Big Letters

This is the keyboard for my work computer. With my low vision it was a beast seeing those tiny letters. Got these stickers from Amazon and they’re very effective. I love them like damn and whoa. They come with a light and some tweezers. The ink goes all the way through so they’re supposed to last three years.

So Where Am I Now?

I’ve had both cataract surgeries. Unfortunately I’ve had a couple complications with the macular hole eye (Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!) I’ve developed cloudiness behind that lens that’s something like the original cataract. Fortunately that can be zapped with a laser and should be okay. However, I have a problem with major imflammation in that eye as well, so it’ll be a while before I can get my new glasses. Yeah, I had ‘zombie eye’ again. My kids were horrified! I was supposed to get them last week, and that’s not happening. So, I still can’t see, and writing isn’t a thing that’s happening anytime soon. I can’t wait! I can work, and am grateful that I can work from home. I do have to take frequent breaks as my eyes tire easily. Hopefully that will ease up.

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.

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.

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.