A Role Model To Follow

My journey into low vision living is full of twists and turns, ups and downs, joys and struggles.  Even though I am trying to be accepting of whatever may happen, it is sometimes hard to navigate this path.  I don’t seem to fit into a support system, since I have a visual impairment but am not legally blind.  As I try to find my way through the maze of possibilities, I am looking for grace wherever I can find it.  I turn to family and friends for love and understanding.  (I am not alone.  This was pointed out to me yesterday when, in the middle of a rough day, a friend dropped by my office to see me.  It was a wonderful sign of God’s love for me that I was shown that I am not alone, that there are people who love me and care for me.)  I turn to prayer and scripture for peace and wisdom.  I look to spiritual leaders, past and present, as examples.  I turn to this blog and to photography for creative outlet.  I turn to movies and music for escape and symbolism and emotional release.

Sometimes the big blockbusters about one person fulfilling his or her destiny resonate with my own desire to follow my path to its best destination.  Sometimes it’s the smaller stories that are more compelling.  Gladiator, Braveheart, Spit Fire Grill, Trip To Bountiful, Fried Green Tomatoes, Remember The Titans – each movie has a character from which I can learn to be my best self.

For me, the movie Joan of Arc gives me a role model.  Joan of Arc lived her life the truest way that she could.  She followed where she was called and trusted in grace to help her.  Here is a clip of scenes from the movie, paired with the beautiful Panis Angelicus sung by Charlotte Church.

Movies and songs such as these help me to put things into perspective.  I am not being asked to save my country or lead a battle or die for my beliefs.  My attempts to get a state agency to help me are nothing compared to Joan’s attempts to get approval from church and king.  I am not being asked to defy convention or give up my life.  I am only being asked to follow my simple path with dignity, finding and pointing out the grace and touches of the divine that I find along the way.  Accompanying me, every step of the way, is the Panis Angelicus, the bread of life,  communion with the divine who leads me as I “wish to reach the light in which You dwell.”

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10 thoughts on “A Role Model To Follow

  1. I really enjoyed this post Your experience resonates with me. I am legally blind, with a birth defect that feft my optic nerve too small. This makes driving impossible and increasingly makes descending stairs and unstable walkways an adventure. I didn’t understand my disability until I was age 35. when my wife pushed to get answers as to the nature of my condition. Like you said in the article I have found a great deal of comfort in my faith, books, movies, music and historical role models. You have been a blessing to me today. Thank you for your blog. God bless!

    • Thank you for the kind words and for sharing about your vision problem. I am glad we are united in our dislike of stairs and unstable walkways. What are some of your favorite movies, books, music, role models?

      • I have so many favorites movies: feel good comedies; What About Bob?, Throw Mama from the Train, O Brother! Where Art Thou?; Science fiction; Star Wars, Star Trek series, The Fantastic 4; Mysteries; Dial M for Murder; Quirky movies; The Gods Must Be Crazy, The Trouble with Harry etc.

        Books: Fahrenheit 451, 1984, Life Expectancy by Dean Koontz; Nathaniel Hawthorne, Alezandre Solzenetzen etc.

        Music Western/ Cowboy, light classical, smooth jazz, acapella Christian, country gospel, generally light instrumental.

        Heroes: John Milton, John Donne, George MacDonald, C.S. Lewis, Albert Sweitzer- people who have suffered greatly, but lived triumphantly.

  2. Belinda, I don’t usually read facebook but i am so glad i did and read your entry that led me to this site. It is very meaningful to me to read your insightful and beautiful reflections.

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