Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Our Eyes Do More Than See

When I was in labor with Megan, the nurse said to us, "I predict this child's most distinct features are going to be her eyes." Mike and I didn't think too much of the comment. Mike has beautiful eyes, but other than the occasional person stopping him at the gas station to comment on them, or the lady who once asked me if Mike was of Japanese descent ("Or are his eyes just like that?" she continued), we never really dwelt too much on eyes. And when you're in labor with your first child, thinking of their most distinct feature wasn't exactly at the front of our mind.

As Megan grew from a newborn into a baby and toddler, we began to notice she got a lot of comments about her eyes. Mike and I laughed when we remembered the nurse at the hospital, and wish we could have taken Megan back to visit.
(My all time favorite photo of Megan. Even though you can't see a close-up of her eyes.)

I didn't think too much of Megan and her eyes, you know...when you're with them day-in-day-out, they aren't as stand-outish or unique. It's more normal. (That sentence doesn't quite sound right. I think Megan is beautiful, including her eyes-but there just "Megan's eyes" to me... get what I'm trying to say??)

As Megan grew a little older, hearing the very frequent comments of, "Oh you're eyes are beautiful!" or "Look at those eyes!" or "You're eyes are so pretty." became so normal and common to Megan that as she began to talk and communicate, she'd reply, "I know." I think it was no different to her than if someone said, "Your shirt is pink." She only replied "I know" a couple of times, before I embarked on an emergency learning lesson about the difference between a compliment and a fact. Megan learned to say, "Thank you" to the eye comments pretty darn quickly.

As our other children joined the clan, their eyes were never the most prominent features to Mike and me (again the whole--we see them everyday thing...), but we soon realized it was no longer only Megan that received eye comments.

We hear comments about their eyes from complete strangers, from family friends, teachers, etc. etc. Our children sometimes talk amongst themselves, "What's the big deal about our eyes?"

We've joked for years about wishing we could take all five of our children to visit the nurse that made such an accurate prediction.

I'm beginning to realize my children's eyes should have a spot in the record of our family history, especially after an experience we had at Disneyland last month...

The first day we were at the Disneyland Resort, Joshua, Drew and I left California Adventure to head over to Disneyland. As we exited the park, the boys got their hands stamped by a nice worker lady and we went merrily on our way.

The second day we started out at California Adventure, and after a few hours headed over to Disneyland. This time, my brother's family was with us. I followed Casey toward the exit turn-styles. Joshua and Drew were standing in front of me, and as they outstretched their hands for the invisible hand stamp, the lady said, "It's those eyes again! I remember you boys from yesterday!! Immediately in my mind I'm thinking, we are at a resort where she sees hundreds of people each day and she remembers MY BOYS and THEIR EYES??

The lady looked up at me and said kindly, "Now I can see where they get their beautiful eyes from. Yesterday you were wearing sunglasses and my co-worker and I wished so badly we could have seen your eyes." I think I was so dazed and shocked that someone was remembering me and my boys from such a large crowd, that instead of graciously accepting her compliment, I said, "Oh! They get them from their dad. He has beautiful eyes."

Casey and Cindy were as shocked as I was that:
1. What were the chances that of all the turn-style exits, we'd encounter the same worker lady as the previous day?
2. How in the world did my boys and their eyes stand-out to her among the thousands of people she encounters in a 24 hour period!?

Instead of feeling giddy and happy as I walked into the gates of the Happiest Place on Earth, I found myself wishing there was a way to tell the nurse that worked an October 1998 shift at Orem Community Hospital that not only was her prediction right, but it was right with the next four children that would follow.

I was also trying to give the emergency-always-say-thank-you-for a compliment-talk to Drew as he turned to Joshua and said, "Why do peoples always talk about our eyes?"

The end.

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