I know that what I have experienced was neither complete blindness, nor can it ever be compared to even a fraction of what people who truly are blind go through on a daily basis. But for that instance of time I was “blind”, though it was not much, I experienced a range of emotions that I had never before that moment. It gave me perspective and empathy of the people who have overcome these emotions to lead on with their lives.
I believe this was almost seven years ago now, yet I remember it very vividly. It was just another day in my normal life. My hair had gotten quite long and I decided to get a haircut since my dad was getting one that same day as well. I followed him on his bike to the barber shop and waited for my turn. I remember myself being called in first instead of my dad. I remember sitting on the barbers chair and getting ready. And then everything went black.
I fell unconscious. When I had come to, I was moved to the waiting room. I remember opening my eyes. Nothing. That is what I saw. No light, no warmth, just darkness. I could hear my dad and the barber next to me asking me if I was okay. I did not know how to respond. The first few seconds seemed like an eternity to me. I remember trying to move my eyes as much as I can. I knew my eye lids were open, yet I saw nothing. I tried to rub them to see if that would work, nothing.
So many thoughts had gone through my mind in that ten minutes. It does not seem like much now but for me that was one of the most fearsome moments in my life. I thought of all the things I would miss seeing in this world, how I had abused the blessing of sight that I had been given, the life I would have to live if this were to be permanent. I was fearful, I was panicking and I did not know what to do. I finally cried out “I cannot see, I cannot see”.
My eyes would shift from one side to next, trying to see but nothing worked. My heart would start beating faster and faster with every passing second. My dad did not understand what I meant when I said I was blind. He thought I was exaggerating at that time from me being unconscious. True that at that point in time no one knew that I was going through the stages of cancer so I do not blame him for being skeptical of my circumstance.
I tried to relax and close my eyes for the next few minutes. The darkness I saw was the darkest thing I have seem ever in my life. I guess its not really “seeing” but even so my mind made it seem that way. My imagination ran with the situation I was in and gave me feedback to calm myself. I remember when I started seeing the warmth through my eyelids. I took a deep breadth and opened my eyes. Light, that is what I saw.
I went home straight after that with my dad. My hair uncut, my dad worried and me scared to death. I do not think I slept that night either, I was too afraid that with the close of my eyes, I would return to that state once more. As the night grew longer, I finally went to sleep because if how tired I was. The events of the coming weeks would reveal that I had Stage IV Hogkin’s Lymphoma.
Forgetting all these memories would bring me enormous relief but I do not wish it so. I want to remember these details of the struggles that I faced. I want to remind myself to be humble at all times. I want to treat people with kindness because you never know what one is going through. That does not mean that you must walk on eggshells and be sensitive all the time. It just means that compassion and empathy must be understood. I do not demand sympathy, I demand understanding.
via Daily Prompt: Blindly