Worthy of note
“Recently I was visited by a very good friend who had just returned from a long walk in the woods, and I asked her what she had observed. ‘Nothing in particular,’ she replied. I might have been incredulous had I not been accustomed to such responses, for long ago I became convinced that the seeing see little. How was it possible, I asked myself, to walk for an hour through the woods and see nothing worthy of note? I who cannot see find hundreds of things to interest me through mere touch.” — Helen Keller
The quote above is longer than the ones I usually feature here, but I wish I could have included the entire article from which the quote was taken. When you have a few minutes, I suggest you read it and ponder what it says.
Today, I invite you to join me in giving thanks for the gift of sight. As far as I am aware, all of those who read my blog can see. In my entire life, I have had only a few friends who could not see at all. This amazing gift of eyesight is shared by more than 99% of the people I know, yet I seldom hear any of us voicing gratitude for it.
Those of you who have shared photos with me through your blogs and emails have given me priceless glimpses into your lives, windows that allow me to know you better even if we have never met in person. In seeing your homes, your dogs and cats and birds, your gardens and hometowns, the crafts you create and the cakes you bake, I am able to share the ways you have added joy and beauty to your own sphere of influence.
I’m grateful we are able to easily read each other’s words, and those of countless wise authors who have lived in years past, including the thought-provokingly candid words of Keller in the article linked above. I’m thankful to have shared together reflections on the beauty of a sunset, or a snow-covered field, or an exquisite flower. I’m happy that no matter where you live or what your personal circumstances, I can wish you a day of joy at seeing daybreak, or a sunny afternoon, or a cozy room filled with photos or plants or pets or people dear to your heart.
At times I complain about my eyeglasses or contact lenses. How foolish of me, to complain of having something my ancestors would have been overjoyed to have! When I stop to think about it, I so appreciate the gift of a relatively simple device that sharpens my vision and allows me extended years to fully enjoy the visual treats I have described.
Whatever mood you are in as you read these words, I hope you will feel happier just thinking about the amazing gift of eyesight. Let’s take Keller’s challenge, and look at our worlds as if our sight would soon be gone. We may never see things quite the same again.
This post was first published seven years ago on February 2. The date for re-publication was adjusted to enable me to publish the Lunar New Year post on the correct date for 2022. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.
- Posted in: Uncategorized
- Tagged: appreciation, attention, beauty, blindness, eyes, eyesight, gratitude, joy, mindfulness, senses, thankfulness, vision
Julia, A worthy post on things we take for granted. Too, often the most important things or people in our lives, which can be called gifts, are appreciated only after they are gone. Let us not lament then but rejoice in them while we have them. I can identify with this post as I have some Macular issues of age that taint that vision. But, not enough, thanks to the grace of God, where I cannot still find pleasure in what is before me.
Alan, I’m so sorry to hear that you are having vision problems. I have had relatives with similar age-related issues and through them, I’ve become aware of how thankful I am to still be able to see reasonably well. I’m glad that you still have enough vision to treasure what it offers. Perhaps you can take many mental snapshots to keep with you in case the deficits progress. May we all rejoice in whatever physical abilities remain to us as we live far longer than our ancestors could.
Amen to that Julia.