March 6th 2013, I woke up to a sight I had never seen before.
I could see my nose!
At first I thought I was just a bit cross-eyed and would snap back to normal once I fully woke up. However, after a few hours of being able to see my nose in my field of vision I began to worry.
Do I have a tumor pushing my eyes closer together?
Am I having a bad reaction to the antibiotic I was taking?
Am I going blind?
At a time when I was experiencing an intense amount of anxiety, I added my new mysterious symptom to a list of other issues I was facing. When I went to my next Dr. appointment I mentioned my vision problem. He lifted his head slightly to the right and assured me, “Everyone can see their nose!” I insisted to see a specialist, unsatisfied with his short response. However, when I visited the eye Dr. he too had no explanation for what I was dealing with. I was convinced they didn’t understand and they just didn’t care enough to investigate the issue. I was unsettled in the responses I received and my anxiety continued.
Every day…all day…at every moment since March 6th, my nose has been in my way. It makes me dizzy at times, annoyed, frustrated, and leads me to wonder what else might be going on in my body. No matter what was happening in my life, this issue has seemingly overshadowed everything! I haven’t shared this with too many people as I felt silly for caring so much about a phenomenon the Dr. never seemed concerned about. And because the issue is with my eyes, with no apparent physical change, no one ever even knows that I struggle.
I would leave a coffee date with a friend or dinner with family in tears that I had an extrememly difficult time focusing. It also hindered me from seeing my new baby clearly. I held him in my arms, yearning to look closely in admiration, bombarded with the outline of my nose, getting in my way.
It is still difficult to explain the frustration and deep heartache this issue has caused me.
I realize there are worse things that could be happening, yet it is hard to compare what I don’t know. This eye problem is something I know, and to be completely honest, I hate it.
Since a many of conversations with my husband, rather complaints I shared with him about this issue, I have learned to cope with this vision problem. The recent months have not been as distracting, although I still see a pretty clear image of my nose, always. My husband’s words of encouragement and faith and perspective help me through times of weakness, words that help me in incredible ways.
I recently decided to get my eyes checked out one more time, just to make sure there were no underlying issues more serious than what I have been dealing with.
There is nothing quite like being unveiled in the middle of an eye exam. I stepped into the appointment feeling nervous, hoping to receive good news for a phenomenon I have been experiencing for over a year. When the doctor wheeled his chair around to tell me everything looks healthy, my heart leapt. Then he pointed at his head and continued with “The brain is a mighty powerful organ…” Tears welled up in my dilated and numb blue eyes. I knew where he was going with this. He said it is most likely that I my brain noticed my nose and could not stop focusing on it. With my anxiety aroused things just stuck!
I am positive my face was flush, as a crushed spirit led me to be extremely vulnerable with the doctor and nurse who were sitting across from me.
“I am so sorry to get all emotional with you,” I mention while wiping a tear away. “I couldn’t wait to be a mom and this last year and a half has just been really challenging. I am so thankful my marriage was strong enough to endure through it. With almost every appointment I have made for different things, I walk out to the car and my husband asked how it went and I tell him, they said I just have anxiety or too much stress.”
I don’t know why I shared what I did in that moment. Raw emotions exposed by a woman whom they have never met before. But it felt so good to let it out!
The doctor replied in a kind tone,
Being a parent takes a lot…give yourself some credit. And knowing that you are healthy will hopefully help ease your worry.
It was relieving to hear the good news and to know that I am healthy.
It was also encouraging of them to just listen and smile and be there for me in my moment of emotional breakdown. I thanked them and exited the room as the doctor reminded me,
Things can always change, right?!
It was a statement of true freedom and I received it. Whether he was referring to my vision phenomenon fixing itself, my battle with anxiety subsiding, the challenges I face as a mother, or the mention of how things affect marriage…maybe all of it…I believed what he said. It was inspiring and reminded me to keep my faith in the One who can bring that change.
It is true that many of my symptoms or issues I have dealt with this last year are byproducts of anxiety. I never knew just how powerful our brains are, yet God is revealing to me just how much a brain controls. I am challenged daily to let go of my worry and trust God more, today was no different. I challenge you with the same: Let go of your worries and anxieties and trust in God! It is way easier said then done, but when we do it, marvelous things happen.
Do you believe things can always change?
Also, if you have experienced a random phenomenon such as this I would love to hear about it! Please share in the comments.