bit further. And I hope I’ll get funding for all the tech stuff I need, or at least for a new Braille-Sense, my old one, as you may remember, is Zofijka’s age, so quite a senior as for a tech device, and is driving me crazy more and more with each day. So I also hope that in case I won’t get the funding, I’ll have the patience to get me through it all.

What are your hopes? 🙂

Question of the day (2nd October).

A Song/Book/Movie/Cocktail/Food/Activity/Item of clothing/Colour/Country. Chose four to give us a better idea of who you really are.

My answer:

Song – “Evacuee” by Enya.

Book – “Emily Of New Moon” by Lucy Maud Montgomery.

Movie – “Rännstensungar” (Guttersnipes).

Food – anything spicy, but please, spicy, not sour or sweet and just imitating real spicy food.

You? 🙂

Question of the day (1st October).

Let’s assume I’m popping to yours next evening, so what have you got planned?

My answer:

Well if any of you guys were going to visit me next evening, I’d definitely feel more comfortable if you’d let me know a bit earlier. If so, I could prepare some yummy food with my Mum. I’d ask my Dad to smoke some meat for ya, we’d have homemade bread and my Mum’s great fruit crumble, we have still so much fruit. I’d ask Mum to make some delicious dinner, maybe something particularly Polish like pierogi or something like this. We’d have some snacks too. I’dintroduce you to Misha and Sasha, although please don’t expect too interest from Misha, he’s got too many surprises recently and may not seem overly enthusiastic. I’d show you around our house and backyard, we’d talk about whatever we’d like to talk about, and do other things you’d like to do, I’m sure we’d come up with something else when you’d be already here.


Question of the day (28th September).

When was the last time you had to follow instructions?

My answer:

Today, from my Mum, when I was learning to clean our little kids’ new litterbox. It’s the kind I can clean, when you shake it the poo is separated from the sand so you can take it out easily.

How about you?

Question of the day.

So this week is the week in which you…?

My answer:

…feel a bit better than last week. Have a lot of changes to get used to. Have my laptop back and am catching up on things and getting used to all the new things in it. Am getting to know my new cat Sasha and still worrying about Misha. Thinking hypothetically about a new name for Sasha because Zofijka now says she doesn’t like Sasha, and although I think the names match well together, I also am not sure now if Sasha is actually a good choice. We’d like a Russian name, although Zofijka comes up with loads of very common-sounding names like Lucky, Rocky, Happy, Ozzy. Ozzy’s good, but, uh… Ozzy Osbourne… I have mixed feelings. And it certainly doesn’t match Misha at all. Misha and Ozzy… Meh. We thought about Dima, Mitya, Pyetya, Nikita, ugh, no, it doesn’t fit him at all. My Dad suggested Grisha, but it’s way too matchy, he even suggested Putin, but, oh well, do I have to comment? 😀 So we just don’t know, I silently hope he stays Sasha, even though I’m doubtful myself if it’s the right decision. Am looking forward to horse riding, but still don’t know when that happens exactly.

How about your week? 🙂

Question of the day.

What was the last thing you doodled on a piece of paper?

My answer:

Doodling sounds like a fab activity, but since I am blind, in my case it’s rather pointless and not the easiest thing to do, I guess. So I don’t thik I’ve ever doodled anything in my entire life. 😀

How about you? 🙂

Question of the day.

Did you have coffee or tea, this morning? If so, how did you take it?

My answer:

I often have both, coffee before breakfast and then tea with breakfast, but today I just had tea. Raspberry tea. It’s my favourite one right now. Mum bought lump sugar recently, we don’t usually use it but she just said it’s more fun haha, so we’re now using it, so I’ve had raspberry tea with two sugars.

How about you? 🙂

Question of the day.

What was the last thing you texted (add context if you’d like)?

My answer:

The last thing I texted was last Saturday (now you get the idea how often I text with anyone 😀 ) and it was to Zofijka: “Sofi if you want to talk to Mum call me her phone is dead”. And that’s about it.

How about you? 🙂

Question of the day.

How is the weather?
My answer:
It’s about 15 C., rather cloudy and windy, recently we have a lot of warm days, and it still feels warm, but it’s cooler than even yesterday, and it’s definitely not hot. How is it where you are? 🙂

Question of the day.

If you HAD to pick a favourite sport, what would it be? You can’t say “none” or “pass”.

My answer:

Horse riding, obviously! I haven’t been riding for more than half a year now myself because of my instructor not being available, my exams, skin infections and other adventures, but I like to learn more about it, even if I can’t ride. And I am very disciplined in this matter.

Which would you choose? 🙂

Question of the day.

Would you ever tell your hairstylist to do whatever they felt like doing to your hair?

My answer:

Nope. Never. Very many hairstylists don’t do what you ask them to do even if it’s very speciffic, so, in my opinion it’s way too risky.

Would you?