An Attitude of Gratitude

My annual visual fields test was today. Everyone I know, including me, hates this test where you stare at a light for an average of six minutes and press a button every time you see a light flash in your peripheral vision. The flashes may be bright or dim, sharp or fuzzy, closely spaced or separated. You don’t know when to blink and after a few minutes, you begin to think you imagined that last flash.

Last year I decided there was no benefit to complaining about my visual fields test and with a different attitude I didn’t mind it so much. This year I decided to upgrade my attitude even further and think of something for which I am grateful each time I saw a light flash. If nothing else, I could always be grateful that I was able to see each light.

An attitude of gratitude transformed my experience of the visual fields test. For the first time I realized what a blessing it is that I could see those lights after ten years of glaucoma. I was even grateful that I was able to do the test, able to remember what I was doing for six minutes. My doctor laughed when I told him it could just as well be a test for dementia.

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