I am 5, and I am riding with my grandfather on a bicycle along the streets of a small village in Karnataka. He points at the trees and can name each one of them, he points at the small stream to a flock of cranes flapping away noisily. I watch in awe as the wind swept hair covers my happy face. We watch the sunset together and he weaves stories around the jungle that he grew up in. The best memories of my life with my “Ajoba” are these.
Fast-forward to 10 years later and I realized that I could never have those days back, because now, my grandfather had lost his sight to cataract. I have seen first hand the vast difference what a loss of sight can mean to a person. But he still had his memories & all his stories.. true he couldn’t see anything but when we would describe, he would dig in his memories and recall the glory of the sunset again.
But try to imagine – having never seen a rainbow before , having never experiencing the joy of watching a flower bloom , of watching a star shine.. or the riot of colors during holi. Imagine being blind ..
Eye Donation – Why I’m doing it and you should too!
But my Ajoba also taught me some valuable lessons. Here are three things I would do to change the way I see the world.
Many times I get frustrated with what’s happening at work or if something doesn’t go the way I planned. A missed promotion at work, a last minute cancellation to a trip we dreamt about. But I’d like to be more appreciative of the things that matter the most. My family is my everything. I am thankful for my time with them, for us being safe, healthy and loved.
Living with my Ajoba taught me empathy. I was more sensitive to the challenges he faced. Something that I always took for granted were really tough for him. So the next time I am walking down the street I will be less engrossed in my own world and keep an eye out for those who might need a helping hand. It could be a small gesture like holding the lift open for someone, giving up my seat for a pregnant lady or helping an elderly cross a street. This life is so much more than us and our petty problems.
Not lose myself
Its so easy to be caught up in the rat race that we live in.. Office, home, kids , maids!! its like a running race from dawn to dusk and in that I began to lose my identity. I got so bogged down with the daily grind that I forgot to do the stuff that I loved to do the most – play with my daughter, exploring something new, discovering the joys of a new book, a paint splash and the laughter. I have started painting again. I am fortunate to have an amazing hubby and help who support me in tasks that I can delegate and help me make time to pause, relax & rejuvenate. To see life through a happier perspective..
How often do we take things we have for granted? The power to see things one way or the other is a precious gift. You could think of your glass to be half full or half empty. The choice is yours. Only this time, we pledge something more. We pledge our eyes, the gift of sight for someone else who will see long after you and I are gone. I have pledged my eyes. Would you?
I have stared into the empty eyes of my loved one and seen the pain & anguish. To be able to make a difference in someone’s life would be biggest gift of all.
Donors are heroes. Here you are, a stranger, giving a stranger the greatest gift anyone can give : The gift of a second chance at life. The chance at more time with family and friends, another day to live and enjoy all the things we may have taken for granted before.
80% of blindness can be avoided.
How?Eye Donation. More than 2.5 lakh people could be benefited by the corneal transplantation of donated eyes. But the lack of awareness and intention often act as a hindrance for eye donation. It’s time to change. Pledge to donate your eyes and give the gift of sight.
I did ! Did you?