This is Ron with your Motivational Message:
“Mr. Heagy, you’re glaucoma has worsened. The pressure in your left eye is over 40 and we don’t like to see it over 10. You need to see a surgeon.”
As most of you know, 35 years ago my head struck a sand bar that resulted in a spinal cord injury. A few years later I also developed glaucoma. Glaucoma can be explained as a drainage problem in my eye. Blockage creates pressure that tears the optic nerve from the back of the eye. Being paralyzed with no use of my hands, my eyesight has taken on a significant duty. I love gazing upon all God’s creations, from nature to people, and my eyesight is the key to my artwork. It’s something that I don’t take for granted and am truly grateful to have. Although I’m sure I could find the strength to endure the loss, it would affect my life greatly.
As the laser beam shot through my retina and into the back of my eye, I could feel the pops as she triggered the laser cuts, 80 of them in total. It’s hard to hold your head still for a prolonged period of time, particularly when a laser is pointed directly at your eye. The laser did lower my pressure, but not significantly. I am now at a pressure of about 25, still too high to be considered a success. I am scheduled to repeat the laser process in three weeks and ask for your prayers. I would like to avoid optical surgery which entails cutting into my eye and putting new “drain lines” in. That is a serious surgery with a lot of risks involved. To be honest with you, it is a bit scary for me.
What I’ve done to overcome the nerves is to wake up each day and thank God for the wonders of the working eye. I look at my daughters differently; appreciating the details of their beautiful faces. Spring flowers appear more bright and colorful. I appreciate seeing the wonderful people in my life: friends, family, and caregivers.
I realize I have taken my eyesight for granted in the past, but have vowed to remain thankful for what I’ve been afforded. Please remember me every time you see something naturally beautiful. When something makes you say, “Wow!” say a little prayer for me. I have many more pictures to paint, places to go, sunsets to see. I can see your smile as you think of me. Likewise, please let me know how I can pray for you.
A thought for the day: let’s not forget to be grateful for everything in life. It’s too easy to see the negative. Let’s take our eyes and look for something positive.
To your inspiration,
Giving sight to my shark.