One-Arm Israeli Makeup Artist Overcomes Daily Challenges

Created: 2013-03-17 17:42 EST

Category: Life
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Imagine what it would be like to be born with just one arm.

Imagine the immense challenges such a person would face trying to make a living in today's competitive society?

For Lishay Sitbon, an Israeli who was born with only one arm, this is a daily reality.

[Lishay Sitbon, Professional Makeup Artist]:
"I am constantly treated as abnormal, I can feel it. If you walked down the street with me now, you would see all the eyes turning to us and not because I'm handsome, but because I am lacking an arm."

Sitbon has learned to come to terms with his emotions concerning his disability.

[Lishay Sitbon, Professional Makeup Artist]:
"I have learned to live with it and I feel whole. I know who I am and I feel whole. As to society… there's a problem with society. Some do accept it, I'm not saying nobody does. Some do… and there are those who don't."

Despite the rejection he received when trying to apply for work at the professional make-up school where he had studied, as well as refusals from some other colleagues,Sitbon never gave up and kept trying.

Faith in his abilities finally came from a well-known professional make-up artist.

[Bo'az Stein, Professional Makeup Artist]:
"I have not seen many people who are not disabled who have such energies, joie de vivre and vigor such as he has, and these have a great effect. Such disabilities are not contagious! It's just that he has fewer working tools than I have. And despite this shortage in working tools his work is not less good than anybody else's. I do not get this reservation, but I understand it is imbedded in human nature. I hope that although it might take some time, people will get used to it and understand that part of our society consists of handicapped people. Those are the people we should care the most about; if we don't give them what they are entitled to, then we are worth nothing."

In time Sitbon learned how to break through his clients' barriers.

[Lishay Sitbon, Professional Makeup Artist]:
"She has to face a man without an arm who has to do her make-up on the day which is the most important for her, and it is up to me to break though this barrier. I have developed some kind of a marketing approach."

And what is the message Sitbon would like to communicate to us?

[Lishay Sitbon, Professional Makeup Artist]:
"Accept the other, accept the different, that's the main thing for me. I am not being disqualified on the grounds of the way I do make-up, they don't check who I am and why, they just look and say no, because I am different and strange in the eyes of others, and that is the problem: not accepting the different."

It seems, then that spirit overcomes the physical limitation.

NTD News, Israel
Reporter:Janet Zrian          Photographer:Michael Ash