People stand in a line with arms wrapped around each other.

Human Nature and Declining Vision

Wow! What a year 2020 has been! Fires, hurricanes, murder hornets, COVID 19, and so much division with politics! Some of these things almost made me forget that my vision is declining. Maybe in a way, it is a good thing to not dwell so much on our vision deteriorating?

In what way is it good to forget about my eye disease?

I don’t mean we forget and take lightly what is happening with our eyes, rather, I say it’s good to give it a rest once in a while. The way I feel about it, is it’s similar to our body needing sleep. When we sleep, we enter an altered state. We have light sleep, deep sleep, and REM or rapid eye movement cycles. It’s very therapeutic, without it we would be in big trouble. I think the same goes for our eye disease. We gotta put our fear and trepidation in timeout, not forever, just periodically. I mean after all, how did Helen Keller cope so well? She was deaf and blind, yet she was an amazing and inspiring person. So I say, heck... we got this!

Living in hurricane country

Don’t forget to enjoy life’s bounties but be careful with assumptions.

As an example, let me tell you about a few things that happened down here in “hurricane country”, that’s where I live. I’m on the Gulf Coast very near the Gulf of Mexico, it’s usually a delightful place to live. A human trait is that if you’ve experienced something numerous times, you begin to think you’re an expert on whatever it is. Mother Nature laughs at this and says “Oh yeah, watch this!”

What happened?

Growing up in South Florida and living in different places during my working life, I went through probably a dozen hurricanes during the course of my life. Meteorologists categorize hurricanes based on wind speed, category 1 through 5, with 5 being 150 mph winds or higher.

Ok, so?

My old self used to be nonchalant about category 1 and 2 storms, a category 3 got my attention. A category 4 or a 5 meant evacuation to me. And then along came Hurricane Sally! Wow, all my perceptions about storms have changed! Sally got to the southern coast of the USA and stalled, then it wobbled left and right and finally decided to head to my neck of the woods! This hurricane just meandered so slowly and dropped enormous amounts of rain on us, 30 inches in a 72 hr period. It tracked at only 2 to 3 mph over the ground versus the typical 10 to 14 mph. We thought it would never leave!

Fast forward and getting to my point.

The power of the human spirit

The bottom line is my little city lost electrical power for a week and no WiFi for more than 2 weeks. The ground was saturated and trees fell all over the place. And then a curious thing happened, the power of the human spirit came into play. It was beautiful to witness and participate in. It became neighbor helping neighbor, people doing for others with no motives or expectation of anything in return. I won’t go into intricate detail but remember the unity and spirit of America after the 9/11 attacks? There for a while, there was no thought of race, politics, or any of the other things that divide us. It was the way it should be and it was amazing to be a part of.

We are stronger together than alone.

Vision disease is our hurricane

Our hurricane is vision disease. It is what we share and we are stronger together than alone. Our shared experiences and knowledge are very powerful. Belonging to a group like ours is also comforting and encouraging. Yep, so our “hurricane” is vision disease. We can’t evacuate and run from it, we can’t ignore it. My hope is we acknowledge and help each other. The human spirit is real, I’ve seen it! Wishing you all well!

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