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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

hurry up and wait...

Okay, so today has turned out well in the end and we’re going ahead with the eye surgery on September 8th. Thank goodness, because I don't think I could wait until November. Driving & functioning with an eye-patch -- even a stylish one -- is draining & more difficult than it appears!

There was a lot of debate this morning at UCSF with one of the technicians about whether or not the tests she was performing would have enough time to properly measure my eyes for surgery. To start my day, I had to wait over an hour for the technician to realize that I was waiting for my appointment, then I was told that the test wouldn’t be accurate because I was supposed to go 3-weeks without my contacts in both of my eyes (I had taken out my left contact only for 1 week, as I had been instructed). If I indeed need to wait two more weeks to do the scan, I would miss my surgery. And the surgeon’s schedule has only a tentative gap in October. The only definite choice is to wait until his next appointment in November. Boo.

The scan today was to measure my current lens in my eye via ultrasound so they could make sure they have the correct replacement lens in-stock for my surgery. Apparently although a Toric contact lens is technically a soft lens, it changes the shape of my cornea, which could give them an incorrect reading. For obvious reasons, the surgeon needs as accurate a reading as possible, because once the replacement lens goes in, it’s in. We had much discussion about whether or not the three weeks measurement is absolutely necessary, whether both eyes need three weeks (both of which alternatives would cause my surgery to be moved), whether they could do the scan the day of surgery (my preference), whether coming in next week would make a difference (only 2 weeks w/o a contact in my left eye & one week w/o a contact in my right eye), etc. My concern was making sure the lens is accurately measured & available the day of surgery. Dr. McLeod was in with patients, so I had to wait a bit more before the ultrasound technician and his surgical consultant, Maricris, could speak with him for his opinion. Fortunately the initial scan revealed that my lens is fairly standard, so they do not have to special order a lens to fit. And Dr. McLeod said we can do the scan the day of my surgery, I just have to come in early. Yeah! I love it when things come together! So we are proceeding with my eye surgery on September 8th.

A lot of people are asking how I’m doing? And honestly, I think I’m doing pretty well, all things considered. I'm in a good space emotionally & physically (despite the headaches). I also think I'm doing well because I dealt with the fear of going blind so many years ago when the champagne cork accident first occurred. Plus, the myriad of daily headaches & physical strain have been so intense, that I'm eager to get this over with.

My most difficult part recently was when one doctor said she couldn't adjust my vision & I would have to settle for not seeing. THAT was a bad day because I was thinking I was going blind based on an earlier doctor's prediction. Then I decided not to take that as fact & started digging further & got hooked-up with the right doctors. Thanks again to all of my friends who helped me find the right specialists through their networking efforts! Now I'm actually excited to have the eye surgery! I'd much rather have a bionic eye than lose my vision; who wouldn't!?! ;-)

A lot of people have also been asking if I’m scared? Honestly, I’m not afraid at all. Perhaps I should be, however I’m not! I feel positive and hopeful. I figure my surgeon is a type-A personality who likes challenges, right!?! While your (healthy) eyes are boring to him, I’m banking on the fact that he LOVES that mine is a mess. Type-A’s are by nature competitive, and like to rise-to-the-occasion. So he can be my guest to open it up & get ‘under-the-hood’ and do his thing!! I've seen three specialists and four surgeons who specialize in retinal & corneal stuff at UCSF, so I feel really confident with the whole thing, and particularly with Dr. McLeod. I’m not allowing myself to be afraid of what ‘could’ go wrong. Right now I’m too focused on staying positive and being healthy in all aspects of my life.

Thanks to everyone for their encouragement & support. And a million thanks to Nina Morse & Bradd Haley for helping me get safely to-and-from the hospital for all this testing!

Onward & upward! ;-)

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