I had to make one of the toughest decisions of my life this year. I could put a third hole in my head, or I could put my Big Girl Panties on and carry on…with some modifications.

On January 13, my life changed forever. I had lost vision, and I  was rushed to the hospital. My condition is called a pseudotumor, or more simply, water on the brain. I had three surgeries in three months, and I was labeled “legally blind.”

Maybe it was just the word “blind.” It seemed so final to me. Everything in my world relied on sight. Watching my Goddaughter grow up. Seeing Broadway shows. Exploring new places and my passion for travel. And my devotion to my writing career.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve discovered that I don’t have to miss out on a single thing.

Being legally blind doesn’t mean that you can’t see anything. You see in shadows in dim light. The bright sunshine, though, is too much for me.

But I know now that I can still see my little sweetie’s face when she gets really close to tell me she loves me or to give me a kiss. I can still thoroughly enjoy a Broadway musical, and I can hear little things that I missed before — like the subtle nuances of the triangle player in the orchestra. I can certainly still travel.

And with the help of coke bottle glasses and software for the vision impaired, I can still write the stories floating in my head and burning in my heart.

My low-vision specialist even has hopes that we can work on helping me to see better at the theater.

And I’m proud of myself. Throughout my life, everyone has always told me two things about my personality — you’re funny…and you’re strong. Admittedly, I let myself wallow for a couple of weeks. But then I started to realize that life doesn’t end just because I can’t see so well.

After my third surgery — I had a shunt placed in my head to drain the water from my brain — I realized that I was still funny and stronger than ever. I certainly don’t want my Goddaughter to look back and think that I wimped out. I want her to see that you can conquer the the curves on this road called life.

Right now, my biggest gripe with being blind is stepping in cat vomit.

As for those holes in my head, I’ll keep them at two. However, I still maintain that neurosurgeons are the new dentists. I mean, it’s no secret I like a Dominant man, but pure sadism isn’t my thing. I make that accusation with the authority of having dealt with two neurosurgery teams — both of which left me muttering, “Sorry about your penis…”

Right now, it’s business as usual as I learn how to be blind. I have to be trained to use a white cane. I guess they want to teach me how to avoid hitting people on the subway. I’ve already decided that manspreaders at rush hour don’t apply to that rule.

And I’m still writing. BLEMISHED is almost in its final form. You’ll see it in September. I just have to make up my mind whether I want to do an erotic paranormal or something a little lighter to take a break from the weight of this year so far. I’ve also plotted a series of standalones that will likely start next year. When I come up for air.

And I’m planning a trip to Scotland to see a dear friend. We can still have fun and enjoy our time together. She’s the same person she was before I went blind, and so am I.

Maybe I’ll even have some Scotch and find out what’s really under those kilts! You know…get a little carried away with the white cane, and…OOPS!

Am I happy about going blind? Oh, hell to the no. Would I change it if I could? Of course, I would. But I’m not going to sit around and cry about something that can’t be changed. There’s still a big world out there that I haven’t experienced to its full extent yet.

Now, if I could just get the cat to stop hurling all over the place…


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Juliet Braddock loves eighties music, wine, food, theater and all things French. When she’s not exploring the big cities of the world—most notably Paris—she lives and writes in Manhattan, and is the proud cat mom to a very spoiled Russian Blue rescue.

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