Saturday, March 3, 2012
Last weekend she jumped rocks, maneuvered the trails and played in the lake beside her boy.
On Wednesday night, we laughed at her as she stood at the sliding glass door, which was open, thinking it was closed. She has a reputation for being a "blonde."
On Thursday, she ran into some walls, a chair, and we started to think something was wrong, she was being unusually clumsy.
On Friday, we watched as her sight rapidly deteriorated, becoming worse as the day went on, until she seemed completely blind by the evening, her eyes dark, unseeing.
A Saturday trip to the vet, referral to an opthamologist specialist, tests taken, awaiting results.
What would it be like, to have sight taken away so suddenly? Not watching the light change, shadows move, sunlight filtering through the windows, bright and dark, gone. Not having perspective, like wandering in a dark room at night, except even then, there is some light mixed in with the shadows. For her, just dark.
She has been confused, disoriented, lost. We make sure furniture is in its place, shoes aren't left in the middle of the floor, the path across the patio to the yard is clear. She steps gingerly, feeling her way, stiff legged. The stairs are scary, but she seems to have learned to count them, one, two, three, floor. She stays close to her boy, relying on him for reassurance, the sound of his voice, his touch. Outside, she moves freely in the yard, comfortable with the grass, knowing her boundaries by the edges of the grass. On the patio, she gets confused by the chairs and tables, the leaves of plants. Today was warm and we could leave the door open all day to make it easier for her, during this crazy adjustment time. Actually, she is learning quickly, seems to be handling it well.
At this point, we don't know, but from what we researched, it looks permanent. She is eight, not terribly old, still with good years ahead of her.
I remember a pastor, who asked for about a dozen volunteers. He had each person look up a hymn in the hymnal (he gave the numbers) and had them look for a reference to sight, or vision, or seeing. Each person read their lines aloud. Then, he shared that all the hymns were written by Fanny Crosby, a woman blind from childhood. A woman who wrote hundreds of hymns in her lifetime, her spiritual vision undimmed, her sights set on heaven.
We take so much for granted. Tonight, as the sun was setting behind the hill, I watched the light move across the patio, changing as it shined through the windows, illuminating the leaves and blossoms, reflecting off the walls. To not be able to see that, ever again? Hard to comprehend.
For her, though, her comfort is in her boy, her people, the home that is familiar and safe. We will have to take extra steps to protect her, but there is still plenty for her to do, plenty for her to enjoy of life. Her boy found a website, games to play with blind dogs. Lots of possibilities, new things to learn and understand. For all of us, a new appreciation of vision, of love and care for others.