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Respectfully Filling The Void

Submitted by Avi Laird, Low Vision Coordinator

Reading is among my favorite hobbies. I read everything written on whatever; tablets, computers, yard signs, posters, billboards, etc. My favorites are books; I enjoy the weight, the turn of the page, the lignin scent ….

Print-size can be smaller, and lighting may not be ideal, but as the weather changes; snuggling-up with a blanket and warm books; whether sitting in the living-room, on the porch, a swing, or where-ever is comfortable and listening to the voices of characters as they go through their journeys is cherished.

I like knowing when a StarTrek spinoff named a character Odo, it was “a nod” to the St. Odos of long-ago. My favorite is St. Odo of Canterbury who loved books and languages. I also admire St. Hildegrad of Bigen, who was a polyhister (an expert in several fields), who wrote about science, and medicine, and used her influence to write music and books. St. Hildegard suffered blindness from migraines that she turned into influential messages; we too can turn our disabilities into power.

We may not be saints, but we can use our voices to convey important messages.

Famous authors use the same themes in a more modern sense.

Tolkien writes about the seemingly simple themes of good versus bad within a grand background; but in the end, it is a single character, whose choices make the difference. “Even the smallest person can change the course of history.”

Frodo claimed his destiny, when it seemed easier to give-up; you are aware he doid not succeed alone or dredge without cheer. He was with friends, which traveled with him side-by-side. They didn’t hold the same burden, but together, they walked the same journey; each with different perspectives, and with their own unique abilities and disabilities. “Deeds will not be less valiant because they are upraised.” Together they made the journey complete.

Will a heavy burden, cause you to submit or will you overcome and set in motion the choices of what is “good” and “right” against the odds that seem impossible?

“It is not the strength of the body, but the strength of the spirit.” ~ J.R.R. Tolkien

In the Narnia books;, Aslan, gives animals the power of speech and then commands them to use that “power for justice and merriment.” C.S. Lewis also shows the theme of responsibility but not without balance; care of oneself, including enjoyment.

We may think we cannot do anything or the burden too overwhelming; but we can join our voices (written or otherwise) with those lives we touch; even unknowingly. We need to allow our friends to support us, speak together, and speak out ourselves. Together we can make the journey….

….But I linger; as the wind rustles; turning over a new page, and begin again.

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