Caution: Tedious Health Adventure Update
I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had white bubbles in my iris. Well, I didn't. I had white bubbles on my cornea over my iris. After talking to a couple of doctors on the phone...well maybe 3 if you count email...I went to the ER on a Sunday afternoon, expecting to be sucked into the vortex of waiting around at Lester Naval Hospital forever. We weren't able to be sure that it wasn't something like a corneal ulcer, which is kind of a big deal.
After a few unpleasant minutes waiting in the waiting room/vomitorium with sick and grotesquely injured people (one guy had his toes crushed when he was trying to load something into a car. I heard him describing it on the phone--"One of my big toes is, like, flat." I won't describe it further.), doing the walk of shame with a precious bodily fluid sample through the waiting room--couldn't they send you to another bathroom, or at least give you a paper bag?--and proving to the triage nurse that my eyes should have belonged to a fighter pilot, even after a week of infection: this sentence is so convoluted at this point that I don't know what punctuation to use in place of that colon or how to continue/end it.
After all of those things, I was actually seen pretty quickly, got my eye dyed and a cursory slit lamp exam, had the doctor try to wipe off the bubbles with an overgrown Q-tip--he practically muttered, "Out, damn spot!--and was told that he was going to call the optometrist. They mentioned the dreaded bacterial infection eating my eye again, although it seemed unlikely because bacterial corneal ulcers apparently come with "boring" pain and I am intensely grateful to announce that I have never experienced boring pain in my eye. Still, they gave me antibiotic drops and an appointment at 7:30AM at optometry the next morning. With a Lieutenant So-and-so.
Um...optometry? Lieutenant? I really hate to be a doctor snob, but I officially am one. I already have a standing date with ophthalmology (and I can spell it), so I was hoping they'd just send me there. But I decided to meekly jump through their hoops, and it actually worked out just fine without too much wasted time.
I showed up at 7:45 in optometry, trying not to announce with my attitude that I don't engage in lieutenant-level medical problems. LT Optometrist was nice, seemed competent enough, and best of all was not shy about saying that he had no clue what was going on. And, of course, he wanted to show me off to his optometrist friends. And his wife who used to fit people with contacts but now works in the lab. This is what happens 58% of the time I go to the doctor with a new problem-- "Hey, guys, come look at this!" I'm happy to oblige. Sure, you can take a picture. Sure, invite the janitor in to have a gander too. Have him bring his janitor kids. (That's a joke from a TV show--I'm not heartless.)
By 8:30 they sent me packing to ophthalmology. Ophthalmologist squeezed me in and added steroid drops to the antibiotic drops. (Just for the record, every single time I go to the doctor I get antibiotics or steroids. This is what happens when your immune system is psycho--it has to be beaten into submission, then petted and encouraged, then beaten back again when it bites.) Then we monitored and waited. I had daily appointments for a while, now we're down to weekly. His (and the second opthalmologist's--yes, I'm a double-ophthalmologist patient!--conclusion was that it was just some weird autoimmune thing that seems to have stopped progressing. I have a sort of crater over my iris but hidden under my upper lid if you look closely, and my cornea has thinned just a little bit there, and there's no damage to my vision that we can tell (the drops make my eyes blurry, so hopefully that's just that).
So, thanks for your interest and prayers. This should be the last you hear of it. And if you've read through this much of my medical navel-gazing...well, I'm a little embarassed.
*I engaged in this bit of narcissism when prepping my costume for our Egypt-themed VBS over a year ago. Not sure why I immortalized it on "film". Of course, running on Martha Standard Time (MST), I was too late every morning to do anything other than slap on extra eyeliner. And sometimes too late even for that. My costume came out looking like an eisa drummer anyway.
**Yes, my appointment was at 7:30. This was sort of an MST issue and sort of not. In my rushing out the door, I went to grab my ID card from where it was perched on the edge of my dresser. Yes, it was nearly obscured by the jewelry, half-worn clothes, tickets from Hong Kong, hairbrushes, and anything I was trying to keep out of Eva's reach. But I knew exactly where it was. Except it wasn't there. A hasty call to work revealed that the Pater Familias had seen it there, decided that I had lost it, and put it in his pocket to take it downstairs and hand it to me pointedly. But it never made it out of his shorts pocket and was buried in his pile of half-worn clothes on the other side of the room. Thankfully I know him well enough to call him at work and ask him where he'd put it.***
***No, it's not easy living in our house.