Pandemic Therapy

Debbie Eldredge,

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

he health care crisis that has swept across our nation has severely tested our organization. To help slow the spread of COVID-19, we voluntarily discontinued all non-essential care before government mandates required it. Most of our nearly 600 staff were furloughed for two months, at great hardship to some. Our mettle has been severely tested. You may have experienced similar difficulty.

Pacific Cataract and Laser Institute is made up of caring people spread across six states in 17 different locations. So getting everyone together is impossible. However, in the middle of the lockdown, our doctors and management team met in a Zoom video conference. Debbie Eldredge, our Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, shared some thoughts on a most valuable therapy for us now in this crisis and in the future. Here are her words.

The valuable therapy is gratitude!

This period of downtime has given us all an opportunity to slow down and think about life. Some people tend to see the negative. If there are nine positives about a certain situation and one negative, chances are the negative will be the first or the main item that gets their attention.

Nevertheless, gratitude is a simple and yet profound practice that can really change our lives. Research has confirmed that it has many emotional and physical benefits. When we take the time to focus on the good things in our lives, it opens our hearts, creates happiness, and then restores us to a place where we notice what is right instead of what is wrong. When we find ways to be grateful every day, we experience more joy in life. Focusing on the things we are thankful for causes fear, anger, and bitterness to melt away—almost effortlessly.

So what are you grateful for?

Maybe you’ve recently had the opportunity to do some deep cleaning of your home, your garage, or your shop. Maybe the downtime has triggered thoughts about some work you could do to improve relationships that are suffering. Maybe you’ve had time to simply enjoy being with loved ones. Maybe the available time has allowed you to get to some of those rainy-day projects that there never seems to be enough rain to accommodate.

A favorite Bible verse is Nehemiah 8:10, which says the joy of the Lord is our strength. Notice that it says the joy of the Lord and not anything about our joy. What brings the Lord joy? It’s His relationship with His creation. That’s us. So we can be strong in knowing that God delights in us!

A story is told of 100 bicycles being auctioned off by a police department. “One dollar,” said an 11-year-old boy as the bidding opened on the first bike. The bidding, however, went much higher. “One dollar,” the boy repeated hopefully each time another bike came up.

The auctioneer, who had been auctioning stolen or lost bikes for 43 years, noticed that the boy’s hopes seemed to soar higher whenever a racer-type bicycle was put up.

Then there was just one racer left. The bidding went to eight dollars. “Sold, to that boy over there for nine dollars!” said the auctioneer. He took eight dollars from his own wallet and asked the boy for his dollar. The little boy turned it over in nickels, dimes, and pennies—then took his bike to leave. After taking a few steps, he carefully parked his new possession and went back and gratefully threw his arms around the auctioneer’s neck and cried. A real demonstration of gratitude!

What am I grateful for? I am very grateful for my PCLI family. We are nearly 600 in total, and while there are many on our staff that I don’t know, I consider it a privilege to do my little part to support the important work you do!

I am very grateful that while we see many companies defaulting on loans, discontinuing their lease payments, and closing doors for good, we can meet all of our financial obligations. What a blessing!

I am thankful that eye surgery is something that will be needed as long as humanity exists.

I am thankful for the verse in Nehemiah that tells us that God’s joy (which is in us—a blessing within a blessing!) is from where our strength comes.

Another thing I am thankful for is that this pandemic has drawn our leadership team closer together through our many brainstorming and planning meetings.

We have a bright future!

When we take the time to focus on the good things in our lives, it opens our hearts, creates happiness, and then restores us to a place where we notice what is right instead of what is wrong.

World Class Care

We specialize in cataract surgery and LASIK laser vision correction. When you entrust us with the care of your vision, our team of experts concentrates their skills on giving you the best possible outcome. Having performed over 500,000 micro eye surgeries, we have earned a reputation for world class care.

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