Introduction

“The Story Of My Life” is an autobiography of Helen Keller which she published with the guidance from Anne Sullivan and John Macy. 

The narrative is an inspiring description of a visually and aurally impaired girl, Helen Keller’s life, and how she overcomes her disability while graduating school and college, taking tests, and learning to appreciate the little things in life. Some of her problems are recognized by all young people her age, while others stem solely from her determination to overcome her impairments.

The story depicts the perspective of a person who is blind and deaf, and who tries to understand the world and connect with others around her. It also demonstrates how ordinary people may help persons with impairments. In this chapter, Keller talks about the most auspicious day in her life, which is when Anne Sullivan, her teacher, came into her life.

Helen Keller was born in Tuscumbia, Alabama in 1880 and went on to live an extraordinary life that no one could have predicted. She was 19 months old when she contracted a terrible fever, likely scarlet fever or meningitis, that rendered her deaf and blind. Helen, a bright youngster, used touch, smell, and taste to try to understand her environment, and by the age of seven, she had devised approximately sixty hand motions to communicate with her parents and ask for items. Before the sickness, Keller had begun to walk and talk and showed signs of being a quick learner.

A Day To Remember!

Helen recalls a remarkable day in her life. She recounts how she was standing on the porch watching the commotion around the house. She had a feeling something was going to happen. She didn’t know what ‘the future held of marvel’ for her. She felt as if she was in the middle of a vast sea, with fog all around her and darkness closing in on her. She became agitated and cried out for help. She heard footsteps approaching and expected her mother to take her hand in hers. Someone grabbed her hands and drew her into their arms. That’s how she met Anne Sullivan, her teacher.

Helen learnt the manual language and began speaking by finger spelling with the help of her educator, Anne Sullivan. Within a few months of learning with Anne, Helen’s vocabulary rose to lots of words and basic phrases. Helen was also taught how to read braille and raised print, as well as how to print block letters, by Anne. Helen began learning to talk and lip read when she was nine years old.

Anne taught her the definitions, spellings, and uses of words like “mug,” “water,” “doll,” and many others. Anne sometimes used take her for a walk. Because it was a sunny day, she offered Helen her hat before leaving. Someone was drawing water as they walked to the well-house, and Anne placed Helen’s hand under the spout. It was ‘water,’ she realized, a marvellous cool thing that could flow.

That’s how she began to study words and understand their relationships and use in the actual world. Being able to do so filled her with joy and made her the happiest she had been in a long time.