Those of us with my myopia as children were often enthusiastic readers. I loved my books, my inner world and drew vision in, held it close. I was in fourth grade when it was discovered I needed glasses, and then each year a new pair until I was 13 and got hard contact lenses which I wore for 60 years.
Now the right eye is corrected to “perfect” vision, and the left will soon have correction though not too far, to just about a foot in front. What I find puzzling is that I grumbled when I had to switch to glasses for seven months so my eyes could adjust to their natural shape.
Now, I want to wear them. They have become a crutch, a measure of safety or perhaps protection. They cover a large part of my face. Am I hiding? Do I find comfort there?
We are very strange creatures in how we adapt, and where and when we hold on, and where and when we let go. I think when I see so much detail, I find it puzzling. Where do I focus? Do I take the world in whole, or in pieces? How do I receive this universe of which I’m part? And then there is the seeing that has nothing to do with the eyes. I can sense 360 degrees around like a tree, and perhaps that’s the division. This feels so precise. I think of the poem “Monet Refuses the Operation” by Lisel Mueller. Despite any reluctance, fear, or concern, Monet had successful eye surgery in 1923, and it’s a beautiful poem.
I think Mueller’s poem gives a sense of my struggle. What is seeing? Where do we focus, and when? Where and when do we attach, and let go? How do we give and receive?
How will this change in perception change my life? I can only wait and see, and I’m grateful as can be for this opportunity to play with change and response and immersion in this life and giving we share.