New Year’s Resolutions: 2020

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Photo by Johnny Spillane

By Louis Cahill

I think if there is one thing I’m looking for in 2020 it’s resolution.

It’s impossible for me to think, or write, about the coming year without addressing the rays of hope and the clouds of uncertainty I manage hour to hour these days. As I continue my struggle with PVR, it becomes more evident every day that I am running a marathon. I feel very fortunate to be where I am at present, and I truly believe that the worst is over. Still, there’s a lot left to be determined.

At my last meeting with my doctor, hr told me, “I feel like we now know that the house is not going to burn down. Whether it’s a house we want to live in we’re not going to know for a while.”

As of now my retina is still attached, but a section of it is not healthy. That’s the part of the retina most effected by the initial onset of PVR. The scar tissue there is preventing the retina from getting a good connection to my eye. The retina has been reinforced around this area and for now is sound, as long as it is protected by the silicone oil that fills my eye, acting like a cast on a broken bone. If that oil were removed today, the retina would most certainly detach. 

First thing first. I am taking advantage of this current stability, such as it is, to host my three weeks of Bonefish Schools at Bair’s Lodge. I can not tell you how happy I am to be able to do that. I don’t expect to be able to fish every day, but I will fish and I will be able to teach the schools and that is my top priority.

When I get home, I will have another surgery. This one should be an easier recovery than the last two, thank God! The goal will be to flatten out the scar tissue and use the laser to firm up the connection of the retina to the eye. We will then watch the progress for about three months. If the laser work is successful and the retina forms a good bond in the damaged area, then we can start talking about another surgery to clean up some of the last surgeons work and removing the oil. That is the best case, everything goes perfectly scenario. I am focusing all of my positive energy on this outcome.

If the laser work is not successful and the retina remains sketchy, then I have two options. I can have another surgery to remove the damaged part of the retina. That’s risky, as the chance of more PVR is high. That means we could easily be back to square one and me be at risk of losing the eye. I have a hard time seeing myself making that choice, pun intended. The second choice is to leave the oil in my eye permanently, as a bandage, and deal with the damaged retina when, or if, it becomes a problem. 

That would mean a couple of things moving forward. The oil makes my vision extra challenging. Think double vision. distortion, murkiness and so on. It also increases the risk of eye pressure issues which can lead to total blindness and would have to be managed with drugs. It also means I can not lay on my back, which doesn’t seem like a big deal for the first six months, and then it is.

It’s important that I put all of this in perspective. PVR cases commonly require six to eight surgeries across five years, so I really am doing well. It’s just becoming obvious that I will be managing this situation for some time, if not the rest of my life. I feel very lucky to have my eye, but I also can’t help but think that losing it would at least feel like resolution.

I am also incredibly fortunate that I can continue to work and be productive. I’ve really eager to get back to full steam here at G&G, and I will, though it’s taking me longer than I had hoped. I am truly grateful for the patience and support you have all provided. I am incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by awesome supportive people, both personally and professionally. There is certainly a special place in heaven for Mrs Kathy Cahill for all she has endured with utter grace. Before she gets  there, there’s at least a special place for her on some Caribbean beach!

So here’s the resolution I feel like I have some control over.

G&G get’s bigger and better in 2020. More content, different kinds of content, more video, and maybe even that podcast everyone has been asking for. I am kicking this thing up a notch if it kills me.

Here’s how you can help.

Leave us a comment below telling us what you want. What kinds of content. What kinds of site features. What kinds of social involvement. What kinds of hosted trips. Let us know how G&G can be better for you and I’ll do my very best to make it happen.

Thank you for your support and for being the most awesome fishing community on the planet!

Happy New Year! I hope this is the year all of your dreams come true.


Louis Cahill
Gink & Gasoline
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12 thoughts on “New Year’s Resolutions: 2020

  1. Louis, hoping for continued positive recovery for your eye. Thanks again for keeping us in the loop. As for content, the podcast is very exciting to hear about. I think a G&G road trip would be a cool thing to see in which people meet up and decide to put a day on the water together. Cover the 50 states, share some laughs. While this isn’t as grand as a trip to the Seychelles, or many of the other places your G&G trips go, I do think there are great areas to discover in all of the states and brings the G&G community to life in an alternative fashion where some of the trips are likely out of the budget(Please don’t stop hosting as the dream of going on one of these is still very alive!). Maybe one local fly shop hosts G&G for the day and local folks explore together….

  2. I’m in for whatever you feel like sharing, my friend. It’s great to see your optimism. That, alone, can carry you far. But then, we’re fishermen, right? The poster children of optimism.

    Here’s to a better 2020.

  3. Louis, so glad you are getting better and especially happy you were able to go to Andros for the bonefish school. I am a little envious re clear Bahamian waters. Any content you put up will be enjoyed, always learn something new!

  4. Best of luck as you continue to deal with the eye problem. Hope you continue to get positive results. Podcast sounds great! I enjoy the instructional videos and would like to see more tying videos, especially of the flies you like and have success with fishing for different species.

  5. Very best wishes Louis for your ongoing recovery! What a process but with your positive attitude I am confident you will prevail! As to content I cannot think of much that is lacking! It’s a great weekly recap and one I always take some time to read (if not all of it each week then at least one or two articles)

    best of luck / Happy New Year!

  6. Very sorry about your eye condition. I know the eyes are slow to respond to repair. Sometimes it seems like forever. So, I wish you well and praying for as complete a recovery as possible. Best of luck.

  7. Good luck with the eye! Having had a torn retina, I know that is some scary stuff.
    I definitely don’t want to lose the storytelling part of the blog, but would like a bit more technical how to kind of features from time to time.
    And maybe the chances for GNG trips to good trout water in the US. A few of us might be able to swing that easier than out of county trips.

  8. I am glad you are making progress with a difficult situation. Your resilience has impressed many people. I am glad you are telling everyone your journey thru such a unforeseen problem which you never expected. I have known thru my experience as a physician, husband, and father of five children that the worst things in your life appear out of no where and hit you as a sledgehammer. Your courage and willingness to share your journey is admirable. I hope you have a full recovery. I pray for you often. I am happy you are fighting the problem head on and continuing your life. Look forward to fishing with you again.

  9. Keep on keeping on Louis. Very much appreciate each edition of G&G, always something of direct interest to me.
    All the best
    Chris in Tasmania

  10. I’m praying for a successful outcome for your eye,Louis.

    As far as content….I’ve enjoyed seeing articles from 2011 on. They have been as pertinent today as they were then.

    Do whatever the doctor requires, and we’ll be waiting for your healthy return.

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