Like I've said before, Hermana Merkley writes much better than I do. I thought that this note from her deserved a wider audience!
Sunday morning we had ward council at 8:30 so I was hurrying to get ready. Since we've had several very late nights this last week, my brain was in a fog. Just before I walked out the door of our apartment, I realized that I had forgotten to put my contacts in. Now you have to realize my eyesight isn't really that bad. I am a little nearsighted and have a slight astigmatism. In my small apartment, I hardly notice the difference. It only makes a difference when I am driving or shopping in a large building. Without my contacts, all the signs are just a touch fuzzy and I can't pull them into focus.
Back to Sunday morning. I hurried into the bathroom and put in my left contact. (I always put my left one in first.) Then I put in my right contact. As soon as it was in, it felt wrong so I tried to take it out. I loosened it on my eye, and then it popped back into place and felt just fine. I sighed in relief. Being in a hurry I went to wash my hands only to find a contact in the sink. Thinking that my right contact had actually popped out when I tried to adjust it, I quickly rinsed it off and popped it back into my right eye.
We arrived at the church only a couple of minutes late due to my struggle with my contacts. After ward council I went to practice the the hymns for sacrament meeting before our three hour block started at ten. With my sleep deprived brain slowly waking up, that was the first time I realized something was wrong with my eyesight. I couldn't get the music to come into focus. I tried moving closer or further away but to no avail. I tried putting on my reading glasses since sometimes I need them with my contacts. (Yes, I have finally reached that age where I can't always get my eyes to adjust from near to far easily.) They made my vision even worse. I started to wonder if my vision was changing. I was relieved to find that the hymns for sacrament meeting were well known, and I practically had them memorized. I quickly stumbled through them and figured I could convincingly fake my way during the meeting.
For the next three hours, I struggled with my eyesight. I developed a slight headache constantly trying to pull my world into focus. With effort I could still read the scriptures and follow along with the lessons, but everything was slightly blurry. I survived playing the hymns without anyone really noticing that I could hardly read the music. After we arrived home, I hurried into the bathroom to take out my contacts. To my amazement I didn't have a contact in my left eye. Instead I had two contacts in my right eye, one on top of the other. When I had found a contact in the sink, it really was my left contact. Somehow in my daze I hadn't realized I never got it in my eye correctly.
The next time I put my contacts in correctly I was amazed at the clarity of my world. Compared to earlier, my vision was crisp and clear. Everything seemed brighter and purer. I started thinking how the Gospel does the same thing for our vision. Without it we see a good deal. We can even make sense of most of it at times, but everything is a touch fuzzy. But with the clear lens of the Gospel, our purpose here on earth comes into focus. We understand why we have struggles and trials in this life, and we have a perfect brightness of hope in the life to come.