Truly Seeing The World Around You by Paulette Le Pore Motzko
Copyright March 2013
I love what this said in that it illustrates that some really don’t truly live but go through life blinders on to the sights, scents and amazing small miracles they encounter. When we open up our world to the sights and scents and all the experiences in life, we truly live.
For instance, here is a great exercise to become better at TRULY SEEING LIFE. PRETEND YOU ARE EXPLAINING WHAT YOU ARE SEEING AND EXPERIENCING TO SOMEONE WHO IS BLIND.
I had a great friend when I was younger who was blind and I used to explain in glorious detail what I was seeing for her and only wished she could see what I did. I also had a client who was blind and had epilepsy and he called me for help when I was the CEO/Founder of The Epilepsy Connection. It was Friend & Family Day at The Braille Institute and none of his family wanted to go with him, so I became his family and was honored.
If you have never volunteered your time at The Braille Institute, or been there it will literally “open your eyes” to some of the most courageous and intelligent people you will ever encounter. I wore a blind fold to simulate blindness and then cooked (or at least tried to) with the blind fold on. It didn’t go very well because I had no grasp of where things were from each other and I realized what blind people have to go through on a daily basis to do even the most simple things.
Then I wore goggles to simulate being partially blind, which was worse than the other, because things looked distorted and out of focus. Then they gave me a can to walk with and we were supposed to find our way home, with an assistance, who gave directions and described in glorious detail what I was coming up against and allowing my ears to make up for my eyes.
In the center of The Braille Institute in Anaheim on Dale is a beautiful fountain with crystalline waters flowing from it. I have always loved fountains and the charm of them but had no idea there was a distinct reason why the fountain was there. Do you know why it was there?
It was to give orientation to all the people there who had vision impairments-blind or partially blind. They could sense where they were from the center of the building. My senses were not in tune with it and I never really got a sense for where I was at, but I had an even deeper appreciation of people who were blind, who taught many of the courses and looked just like anyone else. Epilepsy and blindness have several things in common:
1. They are permanent disabilities
2. They are for the most part invisible to others
3. They make those whose lives have been touched by it gain a deeper appreciation for the world around them.
4. Anyone can acquire epilepsy or blindness if the right set of circumstances arose
In my case, I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 9 years old and was a very sick child passing out all over the place and it took awhile to find a medicine gave me the control I now have. Consciousness, uninterrupted normalcy was a highly appreciated thing and compassion was a thing I learned at a very early age, along with big words, and hanging around with people who were 30 years my senior because the “kids” my age didn’t understand what I was going through and were not nice.
Going back to the name of this post/article, the next time you go outside on a pretty day, pick up a pen and paper and write down what you see. I mean, really write it down as though you are seeing for the first time and are explaining to someone who cannot see. It will change your world forever.
Paulette Le Pore Motzko
St. Patrick’s Day 2013