Sunday, July 19, 2009

Just because I can

There are a few perks to having a blind son. One of them is that I can actually make socially awkward jokes about blindness and get away with it. And don't think I don't make use of that one at EVERY OPPORTUNITY.

My favorite, however, is Danny's handicapped parking placard. Oh, the joy of preferred parking! Even through the shock of new diagnosis, that magical blue placard shone in our future like a bright silver lining.

I remember bringing it up on the car ride home from Children's Hospital Los Angeles that horrible, awful June in 2005 when we first found out Danny would never see. At some point it dawned on me that he (we) would qualify for the coveted handicapped parking. I swear I held on to that thought like a life preserver for the longest time. The single bright spot in a very dark future.

Huh. In hindsight I can see how desperate I was for anything positive about our news. In reality, however, our lives with Danny are far from bleak or dismal. He quite literally lights up a room with his presence. Of course, my fear and desperation in no way diminishes the awesomeness of my recently acquired placard. 'Tis truly spectacular!

We watched Blindsight as a family last night. If you are into documentaries or are just looking for something to make you feel like you should never complain again, this is the movie for you. What an amazing group of kids!

Blindsight follows a group of Tibetan teenagers on their journey to climb a mountain in the shadow of Everest. As a parent of a blind child, wow! I only hope for my son half that much freedom and adventurousness in his lifetime. Also, I was mortified by the treatment that blind people receive in Tibet. Save a worm. Squash a blind child's spirit! Bah! Essentially, they believe the blind person must have done something horrible in their past life to be saddled with blindness in this. One old woman was quoted as saying to a blind teenager who got in her way that he "deserved to eat his father's corpse!" And people say American's lack compassion.

Otherwise a stellar movie. A must see. And, it is completely adapted for the VI.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

OK, so first, you don't know me.
With that said - the photo of your son walking in the surf is beautiful! I remember going to the shore as a child, and how the waves felt.

Also - the movie you mention is great, though I agree, quite distressing at times. The teamwork of the blind and sighted people, across both ages and cultures, was inspirational - even if the outcome wasn't exactly as they had planned. I particularly thought that the discussion and (yes) conflict among the adults was addressed in a very thoughtful way. And yes, the movie made me cry.

The cartoon above, not so much. (ha)

I also have a friend with IBC who is doing very well... I think that's how I found your site originally.

Best wishes to you and your family!