Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Looking Through the Right Lens

Remember these glasses from the movie National Treasure? Really, I didn't like that movie but I have seen it more than once because of my husband. In it, Nicholas Cage uses these glasses to read a secret message to find clues to the treasure. Later he discovers that by switching the red and blue lens more of the message is revealed helping him find his way to the gold and gems.

These glasses remind me of how I view my own life and circumstances. If I look through the clear lens and see my reality, it gives me only one perspective. But by adjusting the lens, I can see more and more.

Here's an example. When we got home from the hospital last month, I was immediately in my post-hospital funk. That was Jaycee's 21st hospital admission for an illness or emergency. (That doesn't count surgeries or admissions for tests.)  After 3 weeks of being away from home, I was exhausted and stressed from her hospital stay.

When I'm in the hospital, I'm just reacting to circumstances and trying to make it through the day. When I get home, I start to really fully process everything that has happened. I think about the tubes, the bad news talks from the doctors, and the scares Jaycee just survived. There's sadness that this happened again. There is also a sad reality that this probably won't be the last time she's ever in the hospital. It's never easy even after 21 times, though it does get more familiar.

I was in a teetering position when I got home from the hospital...feeling so isolated, feeling like no one has our problems, feeling on the verge of depression. But there was also a feeling of gratefulness that she had survived again, and I still had my little girl. I wasn't sure how to resume life again after another trauma in the ICU.

The reality of the first look through my glasses wasn't good. I don't have much to be happy about.

But, then I did a smart thing. The first time I went back to church after her hospital stay, I asked someone to pray for me, because I didn't want to stay looking at my situation through this lens.

So I did. I didn't feel any differently when I walked away from the altar, but I did get some good encouragement from that prayer partner. The next day, the lens changed though. I was able to see things through a different perspective.

I didn't feel sorry for myself anymore. I didn't have the urge to hang on to depression and to the negativity. The lens has changed for me even though nothing in our situation changed.  I could see something differently that I couldn't before. I didn't have to be afraid of future illnesses. I also didn't have to meditate on those traumatizing ICU images that tried to appear.

I was happy. Happy Jaycee was alive. Happy we all survived. Thankful that we made it through number 21. Encouraged to enjoy the days we are given.

I'm so happy God can help get us looking through the right lens to see the treasure in our lives!

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