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A woman's legs with matching shoes on her feet stands on a yellow brick road with rain clouds behind her

It’s the Little Things in Life

On January 26th, I had 2 surgical procedures on my foot. My podiatrist did everything possible to prepare me for post-procedure rehabilitation. He repeatedly stressed that I would be non-weight bearing for a period of weeks.

The same podiatrist operated on a friend of mine a few weeks before my surgery. She was in a walker boot and was back on her feet in less than a week. It appeared she healed well with her procedure. In spite of what my doctor told me, I expected my recovery to be similar to hers.

Recovering from surgery

My recovery did not follow the plans I had in mind. Sure enough just as my podiatrist warned me, I was non-weight bearing for a full 5 1/2 weeks. During the recovery, it was impossible to take a normal shower. Trying to keep my bandaged foot dry and sit on a shower bench made taking a shower an ordeal.

Walking in a walker boot made me very unsteady. As I was required to walk only on the heel and with my foot turned outward, I was quite unsteady. A cane was needed to maintain my balance.

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Finding joy in the little things

After surgery I discovered the joy in the little things in life. The ability to wear matching shoes to church pleased me immensely. Walking without a cane was nice too.

I was able to resume daytime driving. No longer was I tied to the house. Standing up to shower gave me the most joy. I had not felt truly clean for weeks!

Finding joy in spite of age-related macular degeneration

When it comes to age-related macular degeneration (AMD), my goal is finding joy in spite of the limitations caused by AMD. I choose joy rather than happiness. I find happiness to be fleeting.

Ice cream makes me happy in the moment but isn’t lasting. Joy for me is a deeper emotion I choose to have. It is internal; not dependent upon my circumstances.

Enjoying nature

Being outdoors in the beautiful mountains of Southeast Oklahoma, causes joy to well up deep within. I could be unhappy that I can no longer see clearly. 

Instead, I revel in the beauty that surrounds me. My favorite form of art is Impressionism. As an artist captures the beauty of outdoors with soft lines and vivid color, I can still enjoy the beauty that surrounds me.


I come from a family that loves reading. My taste in books has changed over the years but my love of reading continues. Even large print books are too hard to read. I have not allowed my limitation to hinder my joy in reading. I read digital books so that I can enlarge the text and change the background color.

Helping others

Through the years, I have driven friends to distant appointments or offered my nursing skills to those terminally ill. Having AMD changed all that. I drive in the daytime in familiar areas but city traffic is not safe for me to drive in.

Even so, I find deep joy from doing those things I can do; making food for a friend with cancer or bringing a jar of jalapeño strawberry jelly to another friend.


I am not happy I have AMD! Rather, I choose the deeper emotion of joy found in the little things of my life.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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