Although it has been a few months since I last shared a personal post about my eyes, a LOT has happened since then!! I figured that the best way to share this news was to start from the beginning. For as long as I can remember, I’ve struggled with eye problems. I’ve had double vision since I was little, but it was something that I had grown accustom to. This wasn’t unusual in my family to have double vision, but I was just the lucky one that had it a little bit worse than the rest of my family (or so we thought).
Up until 7th grade, it was possible to control the crossing of my eyes with glasses. However, I began to notice double vision more regularly with my glasses, so we ultimately decided to have the corrective muscle surgery as a simple fix for the double vision. I will spare you the details, but the surgery was successful! Although I still needed glasses for my farsidedness, I didn’t have any double vision with the glasses so that was a win in my book. A few years down the road, an unfortunate encounter with a medication and extremely scary side effects (we are talking fake brain tumors and possible blindness), my eyes were permanently damaged as a result of the medication which caused me to have a much more complicated case of double vision.
Over the next 3 years, two more surgeries miserably failed. Each time, there was a false sense of hope to grasp onto since the results of the surgeries were near perfect BOTH times immediately after surgery. Only a few weeks later to find that my eyes had regressed to exactly where they were before surgery. My case was so complicated that the neuro-opthamologist who performed both of these surgeries was stumped. Out of the tens of thousands of surgeries that he’d performed, he’d never had two fail quite like mine.
Although the surgeries failed, I was able to manage the double vision with glasses. Fast forward a few years, and my eye lids were starting to get droopy. It was partly due to the 3 surgeries, but also just because that’s how God made them. They were actually so droopy that they were covering 40% of my pupils, which caused caused me to tilt my head back so that I could see better. I was noticing that I tipped my head back to see better, but I always thought that it was because of my droopy eye lids. My doctor recommended that I get an eyelid lift (LOL, for medical reasons, obviously!!!) to get those lids out of the way, and for a few other reasons too!
That surgery was in August, and although it was questionable at first, it ended up being successful. However, I began to notice that I was seeing double vision ALL. THE. TIME. Obviously, for someone who thought that they were able to manage this problem, it was quite alarming. I shared this new development with my eye doctor, and she actually didn’t seem at all surprised. In fact, she suspected that something like this would happen! It turns out, that my double vision wasn’t just different in the three main fields of gaze (left, right and center), but also the up and down gazes as well! Talk about complicated!! I was seeing different every which way I looked! The eyelid lift revealed the root of the problem that I’d had for my whole life. Because my eyelids had always been in the way, the other doctors didn’t know to look for it. Who would have known?? Thankfully my sweet surgeon knew EXACTLY how to fix it, and I had my 5th surgery in mid-December, a week before Christmas.
Last week, I had a follow up appointment with my surgeon. For the past few months, I have actually been going without glasses because my original prescription literally made my eyes cross. Although the results aren’t perfect, they are still successful! And that’s more than I can say for any of the first three surgeries! By this point in all of the other surgeries, I was already back to square one.
As of last week, I no longer have to wear glasses (or contacts!) for every day activities. I’ll only have a low prescription for reading and using my computer to edit all of your beautiful pictures! This is crazy!! Friends, I was always told that this would be possible. My case was just too complicated. But you know what? With my God, ALL things are possible! He can move mountains!!
This has been an area of my life in which I had to depend on Jesus 100% of the time. I’m at a point where there’s absolutely nothing I can do; it’s all in His hands right now and I have to be okay with the way things turn out. My results aren’t perfect, but I have come so much farther than we ever thought was possible. Does that mean I won’t need any other surgeries in the future? No. There may still need to be a few tweaks that need to be made, and that is perfectly okay.
What I love most about this story is that God just seems to be showing off. He’s telling us that he’s the ultimate healer. He’s the redeemer. He’s the one who loves us so deeply and so unconditionally. Regardless of how perfect or imperfect we are, He loves us anyway and wants the best for us. So, as I stand here today and reflect on where this journey has taken me, all I can say that I am thankful. I’m thankful for the good times, the hard times, and even the scary times. I’m thankful for my friends and family who have consistently kept me in their prayers, for those who’ve hung out with me while I recovered, for the sweet texts and get well cards, for my surgeons and for my church family.
I am still so in awe that the Lord has given me such a passion for photography, something that could have never developed had the medication taken my sight years ago. Although our God is a mighty God, he is here, with us, in the nitty gritty details of life. He is intimately weaved into my story, and it is oh so beautiful.