Tuesday afternoon I found myself at our ophthalmologist chatting about how if my son’s eyes don’t respond to a change in his glasses prescription, how we might find ourselves back in hospital requiring further eye surgery.
Eye Operation – April 2015
I’m okay with this. While it’s not great news, he can see, we have medical aid (which should cover it this time!), and we have options.
I sat there thinking about the next step. I’ve realized I’m a solutions focussed person and so my mind is already calculating what needs to be done: go to optometrist to order new lenses, send other glasses back off to Vancouver, double check with our broker that all our medical aid bits and pieces are in order and book a follow up appointment for 4 months time to determine official outcome. Cool. I got it.
A year ago these appointments terrified me. When something is wrong with your little one, your heart sits FIRMLY on your sleeve and you feel EVERYTHING DEEPLY. Once we knew something was awry (I still remember clearly, the road we were walking down when I verbalizied what I had noticed with Clay to my friend Amy) we booked numerous appointments, including the BIG one with the ophthalmologist to rule out the very scary stuff. I don’t think I ate for a week before the meeting I was so anxious. But now, we’re stronger and this is what it is (which is minor in the greater scheme of things) and with chins up, we embrace the challenges with grace and love.
Recently, I’ve known of friends dealing with many, many things. Friends struggling with rejection, very real family challenges, struggles with identity, years of getting out of debt, miscarriage and even the death of a child.
I’ve also been chatting with new parents, in what seems like that gushy, mushy, amaaaazing, yet sleep deprived what-the-hell-am-I-doing stage of parenting. I chuckled to myself as I heard them talking, remembering so clearly how I tried to keep things ‘right’ with this clean slate (of a person) I had just been given. I did it too: the whole ‘wash all of the baby clothes in the natural scented, gold tinted baby laundry soap’, have way more of everything than I EVER needed, put the ‘no tears’ shampoo in my eyes before using it on the kids, and didn’t sleep much at all if my child was 0.3 degrees hotter than his regular basal body temperature (all the while the canned goods in my cupboards were lined up military style – labels facing forward).
But the reality is, in our imperfect broken world – things go wrong. Eyes weaken, bodies fail, bad decisions are made (even with the very best and most honourable intentions), families break, and hurt people hurt people.
As I sat in the ophthalmologist’s room picturing the possibility of a second eye operation, I was comforted by the fact that this is life, and we are all working through different things. We may not all wear the badges on our blazers or show the depth of the scars but to pretend this stuff is not happening and that we’re always alright is just ignorant, hurtful and even harmful. Being an idealist I might come across as one of those ignorant ones, but I’m not… I am hopeful.
This quote is so great –
I’m hopeful. I believe in a God who heals, who changes, who restores and even if not – I’m hopeful because he is God. And we’re a part of a bigger story, and what we’re struggling with now, does not define us or determine who we are.
And because he makes beautiful things, out of us (thanks Gungor).