Tuesday, December 23, 2014

"Don't ever let him cry"

I have a little story to tell you. 

First, I am getting manic so I can handle just about anything.  Thank God - although I had a good day. 

Anyway, Ron's mother, a Catholic, was pregnant.  She had 3 living children and several miscarriages.  The doctors (in the 50's!) offered to perform an abortion, as they were deeply worried about her health.  She said no. 

Ron was both with congenital glaucoma.  He looked so awful they have no baby photos.  When they were presented with him, they were told "Don't ever let him cry.  Crying raises eye pressure.  If he cries, he'll go blind." 

I can hear collective groans around the world.  Ron could do anything.  Boundaries?  None.  Absolutely none.  His brother could earn money doing chores for a neighbor, buy a treat, and would be forced to share it if Ron whined. 

After hearing all that, I wasn't really shocked they dumped us so quick after the accident.  Had I not been 17, "crazy", with brain damage (in a report they wrote me up as "extremely naive"), I would have run screaming, I'm sure, when I heard that story. 

Ron, in the meantime, had 9 eye operations.  At that time, they didn't believe in painkillers for children.  He doesn't talk about it.  It was pretty horrific. 

At one point, a team of doctors stood around his bedside, doing rounds, discussing just how they would operate on his "good eye" - discussing the incisions, angle of approach, scalpels, etc.  Ron became hysterical.  The head doctor decided it was time to stop the operations. 

At this point, Ron had very little vision.  He was enrolled in a blind pre-k program and was encouraged to use his intellect.  He was born and raised in one of the worst ghettos in Houston. 

Ron's mother caught him one day, telling his brother he had "Mama wrapped around my finger".  The beatings began.  Ron went blind pretty quickly after that. 

Ron wouldn't want me to share what happened the day he went blind, but everyone in his life failed him that day.  "They turned off the sun" Ron says, in a small voice.  "I cried and cried". 

From my observation, people who go blind as adults do not adapt as well as those who went blind as children.  Kids are fearless. 

Ron was always pretty fearless.  Still is.  He wants to take out the garbage, but it's "too cold".  He puts the cans in his wheelchair and rolls them out to the street. 

So, when I look at all that, it's not surprising Ron has issues.  Who wouldn't? 


Anonymous said...

you will be glad to know things have changed. There are schools now, my daughters friend was in one. That as they loose vision are amazing at teaching them and providing them with tools for the adjustments as they happen…she is of course blind now, but you would never know as she was taught each step of the way how to deal in the "now" with her disease..she was inner city and poor so money was not an issue there are programs all over that help kids like Ron now. Progress doesn't help him but it is good news for others don't you think? Merry Christmas Heather glad you got a little mania for the holidays OOOXXX

Heather Knits said...

One thing I haven't shared on the blog: I was a teachers aide in the blind students class, for 2 years, before I met Ron.

When I met Ron he kept saying "You're so cool. You understand what I need and you aren't weird about it, either."

A trip to the hematologist

I slept OK but woke up really tired.  I hit the snooze alarm a few times, much to Biscuit's disgust.  But I'm getting ahead of mys...