Their Story Their Voice

Seeing Beyond Blindness: A Remarkable Journey to Success

October 12, 2022 AO / Amanda Heal Season 1 Episode 13
Their Story Their Voice
Seeing Beyond Blindness: A Remarkable Journey to Success
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Amanda Heal is a remarkable woman who has overcome incredible challenges in her life. Despite being blind since birth, Amanda has never let her disability define her. Born prematurely at just 26 weeks, weighing a mere one pound, 9 ounces (750 grams), she has displayed extraordinary resilience and determination. Throughout her career, Amanda has ventured into various fields. She began her professional journey as a lawyer, working in the government sector. However, in 2014, she faced a setback when she was laid off from her job. This unexpected turn of events, though initially disheartening, prompted Amanda to embark on a soul-searching journey to find her true calling. During her quest to discover her life's purpose, Amanda had an epiphany: she was meant to inspire and encourage others. Harnessing her own experiences and the unwavering courage she had developed over the years, she decided to transition into becoming a motivational inspirational speaker. Today, Amanda dedicates her life to helping business leaders and their teams build resilience by nurturing their own courage. Through her powerful talks, she shares her unique perspective and offers practical strategies for overcoming adversities and embracing challenges head-on. Amanda Heal is a living testament to the human spirit's ability to triumph over adversity. Her story serves as a powerful reminder that each of us has the strength within to face any obstacle and emerge stronger on the other side.

Please note transcription accuracy may vary.

Music:
(Neffex - A year ago)
(Neffex - dont want to let myself go)



Links:
https://purposevisionfuture.com
- Amanda's website
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Seeing-Vision-Not-Sight-Discover/dp/1636180248 - Amanda's Book
https://amandaheal.com.au/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Everyone-Communicates-Few-Connect-Differently/dp/0785214259
https://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2018/05/curious-case-blind-baby-epidemic/
https://www.rnib.org.uk
https://www.jeangreenhowe.com
https://www.ndis.gov.au
https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/aira/id1071584352
https://aira.io

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Amanda Heal:

There are people that it does define and it's really hard to talk to them cuz all they talk about is their blindness. But my blindness doesn't define me, It's just happens to be something that happened.

AO:

Welcome to another episode of chataholic This episode I am speaking to Amanda. Amanda's going to talk to us about her journey. Hi, Amanda. Would you be kind enough to introduce yourself? Tell us a bit about you. And as i always say what ever you are happy sharing and why you wanted to share your story.

Amanda Heal:

Well, I am totally blind. I have been since birth. I was born at 26 weeks back in 1970, and I weighed one pound, nine ounces or 750 grams. And I guess I should give you the short version. I've done various things. I've been worked as a lawyer, in government. And then I was laid off in 2014 and I started on a journey to discover my life's purpose, which I did, which is to inspire and encourage others. And now I am motivational slash inspirational speaker, helping business leaders and their teams build their resilience by building their courage.

AO:

I have a few questions which you can answer or you cannot answer completely up to you. So I wanted to speak to you because obviously you mentioned when you contacted me that you were a premature baby back in the seventies. And I did a little bit of research, only a little bit of research. And there is a professor in Australia because Amanda is in Australia who basically explains that in the seventies when you were born. They, it was when oxygen first came to Australia to help premature babies, but it had been around since the 1940s. However, just because I found this really interesting, it was because of the oxygen that they put in the incubators that for actually caused babies to be blind.

Amanda Heal:

correct?

AO:

Right. Okay. Because I didn't want to say stuff. That actually. It Is incorrect to your situation so i just wanted to check

Amanda Heal:

No, no, that's, that's fine. I've got retinopathy prematurity. And what happens is the oxygen causes abnormal formation of blood vessels on the retina, which then bleed and scar causing the retinas to detach.

AO:

What was it like growing up for you because you've achieved so many things. You've achieved things that people who aren't visually impaired aren't blind have no disabilities have not managed to achieve. So would you just be able to, just give me a brief overview of what life growing up was like for you. And at what point you decided I can actually do whatever I want to do. I'm not limited by being blind.

Amanda Heal:

Well, I had two very interesting parents who were kind of polar opposites of each other. My mom, she pretty much said to me, as long as you do your best, that's enough. You know proud of you. And so that was, that was that I got all the praise and reassurance and encouragement, everything from my mom, my dad, I think, deep down, he never really coped with my blindness and he was very much you have to be better than your peers to compete on equal ground. So he was always pushing me. You've gotta be better. You've gotta be better. What, you know, you got nine out of 10 for your assignment. What did you do wrong? And not in a constructive way. Oh, you know, what did you do wrong? You know, why didn't you get 10 out of 10? Whereas my mom went, you did your best. You got nine out of 10. I'm so proud of you. whereas dad was always making me strive to be better, which I think was a very thinking back now. Was a very healthy mix. I found it very hard at the time because I felt that I could never please my father and he died in 2018 and I've spent the last few years kind of dealing with. The reasons why we didn't get on dad and I didn't get on cuz we didn't. we fought a lot and he was very jealous of me of my mom's attention. Let, let me tell you a story. When I was about five I'm sitting in my mom's car and she said, What do you wanna do when you grow up? And I said, oh, I wanna be a nurse. Cause my mom had been a nurse. And she said, oh, why do you wanna be a nurse darling? And. I said, oh, cause nurses put bandages on people and they make them feel better. And she said, yes, they do. But they do other things as well. She said, they make lots of beds and you don't like making beds. Do I went, oh no, no. Don't like making beds. And she said in the empty bed pants, and I said, what a bed pants? And she told me, and I was like, oh no, gosh, no, I don't wanna be a nurse.

AO:

I don't wanna be a nurse anymore.

Amanda Heal:

No, no. Whereas my dad, 20 years later, when I was studying law, I said, I could be a judge and dad said, don't be so bloody stupid. Of course you can't be a judge. And that's kind of, yeah. I mean, there are American blind judges in the us, but you know, that was the way he, you know, you are blind. Of course you can't be a judge. Judge, don't be so stupid. And you know, that's whereas mom, she didn't wanna crush my spirit. So she told me all the things that I didn't want to do that nurses did. Whereas my, so yeah, so my mom never told me I couldn't do anything ever.

AO:

I think I, yeah, I, you think it's great that you had two parents whose attitudes were completely different and then there's the part of me that thinks it's great that your dad wanted you to be the best that you could be. But predominantly the main thing that I think is that's very harsh.

Amanda Heal:

it gave me a work ethic. it made me stubborn. It's like, don't you tell me I can't do something cuz I will find a way.

AO:

Before, when we started recording. I don't know what was happening, but there was some issues. So I emailed Amanda and said, Amanda it's okay. we can rearrange if there's issues. And I could see her on the video just underneath the table just fiddling around with stuff and I thought to myself. Nope. She's not giving up. She is going to do this And it does not matter what time it is in Australia. Or in the UK, she's not giving up. Our attitude is she's very She doesn't give up easily because personally I would have just been like, Yeah, let's just let's just rearrange, but no, not Amanda. That's not who she is. Even over really small things like doing this she was like, no. no. We said today and we're doing it today

Amanda Heal:

No, I've, we are meant to do the zoom interview and, and you know, something's not right. And we'll stay until we find out what it is. yeah, so it's, it's made me stubborn, which means that I don't give up, which means I try things which terrify me because I wanna do them. And so I think the combination of mom and dad praises what drive is kind of what fuels me, but stubbornness also drives me too..

AO:

At what point did you decide that Law was the path that you wanted Because I know this from my nephew, cuz he's studying law in America. He's doing the bar exam next year and. I know from speaking to him, how much work goes into it's a lot of work. It's the equivalent of in my head being a Doctor it's not for the faint hearted. So why did you choose law?

Amanda Heal:

Well, when I was in high school, I got to do work experience. And so I got to do lots of different things. One of them was being a Physiotherapist and I just loved it because it was making people feel better. It's all about making people feel better. And so I decided I wanna be a Physiotherapist. And so back then in 1988, Eight pre Disability Discrimination Legislation. They all threw up their hands. The physio schools in Australia went, oh, good grief. We can't have you, your blind how could we possibly train you. So I had to go to the North London school of Physiotherapy. and that's where they specialized in training blind people had since closed now, but I had to go to London. My mom had to sell her car and you know, all different things to raise the money, to go to London at 16,000 pounds a term for board and education. And so went off to London and 16 weeks into the training, they said, oh, good grief. You can't be a Physiotherapist, you've got spatial awareness problems. Which in practical terms doesn't really affect me that much, but like, I can't carry trays or bowls of soup, or if I'm in a very large room, I can get easily disorientated, but it does affect you if you're trying to say, teach someone to walk or something like that. which is crazy, cuz blind physios generally don't do that. Anyway. They go into private practice and do your next backs and knees. But anyway, I'm sitting in my aunt's lounge room in Devon, crying, going, oh, I wanted to be, was a physio. And she said, you've got a good brain. Why didn't you study law? And my darling aunt, I mean, she had a, she had a hidden agenda. One grandchild. She, convinced to be a Doctor. Another was a teacher and she had me as a Lawyer and the fourth grandchild, she said he was going to be a Prime Minister, but that kind of didn't work out But so my dear aunt, she was the one who steered me into Law and I'd signed up for commerce and I'd because I liked numbers, I didn't really know anything about what it was, but signed up for commerce and deferred for a year. Because our academic year goes from January. Onwards through to November December. And of course the UK academic year starts in August, September. So I deferred for my commerce degree for a year just in case. And so I got back to Australia in January and said, oh, I wanna study law. And they went, all your marks are too low. But you can still do commerce and it's like, oh, okay, fine. So I kind of forgot about law and started doing commerce, which was alright. Wasn't great. But, and in the second year of commerce, I did introductory business Law, which I absolutely loved cuz we had this wonderful lecture. He was the most amazing storyteller. And I still remember the stories of the cases, but I can't remember the case Law anymore. That's how good his stories were. And so I hassled the Dean of the Law school. He allowed me to wouldn't let me transfer into Law, but he said, well, you can pick up law and do a combined commerce law degree, which is what I did. So that's how I got into law.

AO:

And you did that for, was it 17 years?

Amanda Heal:

yes. I was a government life for 17 years. Yes.

AO:

Okay. you would've gone to court. I'm imagining

Amanda Heal:

I didn't that much. I went to court three times. I was mainly doing advice work.

AO:

Right. Okay. Because I just wanted to, I guess I was wondering how were other people's perception of you.

Amanda Heal:

The, the court staff and the Chief Magistrate who I was in front of, we were actually taking evidence by video link when that was just starting off. In fact, I wrote a paper on it and we were taking evidence from a guy in Australia in a murder trial. He had witnessed a murder from his second story window while he was looking down on a Scottish pub. He witnessed a murder. And so the House of Lords was running the trial and he was now in Australia and it was cheaper to get his evidence by video link. Everyone was wonderful. The Chief Magistrate just treated me like a normal person and all the court staff were lovely. And yeah, everyone just talk treated me like a normal lawyer, which was great

AO:

You're very intellectual. And I did think to myself when I knew I was gonna speak to you and I thought, I don't think people who have no disabilities who have all their senses have achieved as many things as you have. And. I don't know, this is why I like speaking to people who have a story, because it just puts everything into perspective for me, because I then think everyone complains about all of these irrelevant things all the time. And then when I speak to different people, different journeys, different lives. It just reminds me that. There's there's no excuse. We have, we have no excuse to not be our best

Amanda Heal:

absolutely.

AO:

Can I ask of all the things that you've done? What would you say to date is your proudest achievement? Because there is a lot more that you have done. It's not just about the Law. What is your proudest achievement

Amanda Heal:

I know this is gonna sound crazy and, but my, one of my proudest achievements is Well, there's a couple there's going through a being laid off or a redundancy we call it in Australia was I think one of the hardest things I've ever had to do and to actually pick up and start a business and learn all that I had to learn to run a business. That's that was huge. But the thing I keep going back to is my biggest fear was getting lost. And I used to catch buses to and from school and two of'em from university and to, and from work for the first couple of years. And then I was able to find people who would drive me to work, cuz they worked in the same place. So I'd get lifts with them. And that was great. So I didn't catch a bus for 20 years. And then I was offered a job as PR speaker for the guide dogs, new south Wales, a C T and they said, oh, you know, you'll, you'll have to use public transport. as much as you can to get to the speaking engagements. And I pretty much almost threw up in the interviewer's lap when she said that, because I'd become convinced that if I caught a bus on my own, I would get lost. And that would be a disaster. In fact, even a bus going by would make my heart race until it had gone. It's like, oh, thank goodness. I don't don't have catch that nasty bus and I don't have to get lost. And everything's okay. I've been known to sit in the gutter and sob until someone's come along because I've got lost. So that was pretty huge. And thankfully someone came along, put me on the right track. But I decided I wanted the job and I just finished reading John Maxwell's book, everyone communicates few connect and he was talking about communicating with authenticity. And I thought I can't stand up in front of crowds of people and say, oh yes, I'm an independent guide dog user if I catch taxis everywhere and get driven everywhere. So I did two weeks intensive training and I went to catch buses and now I travel all over Canberra by bus to speak. I've also traveled internationally on aircraft because I now know what to do, what to ask who to speak to how to stay calm. And so I know I can travel pretty much anywhere in the world.

AO:

I think I find it amazing just because you were so scared of buses and getting lost and you've just said, now you can travel anywhere in the world that you want to

Amanda Heal:

It still scares me. Don't get me wrong. It still scares me,

AO:

but you still do it.

Amanda Heal:

yep. I can now knit in between stops on buses. And when I'm traveling, when I'm sitting in air, airport lounges and waiting for the person to come back and put me on their aircraft, I'm on sort of on super red alert and I've got my cane out and I'm listening to everybody and listening to the announcements and, you know, so it's still not a relaxing thing to do, but I wanna do it. So I do it.

AO:

I do love that you have this attitude of no, I'm not going to let my fears hold me back. I'm just going to do it. I have, this is very random. I listened to a podcast a few weeks ago about a man who wasn't born blind. His vision deteriorated And he then became blind. And this is such a random question, but I have to ask. And one of the things he said, which really stuck with me was when he lost his vision, It's almost as if he became some type of free counselor for people.

Amanda Heal:

Yes. I found it too, too.

AO:

Thank you so much. Cause I wanted to ask and I thought, I think this might be bad asking this question,

Amanda Heal:

mom always used to say to me that I'm safe. I'm a safe bet though. The broken ones come to me and it's like, but I don't want the broken ones to come to me. At least I didn't, when I was younger,

AO:

I don't understand it. I don't understand why people would think because someone can't see then I don't personally, understand

Amanda Heal:

maybe they see them somehow as a lesser form. And they're so therefore they're not threaten. Perhaps, I don't know. I, that went through a stage in my life where drunks would always come up to me in the city. They come up to put their arms around. It's like, go away, go away. Yeah. So I don't, thankfully that has now passed. Don't it doesn't seem to happen anymore. Yeah, so it's it's yeah, strange.

AO:

I know it's such a random question, but I couldn't logically work out why people would do that. And then it entered my head and I thought I'm going to ask Amanda, She could say yes I can relate to that. I find it bizarre, but I just wanted to ask,

Amanda Heal:

Sure. I have never been asked that question before. that's that's fun. I have since trained as a life coach though. So I do, on rare occasions now will coach people and counsel them.

AO:

I guess I want to know what, obviously I live in the United Kingdom, as far as I'm aware, and I don't know if it's okay for me to say this because obviously I don't have disability, but as far as I'm aware, we are quite good. We're quite good with our homes that we build. I know this from studying surveying We've got a lot of laws in place. We have our acts in place. What is it like in Australia for people who are disabled?

Amanda Heal:

It really depends on your disability. I mean, when I was over in England the Royal national Institute for the blind was awesome. And, still is awesome. As far as I know, there's equipment you can get and it's cheaper and it's easy to get. And in fact, some of the equipment we get here comes from the UK and some of the books and such in fact, I'm an avid knitter and the Royal national Institute for the blind or the RNIB Had all of Jean Greenhouse knitting books in brail or a lot of them. And so I got my cousin in the UK. I couldn't order them from here. So my cousin ordered them for me and then posted them to me. So I have a whole heap of braille books, full of patterns for knitted Teddy bears. And. Different dolls and clowns and animals and all sorts of things. So, and she's a darling Scottish lady who I actually emailed and said, oh, thank you for your patterns. They're so good. There's no mistakes in them. And she actually emailed back, which was so cool. but we do have really good disability legislation. There still is some degree of. Discrimination, but, you know, things are slowly getting better. We've got the national disability insurance scheme, which some people have had negative experiences with, but I came in right at the beginning. So it's actually been really good for me. So that enables you to kind of, buy equipment and the government pays for it and that sort of thing, which is great, but there's this new, awesome service now, which we have in Australia. And I think you've got it in the. It's called AIRA, which is stands for artificial Intelligence, remote assistance. And you can use an app on your phone and you can call an agent who's in America and they use the camera on your phone to describe stuff, which is amazing.

AO:

Excellent

Amanda Heal:

yep. So it's, it's great. it's a game changer and in fact, their motto is independence on your terms. I can say, oh, is this the red wall or the green wall or the dogs thrown up? Can you tell me where it's and if I've cleaned it up properly and you know, also anything you can ask them to describe.

AO:

Oh, that's really good. is that free?

Amanda Heal:

To a point you can get five minutes of assistance for free. There are various offers you can use. So if you are at Sydney airport, for example, or you are doing a small business task or you are looking for a job or you are getting a COVID test. That's all free. but the rest you have to pay a monthly subscription for

AO:

I always want to know what life is like for people who aren't in the United Kingdom. I'm just always interested. And I say this and at some point I'll speak someone in the UK who will say no, I think we are really lucky over here. It's not perfect, but nowhere's perfect. But I do think we are quite lucky.

Amanda Heal:

It's pretty good. Yeah. You guys have way more audio described TV than we do. We're still fiddling around the edges and getting a few hours a week here and a few hours a week there, but your audio described TV is awesome. In fact, a lot of the stuff that we get comes from you. In fact, some of the UK audio describers almost feel like old friends now. An audio description is where. There'll be a silence. And they'll say he scratched his head and looked thoughtful or he made a fist and was about to punch someone or, you know what not? And they did. They describe in between the dialogue what's happening.

AO:

I have actually seen it. I've seen it on BBC and I'm sure I've seen it on Channel Four as well. I don't want to say as someone who obviously has full use of my senses and always has that it's good over here. So it's reassuring hearing that from someone else, especially someone who cuz you came you were in the United Kingdom, you studied here.

Amanda Heal:

I was, I was there for three months.

AO:

It's nice to hear. I like to hear positive things

Amanda Heal:

Do you know, in some countries you can't actually enter into a contract or even get a credit card if you're blind, which horrify me.

AO:

No, I didn't. We were doing so well. I And you manage to you manage to tell me something that's now made me think what countries are these we're in 2022 people come on

Amanda Heal:

I know Malaysia and India. I know of cuz I've spoken to people from those countries and they can't get credit cards. They can't they can open bank accounts, but that's pretty much it because their government says, oh, you are blind. You can't see, you can't sign, you can't read. And it's like, someone can read it to me and I can sign where you put the pen. Crazy,

AO:

I'm not that naive, but we are in 2022. And. Actually with range of disabilities and that's not just physical, that's mental as well. We're all, we're all the same. And I don't understand how we're in 2022 and there's countries that don't understand that. it blows my mind. That's what I usually say. When someone tells me something shocking,

Amanda Heal:

Yeah, me too. I was horrified

AO:

you do talks and you would do speeches and it's not just correct me if I'm wrong, but it's not just for businesses. Isn't it really about motivation?

Amanda Heal:

Yes. I mean, my, I decided I had to pick a target market, so I picked businesses, but it doesn't have to be businesses. I'm building my speaking career. I'm at the beginning of it. So, you know, heck anyone out there in podcast land, if you want encouragement. If you want motivation I'll speak to you and motivate you and encourage you. Answer to your question about why I wanna share my story. I wanna encourage others and inspire them.

AO:

I think more so since obviously the pandemic and just the general state of the world now. I think everyone's looking for a little bit of inspiration wherever they can get it.

Amanda Heal:

Absolutely. We've become scared all this uncertainty. And I mean, gosh, I've found it hard too. I I've been plenty scared over the last few years. But yeah, it's, it's, you've just gotta get up and, you know, do what you wanna do put your mask on, you know, take a deep breath, wash your hands. Yeah. And, and just get out there and do what you wanna do. It's not gonna go away anytime soon.

AO:

No, it's not. And that is what you have been doing. Well, that's what you've been doing throughout your life. Really? You've just been getting on and doing, yeah. You remind me of one of my other podcast, guests Harriet you have the same energy. And I remember saying to her, I wish I could bottle up some of her energy and just give it away to people. And I get that same feeling from you.

Amanda Heal:

Oh, I'm so pleased. Thank you.

AO:

It's a really nice way to be. Telling your story, hasn't just been through podcasts or through speeches. but you've written quite a few books. Can you please tell me? Your latest book is called Seeing by Vision and not by Sight. can you explain the title to me? Because I know it's significant, but I want you to explain why, what does that mean?

Amanda Heal:

It is all about looking, within, it's all about having dreams. It's all about getting a vision for your life, because what, what the book is actually about is how I discovered my life's purpose and how readers can discover theirs. And so there's a lot of reflection. Self reflection is a lot of looking back at your past, examining your past, examining your present and examining your passions and dreams. So. Yes. So you are seeing my vision, not by sight, you know, what's right in front of your nose. And what seems obvious, you are doing a bit of digging and you are mining that gold. I say, discovering your purposes, like mining for gold. Some people it's just on the surface so we can pick it up or pan it out of a river. Other people have to dig down. Under a life of doing other things and forgotten dreams, and then you have to get the rock out and then you have to crush it and then you have to refine it. And then eventually the goal comes out and that's your life's purpose? That's what it was like for me. I took four years of digging and reflecting and trying things and failing and trying again.

AO:

I think you have. I can't remember who it is, but I know there's a lot of people who have been really successful, who said they got to where they needed to get to through failure.

Amanda Heal:

Totally. I'm just hoping that my book will perhaps shorten that journey or lessen the number of failures that people have to go through by following that three step process to discover their life's purpose. There's questions in there. There's exercises, there's different things. So it's a very interactive book. I was, I used to have terrible trouble with books when I was at law school and using a document scanner and back then, they weren't particularly accurate and used to take, you know, A minute or two per page to scan. And one thing I absolutely hated was that when people used to highlight library books, because the scanner wouldn't read the print when it was highlighted. I, I used to think writing in books as a crime, but this one I encourage you to write. So my books meant for writing.

AO:

So it is interactive. It is supposed to get whoever's reading the book engaged. With the content

Amanda Heal:

Definitely. but it's a bit biographical as well.

AO:

So I actually will get it

Amanda Heal:

It is available on Kindle. it's also available as a hard cover write in it type book. Yeah. You can take notes on Kindle I think. Yeah.

AO:

Yes. Yes you can. You can.

Amanda Heal:

Excellent.

AO:

I saw somewhere that you do a podcast and I wanted to listen to it, but I didn't actually know what the name was. So I wanted to ask you so I could actually listen,

Amanda Heal:

it's called the do what you love podcast, if you go onto my purposevision future.com, that's my everything else website. And you can get to my podcast from there. But my speaker site is Amandaheal.com.au and I haven't linked to my podcast from there, it is on apple music iTunes, And apple music, apple podcasts, and Spotify, and all the different places. It's just the one by Amanda heal.

AO:

I wanted to ask other knitting, what are your other hobbies? Where do you get your enjoyment from?

Amanda Heal:

Knitting a lot. I do that a great deal, and so much so that I had to go from needle knitting to loom knitting, cuz the needles were putting holes in my reading fingers. So I couldn't read anymore. I like spending time with close friends, eating out. I love reading, I'm reading the Outlander series the second time. So I love kind of fantasy type sci-fi books and that sort of thing. So listening to audio books

AO:

would you just tell me what is a typical day in your life? How does your day start and how does it end

Amanda Heal:

I've developed a very bad habit of checking my email when I first wake up, that was cuz I was working for a group in America and they often used to have very early morning calls and I always checked my email just in case they were canceled and I could go back to sleep. So I start my email, my day checking my email. Then I have breakfast. Look at the news, read the Bible a bit. Then I can do any number of things applied to go on podcasts like yours. I'm always looking at, you know, doing those sorts of things. Perhaps it's writing a speech perhaps today I got a backdrop delivered. Got my new backdrop delivered and had a coaching session with a guy on E cam, how to use that properly. I spent a lot of time helping my almost 90 year old. She lives just over the back fence from me. she's just bought a house over the back fence from me. So we've got a little path going through and she was helping me with my backdrop today, but you know, I'll go over tomorrow and put something up on the wall for her or fix her phone or, you know, do some other things. So spend a lot of time with her. How I end my day. I usually watch the TV and knit And drink wine. And then I like to go to sleep reading an audiobook.

AO:

Okay. What audiobook are you currently listening to? this is the most I've gone completely off on a tangent

Amanda Heal:

I'm about to start the drums of autumn, which is the fourth book in the Outlander series for the second time, because I read all the books really quickly. And then there was a big pause and then tell the bees I'm gone, came out and I was reading it going, oh, I can't remember who these people are. So I'm reading the whole series again. So I'm starting drums of autumn tonight.

AO:

Okay. Thank you so much. I've had so much fun You're really easy to talk to.

Amanda Heal:

Likewise. It's just like a chat. It's not, you know, the stock standard questions. It's, it's been fun.

AO:

I don't know if I, at some point need to stop making cuz my sister-in-law listens. And she said to me, you need to make it less chatty, less, less chatty. And more, more to the point

Amanda Heal:

Whatever works. Every podcast is different. Mine are very structured. I used to have quite, I did a couple of interviews. Yeah, mine was very structured, but that's how I am. That's okay.

AO:

I have questions. As long as I get my questions out. I'm happy. I just like to know about people. I wanted to do the podcast because I wanted to inspire people who listen with other people's stories, but I've found that the more I do them, the more. I'm also getting something out of them.

Amanda Heal:

Are you someone with an inspiring story as well?

AO:

Not one that I have the courage of ever sharing. I feel like a bit of a hypocrite. Because someone, one of my guests asked me this and I said, don't think I have that confidence to share my story.

Amanda Heal:

I mean, I don't think that I don't think that what I do is special. It's just me, but other people find it special, and encouraging so great. I'll use that to their advantage.

AO:

you have a certain energy. It's very calming. It's very positive. I can understand why people are drawn to you. Why people find you inspirational. I can. And that's actually got nothing to do with, I dont know if this is the wrong thing to say, but speaking to you at no point in time, have I thought to myself. Oh, but she's but she's blind. I, I don't know if that's the wrong thing to say or if it's the right thing to say, but I don't feel like it to me anyway. it doesn't define you.

Amanda Heal:

There are people that it does define, and it's really hard to talk to them, cuz all they talk about is their blindness. But yeah, my blindness doesn't define me. It's just happens to be something that happened

AO:

So thank you. Before you go. If you have. One positive message to just give to people.

Amanda Heal:

Sure if you are feeling overwhelmed. If you are facing challenge, which seems a little bit too big, just dig down deep inside and grab out that courage that I know is within you. And you will be just fine.

AO:

Awesome. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Bye Loved Amanda. She was like talking to an old friend and I'm so sorry, because I went off on several tangents. Anyhoo please join me on my next episode, where I will be speaking to. Another lovely person called Terry. I want to say I don't go off on a tangent too much. But that might be a lie. See you soon

(Cont.) Seeing Beyond Blindness: A Remarkable Journey to Success

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