The Blind Side of Truth | Teen Ink

The Blind Side of Truth MAG

December 28, 2009
By Sarah Danielson BRONZE, Cannon Falls, Minnesota
Sarah Danielson BRONZE, Cannon Falls, Minnesota
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Cover your right eye for 15 minutes and try to do normal activities. Do you feel disabled? That’s how I’ve been seeing since I was seven.

I have glaucoma and JRA. Glaucoma is a disease that causes eye pressure to rise, which blocks the cornea, and soon our vision gets cloudy, a telltale sign of blindness. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, or JRA, is an immune disease that causes white blood cells to attack themselves. It can affect different parts of the body. In my case, my knees sometimes swell up so much that it hurts to walk. I also get sick very easily since my white blood cells are weak.

Glaucoma has left me blind in my right eye, but my left is basically fine. I take eye drops many times each day to ward off the disease. I’ve had countless operations on my right eye.

JRA is like an unexpected visitor. Some days my knees are totally fine and flexible, and others, the pain can make me wish I didn’t have legs at all. I’ve never had to have surgery on my knees though, thankfully.

These diseases, without a doubt, made me grow up fast. I realized early on that the only person who can truly help me is me. I needed to believe in myself before all else. I’ve taken on so many responsibilities, it’s like I’m 15 going on 30.

In many ways I am affected not just physically but emotionally. But I don’t waste my time thinking about life without my ailments. My medicines and doctors are the pillars of my strength. I also like to keep in mind that there are many children who have these diseases but are too poor or unfortunate to get any help.

The struggles I experience have really opened my eyes to a lot of things. Since my diseases force me to take it easy, instead of moping I spend time observing things, watching people when they’re mad and how different that is from when they’re sad, or even happy. I’ve observed people change, basically mature into different people. It’s very interesting.

Despite my ailments, I’m pretty normal. I don’t walk like I’m half blind or get special treatment. I love indie music; I’m a vegetarian; I want to be a psychiatrist; I plan to move to London by the time I’m 25. I love painting. I like the feeling of things accomplished.

If there’s anything I’ve learned from my challenges, it’s not to take life for granted. I eat healthy, take care of my body, and try to be all that I can be and be the person I want to be.

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This article has 9 comments.

on Mar. 21 2016 at 10:16 am
I love you

Nelu96 GOLD said...
on Aug. 25 2012 at 1:33 pm
Nelu96 GOLD, Windhoek, Other
10 articles 0 photos 19 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself."- George Bernard Shaw

Your article is very inspiring. I admire your positivity and strength. Thanks for making me realize the value of my life.

J. Rae said...
on Jul. 7 2010 at 9:44 am
I have a friend who is totally blind in her left eye. It's like it's not even there. But it doesn't effect her at all  I spent a week with her and never realized it until she actually told me.

on Jun. 27 2010 at 2:17 pm
allisonl97 BRONZE, =), Wisconsin
2 articles 0 photos 46 comments

Favorite Quote:
I dont really have a fav quote

this is a great article...i hope that things get easier for you!!!

RebelAnjewel said...
on Mar. 11 2010 at 7:23 pm
RebelAnjewel, Williamsburgh, Pennsylvania
0 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
Love is familiar. Love is a devil. There is no evil angel but love.~Shakespear

Very good article. I completely understand the JRA part. I have it as well, only it is all through me.

It's true you can't take life for granted.

Sarahh said...
on Jan. 31 2010 at 3:16 pm
Thank you :)

sunshinee(: said...
on Jan. 17 2010 at 5:19 pm
Wow. You've really inspired me to take on what I need to do in life and well, be healthier. I'm just not sure where to start but I know I can do something. Thanks for what you've done. I really appreciate it

on Jan. 14 2010 at 3:02 pm
That's so sad I'm so sorry and wow you are very strong

. said...
on Jan. 14 2010 at 11:38 am
Great article! I really liked the ending.

I'm so glad that you don't let these diseases run your life. When they knock you down, you just get right back out there and face the world. Your parents should be very proud of you.