It has been four years since I had surgery and lost one of my four balance nerves. An odd reminder remains with me. In the weeks following surgery, I quickly recovered 90%+ of my ability to walk a straight line. In the first six months, the percentage has gone up to more than 98%. Yet, as my doctor said when I complained, “the last bit of getting your balance back is a b*&%$”.
The initial discovery that I did not have my balance back was a rude one. I was confident, in hindsight, overly so. I had a week without dizziness. Walking up stairs, turns, and even running were accomplished with a natural ease. As I went out on my first bicycle ride my confident was high. It was only in the latter part of the ride, as I accelerated downhill, that I looked down at my feet. In that instant everything disappeared. There was no sense of where I had been just a moment before. The natural awareness of up, down, left, right, forward, or simply being were suspended, instantly. It felt as if I was floating. Nothing made sense. Whatever I had been thinking was pushed aside for a single thought. What now?
In hindsight I can see the Presence touching me in a tangible way. My body tensed and I did what felt like the right response. I looked up.
Everything instantly came into focus. I could feel the speed. I could sense my balance and where I was. I knew I can the ability to control myself.
It was unbelievable, so I tried a quick look down and back. On, off, in control, no control, it was instantaneous.
I realized I was in unchartered territory. I needed to learn. I needed to keep my sights on the reference point from which everything else made sense. David’s words played out in tangibly; “If I keep my eyes on God, I won’t trip over my own feet.” (Psalm 25.15)
I am still not at 100%. It is ok, only the reference point matters.