Living with Colorblindness

“The grass is always brighter orange on the other side”. For some reason, I always receive funny looks when I state this quote. I am not exactly sure why, because through my eyes, the grass is orange, the sky is pink, and there is no difference between purple and blue. I am not blind nor am I completely colorblind. I have a disorder known as red/green color blindness, a sex-linked recessive disorder most commonly passed to a son by his heterozygote carrier mother. This is because the gene that codes for red/green color receptors is located on the X chromosome, which comes from the mother in males.

Every time a person discovers I am colorblind, I am always asked the exact same question: “What color is that?” I don’t mind answering this question over and over. I find it quite amusing that people find interest in my abnormality. The inquiry that astounds me most is when I am asked the color of a school uniform shirt. I find that rather funny.

I have difficulty distinguishing between the following colors: red and green, red and orange, brown and green, blue and purple, light blue and pink, yellow and green, brown and black, and even gray and pink. As I mentioned earlier, grass is orange in my eyes, the sky is pink a fair amount of the time, and sometimes stoplights give me trouble. Rubik’s cubes make me angry, and I can only see blue and yellow in rainbows. I usually have to ask my mother to help me pick out clothes that match, which is ironic because she gave me the disorder in the first place. Color-coded graphs and maps are just cruel jokes. Close family and friends like to confuse me by telling me something is one color when its actually another, and that messes with my head more than anything.

My family discovered I was colorblind when I came home from kindergarten genuinely sad one day. It was the day I had to redo my coloring assignment for coloring a man’s skin green. I had learned to read the labels on crayons very early on. My teacher threw my paper in the trash and made me start over. I found out that day that people don’t have green skin. My parents found out I was born with colorblindness.

Living with colorblindness is not hard. I live the same way people who can see colors perfectly live. I just experience difficulties seeing things the way other people see them. This presents a question in my opinion: Who’s right? Is the grass truly green or orange? In my eyes, the grass is orange.

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