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Friday, June 11, 2010

It Happens in a Blink of an Eye

Except in my case, it doesn’t.

Now that I am on the other side of Wednesday, I’ll admit that the April visit to the eye doctor scared me. During that appointment, no matter what combination of lenses he held in front of my eyes, the doctor was unable to correct my vision, so he sent me down the hall for a test I’d never had before. When the tech handed him my results, a printout covered with bright oranges and reds, they both left the room in a hurry. I may be vision impaired, but the look on the doctor’s face was crystal clear. “Houston, we have a problem.”

Returning to the room, he treaded lightly on a (serious) term Keratitis, finishing with: “We won’t worry about that yet,” and sent me home for six weeks of rest and NO EYE RUBBING. After a nasty 24 hours dwelling on every way in which I rely on my eyesight, I packed my worry into a box of denial and waited for my June 9 appointment.

Wednesday I learned that I do NOT have permanent damage to my corneas. My (correctable) vision has returned. "What we have here, is a failure to blink properly."

Who knew there was any other way?

As a result, my eyes remain chronically dry, which temporarily (thank God) changed the shape of the corneas and altered my vision. Assured that the condition is manageable, I submitted to squirts of yellow dye into my eyes, additional drops that stung, examinations under ultra-violet lights and a video of my “blink,” before scheduling a series of follow up appointments with a cheerful receptionist and heading home.

With two hours to kill before my train and the sun warming a clean spring day, I decided to walk across town to the train station, strolling down tree-lined Commonwealth Avenue, past the towering arches of Boston Public Library. Trekking around the vendors lining the edge of Copley Plaza, I crossed Arlington Street into the cool shade of the Public Garden, stopping to watch a gaggle of kids climb onto a swan boat at the lagoon.

Along the way, I entertained myself by smiling at the people who approached me and guessing who would acknowledge me (worker-bees no, tourists, yes). Climbing the inclines of Boston Common, past bronze statues and school children playing an earnest game of Duck, Duck, Goose, I veering through the early lunch crowd at Downtown Crossing and made it to South Station in time to chat with a woman at a pretzel push-cart from whom I purchased a snack before jumping on my train. Upon arrival at my stop, I drove to the supermarket, conversed with the cashier as I purchased milk and returned to my house.

There I caught a look in the mirror.

Folks, those stinging drops back at the doctor's office? Well they must have been blue, because as you know, yellow and blue make green and that’s what color goop had leaked out my eyes, dribbled and dried all the way down to my chin. This was the lovely makeup I wore as I scheduled my additional eye appointments (thank you for telling me receptionist) purchased coffee at Starbucks, grinned like a mad-woman at about a billion people throughout the streets of Boston, yakked to a pretzel vendor and chattered to the clerk at Stop & Shop. You betcha New Englanders are a closed-mouth bunch. In over three hours, no one said a thing.

Do you think if I blink hard enough, say, like Elizabeth Montgomery in Bewitched, I could make that little block of history disappear?

Oh, I forgot. I don’t know how.

Anyone care to match that embarrassing moment of the week?


Sharon said...

Besides the great news that you have a treatable condition (HOO RAY), most of the people will likely not remember anything else about you BUT the lovely trail of neon tears. Funny story. Thanks. And, I'm really happy about your good news.

Tamika: said...

I agree with Sharon- neon tears sounds is as striking as you can get!

I'm so happy that nothing serious is affecting your eyes- amen!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Yay for a non-scary eye condition! I'm so glad it isn't serious and is treatable.
Think of all the stories you generated with your green tears--you won't believe what I saw today, a mermaid!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

The good news about your eyes is wonderful!
And what are you going to do - cry? Enjoy a good laugh thinking of all the people you freaked out on Wednesday.

rose said...

isn't it great about your eyes? YES, IT'S A CUTE story. following Follow Friday 40 and over. have a good weekend. rose

Robin said...

What a relief about your eyes. I am trying to imagine what the kids playing Duck Duck Goose were thinking about the green tears. Think of the stories told around the dinner tables all over Boston that night. ::Totally awesome::

Blackberry Cottage said...

This had to be so scary! Glad it turned out well - and that you can smile a bit about the whole ordeal!

Stopping by from Follow Friday 40 and Over - and now following! Looking forward to getting to know you better!

Anonymous said...

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Helen Ginger said...

Liza, your story had me howling. I am totally sorry it happened to you, but I am quite glad you shared. If you go in again to that doctor, I would tell him what happened so maybe they won't let someone else walk out like that.

Straight From Hel

Maribeth said...

Next trip to town, look around.I bet you'll spot some kids with painted neon tears. What a fashion trend!
Glad that your eyes are ok Keep blinking.

Giggles and Guns

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

How terrifying! I'm so glad it turned out okay. :0)

Jon Paul said...

Too funny! Glad your eyes are fine, even if they garnered some unexpected attention on your homeward journey.

Pam Houghton said...

That reminds me of the time I smiled and laughed with whole bunch of parents and the school counselor, one-on-one, at the middle school one night, with little bits of ice cream cone stuck to my teeth. Too bad I didn't bother to check the mirror on our way to the school from the local Dairy Queen.

Nishant said...

I'm so happy that nothing serious is affecting your eyes
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