Wendy's Blog

How would you see things?

Blinded by the Light

by Wendy Keller

My friend Robert texted me today.  He wrote, “I seriously just don’t know if I’m strong enough to go blind.” He’s a PhD candidate at a prestigious university, in his late 20s. His disease is genetic, aggressive and heart breaking.

I texted him back “I can’t begin to fathom what you are feeling.  But I do know that if someone had asked me the day before my children were killed, I would have said I couldn’t survive it.  And that was 1991.”

Amazing the variety of traumas humans survive.  I’ve noticed that it comes down to a choice:  deal with it and make the best of it, or give up on life.

People have been going through whatever we’re going through for milennia.

It’s sad.  It hurts.  It’s not fair. It’s an outrage. There is no huge payoff for surviving tragedy that I can see.  I would much prefer my children back than to be told I’m a “better person” now.  But that’s not the hand I was dealt, so like Robert, I have to decide how I’ll deal with my life’s challenges.

So do you.

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  1. Belinda Cook says:

    Just reading this makes me realise what I perceive as been a problem is miniscule compared to others. I hve been jobless for almost a year & it has affected me inasmuch as I hve lost all feeling of worth. Suffer depression & it is affecting my marriage.

    • Belinda,

      I beg to differ. When I was six and my hamster died, to me that was the worst grief imaginable! As an adult, we know that the death of a hamster isn’t the end of the world, but it was for me then. I’ve come to believe that we all grieve our own losses, pain, hurt and suffering at 100% – it can’t be quantified.

      Please don’t diminish your own pain. There’s no such problem as a “miniscule” one if it is yours.

  2. Robert, I also suffer from a genetic eye disease. I have gone from good vision to having lost the sight completely in one eye and blurry, uncorrectable, vision in the other eye. I won’t tell you it is easy but you will be surprised at the strength you have to cope when you have to. You will find that there are so many things you can do without vision, you just never had to do them because you always had eyes to rely on. It is not the end just the beginning of learning to trust your abilities and do things another way!

  3. Wendy,

    I think that the reason this is being shared so much is that many people want to make the best of our lives together, even though life is emotionally difficult for many people. I am glad that people feel inspired to make the best of their lives, because together we can accomplish many beautiful things. Regardless of our circumstances, our disabilities, or how we may feel from time to time, I have seen how much one person can help another. Going through difficult times helps us know one another, creates depth and inner strength, and gives us so much more to share with one another.

    I really commend you on this article, because so many of us are going through tough times, and we can make the best of it. We are incredibly resilient and and strong.

    • Zoraah,

      Thanks so much for your kind comments. I do see so many people hurting and suffering all different types of issues. My heart really goes out to all, because I know there’s a way to get through the “bad” stuff if we just open ourselves up to looking for it.

      Thanks again.

  4. Hello, I just read the article ref. to the 20 yr. old young man, going blind. The Federal gov’t. has not touched the funds for the blind. Perhaps his new calling to life is to teach braille. I am from Wichita Ks. My friend, Randy Cabral invented the American Flag in Braille. He has a web site: http://www.kbti.org This site is kansas braille transcription institute.
    Here you can learn there what is needed virtually in any state to help the blind. There are 1,000 blind children in the public school system in kansas alone,they are not being taught to read braille, there are no teachers. The govt funding pays the tuition to learn braille and how to teach it.He would have an income from teaching. Hopefully he will reach out there and make a difference in someone’s life. He is needed so badly, perhaps this is God’s plan, I dont know or I would be God. But I do know if he will help, lives can be more fullfilled, person to person. Thank you for posting your story. Jan Peters

  5. So very true. My exact sentiments. I’ve had so many terrible losses that people must sometimes think I’m making it up. When they do know and believe it, one of the first things they say is, “I don’t think I could handle that” or something to the effect, “I think I would just die too”. And I can remember thnking (before the losses) “I could never live through that” or “how DOES one live through the loss of a child, or a home and all their possessions”. And even now, my only son has decided he is better off without me in his life…..and it is hard. And sometimes I weep in grief and feel sad. But you do survive. Because, after all, what ARE the choices? You choose your reactions to a certain extent. You can let it kill you or you can move on…with hope and faith. I must say though, that I feel it is faith that sustains me, and faith that keeps me hoping for future. The Lord is my refuge and God is my strength, he heals me in my sorrow. He is my rock, my fortress,and my shelter.

  6. Ginger,

    I’m so very sorry to hear you’ve had a falling out with your son! That must be very painful. I hope things eventually smooth out.

    I smiled when you wrote about people not believing you – I’ve had that happen plenty of times myself. I always think silently to myself, “I wish it was fiction!”

    Sending you thanks for your post and good wishes. I hope it all works out well.

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