Monday, June 28, 2010

One Last Look

* I am truly touched by each of your comments, prayers and support.  Thank you so very much.*

What if you were suddenly informed that you might lose all, or most, of your vision?
What would you want to see, one more time, before your eyes dim?
Unfortunately, that is a question I have asked myself, as doctors recently informed me that I was at risk of losing my eyesight*.

Some might say they want to gaze upon the faces of loved ones.
Those are already etched upon my heart -- even the faces of those not often seen.
Some might say a beautiful garden.
I will still be able to smell the roses, feel velvety blossoms and rough textured bark, and walk barefoot through grass that tickles my toes.
No, I would want to see home one last time.
Home is Amarillo, Texas.
It is where I was born and raised.  It is where my parents lie in eternal rest.
But what I loved most was probably what others would find least pleasant.
It is flat.
Flatter than your kitchen table flat!
The flat land stretching out as far as one can see is what welcomed me home from chaotic college days, from the rat race of young adult life in a huge city, from the disappointment of a failed first marriage, from the tiring days of parenthood. 
It even welcomed me home to care for a mother battling cancer, and later an elderly father.
Nothing, as far as the eye could see, except sky meeting earth.
But in that first glimpse, my mind would clear.  I could breathe.  It did not matter what I had left behind, or what news might greet me.
There was peace and a serenity in that flat land.
It was home and beautiful to me.

What else would I want to see one last time?
It is somewhat similar.  Only this time, it is sky meeting water.
As a girl raised in the dry prairies of Texas, I did not have too much experience with oceans and beaches.
But once discovered, I was head over heels!
Some may find the ocean intimidating.
I find it just the opposite.
I find it empowering, yet calming.
It makes me realize just how big my God really is. 

And lastly, I would want to see Christmas.
Don't we all love to see the splendor and beauty of the holidays?
Whether it is the memory of our childhood holidays, or those made with our children, it is one of life's greatest joys.
It is ornaments and decorations lovingly passed down through the ages.  It is lights that twinkle and candles that glow, spreading cheer in the shortest days of the year.
It is smiles on everyone's faces and reassurance of good and joy and peace.

So, as I prepare for surgery intended to save and preserve my current vision,
I will cling to these images.
I will remember the flat beauty of home and breathe.
I will remember the ocean and know that God is in charge.
I will remember the faith, hope and joy that was born at Christmas.
I will believe that the Greatest Physician will guide the hands of my surgeon and heal my eyes.
And in the meantime, I ask that each of you do all that I cannot:
stitch, create, decorate, appreciate and enjoy these sunny summer days.
My family and I covet your prayers.
My greatest prayer is that I will see you here again --
soon.

In the meantime, I have scheduled a few posts.  You may not even realize I am gone!

So, what would be your last thing to see?


*My vision problems are complications of Graves Disease, a form of hyperthyroidism.  It has caused my optic muscles and tissues to enlarge, placing tremendous pressure on my optic nerves.  If left untreated, the nerves would continue to be compressed, die and render me sightless.  During surgery, portions of my eye socket walls will be removed to provide room for the enlarged muscles and tissue.  This should prevent additional damage to my optic nerves.  Each eye will be done during separate surgeries over the coming weeks.  Additional surgeries to correct double vision may be necessary later.
The first surgery is scheduled for 8:oo am, June 30.

38 comments:

Brynwood Needleworks said...

Jan:
I will be lifting up prayers for a successful surgery and healing to leave you with improved vision. I don't know what I would do if I couldn't see. Be well, my friend. I'll look forward to hearing from you again soon.
xoxo
Donna

Robin Hart said...

Jan, you have been in my prayers for weeks. Over the last few days I have often thought what I would do if I were in your shoes and like you most of the things I truly love are in my memory. May you still be able to see your beloved things after your surgery.

ShirleyC said...

I will certainly keep you on my prayer list. My mom went legally blind from mascular regeneration, and therefore, I worry about it being passed down to me. I think the people I love the most would be like you, forever etched in my mind. I would sure hate to lose the ability to see because sewing is my love. My mom kept trying to sew even though her stitches were terrible. We never told her any different. It made her happy.
I will pray that you never have to experience not being able to see.
Many hugs.

Rettabug said...

Oh Jan...I am stunned! I will move you to the top of my prayer list immediately. How very scary for you, Hon.
I hope they are able to save & even improve your vision with this surgery. You sure have had more than your fair share of health issues, huh?

Knee-mails going up! Please keep us informed? I'll check the about.com site for updates as well. (I lurk)

Hugs & best wishes for a speedy recovery,
fondly,
Rett

Lynette said...

Hello Jan, I've just read your post and immediately called by brother who lives in Highland Village. I asked him to present your operation and recovery in prayers to Trietsch Methodist this Sunday.
I have had the privilege to visit your store during my Thanksgiving trips to his home. Please know I will have you in my thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Cindy said...

Jan....I have been and will continue to keep you in my prayers!!! Your ability to express yourself in words and pictures is truly a gift!!! I'll be thinking and praying for you!!!

Auntie Pam said...

Jan,
Pray our Awesome & Mighty God does MIRACULOUS things for you in these surgeries. Remember Romans 8:28 & Psalms 139:16. You are in my prayers daily !

Michie' Mooney said...

I will be praying for you every single day! May God calm your fears and give you peace.

Michie'

Kathy V said...

My dear friend, you are in my prayers. May your surgery be a total success and your recovery swift and painless. May you, Tom and Martin feel wrapped in all of our prayers and love.

Martha said...

Words fail me to let you know how much you are loved and prayed for.HUGS. So many are holding you up in prayer as well as Tom and Martin.

Prissy said...

I will be praying for you every single day. May God wrap you in His love and see you through this.

Lois said...

Jan, I will definitely keep you in my thoughts and prayers. You have been so faithful to keep us in yours.

seamsgreat said...

Jan, You are in my thoughts and prayers.~janet

gina s said...

Jan,
Oh how your post touched my heart! First of all I want you to know that I will pray for your healing and for God to wrap his arms around you and give you his immeasurable peace.

I too have had optic nerve problems in both eyes. Actually, optic neuritis, or inflamed optic nerves, leaving me with permanent damage. My diagnosis 10 years later is MS. But, I so much remember that day I was told I had the optic neuritis and thinking what if this doesn't improve. I think maybe like you, it wouldn't be what I couldn't see, but what I couldn't do. The thought that I couldn't sew, stitch, or create was almost devasting. God has been good though and my eyes have improved enough that I can sew and do the things I love.

So, just know that you have someone praying for you, that may not even know you, but someone that in a way understands how you feel.

Hugs,
Gina

Sara said...

Jan
I will be lifting you and your family up in prayer. I pray that God gives the surgeon the ability to correct the problem and that you have a peace that passes all understanding.
Hugs and love to you , my friend.

Kristen said...

I will be thinking of you tomorrow. I hope it all goes well.

Debbie B said...

Words fail, but faith and prayers do not. Know that prayers are going out for your healing, for your family as they take care of you, and for those who will be doing the surgeries too.

Anonymous said...

"Not my will, but Thine be done, Oh Lord."
You remain in my constant prayers.....for healing, for peace and for all those who love you and will care for you.

Jackie said...

We'll be praying for you, Jan!!

Goosegirl said...

Dear Jan, I am continuing to pray for you and your surgery. I am praying for steady hands of the surgeons and that the tissues and fibers in your eyes will heal perfectly and beautifully. Your post was beautiful and reminded me that God IS in control. I pray peace and encouragement for you as you heal. Rest. Yes, I know, coming from me, that is more of the pot calling the kettle black. But rest and heal.
You are a blessing.

Aunt Honey said...

Jan, I am so sorry to hear your news. I will be in prayer for you. Know that our God is a God of comfort and peace. I pray that you will experience His peace, and rest in His loving arms, whatever the outcome, knowing that He loves you and cares for you. Our prayer is for your vision to be saved, our trust is in Christ.

Sew Gracious said...

Keeping you close in thoughts & prayers, Jan. (((HUGS)))

Jeannie B. said...

Dear Jan, My prayer is that you will continue to see all those precious things for the rest of your long life. Love, Jeannie B.

Melissa Lester said...

Jan, I'm so glad I read about this surgery in time to add my prayers to the many others lifting your name to our Father. I will be praying for the surgeon, as well as your peace and comfort throughout the procedure and recovery. In your absence, I hope your husband can update us on your results.

The Wrought Iron Gate said...

God speed, Jan. My thoughts and prayers will be with you.

Best Wishes,
Kay

LAnderson (Southern Stitches) said...

Praying for you - God is in control and I pray that God will guide the surgeon's hands in this delicate surgery!

Cynthia Gilbreth said...

Jan,
I'm praying for you to come through the surgery with eyesight intact! God Bless!

Rettabug said...

Its 7 am here & I just wanted you to know I am praying that all goes well for your surgery today.

Hugs & Prayers,
Rett

Marmycakes said...

What a beautiful post, Jan. God put you on my mind first thing this morning. Praying for a successful surgery.
Laurie G

Belinda said...

Jan, I am praying for a successful surgery. Beautiful things come from beautiful people. Truly your last post placed you at the top of the Most Beautiful People list. I too pray that you will be able to see the beautiful world which you take so lovingly to heart.

Mary T said...

You are in my prayers, dear Jan. I am so sorry to hear of your illness and subsequent surgery but I am thankful for the abilities of doctors through the love and power of God. Know our prayers are being prayed with your name on our lips.
God bless you and keep you. Love, Mary

Smocking with Gwen said...

Dearest Jan,
You are in my prayers as well as your doctors today. Prayers for a speedy recovery.. back to enjoying the beauty that surrounds all of us.
Hugs (the kind with a squeeze at the end),
Gwen

Lori B. said...

Jan,
You continue to be in my prayers, dear. I pray for a successful surgery and a speedy recovery. You have had more than your share of health issues over the last year. I pray that you will have no more health issues in the future.
I wish I were closer so I could help you, Tom and Martin. Since I am not close, I will continue to lift you and your loved ones up to our Heavenly Father.
Love you sweets.....

Kathy said...

Jan, you are in our prayers.

Jenny said...

Jan,

We will hold you in our prayers.

~Jenny

Karen said...

Prayers and blessings sent your way and will continue! Hugs!

Bunny said...

Jan, you are in my prayers. Please accept the sincerest wish for a positive healthy outcome.

Stephanie in MI said...

Jan, you have been in our prayers since we first heard about your surgery. It must be all so frightening, but it seems God is a big God and has it all under control and you knowit.
May I ask that some post an update, so we all know how you are doing. I'm not the only one asking, everyone at EverythingSewing and I'm sure lots of other people not in direct contact with your family want to know how you are doing. Bless your heart.
Stephanie in MI

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