How to Look Forever Young

My wife and I were high school sweethearts—for half of sophomore year, that is.  We attended colleges 427 miles apart.  She returned home for high school reunions, I didn’t.  We neither saw nor spoke for thirty-two years.  During our decades apart, she had her first bout with breast cancer; I lost the ability to see faces.  When we reconnected, we shared lots of stories and, in the telling, she sounded the same as I remembered.  Then and now, when I hear her voice, I see the face of a sixteen year-old girl.

My last trip to the picture show when I could see the picture was The Untouchables.  That was around 1989, when the blind spots in my visual field meant I had to look from one face to another to follow the conversation.  I saw that Sean Connery was balding.  I had noticed that I too was balding.  I saw how virile a balding Sean Connery was.  I thought the same applied to me.  But my algebraic truth that if a=b and b=c, then a=c sadly didn’t apply when a = Sean Connery and c = me.  At least, that’s what my friends told me, and, bless them, they broke the news in a Disney way.

At our wedding seven years ago, the friend who introduced us read from my wife’s sophomore yearbook “Hey,” I had written, “it was fun being your boyfriend for four and a half months (132 days).  Maybe we should try it again sometime—like in 25 or 30 years.”  Everybody oohed and aahed.  I smiled serenely, like a prophet.  I scanned every face, every dear face that had not changed in forty years.  And I saw and heard kindness and caring, joy and love.  And I became aware of what beauty truly means and where it dwells.  And then I kissed my beautiful bride.

This entry was posted in Moving beyond vision loss, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to How to Look Forever Young

  1. Kent Flodin says:

    A does equal C.

  2. bethfinke says:

    Yup. I’ve long said this is one of the few, but huge benefits of losing your sight. Have never expressed it as elegantly — and succinctly –as you have here. Beautiful.


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