Blindness and the Beautiful Prairies

Today the duties of the move include making lots of calls, returning library books, and doing laundry. I just unearthed our saved boxes from our last move out of our storage closet. Now when I say unearthed, I really mean it. This is thanks to Robbie’s intense organizational system that only he apparently holds the ability to dismantle without going into a state of fury. Hence, I am happy to be sitting and writing, which has calmed me down considerably already.

So now that that’s off my chest….

Just a quick note about the weekend too. The in-laws plus Domi and our french cousin Clemence came to visit us for the weekend. We got to experience such Calgarian wonders as Peter’s drive in, Famoso Pizzeria, several food comas, the hot hot sun, and a flight in a Cessna…. Wait did I just say that. Yes indeed I did. Thanks to Brian and Teri de Jong parents of Char and Ryan de Jong we were treated to a flight over the badlands of Alberta. It was unreal to see them from the air. They are beautifully alien to the eye both on the ground and from the sky. Blessed we are indeed.

~Sometimes I Wonder~

Was I the only kid in the world to pretend to be blind when they were little? You see the other day I was in the shower (TMI?) when I started to get some shampoo in my eye while washing my hair. I closed my eyes just in time to avert a full on teary disaster, however I could feel some of the shampoo hovering near my eyes. I am super paranoid about soap substances getting in my eyes so I kept them closed as I  finished rinsing the shampoo out of my hair. They were closed for about 10-15 seconds longer then I would normally close my eyes during the day if I wasn’t trying to nap. I was standing upright at the time and my other senses kicked in more intensely for that brief window of time. All of the sudden I had a memory rush back to me almost uncontrollably. It was like going back in time for a second. I suddenly remembered closing my eyes for extended periods of time while standing in the same upright position and pretending to be blind when I was a kid. I remember at the time being curious about whether I could function with total loss of sight. I can specifically remember walking around the room with my hands out in front of me grabbing for the walls and feeling along them to the door to get my bearings. I also remember using an old meter stick that mom used for sewing as a cane. I would tap it on the ground in front of me looking for obstructions. There were no dogs in the Hamel house so there were no seeing-eye dog experiments.  It never lasted very long, probably 2 minutes at most before I would think, “My goodness, this is just to hard. Enough of that. Thank God I can see.” I asked a few friends about this the other night because I wasn’t sure if I would be totally nutty to post such a question on the internet, because once something is on the internet, it never really goes away. What a comforting thought. Anyways, they all had some sort of memory of this as well in their childhood. So I honestly wonder, did anyone else out there do this? Is this a common experience for all children? Also, is there some memory buried in the back of my mind of me plugging my ears and pretending to be deaf, or not talking for a while to pretend to be mute (like that would work). I guess blindness is the easiest to fakley afflict on ourselves.  So if indeed most people do this when they are young what is the root of this common experience: curiosity or compassion? Do we just want to know what it is like or do we want to experience the difficulties of a disability to be more appreciative of our own sight. Please leave a comment if you personally have pretended to be blind for kicks. I would love to know what memory you have of doing this in your own life. Or you could also leave a comment saying that this is just totally ridiculous. But remember to be charitable because after all, it is on the internet and your comment will never really go away.

Just one little ditty tonight. However, I will leave you with a photo of our amazing flight. And who says the prairies aren’t stunning?

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2 thoughts on “Blindness and the Beautiful Prairies

  1. I used to pretend to be blind when I was a kid, too! Same thing as you – just walk around the house seeing if you can make it from room to room (or around a room) without crashing into anything. My grandparents had an old dog who was blind AND deaf, so I think I pretended to be both sometimes, too… what a sight that must’ve been…. little me walking around with my eyes squeezed shut and my fingers in my ears stumbling around the house. And I think it usually ended with “wow… Thank God I can see… and hear!

  2. I used to pretend that I had a broken arm. I had a friend who had one of those neon casts and I guess I was jelous. We also baby sat a girl who was diabetic for years. I swear I nearly poked myself out of curiosity haha.

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