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'Free stuff, avoiding chores, hero status...' Woman whose MS left her legally blind lists the unexpected 'perks' of her condition in witty online post

  • Ardra Shephard, 39, has lived with multiple sclerosis for 15 years but the first symptom she suffered was loss of sight
  • Her MS led her to have a condition known as optic neuritis which caused her to go almost totally blind
  • The Toronto, Canada, resident, who blogs about her experiences, says finding humor in 'sometimes awful and difficult' situations helps her bond
  • In optimistic blog post she shares the 'perks' of being declared blind
Ardra, who describes her current eyesight as 'low vision', was diagnosed with MS 15 years ago - her vision going was her very first symptom.

She said losing any amount of sight is 'gross and scary' and that she would not wish it on anyone - not even her 'worst enemy' - but determined to find positives in the situation, she claims to have discovered a number of benefits.

'My peepers and I occasionally travel back to abysmal but mostly we live in semi-functional town,' she wrote in a witty blog post on Tripping on Air.

'I have experienced almost nothing more terrifying than this back and forth flirtation with total vision loss. But I am exceedingly grateful for the eyesight that remains.

'Because it could get worse. In fact, it might get worse.'

She added: 'MS disability is never static and the superstition prevails that if I am not thankful for what's left, that too will be yanked away.

'And so in an attempt to appease the optic nerve gods, I offer my most sincere gratitude with respect to my blind-ass status.'

Listing the 'positives' of being legally blind, she said she gets discounts on movies, sports events, museums, theater tickets and on the train for a 20/20 vision companion.

She said being banned from driving as a result of her blind status, means she is living a more environmentally-friendly life. It also means Ardra and her husband are a one-car household.

Her eyesight, she said, makes other people look like they have been 'lightly airbrushed'.

Attempting to make light of the issue, she declared herself 'a human Instagram filter'.

Other benefits, she said, means she can experiment with hair and makeup trends without worrying about comments from others.

'Nobody can talk smack about you because what kind of asshole makes fun of a blind person?' She said.

Other benefits include getting taxis - and Uber Blacks when she is 'feeling extra fancy' - having an excuse for not remembering people or walking into things, and not helping paint friends' apartments.

She added: 'This may actually be the best and most legit benefit to losing your vision. I'm so sorry. I can't help. Blind.'

When traveling by air, she said her blind status means 'no line-ups' and sometimes means that she is able to take a sighted friend with her for free.
Ardra even advises people to exploit the prejudices of others.

'When people learn you are a blind-o they expect you will have some seriously heightened senses. Use your mad skills with confidence. Because you can smell lies and hear fear,' she writes.

The 'obvious winner' she said is drinking because she cannot be the designated driver and nobody can complain.

Ardra, who has worked as a translator, classical singer and a docent, said she started her blog because she could not find what she 'wanted to read' about living with MS.

She told Daily Mail Online: 'I’ve kept a diary my whole life and so the transition to blogger and writer just feels natural. It was important for me to tell a different story about MS.

Story Source: The above story is based on materials provided by DAILYMAIL
Note: Materials may be edited for content and length

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