“There is a possibility of bleeding in your left eye. I am referring you to an eye specialist for further evaluation.”
This was the report by the doctor during a routine visit to the optometrist. Pryor to this visit, I had noticed a blur spot in that eye and reading had been more difficult. I felt scared at this information, for there is glaucoma-induced blindness in my immediate family history. Now, what was originally a routine eye exam became the opening scene for a painful and frightening experience.
A week later, I was in the office of the ophthalmologist who had been referred by the insurance company. Test after test, my eyes were examined and compared to one another. After 3 hours of endless exams, the doctor came in to the room and announced:
“There appears to be retinal bleeding in your left eye. I am referring you to an eye specialist for further evaluation.”
Looking at this doctor through dilated eyes, I queried “I thought that was what you were?”
“You need to see a specialist in this type of eye condition” he answered as he typed out instructions on the computer.
Two days later, I was in the chair of the second eye specialist; eyes dilated, as is the norm for any eye exam. It was early afternoon, and I had been confident I would be done before dark, so I drove myself.
After two hours of tests, and waiting, and tests and waiting, the handsome doctor compassionately looked into my eyes;
“You need an injection in the eyeball to stop the bleeding”
Sitting bolt upright in the examination chair, I responded in disbelief
“I need a WHAT in my WHAT?”
Twenty minutes later, a device that felt like a super-sized magnifying class had been wedged into my eye socket and I was unable to close that eye. Because the eye was dilated, this was painful as the ceiling light bounced off my exposed eyeball.
This was followed by several layers of anesthesia swabbed onto the eye, and an ointment that felt like Vaseline.
Through blurred vision, I still saw the injection coming and held my breath, but only felt pressure.
“There, it’s done.” The doctor declared as his assistant put away the equipment and washed up.
Whew! Glad that’s over!”
But it wasn’t. It stung as if boiling chemicals were pulsating inside my eyeball.
I was free to leave, but first needed to get antibiotic drops for the eye. It seemed an eternity waiting for that 5 ounce bottle of liquid when all I desired was to attach an ice pack to my eye and go home.
Home was 27 miles away and it was then dusk. My eye stung and vision was distorted due to the dilated eyes. Car lights appeared as starbursts, and traffic signals appeared as long green and red ribbons that reached to the hood of my car.
“God, please help me to safely get home” I prayed the entire trip.
Raising my arms into the sky as I walked into my home, I blurted out: Phew, Thank you God! It really is over!
And it was. The injection did its job, the bleeding stopped, and the blur spot shrunk. Phew. Praise God!
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