As happens so often, I had the opportunity to meet a person this week who has and is dealing with significant challenges in his life. During the course of our conversation I learned a lot about myself. How I face hurdles. How I react to “bad” things happening in my life. How others react and what I can learn from that.
As all of you know, and may be sick of hearing about, I am an avid golfer. I have experienced challenges regarding my eye sight. And I deal with certain mental health challenges. I have alluded to the fact that I have noticed my vision decreasing. It became quite concerning when I realized I had difficulties seeing my golf ball after I hit it. Finally I made an appointment. I was afraid of what I might hear.
The day before the appointment I met the person I just mentioned. He walked into the meeting room, sat down and proceeded to inform me that he was visually impaired. As he told me his story a host of emotions raced through me. I was amazed at his positive approach to life. I liked his sense of humour. I was intrigued with the eye issues he was describing. In my twisted way of thinking I was also convinced that this was an omen of things to come for me.
As he talked I became convinced that he had been dealing with this for most of his life. I found out different. A mere year and a half ago, in a matter of six weeks, he went from having good vision to being virtually blind. He was a 4 handicap in golf. For all you non golfers that means he was pretty darn good. A goal that I strive for but have been unable to achieve. He was happily married with two young kids. He had an up and coming career. Moving ahead in life. Then the unthinkable. A loss of sight. He has adapted and continues to adapt. By his own admission he has a much better view of what is important in life.
We talked about approaching life with a positive attitude. In spite of our inner most fears and concerns we could put on a happy face. We talked about faking it. Even when the inner emotions clouded our thinking it was important to show positive energy. The comment was made that even faking it sometimes helped in actually giving us a more positive outlook.
So what do I see? Physically I see less than would be ideal. However the good news is that it will take a simple laser procedure to fix that. It is a matter of getting the appointment sooner rather than later. Oh, and my son says, bad omens can &%*& themselves. Perhaps he has a point.
Emotionally my vision also needs an adjustment. How I react to various challenges defines who I am as a person. I have choices. It is important to keep things in perspective. I know. It is easier for some then for others. But there are ways and means of working our way through the challenges we face. Often times we cannot do it alone. That is why I am thankful that I met this person. He is helping me “see” better.
Some of my favorite quotes come to mind. “The important things in life are not things.” “Make life changes before life changes.” “The tragedy of life is not that it ends so soon but that we wait so long to begin it.” Make it a good one.