Supporting Group - Excellent Work (Japan)
“For My Son, Thanks to My Son”
Itabashi Ward, Tokyo Risa Matsuzaki, Office worker (31 years old, female)
Three years ago, my husband and I visited India for our honeymoon. At the town of Jaipur, a town well-known for fortune-telling, a fortune-teller told me,
“You will have a baby soon. The baby will help you two.”
“Thank you, but It’s still early for us to have a baby,” I replied with a smile. But soon after we returned home, I was made pregnant and gave birth to a baby boy.
Soon after having the child, my husband began losing his eyesight. He became difficult to read characters, unable to identify colors of clothing, unable to see the white line of roads, and when our baby boy reached his one-year birthday, my husband lost his sight.
Both my husband and I were born with weak sight. Originally, my husband had better eyesight than me and took care of me whenever we went out, as I had trouble with the dazzle of the light. My husband was active and loved traveling and shopping. He is fond of children. He was looking forward to reading picture books for his son or playing soccer together with him at a park. He lost such joys and inherent activeness together with eyesight.
Since he began to lose his sight, he was always moaning and whining and got lazy. He was unable to read characters on the mobile phone and personal computer which he used every day, was unable to obtain any new information, and was unable to go out freely. It is natural that he felt depressed. I knew in my mind that it was my husband that was having the hardest time but when I heard “I cannot do this, I cannot see that” every day, my words of kind consolation and encouragement had been soon exhausted and I got irritated, and it was not once or twice that I got mean to him. I was worn down with new experiences of childcare and support to my husband. The atmosphere inside the house got worse rapidly as the vision of my husband was being lost.
It was our son who began talking that changed such atmosphere. While the son was a baby who was just crying or sleeping, the husband timidly and awkwardly attended to him but when he was able to communicate his intention and feeling to his father by simple words, my husband began enjoying taking care of him, talking to him, and playing with him by blocks and toy trains. My husband became involved with his son more and more positively and both became great friends with each other.
Our baby boy encouraged his daddy and gave him the courage to face forward by adorable words because of his unsophisticatedness.
When my husband acquired courage to face forward, he really worked hard. He learned how to use the screen reading out software of personal computer, was able to obtain information from Internet, and found his hobbies. He was able to choose toys for his son on online shopping sites, too. He reads newspaper “My News” using personal computer software for people with visual impairment. He received walking training and became able to go shopping to super markets to buy favorite sweets of his son by himself.
He returned to be an active husband as before, and is now planning an exchange meeting of families with visual impairment, who carry out their child-rearing like us.
And his present target is to smoothly read Braille. If he can read Braille, he will be able to read picture books for his son. At our home, a universal picture book with Braille has already been ready to be read. Our son and I are looking forward to the day when my husband can read this book by his fingers.
Our son has helped my husband and me as the Indian fortune teller told us. Our son will continue to give us new dreams and goals and continue to support us. I hope that my husband and I could join force together to carefully protect and raise our son.
Thank you for your having been born to us. Your daddy and mommy promise you that we will work hard for you.