Eye Can See Clearly Now…

Eye wish. I know y’all are all dying for an update. Until this morning there was nothing to say. What with the pandemic and all I’ve been teleworking and home-schooling. Cataract surgery? Who knows?

This morning I woke up in excruciating pain in my eye. I couldn’t open it and when I did the light made the pain worse. How bad was the pain? I briefly considered a trip to the ER. At 5:00 a.m. In a pandemic.

My eye was red and swollen and hurt like crazy. It didn’t even hurt like that after the bleeping surgery! Wish I’d taken a picture. I finally had scary zombie eye and was too freaked out to take a picture.

Thankfully my doctor was on call and I was able to see him this morning. Apparently it’s something called ‘rebound inflammation’. What’s rebound inflammation? So glad you asked!

After my surgery I was put on anti-inflammatory drops and steroid drops for swelling. I finished them up earlier this week. Going off the steroids can sometimes trigger the rebound inflammation. The doctor just prescribed more drops and it’s all good.

The Eyes Have It…

This will be brief because I have been at the doctor all morning, my eyes are dilated and I have a headache. I can’t have cataract surgery until June at the earliest. The doctor wants me to wait at least three months past the macular hole surgery to have cataract surgery.

He said that if I’m tired of wandering around blind (I am!) I could get another pair of glasses but my prescription is changing rapidly. Given that this pair cost $700(!) that’s highly unlikely. He keeps telling me I’ll be thrilled when this is over. No more near-sightedness, but right now I’m just frustrated and tired.

Seeing Eye to Eye

I saw my Retinal Specialist last week and there’s good news and really horrible news. The good news is, the hole has indeed closed, and the gas bubble is gone. Bye Bye Bubble Boy. Bad new? I have a cataract forming in that eye. Yeah, I know, I need to find myself a religion to follow quickly because clearly I’m not living right.

Cataracts are a known and likely side effect of the vitrectomy surgery. Though typically they don’t form until 6 months to a year and up to two years after the surgery. So I was prepared to have it develop, but you know me, gots to get in firstest with the mostest!

No matter what you do, don’t look up cataract surgery on YouTube. Don’t ask me why, but the visual of having part of your eye ball sliced off with a scalpel is almost as horrific as the visual of having tubes stuck in your eyeball.

Anyway, so the cataract has not developed enough yet for me to have surgery, plus, my eye isn’t healed enough either. So I go back in a few weeks to see where we are. Then I’ll be referred to the cataract specialist. Giving how long I had to wait for the retina surgery we’re probably talking well into spring before I have surgery.

Apparently I will need surgery on both eyes, so my lenses match. I’m trying not to think about that, but given I can barely see, and dreading makes me dizzy, thinking is about all I can do. I go back to work next week. Still working from home, so grateful that I’ve been able to work that out. Driving is not a thing that’ll be happening anytime soon. Tried just moving the car for the roofers last week and dear heavens, it was bad!

As far as my vision goes, yeah, my right eye is mostly ornamental at this point. I still have the funhouse mirror effect, along with blurred and cloudy vision. Yes, Dear Reader, my eye sight is actually worse than it was when we started on this long strange trip!

And I realized I owe y’all an apology. I promised Raspberry Sorbet would be out before the surgery, but no. My vision deteriorated so quickly I couldn’t finish the book and I didn’t want to put out an inferior product. I’m sorry, if I have any fans left, I sincerely apologize. I have NO IDEA when, or even if I’ll ever write again. I have so many books planned for y’all and all this is driving me crazy.

As the Eye Turns

Visually my eye is more or less back to normal. It’s not red anymore. I still put drops in three times a day. I thought I’d share a visual of my charming Medic Alert bracelet because apparently if mishandled my eye could explode. Highly unlikely but I do like the drama of saying that.

The latest in chic jewelry…

The gas bubble is about 2/3rds of the way down. It’s like a half-moon at the bottom of my line of sight. As it has shrunk the glare off it has steadily worsened though the vertigo it caused is better.

It’s clear now that the visual distortion is still there. So now it’s like looking through a funhouse mirror only now with added glare! It will take months for the damage to my retina to right itself and I will probably not get my vision back totally.

You know me I’ve read everything I can about this issue, so I knew going into this that the surgery was more an issue of stopping further damage than correcting the damage already done, but it’s still hard to deal with suddenly having a disability and to your eyesight no less.

I’m really struggling with this. Not being able to drive makes me feel like I’m under house arrest. And don’t even get me started on possible job loss. It’s devastating.

We Gets No Cover Love

I just want to know why the foreign versions of books always look so much better than the American versions.

So I bought The Five, an amazing social history of the five canonical victims of Jack the Ripper. Amazing book y’all, seriously I told y’all all about it in a previous blog post I’m too lazy to link here but yeah, you need this book.

I bought the ebook as I do most books these days so I could enlarge the type. Then I started following Hallie Rubenhold (the author) on Twitter and now I’m hella mad. The UK version has a MUCH better cover, and they’ve got TOTEBAGS with the women’s names.

The hell you say? So not only do we get an ugly cover that doesn’t have their names inscribed like the Brit version, we don’t even get totebags. Y’all know I’ve got totebag issues, right?

So I tootled over to amazon.co.uk and much to my amazement I discovered I can order the Brit version, but still no totebag. Thinking about low key stalking Rubenhold until she sends me one (or blocks me on Twitter).

Is That Prone or Supine?

This will be my last day of face-down posturing after my surgery on Wednesday. I have to stay face-down for 45 minutes of every hour. (Yes, that includes sleeping). That’s so that the gas bubble in my eye will remain pressed against the surgery site.

With time, possibly a few weeks, the gas will gradually dissipate and my body will make more vitreous fluid to fill the cavity.

Did I tell y’all vitreous fluid looks like egg whites? Yeah, I woke up toward the end of the surgery and could see the fluid and the instruments in my eye! And yes I asked my doctor what would happen if my body didn’t make more fluid. He looked at me like I’m an idiot, rolled his eyes and said that’s never happened, but if it did he’d write a journal article about it and I’d be famous. My doctor is a bit snarky, yeah?

Right now I can’t see anything out of my right eye. And I’m getting damned tired of it. I’ve essentially been blind in that eye since November but yeah, this is worse because at least I had a little peripheral vision to keep from walking into stuff. Now I’ve got nothing.

It’s interesting though because I can watch the bubble gradually dissipate. It’s like looking through a glass of water that’s draining bit by bit. It’s aggravating and fascinating at the same time. The bubble moves though and is ridiculously distracting.

Anyway I’ll keep you posted. No more pictures because there’s really not much to see. My eye is swollen and a bit droopy. Definitely red, but hardly sympathy-inducing. Mainly I’ve been sleeping a lot. I hadn’t realized how exhausted I was but straining to see is wearying. And I don’t sleep well because of the face down thing. Hopefully tomorrow night will be bliss!

Horrifying ‘Zombie’ Eye!

Not nearly as bad as I anticipated. Probably the worst part of the surgery was the nerve block to the eye and waking up with a drape over my face. Me no likey having my face covered. It’s tender but I’m not in pain. I thought the gas bubble would be opaque but it’s clear like looking through a bubble of water.

We’ve spent most of the day adjusting my chair and such so I can keep my facedown position comfortably. Yeah, no. Not possible. Fortunately I’ll be done by Sunday.

Super Bowl Eats

We always try to pick Super Bowl food based on the city where the game is played. Sometimes we base it on the team cities. (The crab cakes from when my beloved Ravens won are the stuff of legends.) Both Kansas City and San Francisco are both great food cities. For once Whit wasn’t feeling ribs (That’s never happened before) and to me San Francisco will always be about Asian cuisine. Which we eat at least once per week, so we went with game city this time.

Miami is one of my favorite food cities. Unfortunately I haven’t been there since the more recent influx of Brazilian immigrants. I would imagine the food is even more amazing. So we’re going with a full Cuban menu.

Cubanos (Natch. This is Whit’s fave sandwich. Which is saying something because the man LOVES sandwiches.) I wanted to do a Cuban-style ham, but got outvoted.

Moros y cristianos (Black beans and rice). Which I could eat every day of my life. Cubanelle peppers are just so YUM! Very fortunate to have Buford Highway Farmers Market nearby. If it grows and can be eaten, you will find it there.

Debating whether to fry my own churros or just pick some up on Buford Highway. I fear that if I ever start making my own I’ll eat little else. I’ve also got an amazing guava/coconut flan recipe I want to try, but my kids are not fans of coconut. (I have NO IDEA how that happened.) Might just do a plain flan instead.

And, of course, mojitos by the pitcher full. We’re not really rum fans for the most part—he loves Scotch and I’m all about bourbon—but mojitos are delish, especially with Cubanos, so there you go.

And, of course lots of coffee and at least one cigar. It’s Miami after all and since none of our teams made the cut, we can just suck back and enjoy the festivities.

The Funhouse Mirror

Someone asked what does my vision look like with the macular hole. This image is the best representation I can find. I keep that eye shut or covered when I’m working because it’s mad distracting. And given that my job involves almost constant spreadsheets it takes me twice as long to do tasks. I’m having frequent headaches and am exhausted but can’t sleep. I just want it to be over. Even though the recovery can last months and there’s no guarantee my sight will ever return I just want it over.

Doctors use this grid to determine how bad it is. Mine is about like this. Sometimes I have a black hole in the center of the distorted area. Sometimes I do not. I see a bullseye, much like the Target logo, but with ragged edges almost constantly.

I’ve been getting pointers on how to navigate with one eye. I have always had limited depth perception but now I have none. I’ve cut myself three times, the last time pretty severely. I’ve been cooking forever and it’s difficult to alter that process. But I have to because no one wants my blood in their burrito.

Victrectomy Recovery Supplies

I’ve got a little over a week left before my surgery. Time to order the supplies to help me get through this. Nope I won’t be ordering that chair. I’m clumsy as hell y’all. You know that in my hands that chair is just an accident waiting to happen.

That headrest gizmo looks like it would work for sleeping.

Plus it sits up for car rides or reading.

My question is how is it that this surgery is commonplace enough that there’s a whole industry to support it, yet no one has ever heard of it? Hmmm…

Thankfully they deliver this stuff to your home. I’ll probably get a boppy or a similar pillow. I’m claustrophobic so I’m concerned about having a freak out but I guess I will deal.

I’m thinking about getting another iPad. Mine is almost a decade old. It might be good for movies. I’ve got lots of books but reading with one eye is surprisingly tiring. We’ll see.