"Initially I had doubts I would get a job or be able to move on in life after being left blind but I proved that attitude wrong. Instead of learning to live with blindness, I made the blindness learn to live with me! I was going to succeed and that was all that mattered."
- Robert Forde
I was born in April 1982. I had a childhood like any other average kid, playing football, cycling my bike, climbing trees, running into a neighbor’s garden to get my ball back and running back out quickly before they saw the damage the ball did to their flowers! Basically, name any random, relatively harmless, mischievous thing a kid gets up to and I’ve done it.
I attended primary school before moving on to secondary, making many friends along the way. I suffered headaches as a child but nothing that a painkiller wouldn’t cure. In my early teens my headaches started to get worse and the local doctor couldn’t figure what was wrong and why the headaches were so continuous and severe. I underwent several tests to see if the problem was allergy or sinus related but nothing came of them.
My headaches worsened and eventually one day I realized the eyesight in my right eye was deteriorating so my mother immediately took me into see the optician where they spotted pressure and referred me to a hospital for a brain scan. The results came back that I had a brain tumour leaning heavily on my optical nerve. We were terrified. The tumour had damaged the eyesight in both my eyes, the right eye being the worst effected. I had my first of eight operations on Monday 27th November 1995. They got the majority of the tumour but a tiny amount still remained.
Initially I had doubts I would get a job or be able to move on in life after being left blind but I proved that attitude wrong. Instead of learning to live with blindness, I made the blindness learn to live with me! I was going to succeed and that was all that mattered.
I enjoy sharing my outlook and experiences, and how my story can inspire other people to live life to its full potential.