Sunday, March 27, 2011

[Working On] Getting My Groove Back

Last week I went back to work. Back to the elementary school, back to piano lessons, back to forty hours teaching children. All of this with my surgical eye recuperating and having three weeks off because of the eye issue- so with 2+2 equaling 4, I've been exhausted. Working and not seeing properly causes more strain than I realized. To think I was doing my everyday thing for over three weeks with impaired vision and dismissing it- gah! How silly was I??


I shouldn't be driving, but, I have been. Scary stuff! Depth perception is an awesome, awesome thing- especially when you don't have it. Don't worry, I drive as little as possible and as slow as possible without being annoying of course. I have to wear sunglasses in the classrooms I work in because as my pupil can't dilate properly causing the bright light and me aren't good friends. I get splitting, throbbing headaches otherwise (I won't go into how I found this out). I've been reassured this is part of the recovery process, but, while it could be a lot worse, I'm ready to get it over with.


This Wednesday I go back to the surgeon/opthamologist to see how well my eye is healing. I'm hoping I can go back to dancing, I would like to compete at a feis at the end of April. I'm hoping that the gas bubble with be gone and I can see normally or close to normal-ish. And I really hope the cataract that I will inevitably get (could happen now, could happen in 2 years) hasn't developed so my plans to visit Europe may happen (I've lost so much work thanks to the blizzard and this, I lost nearly all of the funds needed to do go). Mainly, I want to get back to some normalcy and to not feel so tired all of the time.


Sorry about the whiny entry. I haven't seen correctly since the end of January. While I am beyond grateful my eye was fixed before I went blind, the recovery process feels so slow! I'm ready to move on and get my life back to normal. So, so ready.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

St. Patty's Day Blues

Well, tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day... and I'm sad. Why? I'm an Irish dancer who has been [medically] unable to dance! Already, there have been two performances my dance school has done and where was I? Stuck at a home with a bum eye and a weak ankle. Sorry for the pity party, but, this has really bummed me out. To top it off, I won't be going out tomorrow hitting the pubs or anything fantastically St. Patty's Day-esque. I won't be in a parade, or seeing a parade, won't go to the new 3-D Lord of the Dance premiere (something to do with only seeing with one eye is nauseating enough at times, add 3-D and I'll be a mess!) and so on.
So, if you are going to have some St. Patrick's Day fun, think of me. Have a drink, holler louder, and have a little bit more fun (not about to get in jail fun though!) for me okay? Just don't do anything that would cause you or someone else great harm alright? Not like I think you will, just wanted to put that disclaimer out there. ;-)

Monday, March 14, 2011

And There Was Rejoicing.. And Other Thoughts

Today is the first day I can have my head up and look around.! I haven't been awake, but, two hours this morning and I already feel like I'm functioning better. I will say my neck is pretty stiff and achy so a trip to my chiropractor will definitely be needed. Still, I'm thrilled to bits. My eye is still swollen, but, better. I can't see a lot out of if- hardly anything is clear. And the gas bubble inserted in my eye during surgery has made it's way down so things are like looking through a very fuzzy fishbowl.
I'm housesitting again this spring break, but, not Jon's sister's house like before. What can I say? They had a better deal. They pay more, have less for me to do, I really like them and their dog, and I'm closer to Jon which makes things very convenient as I do like to see him and he's my 'personal chef'. It was a win-win all the way around.
On a not so happy note, a lot of my thoughts have been on Japan since Friday. Thank goodness my friends who are there are all accounted for and well. I may have not had a great experience in Japan when I lived there as an exchange student, but, my heart has been aching at every picture, video and report I see, hear or read. Pictures of people after such disasters are always quite upsetting, but, when it's from a place you have lived in one's heart aches in a different way. I really don't know how to describe it, but, seeing the pictures of the Japanese people crying in the rubble, the dazed and sad looks, I dunno... it's as if I understand that pain more because I know 'them' better. Again, it's difficult to describe, so that may not make much sense. Anywho, if you can donate I ask that you do. Even though Japan has an infrastructure to be able to deal with this disaster better than non-developed countries there is still a LOT of help needed. A friend provided this link via Facebook and hopefully there is an organization that you feel comfortable supporting. Arigatou!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

So I Had Surgery...

Sorry I've been a little absent lately! This whole keeping one's head down business is not condusive to reading a whole lot. In fact, most of my interneting is down via my iPhone right now. But, I'm back for a bit getting pictures uploaded and a readers digest version of Thursday posted for all to enjoy.
Aren't you excited? ;-)

Surgery was last Thursday and I must say, despite the whole having to have surgery, the experience was very positive. Leo hung out with me in my pre-op room, which helped keep me very calm. Jon and his mother were there so I wouldn't be uber bored. The nurses and staff were kind and funny. Couldn't ask for a better set up!

Tell me... how could I be freaking out with that face laying on my lap?
My surgery lasted around an hour and a half. My amazing doctor, Dr. S, went into my eye with tiny instruments, took my ocular fluid out and placed a gas bubble in there which pushed my retina back into place. Then he peeled some membranes inside my eye to put things in a better position (so hopefully this won't happen again), and then went in with a 'cold laser' and sealed the holes that were created before and after my retina decided not to stick to the wall. Apparently, I had over 20 holes!! He told Jon his all time record was 23, but, I learned later that Dr. S simply stopped counting after he hit 20. So I may have beaten his record.
I know, it's weird I care, but, it's the little things that carry you through the whole, "Holy crap I just had surgery" ordeal.

Post-op was a bit bumpy as we discovered morphine and Megan do not mix well- at all. The nurses were fantastic at giving me enough anti-nausea meds to help with that. I wasn't rushed out the door, in fact I left probably an hour later than planned because the medicine made me rather sleepy and they wanted to make sure I was relatively conscious before I left. My eye hurt for sure, but, the pain didn't bug me nearly as much as the nausea/throwing up biz did. I was very apologetic about the whole deal according to Jon and I also managed to be polite! Oh and I insisted on pictures lol. Because, these things are important after one has had their eye violated with needles and lasers.

So now I'm on day five of recovery. I have been a bit uncomfortable, but, nothing that has caused me great distress. The animals are being really sweet and gentle and Jon's caretaker abilities are exemplary! As I said, the whole head down deal isn't fun- at all. I have to use mirrors on the couch and on a massage chair so I can watch tv and keep my head down. Jon says I look like I'm praying a lot. Overall, things have been going well! Dr. S checked my eye yesterday and was very happy with how it's healing. I have to keep my head down for five more days and after that I can start returning to a more normal life.
Thank you all for the kind words, good thoughts, and support! I really think they helped make this whole ordeal go really smoothly for me. I'll be back to reading and posting more regularly as my recovery allows. Shouln't be much longer. Love you guys!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Eye Update aka Action Plan

I know most of you are probably rather sick of me mentioning how broken I am! lol I promise I'll be back together and at it in no time. I went in to see a retinal specialist this morning, Dr. S. I didn't know if I was going to have surgery today or not, but, was told just in case they do to not have anything to eat or drink after midnight. Let me tell ya, not exactly a fun was to start the day. But, hey gotta do what you gotta do.
So I went in, got my pupils dilated once again (blech), then met with the doctor who looked at my eyes. At first he didn't make much sense. Holes? Degene...wha??? He reassured me that he'd explain everything in after he talked with his nurse and began making notes in my chart. He was penciling what was wrong with my eye on an eye diagram, when I heard the nurse say something to this effect, "Wow... I don't see you draw in like that." Which meant some bad mojo was up. You never wanna hear nurses or docs say stuff like that. Just my two cents here.
Turns out yes I do have retinal detachment, about half of it (180 degrees of my eye) isn't where it needs to be. To top it off the inside of my eye is riddled with holes due to my retina pulling away. If I didn't get surgery to fix the detachment I'd go blind in my eye. If I didn't get the holes repaired I would have a detachment occur again. Surgery is the only option to fix both of these problems. I will go under anesthesia and Dr. S will go in, take out fluid in my eye and fill it with a gas bubble which will push the eye back into position. After that he'll cold laser the holes shut so I won't have this problem in the near future. Obviously there are some risks, I'm likely to get cataracts in 2-10 ish years because of the gas coming into contact with my lens. There is also no guarantee I will recover all of my vision. I may get lucky and get it all or most back. But,at the very, very least this surgery will prevent me from complete vision loss in my right eye.
Thursday is surgery day. Tomorrow I go in and get all my pre-op blood work, chest x-ray, blah blah stuff done. This has been one crazy ride! Fortunately, this eye issue is being addressed and is fixable. The recovery is 10 days keeping my eyes in a downward position (to keep the bubble in place) and about two weeks of doing a whole lot of nothing. As long as everything heals up as it needs to that will be all I have to deal with. I'm missing loads of work which is going to be financially stressful, but, I'm trying to keep my chin up as I've been through much worse in terms of financial hardship. My bosses are all aware of the situation and promising not to give me the boot. They are being incredibly supportive. The doctor's office is being great and handling all the insurance stuff.
I'm really lucky this is going so smoothly. Keep your fingers crossed it keeps going that way!