It has been quite rare in my lifetime for me to need a serious look at potential future reality. Yesterday was one of those occasions and I learned a great deal about myself and taking certain conditions for granted.

Simply put, I was required to undergo a minor eye surgery that was quickly and expediently completed. Before beginning, the doctor advised that there was a minor chance of retinal tear that would have grave consequences (my wording, not his) in terms of my vision.

Several hours later, as I experienced considerable pain and profound inability to focus, I considered the possibility of my life with permanently compromised vision. Yes, this is arguably a case of over-reaction, paranoia or catastrophizing. I’ll gracefully accept any of these descriptions.

The lesson learned, however, was a new appreciation for an ability to see with which I was born. Would I no longer be able to view my magnificent grandchildren? How would my future as a writer continue? It went on and on, without any serious basis in reality.

Thankfully, my vision is near normal after eight hours sleep. But I have a new-found respect and admiration for those whose sight is negligible or missing altogether. While I believe that I practice gratitude for my sight, I will especially value my ability to see from here going forward. In addition, I promise to appreciate the medical genius to which I have had access.

Somehow, growing older necessitates the realization of our many gifts. This is clearly an example, a reminder that my life is enabled and embellished by the countless advantages with which I have been blessed. Shalom.

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