Shortly after I turned 40, I slipped into a deep denial phase where my failing eyesight was concerned. I was determined to conquer the inevitable–by winning the fight and becoming the ultimate victor in the age versus eyesight battle. About a year and half into my quest, I realized how futile my efforts had become. I begrudgingly gave in and made the appointment. Long story short–I now have the glasses, but still try to go without them on occasion, only to get put in my place more often than not. I’m reminded–mostly by my children– that I really need them to see clearly–especially when they shove something in front of my face to quickly read–and well, it’s just a blur.
My diminishing eyesight reminds me daily that life is a blur. So much has faded into the past—and so much still seems out of focus about the future. That’s the hard part. It’s what makes my blurry eyes turn misty at the thought of time not standing still. But as sure as my eyes will continue to worsen, I can still see so much, clearly.
I can see my youngest daughter transforming from our baby, into a young girl with her own interests and her own opinions. I see her face changing. I’m in awe of how our children can one day seem so small, and then almost instantaneously, turn into older version of themselves, before our eyes. I see new freckles on her face, fewer teeth, and eyes that grow brighter with each new realization she stumbles upon. I see a girl who both admires her older sisters, and longs to be with them–yet has every intention of blazing her own trail. I see her doing just that one day, and I love her for it.
In my middle daughter, I see pure determination. Her sights are already set on big things and although I can see her dream, it probably looks more fuzzy to me at this point, than it does to her teenage self. Admittedly, I see myself in her. Mostly the stubborn part. I’m certain I didn’t have her full confidence (or talent) at this age. In her too, I see dramatic outward change, as proof that time never lingers in the faces of our children. She’ll join her sister in high school this year, and the evidence of that next step is crystal clear most days (aside from a few moments when the teenage struggle between maturity and meltdowns becomes very REAL!! In that, I see her passion, and I love her for it.
Let’s be honest, I just literally do not see my oldest daughter much these days! Senior year looms, and the desire to be on her own or with her friends is at the forefront of her thoughts. I totally get that. I was her too, in so many ways. So now, I take every single opportunity to cease the moments we do share, just the two of us–or as a family. I can see her heart, even from the outside, and it’s beautiful. Right now, she doesn’t have a clear vision for what her future holds, but I know, that whatever path she chooses, her kind and loving heart will guide her. In her, I see the something special that each firstborn seems to hold within, and I love her for it.
My eyes are failing, but I see things now, that my children cannot. I see their beauty on days when they, or others, choose to make them think otherwise. I see friendships that will fail and others that will flourish. I see obstacles they will face and likely overcome, but not without a few tears to cloud their sight. I see “firsts” and “lasts” that will come and go without them so much as blinking. I see their bright futures, in ways they may not at this moment, because they’re busy looking in other directions.
I may not see very well, but I’ll take my view any day.
Because it’s beautiful.