SOONER OR LATER WE ALL DRY UP

SOONER OR LATER WE ALL DRY UP

Have you ever had a a pain or some other medical discomfort that began on a Friday night or over the weekend?  We’re not talking heart attack here, not the kind of thing that has you running to the ER.  Rather, something you must suffer through alone, because your doctor’s office is CLOSED.

One Friday evening I noticed the TV picture was blurry.  I figured my eyes were tired.  But, the next day, while getting a pedicure, I realized I could not make out the facial features of a woman seated not 30 feet away.  Hmmmm.

Once home, I took a “selfie”  eye test, covering first my right eye and then the left, while viewing a picture.  The vision in my left eye appeared to be fine, but with the right, it seemed as if I was looking at something under water.  Thinking I was wearing my contacts too long, I traded them for glasses.  Then, took the same selfie test with the same results.  By evening, the eye was red and I had a headache.  What could this be?  That’s when I made two huge mistakes.

MISTAKE #1  DO NOT GET ON THE INTERNET TO DIAGNOSE YOURSELF.

I, of course,  googled blurry vision and found a specific selection for “blurry vision in one eye.”

MISTAKE #2  NEVER READ DIAGNOSES UNLESS YOU ARE A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL

It was Saturday night, and it seemed I could have  macular degeneration, a brain tumor, cancer of the eye or an aneurysm.

There is a rule, that states:  “things always seem worse at night, particularly if you are alone.”  You may be the most positive person on earth,  but in situations such as this, the mind goes straight for drama.  I focused on the prognosis grim.  Yes, I was going blind, or dying or both.

By Monday morning, my head ached, my eye hurt and my vision was worse.  The eye doctor’s office opens at 9:00 am.  I was on the phone at 8:30.  Fortunately someone was there and I got an afternoon appointment.  I was convinced I would be told to go straight to the hospital.  “Should I pack a bag?”

Upon arrival at the office, the doctor asked several questions, then gave a thorough exam.  He left for a minute, returning with an associate.  “OMG, he needed to consult with another doctor.  This is serious!”

Another exam and then the diagnosis.  I had keratoconjunctivitis which in lay terms means that I had inflammation of the conjunctiva, a moist membrane covering the outer surface of the eye.  Only mine wasn’t so moist.  “You have dry eye syndrome,”  he said. Funny, I didn’t see that on the internet.

So, I wasn’t going blind, or close to death.  Glad I didn’t bring a packed bag.  What a relief.

But, I needed to know why this happened so asked the doctor, “What would cause this to come on so suddenly?”

As he walked out of the room, I heard his reply, “Sharon, sooner or later we all dry up!”

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4 thoughts on “SOONER OR LATER WE ALL DRY UP

  1. Poor baby! Really related to your latest post! Our MD warned my family (and probably all his other patients) NOT TO READ MEDICAL WEBSITES. They can and will convince anyone they’ve got 10 minutes to live!

    When I worked at Barnes & Noble as a bookseller/cashier in the pre-Amazon 90’s, I woke up one morning with red itchy teary icky eyes. Figured it was just my allergies, so I took an antihistamine and went into work. The manager took one look at me and say, “You’ve got pink eye! Go home and call your eye doctor!”

    Pink eye?? What the hell was that?! Wasn’t far from my MD’s office, so I just walked in, figuring they could fit me in eventually. Receptionist took one look at me and said, “You’ve got pink eye! Wait over there.” Translated: get away from all the decent upstanding citizens who practice proper hygiene.

    Doc saw me, like two minutes later. As you probably figured out, it was a common form of conjunctivitis, an affliction usually seen in preschools, daycare centers, and elementary schools, almost as popular as (yuck!) lice. I probably got it from handling money, then touching my face or eyes. Paper money is possibly the most germ-invested thing we can handle. Guess they don’t call it “filthy lucre” for nothing! Antibiotic drops took care of it in 2-3 days. As careful as I thought I was, still got it at least twice more in the five years I worked there. At least it wasn’t lice.

    Meredith brought lice home from preschool when she was two, but I’ll spare you the details.

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  2. Nice story-everything sure does seem worse at night!! I am reading a book in which some aging twins running a degenerating castle in England had 3 tests for aging, and if any of them were true they would consider themselves “old”. One was: if you have to sit down to get into your underwear. A second was: if you find yourselves talking about your ailments. I forget the third, but perhaps I might add forgetfulness and talking to oneself. Since I fail all those tests (or pass them, depending upon your point of view) I am decidedly in the “old” camp if these Brits are to be believed! Bro

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