Sunday, June 13, 2010
and the summer is just beginning
So Friday, my right eye, apparently not having anything better to do, and bored with coordinating with my left eye, decided to tear a little hole in the retina and fill my eye with a medley of interesting blobs. Nothing was discussed with me beforehand, which is the usual case with my body parts. They just decide to bollocks up what was a perfectly fine and ordinary day with something dramatic, and then sit back and snigger while i go dashing off to the emergency room to get things righted again. This time, though, my right eye had a little help. About three weeks ago, I contracted some weird virus that settled in my lungs (a repeat of last year) and gave me pneumonia (thank you, lungs. i wouldn't even know of your existence, if it weren't for that periodic pneumonia). It was the dramatic and violent coughing that created a jealousy situation in the right eye. It waited quietly until I went to bed, waited quietly until my next wretched coughing fit, then neatly made a little rip in the retina. I saw a flash of light, which is not uncommon for me. I generally view flashing lights as an entertaining sign from the universe that i am overworking. I pulled the pillow over my face, watched the light show for a while, said "Cool" and fell asleep. Next morning the lights were replaced by a weird black Halloween spider sort of configuration. Since we're mid-June, and Halloween isn't traditionally until October, this raised my suspicions. Still, I went off to perform some some Satur-ly weekend chores. There were more flashing lights, ominous clouds, weird blurs and fashionable black dots, apparently seen only by me. I may have mentioned it once or twice to whomever i was sharing the day with, after which i was whisked off to the emergency room at Westchester Hospital where i was given a sonogram of the eye. After peeling off the sonogram patch and most of my right eyebrow, the ER doc notified the opthamologist on call who immediately called me back, mostly to convince me that she didn't need to make the "it'll take me hours and hours" drive from Manhattan where she lived, to Westchester (for you non-New Yorkers, it's about half an hour) and proceeded to give me a phone diagnosis without even the benefit of looking at the sonogram. Talented, that one. But she did warn me to watch for a black curtain draping across the eye, black only, nothing flamboyant, no paisley, no tacky floral prints, just your basic black. This would indicate, besides impending blindness, that the retina was getting detached, and we didn't want that. Could she reccommend a retinal specialist? Um, not really, she didn't know of any. Could she reccommend an opthalmic surgeon in case the retina decided to secede? Um, no not really. Apparently she had done her residency in a total vacuum. We hung up and she went back to bed, firmly convinced she had elevated the art of practicing medicine to even higher than usual standards, while introducing new levels of compassionate healing. I went home, waiting in dread for black drapes while my eye, satisfied it had gotten its fair due of attention, lay there smugly in my head, flashing away until we both fell asleep.