“I am not my eye”

Project Description:

“Lazy” is something I am not, but my left eye is. I was born with Amblyopia, as Wikipidia defines it: “Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, is an eye disorder characterized by an impaired vision in an eye that otherwise appears normal, or out of proportion to associated structural abnormalities of the eye. It has been estimated to affect 1-5% of the population.” Not very many people have this annoying disorder, but I happen to be one of those few.
At the age of three I was put in an orphanage and for the next five years I was shuffled from orphanage to foster home to orphanage, until I was adopted at the age of eight by a family who tried to help correct my eye disorder. I was often called “cross eyed” and as a child who had a rough time in her early years being called names was something that hurt me very deeply. I so wanted to be “normal”. I wanted a real mom and dad, a real house, a real school, and real friends. At the age of ten, I underwent eye surgery to help straighten my eye. I wore patches and had to use eye drops, but nothing seemed to help. I still to this day have Amblyopia.

As I grew older I had to wear glasses and now I was called “four eyes” and “cross eyed”. As we all know children can be so cruel. I wanted so badly for my eye to be straight. I learned how to align my eyes with other people’s eyes as I was talking to them. This was a huge leap of faith for me to look others in the eyes, since I was only too often asked “what are you looking at?” or “are you talking to me?” Having a conversation that included eye contact was very difficult for me. I believed that it was respectful, showed you were listening, and making a deeper personal connection, when you looked someone in the eyes while talking to or with them.

As time went on, I started a deep spiritual quest and found through my spiritual understanding that the eyes are often considered to be the windows to the soul. I so wanted to make eye contact with everyone out of respect to all living beings and to have a spiritual connection. This is still difficult to do with my ‘lazy” eye, but I have become very competent at aligning my eyes with others and not giving into the fear that others will not know I am talking or trying to have a sincere connection with them as spirit.

I have never truly understood why I was born with this disorder, but I do know that a lazy eye does not make me a lazy person. Only twice in my life has someone told me that they found my lazy eye kind of cute. Thanks for those words; they made up for all the horrible comments I had to deal with as a child.