My Family

My Family

Friday, March 28, 2008


This life is full of new experiences and adventures.
Last Friday, we took our children to Albuquerque so that our 4th child, Thomas, could have an Electroretinogram (ERG) performed on his eyes.

This meant his eyes were dialated for most of the afternoon following the test, hence the styling sunglasses!

A little history for you: We have known since he was 2(ish) that he had difficulty seeing, but it wasn't until he started school and his kindergarten teacher started asking multiple questions that we realized that his glasses did not correct his vision to 20/20.

Over the course of his life, he has seen numerous specialists, and had his eyes dialated more times than I can remember.

In the past year, we have made 2 or 3 trips specifically to find more detailed answers in regards to his vision.

This last trip was one that we hoped would bring results, but I hardly dared to hope we would receive a really helpful answer.

Yesterday, however, I received a phone call from the pediatric opthamologist and he discussed the findings from Thomas' ERG...(can I just say thank you to a doctor who discussed the findings with me over the phone rather than expecting me to make the 5 hour drive back to Albuquerque for a 5 minutes discussion of the findings?!!).

The ERG showed that Thomas' cones in his eyes do not work appropriately.
In fact, Thomas has what is called "Cone Dystrophy"

Here's a little information that I found on the internet:

Cone dystrophy is a term used to describe a group of disorders that affect cone cells in the retina. This decreased function of cone cells can lead to decreased central vision, reduced color vision, and often sensitivity to bright lights.

People with cone dystrophy typically have trouble with color vision, or in some cases..., do not see color at all. A person who does not see color may not even have a concept of what color is, as everything is seen in shades of gray.

Although patients are concerned about going completely blind from the condition, this is actually uncommon for people with cone dystrophy. It is more likely that a patient may be considered “legally blind.” This is defined as having best corrected vision equal to or worse than 20/200 in both eyes (which cannot be corrected with glasses).(from: Understanding Cone Dystrophy, University of Michigan, Kellogg Eye Center Brochure)

So, in trying to wrap my mind around what this really means, I've come to a few conclusions:

The only sadness and loss I feel at this point is the realization that Thomas' eyes can't be "fixed".

I know part of my heart wanted to feel that I had done all I could to make sure my son could see as well as possible.

I now know that there is no surgery, no "better" doctor, and no different pair of glasses that will "fix" his vision.

I can pray for a miracle, but I fully realize that a miracle does not necessarily mean perfect vision for my son in this life.

A miracle may simply be that the right people are brought into his life in order that he may learn to function as well as possible with the limitations the Lord has allowed him to have.

We are here on this earth to learn...about ourselves, and how willing we are to follow the Lord and His plan.

Despite the road bumps, and new subjects that are thrown our way for us to learn, ultimately, the Lord wants us to show our faithfulness by continuing to turn to Him.

As I start down a more clearly defined path in regards to my son, I pray that I may be a willing student and turn to the Lord when I am the one who cannot see.

Friday, March 14, 2008


Time is an interesting concept.
For the majority of the week, my children have tried to wrap their minds around the concept of Daylight Savings Time.
A common question is, "So, it's really 7am, even though the clock says it's 8am, right?"
Trust me, having grown up in Arizona where you never worry about DST and changing your clocks, it's a pretty tough concept to comprehend.
We change the clocks...and's a different time of day.

This is my 5th year dealing with the "time change", and I must admit, it is still a difficult thing to adjust my body clock and my mental thinking based solely on the numbers on a clock.
I didn't realize how much I depend on specific cues to let me know what time it is...and how easily those cues can throw me off when I'm not thinking about the literal time.
Earlier this week, I made a phone call, thinking I had quite a while to talk before running to the bus stop to pick up my children.
I made this assumption based on how much sunlight was coming in my west windows...and I had judged that it was about 2pm.
About 5 minutes into the call, I glanced down at my computer clock, and saw that it was almost 3pm...or was it?
In Arizona it IS 2pm, and if I were to think about Europe, we'd be looking at it being 11pm instead of afternoonish.
Regardless of the time on the clock, there were obligations to be met...and they hinge on those pesky numerals.
I ended the call and headed out the door...but it did make me ponder.

What is time?
We use the concept in many different ways:
It's time to go (somewhere).
It's MY time (for solitude).
It's time to (crawl, etc...).
I have time (or don't have time).
I had a good time.
It's almost time (birth).
It's his time (death).

Clearly, there are many interpretations of time and how we perceive it.
One of my favorite quotes is this:

"When the veil which now encloses us is no more, time will also be no more (see D&C 84:100). Even now, time is clearly not our natural dimension. Thus it is that we are never really at home in time. Alternately, we find ourselves impatiently wishing to hasten the passage of time or to hold back the dawn. We can do neither, of course. Whereas the bird is at home in the air, we are clearly not at home in time—because we belong to eternity! Time, as much as any one thing, whispers to us that we are strangers here. If time were natural to us, why is it that we have so many clocks and wear wristwatches?" Neal A. Maxwell, “Patience,” Ensign, Oct 1980, 28

Time, as we comprehend it, must be utilized to the best of our ability...and we must understand that there are many things that will be experienced during our time here on this earth.
These scriptures comes to mind:

Ecclesiastes 3
1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

May we use the time we are given to the best of our ability.
There is a purpose and plan for each of us...we just need to take the time to find out what God would have us do daily, weekly, and in the larger scope of our life.
In the words Mordecai to Esther: "Who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" (Esther 4).
Our mission will become clear as we petition the Lord to understand His will for us, our time (which is really His time) and our life.

I've been blogging here most of the morning...time got away from me...I've got to run!
See you next time.