If you follow along on Instagram, you probably know about Olivia’s bilateral eye surgery that happened last week. In short, her eyes had been turning too far inwards; since her vision was still 20/20 and unaffected by the turning, the doctor’s recommendation was to do this surgery before her little brain developed with a crooked, learned way of seeing. If left untreated, the risk would be having this occasional double vision solidified in her brain as being “normal,” which would obviously hurt her vision as a whole.
So we took action and got the procedure done. They make small incisions on the eyeball to cut/move the muscles holding the eyeball in place to straighten everything out. (If you’re a little queasy on the medical front like me…sorry for that visual. Ha!).
I was a nervous wreck. Liv was a TROOPER (per usual).
Now in this healing stage, her eyes are super red and a bit swollen (she looks like a little vampire, truly), but it should get better in the coming weeks with the help of some eyedrops (that girlfriend does NOT like – and putting eyedrops in an almost-two-year-old’s eyes isn’t my favorite to-do either 😉 ).
The whole thing really got me thinking about vision in general – especially since at the last New Year’s ball drop, word on the street was that 2020 was going to be a great year for great vision. HA. 😉
Now, nine months in, everything from memes to letter boards outside businesses are asking 2020 for a do-over, claiming we all got duped.
And man, I feel that.
But I think I also feel something else now, too.
That maybe – just maybe – we’re still in the healing phase. (Or maybe we’re not even out of surgery yet, so to speak).
Maybe some things needed to fall apart (like, the world) for there to be room to get better – to heal.
Maybe things are going to be swollen and red and look a little scary before they’re better than before.
Back in Biblical times, when God wanted a do-over, what did He do?
He sent a flood. He sent plagues. He sent a whole lotta bad-looking stuff in the hopes of righting wrongs and correcting course.
Now, I won’t go to far down that rabbit hole of analysis and connecting dots between then and now, because quite frankly, I don’t feel smart enough to do so in a worthwhile way. BUT, I can’t deny feeling like there’s this connection between everyone and their mother calling 2020 a year of “perfect vision” and the utter sh*tstorm that ensued.
Sometimes an entire crop needs to be intentionally wiped out so that a better crop can rise up next season.
So maybe the biggest challenge of the year isn’t even surviving a pandemic, but in seeing (+ taking) the opportunity to thrive amidst it.
If nothing else, being in quarantine for months and facing the pandemic has certainly given us all renewed perspective, one way or another. Maybe that perspective lay in new appreciation for solitude (or on the flip side, a newfound need to be around people when we used to shell ourselves in), or in the previously unrealized benefits of slowing down. Maybe it showed us how toxic 24/7 technology and the internet can be, or how we had previously taken family and friends’ physical presence for granted (because Lord knows I won’t be pulling my phone out during a family function, like, EVER in the future).
Or maybe it was in how much we need Jesus or how much dang respect is owed to the teachers of our kids, or how we CAN’T get through this life all on our own and NEED to rely on the goodness + kindness of others to make it out on the other side.
By definition, yes, our vision is our ability to see with our eyes.
But vision is also the ability to plan for the future with, as Google says, “imagination and wisdom.”
To get through the toughest of tough times, we sure do need some imagination sometimes. Because we’ve all been through those moments of not knowing how the HELL we’d get through – and somehow, we did.
We’re all still standing today, after walking through every fire and climbing over every mountain that has previously been in our paths.
Sometimes, we knew how to do it – we had wisdom.
And other times, we had not a clue. We thought and stressed and prayed and cried and phoned a friend about the HOW. And maybe wisdom was bestowed upon us by others that helped guide our decision-making. But maybe, it really just took a leap of imaginative faith with the trust that in the end, we’d be okay. And if we weren’t okay, it wasn’t the end.
Through so much suck, I have to believe that there’s a point.
That from a bigger picture perspective, there’s a near-surgical precision in the point of it all – that it’s taken being in a fog and cuts being made and things being moved and shifted for there to be a better hope in tomorrow. In the moment, it’s scary and ugly and painful and hard. But we’re not the surgeon here.
Maybe we’d have been JUST FINE without all of the utter nonsense that 2020 has been (I mean, murder hornets? Really???).
But maybe we’ll be even better having gone through it now.
Maybe – just maybe – our own “2020 vision” doesn’t get to come before the procedure, so to speak. Maybe it’s now on its way, and the healing process can begin.