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Friday, 9 May 2008

a little prayer, a little hope

The first day i stepped into IMU, it was for the entrance interview into the university.

After registering myself, I sat down on the bench with a couple of other hopefuls. Soon i was called in next, and were faced by two of IMU's lecturers. Only remembered one of them, Ms Reiko Yap, a behavioural science lecturer.

Halfway through the usual questions, came this.

"Which field do you intend to specialise in in the future and why?"

To which i answered, almost by rote.

"After i graduate, i'd like to go further into opthalmology. This is because i had seen for myself what it's like to be blind, all the difficulties faced to not be able to see, the things in life they missed just because they are visually impaired. And because personally, i knew of a blind friend, and many times i wished i could help in some way. If i could just help restore others' eyesight and prevent blindness, that'd be the gift i'd willingly spend my whole life giving. Nobody should be robbed of their sight, much more by something preventable."

It remained my specialty of choice for the first year, until we were taught to use the ophthalmoscope. The best friend of an opthalmologist and something, i realised, i have trouble with. You see, an ophthalmoscope is a device that lets the doctor 'see' into a patient's eye. And you use one eye to look through the ophthalmoscope, into one of the patient's eye.

The problem is, i am a 'self-diagnosed' amblyopia sufferer. Otherwise known as 'lazy eye'. My right eye's sight is dimmer due to lack of use during my childhood, when i had congenital ptosis on my right eye. In essence, i can't use my right eye to look through any devices clearly.

And because of that, i gave up on the idea of being an opthalmologist.


An hour ago, a message from my big brother.

"Ah Poh got partially blind."


I cried.

What use is all this studying all the while, if i can't even use any of it to help my grandma?

I felt useless.

When she needs support the most, i am furthest away from her.


First thing i'd do after i settled my stuff here, i'll go back for her.


So i say a little prayer, and wished a little hope.


Please do not take her sight away, not before us 3 brothers achieved what she dreamed of us to achieve..

.. her whole lifetime of hard work ..

.. please give her this one privilege in life ..

.. i just want to see her looking at us ..

.. with pride in her eyes.

This, i pray.. please.

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