I am making this so complicated.
I keep adding strings of words and thoughts and twisting them into some weird tapestry that, in my head is all clean lines and distinct colors: ordered, measured. One could even say, stately and fine. On the screen, it is squiggles of black, with occasional blotches that smudge and hide whatever lines of text it is that keep spilling, end over end, world without end, amen.
Here's the deal: I am terrified that I am going blind, that I will lose the ability to see.
It is a real, though perhaps unlikely, fear. I have a handful of health conditions, all related, all requiring specialists and special attention. And one of those conditions is an eye thing. As a result, I have a retina guy. I have an eye guy. I get lasered and treated and operated on every so often. It is controlled, my condition, but barely. It is progressive, they tell me. It will probably get worse.
And from there, from here, this simple, solid spot, I spin - a whirlpool of dark and limitless power that sucks and pulls and consumes all of the light, all of the hope...
See? Even when I stop (try to stop) the spilling and spinning, the anguish and the angst - they seep into this simple thing: I am terrified that I am going blind.
How will I see the color red? Or that single line of light that separates the sky from the sea? How will I see the messiness amid the grandeur - for every fiery sunset, For every sky stained scarlet and gold, that makes you breathless with wonder and awe, there is a river choked by sludge, or a village ravaged by war and poverty.
How will I see my words, put them into their proper order, see their rhythm and flow?
How will I see the words of Torah, painstakingly, lovingly drawn in their regulated sameness, row upon row upon column and page, so that even the mistakes are present and made beautiful, and every single scroll, every single scribe for millennia has infused his own spirit, his soul into those letters? How will I see to chant those words that fill me and still me and baffle me? This is the offering I give- will it be my sacrifice?
How will I see my son's face, watch him grow and change and become all of the things that I can just glimpse now, the strength and compassion and hardness and surety, all of those amazing things that have been germinating and are now just beginning to show? How in the world will I see this beautiful boy become a man if I am blind?
Every morning, we give thanks to God who opens the eyes of the blind. I do not have this faith. I believe in the metaphor of this prayer. I fear though, that I am going blind.