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.

TBR List

In anticipation of my convalescence from surgery I’ve been stockpiling books. I’ve got my usual e-books, but I also have a list of audiobooks on Libby in case reading is just impossible. Normally I’m not a huge fan of audiobooks, which is strange because I LOVE podcasts. Not sure what that’s about. Speaking of podcasts one of my faves is Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History. He drops a new episode every other full moon after the summer solstice but only 40 days after the first full moon of the lunar new year. I’ve forgiven him for his idiosyncratic schedule because he has a new book. It’s at the top of my TBR pile. Along with Black Jacobins on the Haitian Civil War (Mike Duncan has an AMAZING podcast on this, he recommended the book) and another on the Spanish Civil War. I only recently realized I know fuck-all about the Spanish Civil War. This seemed like a great time to rectify that.

I made some interesting discoveries this week. 1. I cannot read on the train. Got car sick as all hell. That’s a bummer. 2. I drove in to work for a meeting and no one died. I didn’t hit anything not even the dog I thought was a coyote.

Anyway these days I mostly read non-fiction especially history. Any suggestions for my TBR pile?

Quilting

I call this quilt my masterpiece. If you look closely you’ll see all the hand quilting. It’s queen sized and I made it mainly to go crazy with quilting. The actual quilting is my favorite part about the process. I can work on a machine but hand work is more relaxing.

Sadly, I don’t think I’ll be able to hand quilt on this level again. I’ve been a quilter since I was 9 years old. It’s one of the few things I do solely for myself. No one tells me when to start stop or how much to spend. It’s mine for me. I was so proud to have quilted this quilt with a #10 quilting needle. They’re less than an inch long and and finer than silk pins.

Interestingly I was making a baby quilt four years ago when I first started having eye problems. So much so I couldn’t finish the quilt. Don’t know why I didn’t immediately go to the eye doctor. It wasn’t until I couldn’t see to drive that I finally went.

Funny thing is I always thought it would be arthritis in my hands that would end quilting for me. Despite being near-sighted as hell it never occurred to me that yes, things could get worse.

I’ve been looking at this really sweet Brother quilting machine. It’s kind of spendy (what’s new, eh?) but if it can get me my groove back I’m definitely going to get it.

I’m mad depressed right now and dying to quilt. I can’t wait until this whole surgery thing is over. It’s good to have something to look forward to.

Cheddar Cheese Straws

I have always loved cheese straws but for some reason I haven’t made them in like decades.

Yesterday would’ve been my mama’s 91st birthday. I’ve mentioned before that she was a brilliant cook. In the coming weeks I’m going to cheer myself up my making some of my faves that she taught me.

Mama was a ‘recipe free’ cook, so I found this recipe that’s similar to hers. She added a lot more red pepper, paprika and a little black pepper. She said black pepper and red pepper should always be used together for full flavor.

https://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/cheddar-cheese-straws

American Kingpin

Just finished this book. It’s about the Silk Road dude. Basically old boy built an Amazon on the Dark Web for all manner of illegal activities mainly gun and drug sales.

I read the article about him in Gawker years ago (Yes, he gave an interview to Gawker 🤷🏾‍♀️ ) and remember thinking ‘well he won’t be around long’. The Feds really hate it when criminals make them look bad.

By the time he was finally caught the damned thing was worth $1.2 billion dollars. He’s doing life plus 40 years. So he’ll die in federal prison. Presumably he put at least some of that money away. I have to wonder though. Why didn’t he quit? I mean he had to know the Feds were gunning for him. He had actual DEA agents on his payroll. He’d scouted out a non-extradition country to escape to. You would think after making a certain amount of money they’d have enough sense to bail.

My next question is, who’s running Silk Road II?

You know someone is. No way are they leaving that kind of money out there. Presumably they aren’t giving interviews being a little less arrogant than Ulbricht.

Anyway, excellent book. Allegedly the Coen brothers are writing a screenplay. I love the Coen’s but I wish it was Hiassen.

Macular Holes and Other Fuckery

So yeah, macular hole. Never heard of it? No, me neither until about a week ago, now my world has been rocked.

About four years ago I looked up at a street sign and realized I couldn’t see jack out of my right eye. Even worse I was seeing double.

Since then I’ve been diagnosed with all manner of stuff, spent a fortune and nothing helped. Finally this past Thanksgiving we we’re driving to Alabama and I realized things had gotten significantly worse. It looked like someone had smeared Vaseline over my right lens and left a hole in the middle where I couldn’t see anything.

I know, I know, get to the point ffs. Finally found a doctor who knows what he’s talking about. Turns out I have a macular hole. What’s a macula and how did it get a hole? The macula is a tiny spot (pinhead size) in the back of your eye in the retina. It focuses your vision. How did it tear? See, they’re not sure. It could be age, or being extremely nearsighted or it could be the night I slammed my head into Kell’s bunk bed and knocked myself unconscious. (Seriously, don’t get bunk beds.) Of course I could be the only person in history who blinded herself with a bunk bed!

Okay so what are they going to do? Here’s the amazing part–they’re going to stick a needle in my eye and suck out the vitreous gel (yeah, that’s the goop that fills your eye and gives it shape). No, they really are. Then they’re going to zap the macula with a laser. After that they’re going to put a gas bubble in my eye. Yeah, I know, but it gets worse.

I have to be flat on my face for five days until the hole heals. (with hourly 10 minute breaks). Trust, if I had ANY other options this wouldn’t even be in the top ten of solutions because it sounds like some POW camp experimentation shit.

Good news is that with a lot of luck I should be finished with Raspberry Sorbet before my surgery on February 5th. It’s hard to write with one eye but I really want to get this book out.

Apparently my eye will look like unholy hell for weeks. One YouTuber called it a ‘zombie eye’. I have to admit, that part sounds hella cool and y’all know I WILL post pictures because I’m a drama queen like that. Apparently I can go back to work after two weeks.

That’s all for now. As always, thank you for your patience. And if you are so moved pray for me to whatever deity or belief system you subscribe to. I’m a pluralist I’ll take good wishes in the spirit in which they were intended.