Adventure Day Four

It wasn’t forceps at birth, the unfortunate placement responsible for virtually no vision in one eye – never knowing anything else, she managed just fine. A “good eye” was more than enough – published writer, poet, artist, teacher – she saw more with that eye than most people absorb in a lifetime. Her vision allowed others to see – she used language to evoke wonder, transforming everyday ordinary into extraordinary. Infectious, she enveloped people lucky enough to glimpse the world through her good eye.

She lacked depth perception – no big deal. Never an issue, nobody expected her to drive at night – we couldn’t truly fathom her difficulty. None of us saw the demise of “good eye”. In hindsight, I’m certain she  fought with stoic denial for years. None of us took it seriously – the car accident, followed by a immediately revoked driver’s license got our attention. It seems “good eye” had developed holes – Cone Dystrophy to be precise. Degenerative, irreversible, incurable – imagine having only one good eye, ponder losing that eye to growing holes across your field of vision. My mother is legally blind.

I can’t give sight, criticize depression, shrug off bouts of despair or begin to comprehend her increasingly dim reality. That said, I refuse to coddle or patronize – as long as she’s able to stand on her own two feet, I’ll give her light. Adventure day four delivered.

If a more spectacular late December day transpired, I must have been out of town. Weather reports promised sunny and cold, we weren’t advised of perfection. Boarding the 9:30 AM ferry to Langdale on the Sunshine Coast, we catapulted into the realm of fairytale light.

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Mom at Ruby Lake

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Adventure day four deserves more than a few pictures on my phone. Like taking a picture of the Grand Canyon – it simply doesn’t work, you have to be there. The truth is – it doesn’t matter. Light cast a spell, it’s part of me now. Light’s greatest gift went to my mother – light allowed her to see long shadows, exquisite hues and reflections. Even if only in her mind’s eye, it’s part of her now.



4 thoughts on “Adventure Day Four

  1. I’m sorry to hear about your mother’s descent into darkness; but overjoyed to hear her daughter’s wisdom. With age comes (or perhaps ‘should come’) a certain wisdom about the life one has lived and the inevitability of … the inevitable.

    Whether lights and shadows or blazing shafts of color we take life differently as the springs wind down and many of us respond to that which might in younger years have scarcely caught our attention as if it was a bolt of lightning. We don’t need the same things once we did. And even if offered, too often we don’t WANT what once we did. I’m glad you’re letting her find her own way.

    I don’t know how you find it but there can be an amazing change of relationship between child and parent. I enjoyed it with both my own father and with my FIL — as capable parent became the one needing and accepting help as if they were once again a toddler; turning over the reigns of life yet never turning over life. I have so many fond memories about the end of both men’s lives that they far outweigh any memories of them from my youth. It may not always be thus, but I’m glad it was for me.

  2. Did you ever connect up with our friend Tom Peabody, the blind blogger? I spoke to him several months ago about helping me with a brilliant man who’d lost his sight. Peabody was quite willing to help when I requested a step by step guideline on getting him started…if the guy wanted the help. My guy didn’t take up the offer, perhaps your mother would,

    • Buffalo Tom Peabody is a remarkable human being. He gave me help above and beyond the call of duty. Ultimately my mother proved the weak link in a promising chain of possibilities Tom gave us. Mom followed his advice and now has a phone capable of letting her communicate to some extent.It’s a work in progress – thanks to Tom we’re making baby steps count 🙂

  3. This is such a great post ~ love the scenery, and the best quote “Light’s greatest gift went to my mother – light allowed her to see long shadows, exquisite hues and reflections. Even if only in her mind’s eye, it’s part of her now.” That is the gift of travel, and seeing an incredible place with great people.

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