It's about a girl who grows up blind.
| Chapter 1
Hi, I'm Charlotte. I was born in a little city in Virginia on a farm in the year 2002. I was born blind. The doctors came and tried to see if they could give me a remedy or suggest the most reliable surgery, but they said it most likely was already too late. I grew up blind. Not being able to see was hard and to me sometimes I thought life wasn't even worth living without my eyesight. Everyone took advantage of the one thing I desired more than anything else. At age six I attended a school especially for blind children and it gave me hope if not anything else. It made me thankful when they talked of Helen Keller who was not only blind, but deaf as well. For the time being I was happy being blind, but happiness doesn't always lat forever. It was only a matter of time and for me it started when I turned twelve.
"Mom, I want to go to a REAL school," I protested
"But Honey that just can't happen, you know that. Honey your blind," My mother said as kindly as i could
I slumped down and felt my way out of the room with my large cane my mother insisted I carried everywhere. It wasn't fair! Being blind shouldn't mean that I should be excluded from all the other students. In my case I thought of myself as perfectly normal. Mom and Dad were lucky in my eyes that they weren't blind, but I was and I would be stuck being blind for the rest of my life. My mother just didn't understand and my father rarely ever was home having divorced my mother long ago. I walked into my room feeling the door post as I weren't in and slumped into my covers collapsing with a heap.
The next morning Mother called me down to breakfast. We had pancakes, waffles, and cold milk. My mom drove me to school and as we drove I heard kids outside making a rather loud racket as they climbed onto their bus that arrived there each and every morning. I wished I could go on a bus and enter there world for only a day! I imagined that I had beautiful blue eyes and that I was the most popular girl there. In my fantasy I walked out of the car rather awkwardly and started up the steps of the school. Then Bump!
"Oh I'm so sorry! It's all my fault I wasn't paying attention." I said apologetically
"It's all right." sang a beautiful voice next to me as she walked past. I had never heard such an angelic voice in all my life as hers at that moment.
I got to class right before the bell and sat down hastily in a seat by the warm sunshine of the window. My teacher Mrs. Evergreen was the kindest teacher I had ever known in my life. She also asked us amazing questions and taught us that we could do anything, if we put our minds to it. I heard her voice ask the first question of the day, "Class, today we will be talking about what we want to be when we grow up. Write a paragraph or two on what you want to be and why."
I had never really thought about what I wanted to be when I grew up. To be honest it never even slipped my mind as even important. I thought hard topic asking myself questions. I thought about maybe being a baker, but I thought otherwise when a picture of me in a room full of dough came into my mind. I had never been much of a cook and I certainly would fail terribly if i just decided to try. "not too messy." I muttered to myself. At that point Mrs. Evergreen was already asking around the room if we had thought of a good topic. She was going individually one by one asking what their topic was going to be.
At that point someone shouted, "I want to be a farmer!"
He seemed very optimistic, but I didn't have much time and I already knew I did not want to work with stinky animals for the rest of my life. I had to decide now! Mrs. Evergreen was here at my desk! Then she asked me "Charlotte, what would you like to be when you grow up?" I thought hard and long and then it was like I knew exactly what I wanted to be all along and I said, "I want to be a doctor and help blind people just like me."
Mrs. Evergreen must have been surprised because she didn't answer right away. After she told me that was a great thing to be when I grew up the boy next to me started laughing and whispered to his neighbor, "She'll never be a doctor it's impossible for us blind folks. Some dreams are just better left behind." They started chanting around the classroom about me being an idiot. I felt like crying and somewhere in the inside I was.
Just then though the same girl that I knocked over at the start of school with her angelic voice called out, "Hey! Knock it off! Blind people can too become doctors! I'm with her we'll both become doctors and show people like you that blind people can do and be anything they want!" I leaned over to the person next to me and told him to tell her that I was grateful for sticking up for me like that. He responded by telling me that she said I shouldn't listen to them or anyone else and that if I didn't lose hope that she wouldn't either.
I nodded to thank him though I doubt he got the message and started writing. To anyone else my hand writing looked more like playing hang man then forming words. We didn't have much time to finish since we had a rude disruption during class so Mrs. Evergreen said that we could continue tomorrow. After school I searched for the beautiful girls voice and asked her what her name was. She said her name was Rebekah. For the first time in my life I finally felt like I had a true friend.
I hoped into my mom's car as she called my name to hop in and excitedly exclaimed that my mind was made up and I was going to be a doctor someday. She didn't take it well. Although it was my felt for rushing into things so quickly as usual.
She quickly and as kindly as she could asked where I would even get my school books from since not many books those days were in bail. Especially not books on becoming a doctor.
"Mom your a doctor you could translate for me!" There was a long pause and I tried to give her the biggest eyes I could conjure up and she finally agreed she would on one condition and that was that I could not speak a word of this to my father until she had time to explain. I already knew however that not even I would be able to speak to my father nor she any time soon.
"I will. Oh, thanks Mom!" I gleefully shouted from the back seat as we continued down the long road towards home. When we got home I ran to my room not even caring if I tripped or even broke my neck. I was probably for that moment the happiest child on Earth. As I sat in my bed reading my addition of Harry Potter in bail I thought of Rebekah, the new friend I had made and of maybe asking her to take lessons with me tomorrow.
The next day I was so anxious to go to school that I ran from my bed and ate breakfast in such a hurry that I nearly chocked. I then flew to the car as it felt and we were off driving on the highway towards school and towards Rebekah.
We finally arrived at school. The first thing I heard when I walked out of the car was once again about me and my ideas of being a doctor. It seemed to never end I thought. I strained my ears to search for a small angelic voice I knew belonged to Rebekah, but as much as I strained I couldn't find her. I decided to give up and talk to her after class. I walked to my class room and pulled out my English book and some paper. For a moment I thought I might be late, because from the moment I walked in I hadn't heard a sound. I raised my hand until Mrs. Evergreen called on me and asked, "Am I late?"
I heard a boy behind me reply, "Of course your not do do brain!" His remark was followed by a simultaneous laughter that filled the classroom until Mrs. Evergreen beet her hand on her desk demanding silence in her classroom. Although I felt red all over anyways. I was already so embarrassed! The only thing I was proud of was that no one could see my face except for Mrs. Evergreen at that moment for it probably was as red as a cherry.
"Okay, now today class were going to continue on our reports so grab a pencil and a piece of paper. At the end of the class I will read each one of your reports to the class."
I could hear pencil stroking paper as I thought diligently about my own paper scribbling down words carefully to make no errors. Although I don't think I succeeded entirely. I finally finished after hearing other stop writing at least five minutes before I did.
Jenny's story went first. She of course being the most popular wanted to be a princess. Last year I asked her if she was a little to young for wanting to be a princess and her only response was that I couldn't understand because I never could be one anyways. Sometimes she just got me mad! Rebeka's story I found was much like mine and I hoped I wouldn't bore everyone when Mrs. Evergreen read mine on the same topic.
Finally after about three other reports Mrs. Evergreen asked for my story. She read aloud,
"How I wish to be a doctor....When I grow up I want to be a different person: not a cook, not a singer, and not a waitress. I want to be a doctor, just like my Mom. My Mom healed many patients and saved many lives before retiring. She also before she did retire take me with her on occasion to visit there with her during lunch brake. She had the idea of putting the fish in the waiting room after so many complaints about it being so dull and dreary in there. But the best part about my mom is that she has magic healing powers that can heal many things which I hope she can someday entrust to me."
Mrs. Evergreen congratulated me on my report and handed it back telling me I had diffidently earned an A for the day. I didn't think my report at all diffidently earned an A, but I was happy with my grade nevertheless.
School continued after English with Math, Science, and many other of our normal subjects. As always class was amusing with all the boys there. One named Anthony farted so loud, on purpose. It was not at all good smelling, but it gave us all a great laugh when Mr. Drill said
"Oh well.....Anthony.....you must be one healthy boy." Everyone said that the more you farted the healthier you were. Although I still thought it was disgusting.
After school I went to talk to Rebekah and asked if she wanted to study with me and my mom. She accepted graciously, but asked also if it was okay with my mother.
I ran out to my mothers car asking, "Mother may Rebekah PLEASE study with us. She want's to study with us to become a doctor too!" I was sure she would say no and I redid myself, but instead she said yes! Then I ran to Rebekah and told her it was okay with my mom, but to ask hers if she could come over as well. She ran to ask her mother and when she returned she seemed to be huffing very hard. I imagined she must be the big bad wolf in the story 'The Three Little Pigs' since she was huffing so hard. She told me it was okay with her mother and we giggled as we entered my mothers car dreaming of what awaited us as we took our first lesson in becoming the first blind doctors.
My mother had always told me that the best way to learn how to do things was to learn it fresh. She told us that we were going to a nearby preschool that housed children with disabilities and noncontagious diseases. When we got there we entered through the double doors my mother holding them for us to pass through and went to what appeared to be the front desk.
"OH! ANNE! (my mothers name)" I heard someone say with amazement from behind the desk. "Where have you been lately?" she asked laughing out of joy of obviously seeing her again.
"I've been around Luanda. We were wondering if we could see little Stacy." she said kindly.
"Oh! Of course you can anything for you Anne! I see you brought Charlotte, you've told me so much about her, but who's this?" she asked obviously pointing at Rebeka
"A friend." my mother replied
"Oh, well that's nice. Now do you know the way?" Luanda asked
"Of course. Thank you Luanda!" my mother called as she took our arms and led us to a nearby room. Before entering she told us that the room belonged to a girl named Stacy Allen Parker who had cancer and not to talk about it with her. She also told us to be kind and respectful which we already were prepared to do anyways. As my mother entered the room I heard the small girl's voice mutter
"Anne. Hi Anne. Who are your friends?"
"Charlotte, Rebekah..." she called for us "this is Charlotte my daughter and this is Rebekah" she said obviously pointing to us as we stepped forward. We stayed with Stacy for some time telling her how we wanted to be doctors. She laughed after hearing that comment, but said she was only laughing since doctors were the only ones she ever saw mostly these days. She also said that she would probably want us to be her doctors then some of the ones that took care of her there.
After nearly an hour of speaking with Stacy, we knew we had to go so we made our departure. At that moment I didn't think I had ever met a girl like Stacy nor any other would I meet in the past.
After we left we headed home since Rebeka still had another hour she could stay. After we arrived home my mother got out some play-do I had not seen since I was about six years old. She instructed us on how to make a mini clay woman and man. After making them we learned how to make the inside parts like the heart as well. At the end of the day we knew practically every part of the body.
As Rebeka and I learned it was though weeks turned into days. One week we went to the library at our school and were able to find a few books on the human body. We learned how doctors can do amazing things and save lives by doing things like heart transplants. My mother also was able to buy a voice operated patient game called operation where the player had to grab a certain piece out of a certain place with large tweezers. Then they had to pull it out without touching the sides and then replace it. If the patient beeped it meant that the surgeon had touched a vital part and depending on the part and how many times you touched the side the patients sounds would grow louder and eventually we played would die if we hit the side a certain amount of times.
Many years passed of working on becoming a doctor at least once a weak with Rebeka and my mother when we were finally excepted into a college my mother payed entirely out of her savings for. The cost of admission was double for us, but at least we got in. All during college we had special tutors that would come and teach us individually at home. In those times Rebeka and I rarely saw each other because we were so busy, but when we finally made it through with our scholarships we knew we had done it, or so we thought.
My mother was able to slide our careers in in replacement of hers. She had retired nearly ten years ago, but luckily a space still remained for the two of us to share. Although we were happy to have the job many people around the hospital would stare and gape at us. We would sometimes even hear them speak crude, unkind things about us and how we ever graduated or got our jobs. The doctor appointed us merely as nurses, but we didn't mind. We worked on flu, allergies, and many other things even though we had been trained to be surgeons as well. The doctor just did not trust us, but we needed to get his attention some how. Rebeka and I decided to go and speak with him about our injustice.
"Doctor." we chimed together.
"What is it?" he asked all to innocently
"We demand justice. We worked long and hard to become surgeons as well as nurses and we have not seen an ounce of blood. The most weave seen is a bloody nose. Please, wont you allow us to do our jobs?" I asked
"Why of course....but your blind." he said as kindly as he could
Not that old excuse again. How many times did we have to prove that we were just as good as anyone else? I was about to tell him so when he sighed and said
"I do agree that I have not treated you very kindly. I apologize. If you will assure me that you have things under control by proving it to me maybe I will change my mind on the matter."
"Oh! Thank you Doctor Robert." Rebeka said in her same angelic voice as we walked down the long corridor for probably the hundredth time that year.
Rebeka and I eventually went our separate ways and then it struck me! What if I could create a surgery that could allow people's eyesight to return! In my mind I knew this would get Doctor Robert's attention and all I could think was that I was a complete genius. In my mind this surgery could be the most successful thing in the world and save people's eye sight all the way around the world.
I stayed up night after night reading, studying eye books on surgeries done in the past. They all shared a certain thing which was that a surgery to save one's eyesight completely at an age older than a few months was impossible. Although each time I read this line it only made me more determined then ever to prove them wrong. There was going to be a way and I was going to think it up. I drew diagrams, worked on the computer, and then finally I had the perfect solution. The only problem was that it was risky and it could lead to death with a doctor's unsteady hand. Unlike the game Rebeka and I had played so long ago, Operation, there was no restart button. Once a buzz went off the patient was gone. This operation was very risky since it involved not only surgery on the eyeballs itself, but also on some of the most important parts of the brain. If a person survived miraculously after a doctor's mistake it would most likely lead to terrible brain damage, intense strokes, or internal bleeding.
I was still intensely sought on my idea although and no fear was going to change my mind. I would talk to the doctor the next day at lunch.
The next day I came to talk to Doctor Robert and told him my proposal. His only reply was,
"It's way risky Anne. Are you sure...?"
"Yes. I am sure and I am ready. I want to teach you every step, but no other person, but me will be the first to see if it is successful."
"But it could...." he protested
"I am fully aware and I have accepted that fact, but I am going through with this."
The doctor only smiled and listened as I explained more about the procedures of the surgery.
Finally the surgery day came at least a month later of me coaching him repeatedly about what to do at every step. He also knew what to do if anything at all went wrong during the operation. Before surgery I told my mother that I loved her, she was against it of course, but told me I was grownup and had to make my own choices now. Also I was a bit suborn and would not let her say no. She was waiting in the waiting room probably balling her eyes out thinking I could never return to her again. Or at least the same as I had been again. I had signed the day before all the nonsense papers that said things like if I died they didn't have anything to do with it and stuff. Then I was under two giant bright lights blacking out and starting to dream.
"Hello, where am I?" I shouted, and my voice echoed back to me. I looked around and noticed I was not where I should be. I couldn't tell where I was. There was just whiteness all around me. I felt scared so I started to run, but wherever I ran the white hallway, as it seemed, never stopped. I felt like I was running in non ending circles with my voice fading in the distance echoing my first sentence. Where was my mom? Where was Rebeka? And where was my dad whenever I needed him?! Then it was if at that second they appeared in front of me! But only for a second until they started to fade and walk away. I was confused. Why were they walking away? Where were they going? I ran after them begging them to stay or take me with them. Just then as it seemed as they disappeared the white hall went dark and the floor beneath me slipped, and I fell into utter darkness.
I woke up with a start! Then I realized things starting to take form. At first it was a haze, but then it came into view! I saw my mother who had brown hair and a pale face. She had tears drizzling down her checks. Then I noticed my dad and tears started to drizzle down mine. I had not seen my dad in at least seven years, but yet there he was as if he had never left me standing beside my hospital bed. He had wiped away his tears and now he had a big smile on his face.
When they let me out of the hospital I saw the sun for the first time. A burning yellow never really ending glow that gave everything and everyone life and for me a new begging it seemed. My father promised from that day forward to stay home for a change to be with me and mom.
After I was healed it was my pleasure to heal Rebeka. For the first time in my life I finally could see. I was born to see!