Tuesday, 19 January 2010

stickler - vision

When I went back for the pre-op on the Tuesday the dark patch at the bottom of my vision was bigger, and when I mentioned that to the doctor he said that's what they would have expected, and I think he said that's whythey had postponed two other operations to fit me in the next day; I waasn't sure I'd haerd him right, as no one had been making a ig deal about it, but Iguess that's part of the system, and why should they alarm me, unless I'm trying to put the op off or not taking it seriously myself. On the Wednesday morning, the day of the op, the dar patch was covering tmore than half of my visionin that eye. I don't know if all they inspecting and exercising of the eye had sped up the process, or just whether that's how it happened to go.

For quite a while on the Wednesday morning I was the only person in the ophthalmic day care unit on the eighth floor, and I had a good view sitting by the window looking down on County Hall and Westminster Bridge in the snow and light traffic. By the time I left it was dark, of course. I have lost track of which days were particularly snowy and icy, as well as when other things happened in my health recovery. The days' experiences do tend to merge into one.

I remember early on in the vision I would see something likeconcentric raged circles, or quarter circles, as if the centre of teh circle was in the bottom left of my vision, in black and white; like a quarter of a tree trunk, perhaps. For the first few days Icouldn't see much out of the left eye either - the vision wasn't afffected, but it seemed quite sensitive to light and seemed hard to focus. The only thing I could really look at by way of reading for the fist few days was the radio listings, and then not for very long at all. I am more comfortable looking at the Radio Times now, and have started to read some emails and related websites, but nothing more substantial than that. I try not to be reading on the computer too long at a time. On the Friday afternoon after teh peration we watched Scrooge with Alastair Sim on DVD; well, the others watched it while I listened to it and had the very occasional peep for a couple of seconds at the screen, that was enough for me. On Monday I again 'watched' a couple of things we'd recorded, but they were very much things that I could listen to rather than watch. Monday was a day I felt a lot better, but didn't want to overdo it, and thought I might have by the end of the day. To put it in context though, feeling better meant that I actually spoke to someone on the phone, and overdoing it meant that I thought maybe I shouldn't have done that.

This last Sunday evening was significant, as I was getting a bit of a headache, and I realised it was from holiding my right eye shutwhile I had my left eye open. I realised that when I opened my left eye my body wanted naturally to open my right eye, and that was the first time that had happened since the operation. I don't know to what extent previously it had been the body protecting itself and keeping my eye wanting to be shut and to what extent it was because my eye was swollen or was painful if I opened the eye. Through that previous week the experience of vision in the right eye was probably developing from an undifferentiated grey to being aware of patches of light and dark - ie I could tell where the window or the light was. But when they tested my vision each time I was in the hospital , up until last Thursdaythere was still no way I could have said how many fingers the nurse was holding up; the first times, the Thursday and Tuesday say, I could seethe movement of shade against light if they waved their arm; I think the last time, on the Thursday, I might have been able to tell they were probably holding a hand up, even without moving it, but that might have been me experimenting since myself. Sometime in the middle of last week also I started to get a bit of sense of colour - I could see a red patch where the red blanket was, for example.

Later on Sunday evening I also realised that I could see the vague presence of my elelashes. And yesterday evening sitting at the table playing the guitar I realised I could see some specks in my vision. At first I thought I might be seeing something in my eye, some debris, but then I had an idea and moved my glasses slightly, and sure enough, what I was seeing was specks of dust on my glasses lens (these weren't tiny specks, of course; I hadn't had to be cleaning myglasses much since the op sine I wasn't really making use of them very much.

That's enough shut-eye typing for the moment. Not for the first time I appreciate learning to touch-type at the castle.