Monday, December 19, 2022

Still Here

This tiny spot on the web used to be the place I called home. I would come here a few times a week and show my naked, blind ass to anyone that purposely or unintentionally walked pass my unshaded windows. I didn’t expose myself because I wanted to be famous; and not even because I ached for affirmation from the masses. I came here and did my thing for two reasons and two reasons only. I wanted to show the world what I see through these blind eyes of mine. And I guess I also wanted to get some shit off my chest. Some of the posts I wrote here are actually inspirational, informative, and shockingly enough some damn good writing. But some of the posts are rambling complaints about family and work. Clearly, some of the items I wrote were to unload and elevate myself above the BS I was experiencing in my daily life. Perhaps both were appropriate for this spot. I’m not sure. Either way, everything I shared here was true, authentic, fearless, bold, and a record of how and what I was feeling at that time. So, I’ll settle on being proud of my little home, even if I did abandon it years ago. I left my home because I worried that some of the lurkers would be my employers and other people I was trying to convince to pay me for Angie Braden services. I didn’t want this spot to deter them from thinking I was capable of being professional, mature, competent, and careful. However, I now wish I had remained here, in all my naked glory. I should’ve never let my fears stop me from being authentically me. Furthermore, I should’ve never gave up a spot that I carved out on the web. Because when I was here doing my thing, blogging while disabled wasn’t really a thing. I was truly one of the first. That, I’m proud of. So, Here I am. Still here... But not still here, at NuVision for a NuDay... But still in the land of the living... But I think I am going to consider coming back here to write, share, and show a little bit of these big thighs of mine. I presume that time will reveal whether or not my exhibitionist tendencies are still at play. Signing off... Angie Braden

Friday, September 25, 2015

Am I Still a Daughter?

As I read all the National Daughter's Day posts on Facebook, I was forced to pause and reflect for a second. I felt weird, being that I have no daughters of my own, yet I love three little girls (my nieces) immensely.

I also felt weird that I have spent 41 years of my life being a committed daughter to my mom, who is now gone from my physical presence forever as of September 2nd.

Does her physical absence somehow make me less of a daughter because I don't have a mom anymore?

Strangely enough, I do feel like I’m not fully a daughter anymore. I feel that I lost a piece of my daughter status when she slipped away from my grasp the early morning of September 2nd. I feel that as a daughter… A good daughter… I should’ve been able to do more to save her from leaving forever. I should’ve been able to do something to help her live without the physical burden of chronic illness and disability. In a way, I feel that my daughter powers failed my mom. And so, she left me, without me being able to do a damn thing about it.

It makes me sad to feel this way. But I get better every single day.

When Mama left me, I embraced the guilt of her pain, sickness, and even death. I punished myself for not making her life better. All of my friends and family told me to not beat myself up. They reminded me of how much I’ve sacrificed for my mother. But even though I knew all that they were saying was indeed the truth, I still felt like I should’ve done more.

Today, I don’t feel as guilty. But even in my dissipating guilt, I don’t feel that I’m as much as a daughter as I was prior to September 2nd.

I don’t feel motherless or orphaned. I just don’t feel like a fully functioning daughter anymore.

It’s strange. I guess this is just grief in all of its vivid, less than delightful colors.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Join Me at my New Spot!

Hey guys!
I haven't exactly fallen off the edge of the world wide web. I've only been absent here. Well, not really absent... My words and experiences are still here for anyone to read and reread as much as they would like. So, continue to enjoy my honest ramblings about my life and the disability I live with!
But if you're one of these folks that's looking for new content from me, I'd like to invite you to my public Facebook page.
There you will find inspirational content and articles that will hopefully offer you some insight, encouragement, and resolve to keep moving, no matter how dark it is around you.
Also, I wanted to let you know that I'll be launching a new blog that will likely be more revealing than this one. I'll be addressing my mid-life crisis, blindness, dating, friendship, and career issues. Stay tuned!
Oh, and by the way... Articles from me on a rage of subjects are floating around on the world wide web. Last year, I started writing for a online news platform that publishes news and commentary on African American issues. Wish I could point you to a few, but I really need to get back to grading papers. If you're interested, just google my name: Angela L. Braden. A few of the nearly 200 articles will surely pop up.
Take care of yourself. And don't forget to follow me over at Facebook. I'd love to have you as my lovely guest.
Smooches and well wishes!
Angela L. Braden

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Certified Daddy's Girl

A little over 40 years ago, I stepped out on the scene and started this thing called life. There were two people that vowed to help me from day one be the very best Angela I could be: Thurman and Margie. Since then, they have never left my side.

These two worked relentlessly to ensure that their daughter was smart, well rounded, pretty on the inside (Genes took care of the outside.), responsible, tenacious, confident, nice, gracious, even-tempered, and appropriate in most situations.

Let's keep it real.... Often times, mothers hold it down for us when fathers are somewhere lost doing other things. But in my situation, my father stuck by me all the way.

I have plenty Daddy stories to tell, but I'm going to tell this one.
When I first started losing my sight, I couldn't see the light blue lines on the writing paper we were required to use. I sat and watched Daddy carefully take a ruler and marker to trace bold lines on a piece of paper. He then took that sheet of paper to the copy center and ran off bright yello copies of the paper. The contrast of the yelo and black was so great, I had no problem seeing how to write on the lines. (Things went down hill from there. But that has nothing to do with Daddy's commitment to me. LOL)

So, from changing my diaper, to drawing lines on a sheet of paper, to visiting me every weekend in Austin at the school for the blind, to walking me across the stage at my college graduation, to running me back and forth to the hospital to visit my mother who had a stroke, to taking me to the pharmacy to pick up tampons, to dropping and picking me up from the beauty salon, and most recently taking me to Home Depot to buy the toilets and faucets he's going to install in my house: I can do nothing but Thank God that I'm Thurman's daughter.

Happy Birthday Daddy!!!!!!!! I love you so much! You are truly my super hero!
#nodaddyissueshere #wishihadapictogowiththispost #daddymakesithardforothermen #hesetthebarsohigh #wouldnthaveitanyotherwaythough

Monday, August 25, 2014

I may not need light to work, but my keyboard does.

It's probably not a good idea for a woman who doesn't need light to depend on a computer keyboard that requires light to maintain a workable energy level. I work all the time in the dark, never thinking about how I need to turn the light on or open the blinds to allow my wireless keyboard to recharge its battery via solar energy. I bought the keyboard thinking that the solarpowered technology was pretty cool, never considering that this blind woman would not be married to a lit up work area like most sighted folks. Oh, well... I still love my keyboard, even though it's quite unhappy with me these days.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Things My Mama Taught Me (Mother's Day 2014)

* To love and honor God.
* Never leave the house without earrings on.
* To greet people when I enter a room.
* To happily give up my seat to anyone that was older than me.
* Sit with my legs closed.
* That a woman's inner beauty was more important than what you could see on the outside.
* Keep your body and clothes clean.
* Don't let any man treat me less than what I'm worth.
* To problem solve.
* To get along with others, even when I didn't like them.
* To give to those in need.
* To be patient with others.
* To value education and information.
* To manage through difficult times.
* To stand up for myself and those that could not stand up for themselves.
* To love nature.
* To sing, laugh, and dance with heart.
* to express myself through creative channels.
* That nothing was wrong with being different from the crowd.
* How to clean any kitchen or bathroom, with or without sight.
* That offering someone a smile can make their day.
* How to think critically and solve problems that seems impossible to others.
* The love of music.
* How and why I should never think less of myself because I didn't have a man.
* How to be kind and compassionate to others.
* To play hard and work harder.
* To stand up for what I believed.
* That being a woman didn't mean that I was less than a man. I was just different than a man.
* To read, read, read, read, read!
* To trust my inner voice.
* To be kind to everyone and everything. She didn't even want me to hurt animals, insects, or plants. LOL
* To keep my nails clean.
* How to tell a good story and keep folks' attention while telling it.
* The beauty in making others laugh.
* How sometimes proving that you're right about something is less important than just keeping the peace.
* To be a peacemaker.
* To look at the big picture.
* To pay attention to details.
* Never ever steal.
* To not curse. (That's a habit I picked up without Mama.)
* The importance of prayer.

Written By Angela L. Braden

Wednesday, January 01, 2014


While a couple incredible experiences took place in 2013, I’m more than glad to wave bye-bye to 2013 and say hello to 2014. With the full awareness that I possess the ability to take charge of my life and steer myself in the direction of my personal happiness, financial security, improved physical health, and emotional well being, I commit myself to the idea of doing so.

I will be more than a dreamer. I will be a doer. I refuse to continue to surrender my happiness over to external forces. My peace, my smiles, my laughter, my good night’s rest, and my confidence belongs to me and only me. I’m not willing to give it away for any reason and for any person. I will share them, but I will maintain the possession and control of all of them.

God, I thank you for the goodness, love, satisfaction, success, and restoration 2014 will bring. This will for sure be the most incredible year of my life!

Monday, December 02, 2013

Six Tips to Overcome the Holiday Blues by Angela L. Braden

For many, sadness, loneliness, stress, and depression during the holiday season are as common as turkey dinners, crowded shopping trips, candy canes, and sweet potato pies. There are a plethora of reasons why the holiday season is far from cheerful for some. Financial problems, the loss of a loved one, familial discord, lack of or unfulfilled romantic relationships, and geographic distance from loved ones are just a few of the reasons why some people find themselves singing “woe is me” instead of “chestnuts roasting on an open fire.”

Here are some helpful tips to help you overcome the holiday blues.

1. Give yourself the gift of forgiveness this holiday season. Forgiving others gives you the ability to move forward without the baggage of past hurts, strife, and regret. Furthermore, forgiveness is the bridge that can lead to mending broken relationships. Forgiveness does not indicate that you’re weak. It does not mean that you’ve forgotten about the past offense. It simply means that you have given yourself permission to move forward to a place of healing and restoration.

2. If you are living in a city far from close family members and friends during the holidays, don’t get bummed out. Look for opportunities to spend time with family and friends that you are not as acquainted with. The holidays are an excellent time to rekindle old relationships and build new relationships. If someone invites you to a holiday party, strongly consider attending. If your church is having a holiday event, try to attend. Attending holiday events is a great way to meet new people.

3. If you have time to spare, volunteer. Making oneself useful is a fantastic way to build self worth, boost personal enthusiasm, and put personal values to work. Plus, it’s hard to think about how horrible your life is when you’re helping individuals that are less fortunate than you.

4. If you’re a person that experiences depressive symptoms, and they only get worse during the holiday season, seeking mental health services is appropriate. Schedule an appointment with a counselor as a gift to yourself and the people around you. And if you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the crisis hotline in your city. They will be able to assist you with getting the services you need to address your hopelessness and despair.

5. If money is an issue this holiday season, think of creative ways you can give to your loved ones that doesn’t require you to spend a lot of money. Visit your local arts and crafts store and make your gifts. Give your adult children a “free babysitting card” for an evening out during the holiday season. Cook the people you love a great meal. There are all sorts of things you can do that do not require you to break the bank.

6. If you’re sad that someone you loved is now deceased and they are not present with you during the holiday season, cherish the time you did have with them. In addition, take time to cherish the time you have with the people that are still with you.

Angela L. Braden is an award winning blogger, college educator, and motivational speaker. To learn more about how this blind woman is helping audiences all over the country see their way to their personal best, visit

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Middle Perspective

As I creep up on 40, my approach to living is rapidly transforming. This morning, I realized that if I have the life span of my Braden kinfolk, I'm approaching my midpoint. If I have the lifespan of my mom's folks, I have plus or minus 20 years. Basically, I'm realizing that I have no more time to waste. Time to grind until the end! I got to make this life of mine count. It's the only one I'll ever get.

Angela L. Braden is an award winning blogger and motivational speaker. To learn more about her services as a speaker, visit

Monday, October 28, 2013

Inescapable Pieces of Me

My family and friends often tell me that they forget I'm blind. They tell me that their forgetfulness is a result of me being so "normal" and independent. When they say that to me, I suppose I'm expected to feel some level of gratitude that people see me, but don't see my blindness. In many situations that's what I actually prefer. But when it is time for you to help guide me around an obstacle or just guide me at all, I expect you to remember.

There have been a number of cases when family and friends have left me standing somewhere, not realizing that I am not with them until they've walked off and left me. They come back to me with a shameful laugh and this popular excuse. "I forget you can't see, girl."

Well, here's the truth. I never forget. It's branded into my brain. It's a world that I never get to escape.

No matter how well I'm dressed, how straight I can flatiron my hair, how perfect I can pain my gloss on my lips, How many college degrees I have, how great I am at taking care of my nieces, or how quickly I can type up a letter on my computer, I am blind. Yes, I am a highly functional blind woman, but still blind. And my blindness presents challenges that are real and inescapable.

Just this weekend, I had three accidents. I stumped my toe against my mother's walker and broke my toenail and split the skin. I walked into a car door that my niece left open after getting out of the car. That accident resulted in me having a swollen, busted lip. And I stepped in our puppy's wet oops in the hallway. That accident was probably the most aggravating of the three. (I'm not a lover of stepping in urine, even a cute puppy's.)

Perhaps I’m glad that people see me for me. But it really is okay if the person you see me as is a blind woman. I wouldn’t want anyone to forget that I’m black or a woman. All of these characteristics lend to who I am. They make up the fabric of this person you and I know as Angela L. Braden. Don’t forget about the pieces that make me. Embrace all of them and love the whole package.

Angela L. Braden is an award winning blogger and motivational speaker. You can learn more about her speaking at

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Prom Night 1992 -- Not!

Last Saturday night, while riding home from a family outing, we passed by a group of kids, all dressed up in their beautiful homecoming dance attire. Jasmine, my 10-year-old niece marveled at how beautiful some of the girls looked in their flattering dresses, sparkling jewelry, and designer shoes.

"Is it prom night, Ann??"
"No, I'm sure it's a homecoming dance tonight. This is homecoming season."

Then the questions started rolling in like an avalanche.

"What's homecoming?"
“What grade do you have to be to go to a homecoming dance?”
"Did you go to your homecoming dance?"
"Why not?"
"Did you go the prom?"
"Why didn't you go to prom?"

Always striving to be honest with my nieces and nephew, I offered answers that were easy enough for her to absorb. She's not a baby anymore. So, I now could include details that would go flying over her head just a few years ago.

"I didn't go to the prom because I was depressed about losing my sight."
"At least you were alive."
"You're right. I didn't think about that then."
“So, you should’ve gone.”

I felt it wasn't really appropriate to tell my niece that I really wished I was dead at the time and my prom or nothing else really mattered to me. She probably was not ready for that bit of truth.

I explained to Jasmine that I had just lost all of my sight a few months before. I told her that I honestly felt like my life couldn't get any worse. She asked what did that have to do with going to the prom.

“Maybe if you went to the prom, you would’ve felt happier.”

Now, that I look back on it, my niece is probably right. Going to the prom probably would’ve been fun. If nothing else, I would’ve enjoyed dressing up in a beautiful dress. I would’ve gotten a chance to enjoy the company of the beautiful, kind man that wanted to take me to my prom. (I say “man” because he was 19 or 20 at the time.) I would have a better story to tell my niece about my prom than I do now.

Oh, well… Can’t hit the reset button. And I dare not do something corny like try to recreate my prom night twenty years later. I just have to scratch that experience up as a loss. What I will do is make a commitment to do something even more fun than a prom. Perhaps when I turn 40 next year, I’ll fly to a vacation spot, dress up in a sparkly dress and have a fun night on the town with a beautiful, kind man. I wonder what my rejected prom date is doing now. LOL

Angela L. Braden is an award winning blogger and motivational speaker. You can learn more about her speaking at

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I can't do Arsenio again.

While I really really enjoyed Arsenio Hall in the 90's, I just cannot do him again. I can't help feeling like I would be living in the past if I watch the new show. In fact, I think watching his show would be outright painful for me. Honestly, Arsenio was one of the few aspects of that time in my life that was pleasant. Most of the rest of my life was hellish, to say the least. I was losing my sight, living away from home against my will, living and putting up with people I didn't like and/or didn't like me, and losing my sight. (Oh, I said that already.)
So, as much as I would like to see his show succeed, I can't join in this party.
I wonder why I don't feel that way about the music of the 90's. I guess because music has and will always be a place of salvation in my life.

Good luck, Arsenio! Take back the night.