Losing Sight


I frequent a massage shop called “Vibes” in a mall near my apartment. I usually go there twice a month to relieve myself from stress due to work and life, in general. One interesting aspect of Vibes is the massage therapists are blind. Unlike other regular customers though, I don’t favor a specific masseuse. I am fine with being assigned with the available masseuse because (1) I am generally impatient, and (2) it enables me to differentiate the massaging styles of the masseuses.

In the past three years of frequenting Vibes, I’ve observed a lot of things about their staff which often amazes me more than not. The massage therapists have very keen sense of touch and hearing. Even without saying a word and just by touching my back, they can tell if it’s me, if I lost or gained weight and if I am more stressed than usual. They also know my voice very well. They would say, “Oh! It’s Ma’am Melissa.” even if I just uttered, “Good evening”.

When they are in a light mood, some masseuse also share their  interests. There is one instance when I had to wait for the masseuse for a while. When she arrived, she apologized profusely. She mentioned she was just replaying the episode of a drama she missed the previous night. I asked her how she replayed it. She replied she listened through the YouTube application in her smartphone. She further shared that sometimes she replays TV shows on her Acer laptop. I was simply dumbfounded.

Their stories are not always happy or inspiring ones. I also got to learn how some of them became blind or almost blind.  Some were born blind but there are also those who lost their sight during their late childhood. One masseuse shared that she was diagnosed with cataract an early age but because her family could not afford the surgery, she eventually became blind. I could not help but think that her future could have turned out differently if she was able to undergo operation.

While the massage therapists at Vibes are generally happy people and very friendly with each other and the customers, you know that behind their smiles are sad stories to tell.  But one can never guess because despite losing one of the most important senses, they never lost sight of themselves.

At times when I am questioning the track of my life, of whether I am making the right choices, or simply when I want to succumb to all the stress I experience, I think of the blind massage therapists. They could have  surrendered to a literally and figuratively dark life, but they chose not to. I could not help but feel embarrassed because despite being blessed with five senses, I am still not  contented on a lot of aspects of my life. I still  have so much to learn from them on accepting my limitations and making the best of of what He has given me.

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