Freedom From Darkness

English L45 Essay

For Helen Keller, the start of the long and difficult journey to freedom from her prison of darkness, took place at her appointment with Dr. Alexander Bell. Mr. and Mrs. Keller organized this appointment when Helen was seven years old, hoping that Dr. Bell could arrange for a teacher to instruct Helen. As a result of this appointment, Dr. Bell’s recommendation led to Anne Sullivan, who soon afterward became Helen’s teacher.

Ms. Sullivan had great difficulty at first teaching Helen that every object and action had a name. One day, while Anne took Helen outside for a walk, she came across a fountain, and placing one of Helen’s hands into the flowing water, she spelled w-a-t-e-r into Helen’s other hand. The feeling of the water with one hand, having w-a-t-e-r spelled into the other, and the faded distant memory of the word water connected together to reveal to Helen the connection between the water she felt in one hand and the word spelled into her other hand. The first steps to opening Helen’s prison had finally been taken! This opened many doors for Helen, and immediately Anne took advantage of the door, and proceeded to spell many different words into Helen’s hand while she touched the object it described. These events greatly accelerated the learning process of Helens mind, allowing her to step out of her prison of darkness and hopelessness. The  process of teaching Helen was arduous, and took many more years, but after years of study, Helen gained the ability to communicate with others.

Years later, Ms. Fuller taught Helen how to speak by feeling the shape and position of her  mouth and tongue and by feeling the vibration of her throat when she spoke. Helens first sentence that she ever said was “It is warm,” she was so over joyed that she again began her memorization of the movements that were made for hundreds and hundreds of words. Even though Helen became capable of speech, she never fully articulated the skill, and only those who were around her often could understand her.

Helen Keller is a remarkable person and the fact that she overcame so many soul crushing barriers is amazing. Some of us cannot begin to understand what it would be like to be blind and deaf, it could break a person’s mind to the point of insanity or depression. Have you ever tried walking around your house for a few minutes with your eyes closed? Well I have, and you instantly feel helpless, not capable of protecting one self from protruding objects and items on the floor, that would like nothing better then to trip you or smack you, and then laugh at your demise. I cannot imagine what it would be like to not know what colors were, or what a person really looked like. I think that some people take advantage of the ability to hear and see, and should be more grateful for the seemingly simple ability, that others would give much to have.



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