You know what sucks? Waking up blind in one eye, out of nowhere.
It happened to me, in May, in San Francisco. Because nothing makes a romantic vacation better than a medical emergency, am I right?
So we found a retina clinic, post haste. Turned out I had a hemorrhage overnight, which caused my eye to fill with blood. The blood was too plentiful and dark to see through. (No, I didn’t cry tears of blood. Though that would have been fucking bad-ass.)
The doctor suspected that one of my 3 implants (2 glaucoma valve tubes and a slow-release steroid pellet) had rubbed against something and caused the hemorrhage. Not really a big deal, in the grand scheme. The blood would settle over the next week or so; my vision would get better; I could go on with my vacation and be merry. But he wanted me to visit my specialist when I got home, for follow-up.
If you know me, you know that for the past 17 years I’ve lived with an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation in my eyes, which is dangerous and blinding if left unmitigated. Over the 17 years I’ve had this disease, I’ve been treated with drops, injections, chemotherapy (which affected my fertility), lasers, and 17 surgeries (as of tomorrow).
Yup. I’m having eye surgery tomorrow. And, I had surgery just two weeks ago too. JEALOUS?
Turned out, when I went to my local doctor for a follow-up on the hemorrhage situation, we discovered that my disease had come roaring out of remission, and I had significant swelling in my macula, which is probably what rubbed against my glaucoma tube and caused the bleeding. I needed the steroid implant replaced, so it could control the swelling and keep the inflammation at bay. It had run out of medicine early.
And since the implant in my left eye is only 4 months older than the one in my right, he advised that we replace it now, too, to minimize the chances that I’ll have the same problem in a few months, and need surgery too close to my wedding to allow my eye to recover.
So, this month… the eyes have it. 2 surgeries in 2 weeks.
But, on the bright side, once it’s all over, I should be good for another 3 years or so. Knock wood.
Also, on the bright side, PAINKILLERS.
Here’s looking at you!