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Nav Dhillon, 37

Updated: Nov 16, 2022

IG: @1iCollective

Where are you from and currently live? Toronto, Canada

Tell us a little about yourself:

I'm a corporate professional in the payments technology space by trade, but my true passion is making a difference in people's lives, whether it be through my work, advocacy, or public speaking.

Nav holding her prosthetic eye like she is about to put it in. She has dark hair, a dark shirt on, and red lip stick. Visual impairment journey, one eye, lost eye, blind eye.
Nav holding her prosthetic eye

What’s your eye story?

I was hit in the face with a beer bottle while standing outside of a bar when I was 20. Subsequently, many doctors tried to revive my eyesight, but it was beyond repair, and became infected a few years later. In 2011, I had an evisceration to remove my eye and began wearing a prosthetic eye shortly after.

What has been the most challenging thing mentally?

I was raised and brought up in a family and community of Indian descent and speaking about shortcomings, disabilities, or physical abnormalities was heavily stigmatized. Because of that, I suppressed my emotions and did not speak about my accident or prosthetic eye for over a decade.

What has been the most challenging thing physically?

The hardest part has been making sure my healthy eye is well taken care of (safety, hydration, etc). I have also developed a chronic condition in my neck due to my visual impairment. Giving up competitive sports such as soccer was tough!

Where are you now in your recovery?

I eventually gained the courage to seek therapy and learn tools on how to process what I went through. I have now gotten to a place where I am a proud advocate for visual impairments, and prosthetic eyes, and breaking down stigmas against them in impacted communities.

What piece of advice would you give to someone going through their eye impairment journey?

My advice would be this: You have and are going through a lot. You will need to grieve, so make sure you have support around you. To truly feel grateful and happy, you must accept what is and make peace with your condition- the magic begins there!

Nav with her prosthetic eye in. Long dark hair, tan jacket, rosy cheeks. blind eye, lost eye, one eye, eye journey
Nav with her prosthetic eye in

Who is your eye surgeon and ocularist?

Michael Webb at Webb Ocular in Toronto

How did you find EYEHESIVE? Instagram!

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