There is nothing more peaceful than watching snow drift gently down from the sky. Each snowflake is unique, inspiring wonder about the cause and effect of everything around us.
Science is fascinating. Science combined with medicine and the human body is even more fascinating. Imagine being fully conscious as you go in for an operation. This was what I experienced earlier this week. Let me explain.
I had eye surgery a few days ago. This was my first experience of a surgical procedure to correct my vision. Over the past year, a haze from unknown sources had grown over my left eye. The wait time for surgery was six months but because my vision had deteriorated rapidly, my case was expedited to stand-by late last week.
Surgery day came quickly and I am now 4 days into recovery. I can now look back on my experiences and reflect objectively, noting what I did that was helpful and what was not.
The most helpful thing I did was maintain a positive attitude and open mind. Mindfulness created the space I needed to be fully present without judgement. Mindfulness allowed me to maintain a calm state of awareness and be an objective observer of the realities in each moment.
Surprisingly, there was no pain during the entire procedure aside from the minor discomfort I felt when local anesthetics were instilled into my eye. Intently aware of the absence of pain, I kept my mind in a place of peace and my body calm. There was no discomfort after the surgery either and I was fine at least until the next day when post-surgery medications brought intense pain to my eye. That was when I mindlessly fell into the least helpful thing I did, which was allow myself to spiral downwards into emotional distress and worry.
The new anti-inflamatory eye drops caused sharp pain when instilled and worsened my vision. I worried about irreversible damage and the possibility of complications. My mind and heart were now racing. Awareness of this was the turning point for bringing myself back to a state of inner calm.
I took a few deep breaths and focused on relaxing my body and letting worrisome thoughts go. As my heart rate slowed and the tension in my head dissolved, I came to realize there was no more pain. My mind and body were now back in peaceful harmony. Resting here, I waited patiently for insights on what to do next. I went to the phone and spoke to several health professionals, made an appointment with the doctor who performed the surgery, and subsequently discovered that discomfort with those particular drops is normal. As for my blurred vision, the doctor explained that my eye was like a snow globe with floating particles when shaken up. He recommended that I keep my head erect as much as possible to help the recovery process.
Now when I look out the window, it doesn’t matter whether there is a cloud in the sky or not. It is snowing beautiful glorious snow. I am watching snow drifting down right before my eyes as I rest in deep gratitude for the miracles of mindfulness!
For tips on mindfulness, visit my other blog at http://www.mindmastertraining.ca starting January 2014.