Saturday, September 27, 2014
Our blurry vision
I can still remember the way I felt that very first time I got eyeglasses. My mother was driving me home from the mall, or wherever it was, and everything I saw out the car windows was astonishing. It was like a whole new world was presenting itself to me, a clearer world I'd previously been missing.
When you've never worn eyeglasses, it can be hard to imagine. You truly believe the world around you is clear enough, until one day someone tells you they can see something you can't. "What do you mean you can't read that sign?" they ask, and you immediately feel inadequate.
I wonder if life isn't this way too sometimes. We think we're seeing clearly, when actually, we're missing so much. The signs are all around us, but our vision is just blurry, and worst of all, we think we're seeing everything with absolute clarity. We think we're so great, we've got superhuman vision...when so often, the complete opposite is true!
And then it happens. An eye doctor comes along and sets you straight. A teacher points out your spelling is actually quite horrible. A friend confides he actually hates your cooking. A family member gently takes your hand and whispers that you really ought to use breath mints more often.
When you finally get your "vision" checked and you're fitted for corrective lenses at last, you can't believe how blurry your vision used to be. You can't believe how much clearer you can now see.
But this isn't the end of the lesson. That's because you still do have blurry vision. You've just learned to see differently with new lenses. The lenses aren't attached to your eyes, just as perfect understanding isn't a permanent fix for your personality or judgment. Being a good person isn't going to be a constant any more than you'll end up wearing glasses 24 hours a day. Reality is fluid, vision is ever changing, and the eye, just like your sight, is forever imperfect.
We're stuck with our blurry vision, but we can help ourselves see more clearly when we first admit we don't see clearly, when we second get help from someone who knows better, and third, when we simply choose to wear our glasses, remembering that so often in life, we just need the outside help.