Listen in as Tom shares how leaning on his faith helps him adjust to vision loss.
I Followed My Faith
Presented by Douglas Walker
Douglas: Hello, and welcome to the Insights and Sound Bites podcast, where people facing vision loss share insights about what has helped them cope and adjust.
Voice 1: You cannot do this alone. You need people who are experiencing the same thing.
Voice 2: Probably the hardest part was just navigating through the emotions of it.
Douglas: My name is Douglas Walker. Sometimes living with a loss can give a whole new perspective. Today we’ll hear from Tom. Tom will share with us how he grew to help others by leaning into his faith.
Tom: In the beginning, you are like, "What now? What do I do now?"
It's a life...You can make it. It's just having to really reinvent yourself. And I know now with hindsight is 20/20 that in the beginning you panic, there's frustration, you're overwhelmed with emotions. Some days you get up, you feel pretty good, I've got this, life is good, it's okay. And then it can be the next day, it can be later that day. All of a sudden, the emotions that are there, you have to realize that it takes time, patience.
It's kind of funny because there was this lady in our discussion group, not to do with Hadley, but a local group that I'm involved with. She said that a friend of hers really didn't understand, not just people with vision impairment, but people with disabilities, period. And really didn't have a whole lot of compassion and was kind of jaded. Until all of a sudden she lost her vision. And then her whole life got turned upside. And now, she realizes it changes your whole perspective on life and you can become compassionate. I look at it for me because a big component that's helped me more than anything else is faith.
Because sometimes God allows trials and suffering to strengthen our faith so we can help others and be more useful in that. It's really, really hard to be relatable to people if you haven't gone through trials and stuff. All of a sudden, it's, "I know how you feel. I felt the same way, but this is what I found, and you're going to be okay. You've got this, you can make it through this." And that is a very profound thing.
If everybody was just all right, and it was only certain people that had trials and suffering and most everybody else just kind of came into this world and everything was great and wonderful until they leave the world, well, yeah, the best help we can receive is from somebody we can relate with that has gone through things, they've suffered loss. It doesn't have to be vision, it could be anything.
And for me it's how can I continue to serve people? Because I think at the very end of it all, it's not about how much you can get out of life, but how many people are better off because you lived.
Douglas: Was there something that someone said to you or something that happened along the way that made all the difference in the world in helping you adjust to living with vision loss?
We‘d love to hear from you if you’d like to share with us, just leave us a message on our Insights & Sound Bites Podcast voicemail by calling, 847-512-4867. Or, you can use your smartphone or computer and email us a recording to podcast@Hadley.edu.
Again, my name is Douglas Walker. Take care and I’ll see you next time