Wednesday, February 25, 2009

"Watch out."

I'm not easily offended. I talk about my blindness all the time. And I try to give folks a chance to also talk about it. So, if people have a question or an opinion about my blindness, I pretty much will listen and respond to most of anything. But there are some things that people say that really get on my nerves. For example, I hate it when someone tells me to, "Watch out."

How ridiculous is that?

Why in the world would you tell a blind person to "watch out"? It just doesn't make any sense to me.

It's like telling a person in a wheelchair to "watch their step". Do you see how ridiculous that is?

And I'm not sure if people have said that to me always or if this is something new. But lately, I stop and become defensive every single time someone says that to me.

The first time I noticed it may have had something to do with who said it. A woman that I used to work with, who decided that she was going to hate on the new blind co-worker, said those words to me in the hallway one afternoon. Now, interestingly enough, this was the first thing that this woman had said to me in about six months. So, when she said it, I immediately took notice. Not only was she saying something to me, but she was also telling me to do something that I physically could not do.

When she said it, I stopped dead in my tracks. My eye brows went flying up and I looked straight in her direction with a strange, non-intimidating look on my face. I didn't say anything, and neither did she. I just let her pass me in the hall, and I continued on my path, thinking "You watch out!".

Two final thoughts... I'm so glad I don't work with that woman anymore. Thank you God for freeing me from being in her presence. Perhaps I'll dedicate a post or two to her. LOL
And secondly, I feel that it is my duty to help others see how ridiculous it is to use insensitive language when communicating with others. And telling someone to "watch out" is absolutely insensitive. So, every time someone says that to me, I will be telling them how silly and ridiculous that is.

Have a good week. And remember to think before letting words fly from your mouth. That's not a good look.

Angie Braden

Sunday, February 08, 2009

I'm taking questions. (Open Thread)

I did this nearly 9 months ago. Well, I thought that this is a good time to welcome you guys to ask questions again.

Don't be shy! I'm not.

Don't let trepidation restrict you from asking your question. There are no ignorant questions...Just ignorant assumptions.

Questions lead you to truth. So, if you want to get some truth about me, then shoot your question this way. And unless the question is just plain ridiculous and a horrific invasion of my privacy, I'll answer it.

Have a good week!!!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

When You Care

When you care about someone, you really take risks. Risks that can lead to disappointment, pain, and sheer horror if things go really bad. Risks that can leave your heart bleeding for a lifetime. Risks that can render you helpless, speechless, and faithless. Risks that can make you want to kill someone, that can make you wish that someone would just fall dead, or even make you wish you were dead.

This is why we should approach all relationships with God guarding our hearts and minds. Otherwise, you can end up losing both.

My family relationships have always had some type of challenges in them. But I endure because of love them. It's so sad that I feel that there are certain ones that don't feel the same. I honestly feel that they do not love me. And that hurts more than anything.

I know you cannot possibly pay me back for all that I do. But the least you can do is love me. That's not asking for too much.

Perhaps I shouldn't question their love. Maybe they don't know what love is. Perhaps they don't know how to make love "work".

But I don't know why not. Their parents have demonstrated love in the most generous and plain way. So, why don't you know what love looks like?

Well, with all that being said, I will continue to love. A. Because God tells me to do so. B. And because loving makes me feel better about living.

If you don't have love, you don't have life.

And I refuse to live and be dead.

**Nope, this post was not about me and my disability. But I just needed to get that off my chest. Do I feel better? I think.**

Asking for prayer,
Angela Braden

Brown Eyes (Redraft)

When I was eight-years-old, I stared into the mirror and captured the image of my face. I looked at my lips and took note of their fullness. I looked at my nose and realized how much I really didn’t like it. It was an okay nose, but I would have picked another one from God’s inventory. I then zoned in on my cheeks. Full, but not too fat… Yep, I had a couple of my daddy’s dimples. I wished that I could somehow poke a couple more dips in my cheeks.

“Not too bad.” I shamelessly thought. I had some pretty good looking features carved into my honey brown skin. Not perfect… But I decided that I was indeed a good looking child.

I continued to stare into the face of a girl that I was becoming more familiar with as each second leaped into the past. Next, I caught a glimpse of my long, long eyelashes. I admired their beauty and reach. Those lashes extended above the image that I would zone in next, my eyes. I looked into the intense, yet innocent, brown eyes of a girl, who was unaware of the dreadful days to come. I studied the brown. It was so rich, pure, and honest. A true brown… Light enough to see the brown. Dark enough to be called brown. But in that brown sea, pain, sickness, and death stirred beneath the surface. I didn’t know it yet, but those brown eyes were the deep brown pits of despair. The brown would unleash the fury that hides behind them and life would change. The brown would fade, and the girl’s image in the mirror of herself would fade with it.

Now, the image of the brown eyes in the mirror is a memory, just as the girl’s innocence and youth. So much has been lost… So much has faded away… The brown hides from the light. The brown lost the fight.

When I stare into the mirror, I see nothing. I don’t see brown. I see black. I am not a child anymore. I am a woman, whose brown eyes died.

How do eyes die? How does brown fade? How does the dark live? Why did brown fade to gray?

My brown eyes. My brown eye. The other eye is gone to meet His maker. The one that is left is no longer brown. But it’s trying to be faithful to the woman who has lost so much since it was brown. These brown eyes of mine have a story to tell. And one day, they will tell their story, and will sing the gospel and the blues.