Blind at Christmas - Holidays jolly despite not having sight

December 21, 2018
Herol Blackwood loves to spend Christmas with his family.
Damion Rose says Christmas is about family.
Naticia Lewin said that Christmas time is for family.

Christmas is a time when sparkling lights are used to adorn trees, buildings and walls. Shiny bows and other decorations are on full display as people catch the contagious seasonal fever. Members of the blind community are unable to enjoy the season's stunning visuals, but they insist that they are not missing out.

Damion Rose, who was born with glaucoma and has nystagmus, says that Christmas, for him, is about spending time with family.

"Christmas is more of a social thing for me because of work and other commitments. I don't see my family often, so I go and see them during that time. I get to interact with family and friends in the area where I come from [Westmoreland], have drinks and eat food," said Rose, who, works at the Jamaica Society for the Blind in Kingston.

He said that whenever his family carries him out during the Christmas holidays, they tend to describe the scenery to him in a manner that he can visualise it.

Herol Blackwood, who weaves baskets, said that he spends Christmas holidays with family. To him, the lights and the glamour do not matter.

"I always try to stay with my family. I don't do anything extra because mi just want to have a nice time where we can eat and drink, laugh," he said.

Another blind Jamaican, Naticia Lewin, said she usually goes home during the Christmas holiday.

"Back in 2015, I went to grand market, and I had a good time, but now I mostly stay at home," she said.

She said that Christmastime is for family, and she is happy with it that way.

"My mom cooks different types of meat, such as pork, chicken, and ham, and we stay home, drink, and have a good time. I love Christmas that way. I am not missing out on anything," she said.

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