To say that the last couple of weeks were not an adventure would be a lie. One Thursday I went to work, just like I normally do. I had noticed some wonky things with my eyesight and decided to call the eye doctor, just for a quick check. By 10am I was out of his office and into an eye surgeons office and by 11am, I was scheduled for surgery bright and early the next morning.
Surgery was pretty much a non event. I enjoyed watching the surgeon use a straw-like vacuum to suck out all those floaties that had veiled my vision for months causing me to need excessive amounts of light. See ya later alligators, as my grandson would say! The nausea afterwards was no fun, probably caused by the 2 hour car ride with my head leaning forward staring at my toes. I am a little prone to car sickness and believe me, no food for 24 hours mingled with some happy juice and a long car ride was working it's magic. Even the stop halfway home for some ginger ale and something to put in my stomach didn't help.
Once arriving at home, two boxes bigger than I am, and that's sayin' something there, were unpacked of all kinds of weird equipment to keep me face down for the next 5 days.
This little number became my best friend. Mine came complete with a tray which held snacks, my journal and some good reading material. It also had a mirror system that enabled me to see someone's face if they were standing in front of the chair. That really helped in making me feel part of the world while I was locked in this half-blind face down cocoon. I'm not a big tv watcher, but the Waltons were never so appealing to me as they were those 5 days. Of course, my husband preferred to bend over upside down and stick his face under the headrest where mine was peeking out. His antics and funny faces did help lighten the mood at just the right and needed times. Since the pad and head rest they gave me to ensure comfort while sleeping face down was more like a medieval torture machine, I endured the nights with the help of youtube and the scripture downloads I have on my phone and then during the day I cat napped in this chair. Fortunately my fears of needing a plastic table cloth under the chair to catch all the drool did not materialize. Save the carpet!
There was also an assortment of pillows for my face, a large square form block with an apparatus for a face pillow to use while riding in the car. It really helped on those long trips back to the hospital for post surgical checkups. My favorite thing though was my husbands strong arm that I clung to when he took me on walks outside. Having to bend over and put your chin to your chest does leave you vulnerable to storm drains and parked cars. He gently guided me around them several times a day because quite honestly, being confined in that head cushion for 50 minutes out of every hour for 5 whole days tends to make one a little stir crazy!
Okay, now you're probably wondering why I titled this baseballs, pirate patches and Mr. Bubble. Well, eventually I didn't have to be face down all the time. Now I am allowed to sleep on my side or on my stomach, but this time I can turn my head to the side. I cannot, however sleep on my back, lean back in a recliner, fly in an airplane or go anywhere with a significant increase in altitude. This is due to Mr. Bubble who now resides in the back of my eye for the next couple of months. The doctor put him there so that when I laid on my stomach he would rise to the top and put pressure on my newly glued on retina. Over time he will dissipate but for now he is a constant irritation. Every time I blink, he jiggles. When I walk, he jiggles. As I turn my head he floats from top to bottom and side to side in my eye as gravity dictates. Unlike the Mr. Bubble I knew as a child, who gave me many hours of bubbly fun in the bathtub, this Mr. Bubble is a bit unnerving because it's the only thing I can see out of my eye at present. He also gives me occasional moments of terror when I wake at night forgetting that I'm temporarily blind in one eye. It's a good thing I don't have heart trouble! He gives new meaning to night terrors!
Because Mr. Bubble is not allowed certain places in my eye, thus the warning not to lay on my back or look heavenward, I have taken to sleeping with baseballs in the back of my pajamas. Believe me, when you roll on one of those babies in the middle of the night, it wakes you up! So far, this seems to be the only thing that successfully keeps me off my back and reminds me to turn over in a stomach-ward direction. I did receive Kudos from the Dr.'s office for my ingenuity.
After a week, I was released to resume all regular activity, which includes work. Staring at a computer screen and various types of purchase orders when all you can see is light and dark out of one eye sure strains my good eye, so I have to wear an eye patch. The only color I could find was black. After bemoaning the fact that I already look like I'm turning into a zombie with one regular eye and one hyper dilated, blood shot eye, now I had to add a black pirate patch to the mix. Fortunately for me, I have very creative friends who decided that black was just not my color. So they covered it with a pretty blue/purple paisley print. It makes me feel much better about wearing it now!
So there it is folks. My life over the last two weeks. And my life over the next 4-6 weeks as well. But when it's all said and done, I'd rather be able to see with both eyes than to sleep on my back. I'm funny that way!