Wednesday, May 23, 2012

6 years, my how time flys!

Well, would you lookie there. It’s May 23 all over again. This makes 6 years, 6 years since my life changed forever. Today makes 6 years since they wheeled me into an operating room drilled a hole in my skull, played with my brains a bit, and shipped me back to my parents blind. At the time we all thought it was temporary, but here I am 6 years later and not much has changed. Well, at least not with my eye sight, but my life has changed in so many different and interesting ways. If someone would have told me in December of 2005 that 6 months later I would have horrible headaches, blurred vision, then little to no vision, and this was all part of a disease that would plague me for the rest of my life, I might have just told you that I’m going to jump off a bridge and that my life will be completely over. I was a dramatic teenager, but who isn’t? I had a bright future, made the drill team at a local private college, scholarships to help my parents with the costs; I wouldn’t have to live in a dorm because the college was driving distance from home… I had friends and lots of them. We partied, I thought I was in love, Ah, the graduating class of 2006 was a force to be reckoned with and we were prepared to make the world see that. We had a lot of smart people in my class, and I would like to consider myself to be a part of that group. I learned early how to manage my party and study time so that my grades didn’t suffer. I was president of the school’s chapter of DECA (business and marketing club) and I was district secretary. I had composed a monster paper about my favorite charity and made a kick ass PowerPoint to go along with it. I was smart, bright, and ready to take on the world. I feel grateful that I got to have the experiences I did while I was in school. Being able to do the business and marketing competitions, be on the drill team for all 4 years of high school, run wild and crazy with my friends, and be able to be a normal teenager. But now let’s fast forward, its 2012. I’m now 24 years old and its 6 years to the day that I lost the majority of the eye sight that I have lost up to this point. I’m really mostly happy with my life and the turns and changes it’s had. I didn’t get to go to that private college, or be on that college’s drill team, but I really think that I’m ok with that. I think that this way has been better now than it’s ever been. I got myself out of a dangerous and horrible relationship. (This relationship was the same one from high school where I thought I was in love.) I’m in a new relationship, this one just helped me and Taylor celebrate our 5 year anniversary in April. I know I’m in love this time around. I’m older, wiser, and more aware of the hard knocks that life can throw at you and feel that I’m mostly more prepared for that now. My parents live in Oklahoma City, I live outside the DFW (Dallas/Fort Worth) area, and my sister still lives in the town we all grew up in. I’m content for now. I’m close to finishing my bachelor’s degree in business administration; I’ve got the green light to get my masters after I take a semester off. This whole going blind thing really hasn’t been too bad. This way I’ve saved myself and my parents a ton of money because the state of Texas pays the costs of my classes, I get financial aid for my books, and I don’t have to buy my own technology unless I want to. (I usually do buy my own tech) I’ve got a wonderful guide dog that I love with my whole heart and wouldn’t trade her for anything in the world. This is all brought to me by going blind. If I hadn’t lost my sight, I might have not met Taylor; I might be like my sister and still live in the same hole in the wall town, and may just be stuck. I also wouldn’t have had the opportunity to meet lots of cool, interesting, nice, and awesome people. I wouldn’t have heard about Guide Dogs for the Blind, or received Leah. I also don’t think that I would have come to love sports as much as I do without going blind. If it weren’t for going blind I might not have met RO, and then may not have been such a huge Rangers fan! Baseball and football make my life so much better, it’s nice to enjoy a game and only care about the game for a few hours! I really can’t make myself sit down and try to figure out where my life would be if I had not lost my sight. Comparing my way of thinking to my 18 year old self’s way of thinking, I think that going blind could’ve been one of the best things that ever happened to me, and I can’t say that I would change anything if I could. My 18 year old self is screaming at me from the inside calling me all kinds of ugly names, but just give her time... she’ll grow up and realize that things are pretty good from where I’m sitting. I’ll admit there have been drawbacks to the blind thing, and yes they can be frustrating. This doesn’t mean that I spend my days longing to have my sight back. This just means that yeah, every once in a while I find myself saying that if I had my sight this task wouldn’t be as hard or impossible without help. I love my life, surgeries, crazy friends, up and down emotions, grumpy boyfriend, crazy loveable pup, twitter friends, network of friends and family from my hometown on Facebook. I enjoy visiting my parents whatever part of the country they might be in at that time. I love Taylor’s family even though they drive me up the wall sometimes; I love my family even though we would like to wring each other’s necks sometimes. But mostly I love life. I can’t wait to finish school and see what life has in store for me outside the institution of school’s walls. I’m thankful for the people that have entered and left and stayed in my life. I think that by having such great friends it has made it possible for me to love my life this much. I thank Taylor for loving me and being there for me in his own special way. I thank Taylor’s family for doing what they do for us, because it’s honestly more than I can name. I thank my parent’s for not giving up on me when things didn’t look so great. I thank Twitter, without Twitter I wouldn’t know the awesome Canadians I know. I love my Canadians, and you guys are awesome! I thank all of you guys, all of you have contributed in some way to help make my life as great as it is. Thanks everyone for being a part of this melting pot I call life! Here’s to another 6 years and many more to come! Lots of Love, Amanda Ellen


  1. Happy anniversary. It's always nice to see somebody going blind later in life and figuring it out. So many never quite get there.

    Oh, and thanks for the shoutout.

  2. Yeah, it was nice to look back and see that I really did adapt to this whole thing.
    What's an anniversary post including Twitter without a shout out to my Canadians? :)

  3. Happy Anniversary amanda :)

    It's amazing to see all that has changed in your life and how well you have adjusted to it.

    may you have many more years of such happiness and adventure :)

  4. Thanks Brooke.
    Writing it all down helped me put things in perspective, I really hadn't noticed all the changes until I did that.


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