Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Guess I Needed a Reminder

Thought for the day: A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.

If Georgia's Stone Mountain could talk, I'm sure it'd warn us not to take it for granite.

(Sorry 'bout that. I tried, but I couldn't stop myself.)

Anyway, this mountain and its surrounding park is one of the state's biggest tourist attractions, and well it should be. The mountain is one of the largest  pieces of exposed granite in the world, and there's a huge carving on its face that's kinda like the Mt. Rushmore of the deep south, depicting several Confederate heroes of the Civil War. (otherwise known around these parts as the War of Yankee Aggression.)

With a picturesque lake, water park, golf course, skylift,  restored plantation, reproduction town, and much, much more, this park offers beauty and fun all wrapped up in one humongous package. We should never, ever take its beauty for granted, right? Even so, I'll betcha most people do.

They do; they take it for granite.

Do you think the people who drive past the Grand Canyon every day even see it anymore? Do they still marvel at its grandeur? Do the people who regularly see the aurora borealis still gasp at its beauty? Does the allure of a tropical sunset fade after a lifetime of daily viewing?

Young lovers almost always swear that they'll never take each other for granted. Unfortunately, as time goes by, some couples forget all about the day they swore not to take each other for granted, and they end up turning to another kind of swearing altogether. They let gratitude and appreciation simply fall by the wayside in the midst of day-to-day living.

What set me to thinking about this whole taking for granted thing is an appointment I had with the doctor yesterday. I had cataract surgery almost ten years ago, but my vision started declining quite rapidly about three months ago.
For many months after the surgery, I was soooo grateful for my restored vision. I marveled at the brilliance of the reds and blues and greens around me. I reveled in the clarity of the written word. But in time, I started to take that gift for granted. In the midst of day-to-day living, I let gratitude and appreciation fall by the wayside

As I went through all the tests at the doctor's office, I considered what it would mean to lose my vision. The horror of never reading again, of never seeing the face of my husband, my kids, my grandkids and friends again. Never seeing a sunset or a yellow rose again. Never achieving my bucket wish to see the aurora borealis.

Scary stuff.

Turns out I have intraocular hypertension and a super kick-ass astigmatism. Glasses should clear up most of the problems, and daily eyedrops should keep the pressure thing in check. I'm lucky. Very very lucky. Again.

I once knew a blind amateur radio operator who used to wait until nighttime to climb his tower. Said he was tired of his neighbors freaking out when he worked on his antennas during the day. He was an amazing man who lived with his blindness with grace and humor. I admired him greatly, but I'm relieved beyond words that if my neighbors see me climbing one of our towers, they'll be freaking out because I'm a world class klutz, and not because I can't see.

Will I end up taking my eyesight for granted again? I hope not, but I know enough not to make any promises. But for now, I am grateful. Very very grateful. And I wanted to share this with you, so maybe, just for today, we can all remember to be grateful. And remember to appreciate the beauty around us.

                      Color me happy. Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.


  1. Glad your vision problem is correctable. :)

    Love your puns -- I have a deep and abiding appreciation for that lowest form of humor.

    I have a slightly different take on taking things for granted. I don't think we should ever forget to be grateful for the gifts life has granted us, but in a way, just being able to take something -- or someone -- for granted IS one of those gifts.

    Hubs and I have been married for 30 years, and in a lot of ways we do take each other for granted. There's a comfort to being able to relax in a relationship like that. Being comfortable is its own kind of gift. :)

  2. Hi-ya.

    Yeah, me too. I have a definite weakness for puns and corny jokes... and a strong tendency to really let 'em fly after I've had a glass or two of wine.

    I get what you're saying about being confortable and relaxed in a relationship. (My hubby and I got hitched 42 years ago, so we've been breaking wind around each other for a long time now!) But being comfortable and relaxed with each other isn't the same thing as taking each other for granted.

    Even though we're laid-back and comfortable together, he almost always thanks me for the meals I prepare every day, and I usually tell him what a good job he did cutting the grass, that sort of thing.

    Because the bottom line is: We old dogs appreciate a pat on the head every now and then, too. And by golly, if ANYBODY is gonna pat his sweet balding head, it's gonna be ME!