Blind, Chapter 12
The following is a fable, posted in small chapters. If you are new to this story, start with Chapter 1. One morning the sun peeked through the blinds covering our window. How often do we tend to block out the light…
The man’s wife listened quietly as he described the unbelievable day he experienced. He talked about the weight that has been pulling on his body for months. He described the strange warm sensation that greeted him that morning. Then he shared the moment when he first realized he could not see.
About halfway through the part where he had tumbled down the staircase, the man’s wife had silently picked up a pillow off the couch and flung it straight at his face. The zippered end just happened to sting him across the forehead.
“Agghhh!”, he screamed. Then between breaths demanded, “Did you just throw something at me?!”
She paused one extra moment to compose herself. “I thought I would conduct a little eye test”, she replied. She noted that he clearly was surprised, and certainly perturbed. His indignation did not appear staged. Add to that, he did not flinch at all. But, his story seemed too fantastical to believe. How could someone function as a seeing person so long but actually be blind? Was he covering up something much worse?
Yet, it was clear he could not see a blessed thing. She made a mental note to call the doctor in the morning for an emergency appointment. There has got to be a reasonable explanation for his sudden condition. She was the kind of person to test the obvious answers before skipping to the improbable ones.
Her hand was still resting on his as he described the strange black world where he almost lost himself. When he finally made it to the part outside where he was assaulted with intense light, the top of his hand became very warm. He pulled it away from his wife’s hand. “Do you think this is funny? More tests?”. He was hurt.
“What are you talking about?”, she countered, “Why did you move your hand?”
He couldn’t answer because his attention was completely on his arm. The heat did not fade. Instead, it began to travel up towards his shoulder. He lept off the sofa with a squeal and kicked himself backward on the floor as if trying to get away.
His wife looked with disbelief as her husband was unraveling before her eyes. Perhaps I’ll make that call tonight, she thought. But right now he needs me! She jumped up and circled behind him.
She cradled him as the man continued to kick and clutched at his chest. The heat was going deep now, burrowing into his lungs. He saw sharp flashes of his brilliantly lit living room, fireplace and the sofa they were just sitting on. It was as if someone was flicking the lights on and off in his brain. Then it all simply stopped, and there was darkness again. The hot sensation disappeared into his heart. He sat there in his wife’s arms, eyes wide, breathing deep and heavy. He was gripping onto her with desperation.
She fought hard to not give in to instinct and pull away running to the telephone. She couldn’t leave him just now. No, he was certainly facing something very real, as unusual as it was. She could never handle to watch him suffer. So she returned his grip with the same desperation.
As she sat there, she admitted he had been increasingly distant over the last number of months. He seemed disconnected, not at all like the man she fell in love with. That man was playful and adventuresome. This man in her arms was like a cracked shell that once housed her husband. She just figured it was that new “manopause” the talk shows kept harping about. She figured it would pass and he would come back to her. As disconcerting as this crazy moment was, it was the closest they had been in a long time.
She tightened her grip just a little more.
She didn’t know what was happening to her husband, but she wasn’t convinced it was all bad.
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