The title of this post will most likely make me sound like a bitter snowflake, but trust me when I say I’m not. I’m telling the truth: to be able to see properly must actually be pretty cool, but seeming as I never have been and never will be able to see, there’s no use in me dwelling on it.
Blindness is a tricky thing, mainly because I’m just one person. A lot of people sometimes think I can speak for the entirety of the non-sighted world which is horrifying and hilarious, when the truth is that I have one level of sight and my perceptions of it are different to so many others. Let me explain.
At the moment, I don’t particularly want to see; I’m too scared of the adjustment, and the eye condition I have can’t be improved with glasses or anything of the sort and so my view is that I’ve always accepted that, and so that shouldn’t change. However, so many other people want to see: those who’ve lost their sight, and those who were born like this. People want what they don’t and can’t have, and I can’t criticise anyone for that because in a way, I get it. Not losing something because I only had le sight for, what, two weeks when I was born, but the wanting and the realisation that no, you can’t see. Ever.
So, there are the people that lost sight and want to see, and I used to think that they should just live their lives. As much as I still think that, because anyone should try and live their lives, I know it can’t be easy. I can’t understand, not having lost it, but seriously to just lose a sense like that must be the worst thing. I mean, how can I understand it when I’ve never had anything like it? That’s why I no longer feel like I can give any sound advice to anyone who’s lost their sight because I’m worlds away from getting it and that makes me sad, because that’s a group of people I can’t help.
Then there are the people like me, who were “born” with it – I say born, but it might be that they have literally no memory of seeing which is what I have. So, the thought of seeing is entirely foreign to me, except for lights and a few shapes and a vague amount of something that might be colour. And if I try and explain it to you, you won’t understand because you can’t: even someone who’s blind won’t, because they don’t see what I see. The only people that see the same are the ones that can’t see anything at all, and even then, their perceptions of it are different.
There are so many things I don’t understand about how you see, like the fact that you have depth perception because I can see stairs go down but that’s only because I know that pattern in my mind. Also you can’t look in two directions at once like WHAT IS THE POINT in having two eyes?!! I know one colour of blue, but not another (light blue like the sky is cool is that even a colour) because it looks black or green or purple, when purple looks black and grey looks like a lighter black; yellow seems like a muted white and pink is unfathomable to me. That’s only when it’s a square of colour too, not anything else, and contrasts are basically essential so unless you want me to tell you that blue is red. Seeing out of a window confuses me, because when I look out of a car and see a thing beside me, darker, sometimes taller than azuggr thing, I know it’s trees but it COULD be a building, or just a wall; I can pick things up but only through context and only very occasionally. I know when a person stands in front of me but not because I can see their eyes or hands or hair, only because their person-shape stops at the usual height and it turns into the air or the sky, and not because anything is distinguishable. Thingdon’t blur or stop, because I don’t understand what blurry things look like – they just are and then they’re not, like the fact that the wall’s on the opposite side of the room, but I don’t know that if it’s dark or there’s not much light.
If you don’t understand that, it’s perfectly fine, because I don’t understand it. My sight’s just always been there for me, nothing remarkable, and I’m not brave for getting through my “struggles” because I don’t remember being in the hospital; I don’t remember having the mental capacity to stay alive because I was a baby. Ever since I can remember I’ve been blind, not completely but blind enough, and that’s the reality. I’m not annoyed about it, not often sad, because I’m living and I’m still managing. No, not still; I AM managing because this shit doesn’t hold me back.
Seeing must be amazing, though, even if you wouldn’t know it. My dad told me a week ago as we stood outside, to try and see if I could see the moon, that people look up at the sky and think “Ahh, it’s just a sky”. and I suppose I get that. You’ve seen it countless times, and it is just a sky, the same as to me the sound of the wind is just that. I couldn’t see the moon, just a disturbance in the sky that might have been my imagination, but it was nice to try.
I won’t ask you to appreciate your sight because I don’t know what it’s like to do that, and so I can’t expect you to do it as it wouldn’t be fair. But always remember this: I wish I could see the stars, and a waterfall, and someone’s face, but I won’t. I can’t feel sorry for myself, because life moves on, and I don’t pity myself because there are plenty of other people who have it so much worse than me.
I’m just one blind person out of millions, who thinks that distant lights in the sky might look beautiful. I’m not an inspiration, but I hope I’ve let you understand that not everyone’s the same and yeah, seeing would be great, except if you never can.
People with disabilities don’t get magically cured most of the time, and wishing won’t help anything. To see a look in someone’s eye would be so nice, but I’m already doing fine without seeing that.
From Elm 🙂