From Clarity to Blur

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This week I want to talk about something that I believe needs to be spoken about so much more.  What’s it like to transition from living with low vision to only seeing a blur. 

Those of us living with conditions that are slowly taking our sight, know too well the fear of worrying about how our lives will be when we can no longer see the faces of those we love, our partners, our children and even ourselves. To no longer be able to look into a mirror and see our reflections.  I’ve always said we spend far too much time worrying about things that may not happen or haven’t happened yet, and we should focus on what we have now and appreciate the little things in life.

However, now I find myself at the stage of my vision loss journey where the little remaining central vision I have is at its end.  I’m not seeing the details anymore, and when you have a condition like Retinitis Pigmentosa, it means that all I’m currently left with is this small tunnel of vision in my right eye.   I’ve always thought that when I reached this stage I’d be scared, but honestly, I’m not. It’s more a case of feeling sad and frustrated, but mostly sad.

 

There are still so many things I want to do and see with whatever vision I can cling to. Yet throughout everything I’ve learned from the challenges I’ve been through I understand that the feelings I’m experiencing are perfectly natural. I now know not to be too hard on myself and allow myself time to grieve. But like everything in life, I know these feelings won’t last.  No matter what we always find a way to adapt and move forward. 

For me it makes me more determined to do things now, not to wait or put off dreams and goals. Living life with this mindset is truly a blessing and despite the challenges life has given me, I know just how lucky I am.   For years now, I’ve written poetry to help people around the world come to terms with going blind and in times like these I need to take my own advice. 

 

Wait

For a while I’ve been preparing 

but I don’t feel prepared 

Instead of feeling RP strong

right now, I’m kind of scared

I’m noticing another drop this time more haze creeps in

Seems no one has an answer

sights end will now begin

My central visions cloudy 

my peripheral left last year

No matter how many times I blink

can’t seem to make it clear 

I’m staring at my children 

I’m ticking off my list

Of all the things I long to see

before life’s beauty’s missed

I’ve got a trillion questions 

that keep me up a night 

Will I still be the man they need

when I’ve lost last of sight?

Don’t want to be a burden

should be me looking after you 

I’ll catch a tear when cracks appear 

I’m meant to be the glue 

But how can I catch teardrops 

if I can’t see them fall

How can I be the keeper 

when I can’t see the ball

Suddenly I see the answer 

it’s always been right here

inside my heart and soul, a voice

it’s time I need to hear

It’s written in each poem 

each feeling I inspire 

If I don’t lead by example

then that makes me a liar

Through this I’ve found my purpose 

the man I’m meant to be

But with it comes a catch

that I’m not meant to see

This tunnel is my focus 

This blur it seems my fate

But just now I need a timeout 

A little longer blindness wait.

#TheBlindPoet